S: Europe 2009 (Part 2)
FC: Europe Summer 2009 Part 2
1: Budapest, Hungary
2: June 30th: We left Salzburg behind today and headed to Budapest, Hungary. After about a six hour train ride, we met the aunties and Aunt Kelly's friend, Zsolt, at the station. The night was spent walking around the city, eating Mediterranean food, and drinking lots of beer. Mom met us later (after quite a few travel delays), and we reminisced about our past month of traveling.
3: Old Friends
7: July 1st: Today was our relaxing day! We started out at Heroes Square and made our way to the baths. After seeing just a few too many men in speedos, we decided to grab some lunch at one of Aunt Kelly's favorite places. Later, we went to the interesting, yet heartbreaking Holocaust Museum. We ended our night with traditional Hungarian food, ballet lessons, and guitar playing at our friend Zsolt's house! We couldn't have asked for a better day!
13: Homemade Hungarian Food
14: Grandma Zsolt teaches us ballet and drinking games...
18: July 2nd: Logan stayed in today (he had probably had enough girl time), and the rest of us went over to the Chain Bridge and the beautiful castle district! We then shopped at the Old Market and ate some more Hungarian food. Later, Zsolt and Adrian took us to a great concert! We listened to KFT, an 80's band, took shots of Unicum, and mom even got to dance with a nice French man! ;)
24: Unicum And Our Role Models
25: F | K | T
27: July 3rd: Our day began at Parliament today. We missed the English tour, but we really wanted to see inside, so we opted for the Spanish/Italian tour instead! After making up our own history and fun facts, we checked out some of the other sights nearby. We got to see St. Stephen's Basilica and walk around in some of the gardens. Later, Mom and Erin went to an organ concert at the basilica and the rest of the group went to meet some of Aunt Kelly's old friends! It was a wonderful last night in Hungary.
35: Prague, Czech Republic
37: July 4th: Mom passed on her travel karma to us today. We started off by getting duped by a taxi driver on our way to the train station in Budapest. We thought we were good once we got on the train, that is, until we got to Slovakia. Apparently, the Eurail pass doesn't work in Slovakia. And since the cab driver took most of our cash, we didn't have enough money to pay the train fare. Thankfully, the wonderful Slovakian ticket inspector told us that "we are here for you" and let us go to Prague. Here, we met up with mom and headed out to explore the city a bit. We drank Budvar and Logan ate a pig knuckle, which was quite a feat. Mom and I made our once in a lifetime wish at the statue of St. John of Nepomuk. Logan and Annie decided they would just need to come back again to make their wishes. Needless to say, we were ready for bed after this long day!
39: July 5th: Today was a bit more relaxed. We went shopping for Czech crustal and walked around the city a bit. We found lots of weird architecture and art throughout the city! | Later, we went to the Mucha Museum. He was a Czech artist who became famous for his posters that he created. He also did one of the stained glass windows in the church at Prague Castle! We met up with the aunties, ate some pizza, and called it a night.
41: July 6th: We got to see the clock chime in the square today! Every hour, it opens and shows each of the disciples. Then, we headed up to Prague Castle to walk around the grounds. We really enjoyed the stained glass windows in the cathedral as well as the guards who patrolled the castle. Later, we got to see the John Lennon wall. When he died, people painted this wall, but the Communists would paint over it. But then overnight, it would get painted again. It is now a popular landmark for tourists like us! The evening ended with the aunties making their once in a lifetime wishes.
43: Prague Castle
48: Lennon | Wall
51: July 7th: We explored in the town of Kutna Hora today. Figuring out the trains was an interesting experience, but we managed to find our way. Rick Steve, mom's celebrity crush, told us about a sweet restaurant called Dacicky. Our waiter told us what to order, and boy was it good. Later, we went to a famous church that was filled with over 40,000 human skeletons! It was somewhat creepy, but very interesting. We ended our night with food, games, and a puppet show back at our apartment.
54: Before | After
56: Logan's Great Great Great... ...Great Great Great Great Great Great Great Great Great Great Great Great Great Great Great Great... ...Great Grandfather?
60: Czech | Me | Out
61: July 8th: We went out today in our matching "Czech Me Out" shirts! We got to see the Jewish Quarter and Cemetary. This was the only place Jews could be buried, so tombstones are piled on top of each other. Tiredness finally hit us, so we stayed in tonight and played cards.
64: July 9th: We started our day off at the Communist Museum. After buying some funny postcards, we headed to a park and had a nice picnic in the rain. Later, we saw Transformers 2, which turned out to be a poor life choice. We spent our last night all together eating pizza and relaxing.
70: Dresden, Germany
71: July 10th: We said goodbye to mom and the aunties today and got on a train to Dresden! A massive rainstorm hit, so we decided to relax and get some coffee with Bailey's. Later, we walked around the city and admired some of the artwork. We called it an early night because of our busy next day.
73: July 11th: We started our day off by exploring the city. We got to see the world's largest porcelain portrait, and a group of singing soldiers! Currywurst was on the menu for lunch, and boy was it good! Tonight, we went to Sommernacht, a night where all of the museums in town stay open late into the night. We had a ton of fun and Logan even created a piece that got put on display! He may have a future in Lego art.
80: July 12th: We woke up early and attended Church of Our Lady Lutheran Church for service (which was spoken in German)! It was nice since most of the churches we had seen so far were Catholic. After service, we did some shopping at the local outdoor market and then we headed out on the train to Berlin. We found our hostel, and socialized a bit before heading to bed after a long travel day.
81: Berlin, Germany
83: July 13th: Today was jam packed. We started by exploring the Tiergarten and the victory monument. This was soon followed by the Brandenburger Tor, the gate that separated East and West Berlin. We then saw the Reichstag, the parliament building. After that, the Berliner Dom and the Parthenonmuseum were on our agenda. All of that walking made us tired, so we spent the rest of the night in the hostel eating, drinking, and meeting new friends.
85: Berliner | Dom
91: July 14th: Our last day in Berlin was spent shopping and walking around the city. We found a pretty cool mall and a random church that was damaged during the war. After that, we made some dinner and socialized at the hostel.
92: Brussels, Belgium
93: July 15th: A long day of travel landed us in Brussels, Belgium today. We found our hostel after a bit, and we decided to explore the town a bit. We went to a famous bar that had 25 beers on tap and over 2,000 others from a bottle! Later, we ate some famous Belgian French Fries and Belgian Chocolates before making our way over to the famous peeing statue. The statue was a lot smaller than we thought it would be! We decided to call it a night after that long day of travel and activities.
96: Manneken Pis | "Little Man Piss"
98: July 16th: We spent our morning at the comic museum! Many famous cartoons and comics, such as TinTin and The Smurfs were done by Belgian artists! Later, we decided to wind down after the past month of traveling. It went by way too fast!
99: July 17th and 18th: Our trip ended back in London, England. We shared one last meal together at The Mason's Arms by our hostel. Logan and Annie flew back to the U.S.A. and Erin headed off to Oxford to start her program. These five weeks were absolutely incredible. We saw so many beautiful things, met some unforgettable people, and shared the most amazing experiences together. The European Conquering Committee completed their mission and they will never forget the summer of 2009.