14.08.2012 - 23.08.2012
So the journey continues and this time by bus, Busabout to be exact! After travelling by train in Spain which is fast and comfortable starting our first leg of 5 by bus didn’t have me overly excited! But our destination was Vienna so I couldn’t really complain. Two nights and one day in Vienna –a short but sweet stay as is my summary of it!
• There were a few elements that made us feel like we were at home
1. Wombats hostel – the name says it all
2. Meeting up with Prue and Enrico (who were on the way home from their holiday). Was so nice to see them again, they looked so happy. I can’t believe it had been 9 weeks since I was in Salzburg!
• We go from being a dynamic duo to tantalizing trio when Bec joins us. Bec and I were on the boat together in Croatia and she had a free week to fill in so she decided to join us for a few days. Although I had only known Bec for a week she was one of those people that you felt you have always known (and after a day of meeting Myra felt the same!)
• A day of leisurely walking around the beautiful city in the sun! For once we weren’t too worried about seeing all the tourist sites and just enjoyed a slower pace day. Looks so different to when Dad and I were there in winter! (Dad we did manage to walk past the building…that we spent ages looking for last time)
• Not deciding where to eat dinner! We left Enrico in charge to find us somewhere to have a traditional Wiener schnitzel and apple strudel. He did an excellent job, the food was amazing and I think we were the only English speaking people there!
• The highlight by far was having a ride on the swing carousel ‘Prater Turm.’ Its 117m tall (world record) and gives you a perfect view of the city and a small adrenaline rush!!
And then off to Bled we go! So many people had given Lake Bled an amazing review so it had a lot to live up to. But from the moment we arrived in Slovenia I knew I would love this place. I remember Georgie telling me she was a metropolitan girl. She loves the city and would always want to live there. A perfect weekend is staying in Melbourne wining/dining/going out and enjoying all that the city can offer. I knew that this wasn’t me, I like living in the city now but the country side is for me. This was overwhelming confirmed when we arrived in Lake Bled. I have spent so much time in so many amazing cities over the past 8 weeks however very few I felt I could live in. Seeing the amazing country side in Slovenia although very different from Australia I felt much more at home here! We were blessed by the weather gods and loved the place so much we decided to stay an extra night (bad luck Venice)
The reasons why Slovenia and Lake Bled took my breath away
1. Amazing people! From our taxi driver to the owner of the hostel we were shocked by how friendly people were. Jani the hostel owner went out of his way to make our stay memorable. When we decided to extend our stay by an extra night he rearranged things so we were able to have a 6 bed dorm to ourselves! He impressed us that much we even popped our Tripadvisor review cherry (we use religiously but had never reviewed a place)
2. The Lake. It’s just too hard to explain how good it is, you will just have to go visit it for you self! I did love my morning runs around it and we hired bikes one day when we spent the morning riding from one swim spot to the next!
3. Getting in touch with our adventurous side – Rafting and canyonning day! I decided this would be a fun day out as I have always wanted to go canyonning. I don’t think the other 2 really knew what it was which turned out to be a good thing because I don’t know if they would have done it otherwise. Rafting was a little bit tame as the rapids weren’t big but we had fun, jumped off rocks and met some nice English kids who we went out with that night. And they finish it off with some delicious local liqueur to ‘warm you up.’ Canyonning was in the afternoon so after a massive lunch where some creepy local guy bought us some shots and told us that canyonning wasn’t adventurous, joining him in his spa was, we were ready! We decided that they must not have a big issue with public liability in Slovenia because we didn’t write our names anywhere or sign anything. We were just given our wetsuit, helmet, booties and harness and then started the 20min sweat fest walk uphill to the start of the canyon. I loved the whole thing, jumping into pools, sliding on natural rock slides, abseiling. The first jump was the biggest, 5m into a tiny pool, Myra and Bec were petrified and ended up having to sit down and slide after being given a big push. But they soon had a smile on their face too, especially when the guide who had an eye for Myra was making some inappropriate jokes. It would have been better if there was a little more water (it had been a hot summer) but I am definitely hooked and going to make it a part of my next holiday!
4. Vintgar Gorge. Our walk to and through the Gorge was breath takingly beautiful. The water was so unbelievable clear and the colours were amazing. It’s times like these you wished you were a good photographer, my camera just didn’t do it justice
5. Girl’s dinner and drinks. The people you share you experiences with also make the experiences. The 3 of us got on so well and had so much fun including a couple of nights out having dinner and very cheap drinks (5.20 euro bought a round of vodkas)! On our last night we even had a girlie date for 3, dinner by the lake watching the colourful water fountain display and being serenaded by a brilliant violinist, we had to laugh at how romantic it was ;-)
We had such an amazing 3 days in Bled, the best decision we made was to stay the extra night. No one was happy to be leaving Lake Bled and to rub salt into the wound the train ride to Venice was in a sweltering hot box of a train, which arrived around 10.30pm and then involved 20min trek through the mazed streets of Venice to find our accommodation, which also proved to be a little hot box. The joys of travelling :-)