european adventure (part 1)

As the the ultimate reward for the survival of A-Levels, we embarked on 2 weeks of interrailing around Europe and it was utter bliss in every sense.
We packed every day with culture and sights and food and clubbing and sunbathing and swimming and I feel even more enamoured by my beloved continent than ever felt possible. I can't quite believe that everyone survived and that it actually worked.
(unfortunately Im gonna have to split this post up bc I've just got so much to say so bare with)
(I do not write this post to brag about my experience but instead to implore you to break free of your comfort zone, in whatever way that may be, and explore something new)


Our itinerary:
Fly: Newc. to Amsterdam
Train: Amsterdam to Berlin, 3 nights in Berlin
Night train: Berlin to Budapest, 3 nights in Budapest
Train: Budapest to Zagreb, 1 night in Zagreb
Bus: Zagreb to Zadar, 2 nights in Zadar
Bus: Zadar to Zagreb
Night train Zagreb to Munich, 1 night in Munich
Train: Munich to Amsterdam, 2 nights in Amsterdam
Fly: Amsterdam to Newc.

Berlin:
My least favourite place out of those visited but I still managed to fall in love with the city. I partly loved it so much because I am fascinated by the history of Germany and Berlin (esp after A-level studies) so I was overcome with the realisation that it was actually real. I also went with some history fans so that made the experience all the more enjoyable as we dragged the others around commenting on the plattenbau housing and soviet-style gigantism. I also have a lotta love for Germany as a country nd  am amazed by its transformation/change over the past century.
We did:
Jewish museum (outstanding in the way it makes you feel, perhaps a little less informative if you haven't studied the holocaust as much as I somehow seem to, but then I suppose it is a Jewish museum)–there was also a BRILLIANT exhibition on female religious clothing which presented interesting ideas about feminism, society and culture–110% recommend
Reichstag 
Brandenburg Gate 
Memorial to Murdered Jews
East Side Gallery 
A strange attempt at clubbing (which is notoriously difficult and aggressive in Berlin–left us stranded somewhere in the East with no train to get home)
Berlin public transport was a life saver and, once having purchased a 'tageskarte' was gd value.










^view from our apartment woo




As a history nerd (and after studying (and obsessing over) the USSR/Soviet life) seeing stuff like this irl properly excited me (lol)



^I looove the differences shown in this pic, the old-baroque style with the wacky eastern TV tower in the background

The night train we got between Berlin and Buda was one of the strangest experiences, shared with 2 strangers in the most confined space, no sleep and the weirdest conductor who spoke no English–but we also travelled through the most beautiful countryside.

Budapest:
Where my heart belongs or, as became a catch phrase throughout the trip "Budapest is the Budabest". I fell in love with this city. Its cheap and hot and beautiful. After Berlin which, in many ways, feels like any other western city, Buda felt so different. The architecture is so ornate and beautiful, the countryside so rural and the currency so effin' confusing. There is so much to do and we couldn't fit it into our limited days and are all yearning to return.
We did:
Castle Hill/Old Town (kind of touristy but the buildings and views are out of this world)
Parliament (the most amazing building) and general wandering along Danube
House to Terror (disappointing)
Margrit Island and Palatinus baths 
Ruin Bars and Clubbing (FagosHaz/Instant has to be the best club I've ever been to)
Szechenyi baths 
I spent my 18th here(!) and my dear friends bought me a hungarian cake (along with other treats) (which I subsequently left at the apartment in a hungover stupor), we went to the thermal baths, house of terror and the super gr8 club (I can't get over how good it is srsly)–deffs a bday to remember. A pen-pal was also staying at the same time and I saw her twice which was so so lovely.











Home and in the cold grey-ness of the UK–I feel lost and glum–deffs post-hol blues. Ah well, the wanderlust is real.
(Croatia, Munich and Amsterdam are to come)
***
Undeniably, this was a bitch to organise and I may compose some tips at a later date on how we embarked upon it but my number 1 tip above anything, is to plan. We planned every nights accommodation (staying in air bnb's which I highly recommend (better than a hostel in every way (inc price)), reserved seats on every train (again, extra cost but would highly recommend), researched every location and planned the main activities we wanted to do. No day was wasted and everything ran perfectly.

4 comments

  1. i guess i have to go to budapest now. haha. it looks like you had a lovely time after all the exams. i'd have to agree with you on the planning thing. getting lost or without a place to stay in a different country sounds does not sound like a fun time.
    -M
    sundayaresunny.com

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  2. Sounds like such an incredible experience and a good way to forget all about sixth form/college!
    I would love to go to Budapest!
    Aleeha xXx
    http://www.halesaaw.co.uk/

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    Replies
    1. the best thing to power you through A-levels-would totally recommend buda x

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