Poland & Lithuania

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What an eventful week! Due to being stuck in both Belgrade and Budapest I am now ducking in and out of countries and cities without blinking an eyelid. From Budapest I caught an early bus to Krakow (Poland) which was a 7 hour trip. I was dreading it so much, but the only bonus about being sick is that you can sleep! I slept pretty much the whole way there. (And yes, I am sick AGAIN!)
When I arrived I went with some awesome Swedish girls to the hostel, checked in and we then went to explore the city. I loved Krakow the minute I arrived and everything from then on exceeded my expectations! It’s a small city, or at least it feels like a small city, which I always love. It has a great vibe and the old town really is beautiful.

There’s no need for public transport so you can just walk and explore 🙂 I had a really nice first day with the Swedish girls and an American guy. We walked up to the castle, sat along the river and then headed onto the Jewish quarter. We found a cafe that had ‘pussy food’ on the menu! Hahaha Not quite sure what it was, but it was so funny. We then found a bar with hundreds of types of beer and the owner told us all about the history of Polish beer and beers in general. He also gave us a bunch of free samples of different brewed beers. I tried the strawberry beer… Yuck! That night we ate traditional Polish food, which is basically dumplings and I had an early night due to this damn sickness! The next day was spent shopping with my amazing polish friend Anna.
Obviously I don’t usually shop when I’m travelling, but because I decided to go to the Baltics instead of Western Europe I needed some winter clothes. Yeah, OK it’s not ‘winter’ but for me it’s cold! So we went op-shopping and finished up in the mall. Everything is so cheap in Poland! :

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That night I headed out with a Canadian guy I met at the hostel and we then met Anna, the Swedish girls and a group of other foreigners from their hostel. We found a cool bar that sold 5 litres of beer in the tower that you pour yourself. After a few of those we headed onto some nightclubs and it became a very drunken and fun night with people from all over the world 🙂 After the nightclubs closed and the night was drawing to an end Anna and I went and had a few drinks at some polish guys apartment. One of the guys just happened to be a tattooist… Bad news for me! Luckily he was too drunk to tattoo anything, otherwise I would now have another rediculous drunken
tattoo. Instead though, all four of us got a dot on our wrists. Yes, a dot. A DOT! I now have what looks like a small ink stain on my wrist. Oh, the joys! I stumbled into the hostel at ‘ridiculous o’clock’ and set my alarm for 11am, to check out at 12pm. Well, don’t know how I slept through my alarm, but I woke at 12 to the hostel worker waking me up…”Did you have a good night did you?” Oh, the shame! The train ride the next day was the worst of my life. There were no seats so I was sitting in the walkway against the door, it was boiling hot in there and I was coughing and sniffling excessively! Worst still, I had no tissues to blow my nose (and there was no toilet on the train) and no water so my mouth was like the desert!

From Krakow I went and stayed a night in Warsaw. I didn’t even see the place though because I went straight from the train station to the hostel and back to the station early in the morning. Then there was another 12 hour bus journey to Vilnius (Lithuania.) Again, the great thing about being sick is you can sleep! So out of the 12 hours I was probably only awake for 2 hours 🙂 Amen to that!

When I arrived in Vilnius and got to the hostel I was afraid! It is the strangest hostel I’ve ever been to (and I’ve been to a lot!) The whole place was like a dungeon, all gloomy and dark. My room was full of people who were asleep at 6pm… Two of them were about 60 years old, looked like they were beggars from the street and insisted on shouting Lithuanian to me when clearly they could see I didn’t understand. The beds looked like a really nice place for bed bugs to nest and maul tourists and the bathrooms were horrible! I needed to get the f**k out of there! Luckily I met an Irish guy who was just as freaked out as me and before we even showered we went out to explore
the city. Vilnius is beautiful, although there’s really not a lot to do. There are loads of beggars on the streets(although they don’t seem as filthy as most beggars I’ve come across in Europe), all sorts of alternative people, lots of churches and strange stores selling religious gear. There is a store that has made a replica of The Last Supper, which frightens the hell out of you when you see it at night!

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It’s a really cheap place, especially if you look for it. Lastnight we had 2 beers, 2 vodkas, large pizza and fries for about 16 bucks! 🙂 I know that a lot of people from England go to Vilnius for their stag (bucks) night, but where the hell they go to exactly beats me! It was Saturday night and the city was completely dead. We found a cool bar
that had a few people, but not the sort of rager you’d think you’d get on a Saturday night. Today I went and explored the city for a few hours and it really is beautiful… And weird in the same way. It’s hard to explain why, but if you came here you’d know. Overall I was really impressed though and generally the Lithuanian people are quite nice.

Just before I left the hostel this afternoon I ran into some of the other weirdo guests… I don’t know what it is about this place that attracts them, but they’re all there! An Italian guy who ‘doesn’t like maps.’ An English guy who I’m sure just stepped out of the Mighty Boosh (if anyone has seen that show they’ll have a giggle at that
one!) An overweight creepy German guy who looks like a serial killer and grunts instead of speaking. And in general, just a weird, weird crowd. I am now on a bus to Riga (Latvia) and my god I was glad to get out of there!I am moving on to a hostel called ‘friendly franks fun hostel’ which is known for it’s crazy parties and god, the name says it all.
This should be another interesting few days I think!! 🙂

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