Thursday, June 19, 2014

Prague to Budapest - First Five Days

Greeting Earthlings!  I am popping up for a burst transmission from Hungary.  We have been many places since I last posted.  This will be a summation of several days.

June 15

We rode from Prague toward Telc.  Those of you paying attention will remember that we were in Telc on the first tour.  This time we rode from a different direction, so it was like a new ride for us.  This is somewhere in the Czech country side.  The poppies and the blue blooming things were just lovely.

This is the village where some of us ended our ride for the day  I didn't write it down in time, so its name is forever lost to me.  However, they did have a very nice church.

June 16

We rode in the area around Telc, up to an old castle.  Since it was Monday, it was closed.  All castles are closed on Mondays in the CZ.

Milano (driver) and Jiri (guide) had put together a Czech picnic.  In the foil are brie-like cheeses.  One leaves them near the fire to melt and cook some, and then you dump their golden oozing goodness onto salad.

There were also sausages, cooked on sticks, over the fire.  They, too, were very good.  You slice them a little so they don't explode when they start boiling on the inside.

June 17

We rode 45 miles through the country side to a beautiful hotel near the Czech and Austrian borders.  It was in a lovely setting next to a lake.  After dinner the group was taken out for wine tasting.  Jim and I decided to forgo the wine tasting in exchange for a restful evening.  Some of our party were worse for wear the next day.  We were pretty happy with our decision, the vintner was providing really big pours.

This was taken in the bar/cafe on the hotel grounds.  Bowling is popular in the CZ.  I would not have predicted this.

June 18

This was a very full day.  We were up and out to the castle in Lednice.  We were there with Alena, but on that visit we only visited the gardens.   This time we were able to go in.

It's a Lichtenstein castle; as you will recall they traveled extensively and brought back elements of other places that they liked.  The last major renovation of this castle was to turn it into a English hunting lodge style.  Look at the wood work.  This was all done by hand.

The spiral staircase is unbelievable.

After the castle tour we had a one hour van transfer to a bike path in Slovakia.  It was along an old border security force patrol road.  These are dragon's teeth - their purpose is to stop the movement of tanks. 

We rode about 28 miles, and then had another van transfer from Slovakia, through Austria, and into Hungary.  Traffic at the Austrian/Hungarian border was unbelievable.  We did not get in until 7 pm after 2.5 hours in the van.  We were tired.   This is the courtyard of our hotel.

June 19
We're in Sopron, Hungary.  It's a really old town in Hungary.  Like Trebon, it's a spa town.  It's also known as the world's capital of dentistry.  Due to their low rates, many people come here for dental work.  We were wondering about why we were seeing so many signs for dentists, many of whom specialize in implants.   After yesterday, Jim and I decided a break from the bike would be good.  Sopron is just cuter than a bug, so we decided to take the day and walk through town.
There is a church.  There is always a church.

It's just gorgeous inside.  Look at that.

I zoomed in on the angel.  I love the way her head tilts back and she reaches up.

This part of the world was part of the Roman Empire.  Jim is standing by the foundations of part of the Roman wall around the city, which was built in the 3rd century.  They built stuff to last.

These are fortifications.  The opening is a port through which weapons were discharged.  As technology changed, they would change the shape of the ports.

The old wall meanders through the Old Town.  Along the way we came across some excellent graffiti on a new wall.  This is Berlin before the wall came down.  I think it alludes to the divided neighborhoods.

This is the Brezhnev/Honeker kiss.   It became famous after being painted on the Berlin Wall.  The artist captured it well here.

Here we have an homage to Picasso.  He was not a favorite of the Communists.  If the taggers in Tucson could turn out work like this, we might stop calling them vandals, and call them artists instead.

So, now we are caught up.  Tomorrow we are up and out to a new location.  We have two more days of riding.  I think that will be enough for me on that bike.


  1. Great shots! Love the fancy spiral staircase and the fancy bowling alley! What a crack up they have a dental tourism area...just like Los Algodones Mexico...quite a bit cleaner and prettier though!

  2. just beautiful. I must inquire about this bike tour. Will try to email when you return