Posts tagged: holiday

Finally vacation

We finally managed to have a “real” vacation and since we both really needed to recharge our batteries, we went again to our favorite place: Denmark. This time we rented a holiday home a bit more north than we used to.

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Visit to Prague

Last week we took advantage of two free days and we went for a quick getaway to Prague. We left on thursday, we wanted to leave in the morning but it didn’t quite go as planned so we left a bit later in the day. But still, Prague is not that far from where we live and almost all the way is only autobahn so we got there in the afternoon.

That was not so bad in itself because the weather was rather bad that day, it rained a lot. So we only went a little bit to the city to look for some things at Tesco, one supermarket which is not present in Germany. Even though I did read a lot about this before, I still did the mistake of trying to park in the city center. That was a bad mistake, the timing was bad and traffic was horrible. We did find a place eventually but it was very annoying.

The next two days we had really beautiful weather. This time we parked some ways from the city center where parking was really cheap, at least compared to Germany (something like 60 cents per hour). And then we walked through the city. A LOT. We spent about 7-8 hours that day in the city and most of that was walking, except some breaks for food, stores and stuff. Even though we were kinda dead at the end of the day, we liked it a lot and it’s one of the best ways to actually “see” Prague.

The city is beautiful. Even though it also suffered some bombing from the americans during the 2nd world war, the damage was far less extensive in comparison to other cities which were bombed during that time. As a result one can see a lot of very beautiful old buildings in very good condition. You also see a lot of cobblestone roads which reminds of Bucharest, there are quite a few there too. But unlike Bucharest, Prague is a very clean city. It’s actually quite a lot cleaner than many German cities.

As prices go, Prague is in quite a lot of aspects cheaper than Germany. Food is cheaper, cigarettes are cheaper,  diesel/benzine  is the same, accommodation is much cheaper. As everywhere, you can pay hundreds of euros for a room if you really want to but the normal prices are much lower than in Germany. First night we stayed at a hotel closer to the city center for 55 € and second night we found another hotel, little bit farther from the center for only 39 €. That is for a double room, breakfast included. There is no way you find that anywhere in Germany, not in a city anyway.

On saturday, before we left for Germany, we went and visited one of the biggest flea markets in Prague. The place is huge indeed and we went there thinking we will  get loads of nice and cheap things. We did not, unfortunately. The flea market is big indeed but most of it is full of junk. I mean that’s what you usually find at flea market but here things were really junky.  So we were kinda disappointed with the whole huge flea market thingy. I did make some pictures though:

Anyway, overall it was really nice and we plan to go there again because there is a lot we haven’t seen. And of course, some of the pictures I made in the city:


 


Back from vacation

I am not dead, I was just gone in vacation and we came back this weekend. Unfortunately. As always, it was way too short and I wish we could’ve stayed at least another week.

As I was saying before, we spent a week on Römö, an island on the Denmark’s west coast. We were lucky this time, the holiday home we rented was much better than the last 2, and cheaper I might add. And on top of that we had beautiful weather, only sunny days and a temperature of 19C throughout the week. The house was kinda isolated which is exactly how we want it. Some pictures of it:

Besides the mattress which was slightly old and the shower area in the bathroom, which was slightly small, I would say that overall it was quite nice and it had pretty much everything we needed. And it had lots and lots of lights inside, the owner must’ve had some sort of light fetish. But I can’t really complain about that.

We didn’t do much during the week, which was the whole point of the vacation. We went there to get away from people and just relax. For couple of days we also rented 2 bikes from a local rental place. To my surprise and mild   annoyance, it was quite difficult to fit them both in the Passat, even with both backseats down. The space inside looked huge but .. it wasn’t. In any case, it was really nice. I haven’t rode on a bike in a very long time but like they say, this is not something you forget. I felt like a kid again. And after 3 days even my butt stopped hurting from the really hard seat. The rest of the time we just walked around, went through the woods, “climbed” on the highest hill on the island (which is like 19m or so) or just soaked up the sun on the porch:

Almost every single night it was totally cloudless and since there is close to no light pollution here, the sky looks absolutely beautiful. There are so many stars and you can even see the wisps of the Milky Way. This time I came prepared with this:

When you look at the stars through those binoculars you really can’t believe how many they are. You can even make out the moons of Jupiter, which was above the horizon the whole week. I really wish I had a telescope with me.

One thing which didn’t really amuse us was how expensive things are in Denmark. We did have to go shopping for food and stuff couple of times and things are simply ridiculous. Everything was 30, 40% all the way up to 100% more expensive than in Germany: food, drinks, household items, etc. And this is at a supermarket, not at some place for tourists. Because if you talk about things for tourists, then it gets obscenely expensive. 18 euros for 2 smallish coffees and 2 sandwiches ? You even pay if you want them to slice your bread at a bakery! Things are expensive to begin with because VAT in Denmark is 25% but that still does not explain the prices. I wonder how much money the average person makes. I think next time we just take the 1h drive to the border and buy what we need from a german supermarket.

We also went to the huge beach on the west side of the island and witnessed a really pretty sunset:

But yeah, all good things come to an end so on saturday morning we left for home. It was a somewhat long drive the we just took our time and we arrived at The Cave around 9pm. At least our bed is much better ;-) And we have internet!

Still alive

As I was saying earlier, last week I had vacation. We didn’t go anywhere, we stayed at home because my parents came visiting. We had a somewhat busy schedule, as can be seen from the pictures below:

The little one was the guest of honor, if I can say that, so we went to all kind of appropriate places. It was quite nice at Tripsdrill, an entertainment park near Stuttgart, the oldest in Germany. This year they celebrated 80 years since opening. It’s quite big, we spent a whole day there and we didn’t get to see everything.

We also spent two days in the Fairytale Garden, another theme park for kids which inside the huge gardens from the Ludwigsburg Palace. There we saw over 40 scenes from well known children stories such as “Hansel and Gretel“, “Little Red Riding Hood” and so on. It was very nice, we had good weather and Diana had a great time.

The holiday was a chance for my parents to finally see what The Cave (that’s our house) looks like, I hope they were not too scared. We would’ve liked to finish with the renovation before we have visitors but it’s too much work. That does not mean the house is a construction site but some things are just not done. Oh well, what can you do.

Tuesday I went together with a guy from work and two of his irish friends to see Terminator: Salvation:

What can I say, nice special effects but I was not overly impressed. The first two movies were a lot better, I would say. Maybe also because the rating was just PG-13 as opposed to R for the first two movies (strong sci-fi action and violence, and for language and brief nudity). Of course, the reason was money I guess, PG-13 means a larger target audience. But it’s like one of the irish dudes said: if you just shutdown your brain and want to see pretty colored lights, then the movie is quite good ;-)

Today and maybe tomorrow I can relax a little bit but after that there is more work to be done. Stuff to do in the house and the whole next week I have some training class for my next Cisco exam. At least I get to do that remotely from home so it’s not that bad.