Monthly Archives: December 2011

Travel Tips Part 9: Prague, Czech Republic

Welcome to Praha! You are at once confronted by the monotonous Czech language, while at the same time being knocked over by the breathtaking views of the ancient city. You meet your lovely Couch Surfing host, Adela at the main train station and soon start chatting while taking the underground to her flat.

At this point, you must note that Couch Surfing is a brilliant idea; not only do you get to stay in a strangers flat for free (which is always exciting) but you also get to meet some fantastic people along the way. A short walk to Adela’s flat and you’re entering a time warp: her flat was her grandmother’s and it hasn’t changed much since communist Prague, save for the modern posters and general feeling of liberation about the place. Adela makes you a lovely brew of tea and brings out a block of chocolate – it’s already clear that you’re going to get along just fine. After sorting through possible things to do with yourself over the next few days, you realise that you’re late for dinner with a mutual Czech friend, Zuzi. You rush off, and in doing so manage to get lost on the way to the train station, which doesn’t make all that much sense seeing as it’s quite literally around the corner.

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Travel Tips Part 8: Berlin, Germany

Finally you’re in Berlin, the city you’ll be staying in for the next week. You’re soon to discover that this week is just not long enough; Berlin is overflowing with things to do and see and unfortunately for you, you just don’t have the time to see it all.

 

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Travel Tips Part 7: Hamburg, Germany

Having made your way around Scandinavia, you begin your journey south as you switch to the much more adaptable Euro and the German language. Your hostel seems more like a hotel with multiple levels and a buffet breakfast, so the chance to mingle with scraggly travellers such as yourself is much lower. Feeling completely shattered after days of minimal sleep, you spend your first night in Hamburg tucked away in your bed eating a bag of cherry Haribo and watching the slow-motion car crash that is Breaking Bad. (i)

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Travel Tips Part 6: Copenhagen, Denmark

At this point in your Euro trip, you’ve find yourself really looking forward to the train rides to your next destination: you get your own comfy seat with a power-point to comfortably watch Breaking Bad while drinking beer and eating chocolate.

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Travel Tips Part 5: Gothenburg, Sweden

Gothenburg is the second largest city in Sweden, recommended to you by a Swedish girl you met very briefly outside a hostel in Oslo. You arrive in Gothenburg greeted by an array of pierced, tattooed and pinked haired youth, making you feel immediately comfortable and excited about exploring the bohemian town. You spend the next 30 minutes trying to find the right tram to take, but it’s Sunday so you’re out of luck. Not feeling like you want to walk 40 min with your rucksack, you decide to be a bit naughty and take a cab directly to your hostel. The hostel is pleasant, despite the fact that you are in a mixed dorm surrounded by only males – girls don’t like the mixed dorms apparently. That evening, you will be meeting up with friends of the girl you met in Oslo, so in the meantime you make yourself some plastic tasting noodles and then get talking to some lads in the kitchen. You are soon surrounded by a group of rugby playing Scottish boys, who are all conveniently good-looking. Heaven? Oh yes. The next few hours consist of you turning red with laughter as they tell you strangest stories about their alcoholic friends: who’s ended up in jail, who starts fights, who’s parent killed a Muslim gentleman…(i) Continue reading

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Travel Tips Part 4: Umea, Sweden

So: you’ve made it all the way to Sweden, a long way from home. Seeing as you’ve come all this way to these Scandinavian countries, you feel that you should at least make an attempt to catch the Northern Lights while you’ve got the opportunity. Buy a 34 SEK ticket (about 4 Euros) for the night train to a small town called Umeå: the European capital of culture for 2014! This is your second night train you’re taking, and although they save you money, your back is starting to involuntarily spasm due to the seriously crap sleeping conditions. Luckily, the train is quiet so you’re able to use your small backpack as a pillow while stretching your legs up the wall of the train. Optimum comfort, non? Continue reading

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Travel Tips Part 3: Stockholm, Sweden

Stockholm syndrome. The possible title you contemplate having for your next photo album on Facebook. Disregard it – too obvious. You arrived in Stockholm completely knackered having had no sleep at all from Bergen to Oslo and during the trip to Stockholm instead of catching up on some z’s (awful expression) you plough your way through season 4 of True Blood. You come to the conclusion that Sookie is really quite annoying, and she doesn’t do sexy well at all. You’re feeling particularly catty this morning as you hop off the train seeing as your pill hasn’t kicked in and your body has decided to have a mind of its own (makes no sense at all I know).

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