Wednesday, March 28, 2012

Milan, Italy

Buongiorno, ETD Readers!

Home of Pizza, Pasta & Gelato!

our first gelato experience! OMG!

Next stop: Italiano, baby! First up on our agenda was Milan. We headed on another train from Nice to Milan, with a short stop over in Ventimiglia. Where Gaffa had his first taste of Italian coffee, and I opted for a hot chocolate – which was just awesome! It was very thick and full of chocolate-y goodness.

In Milan we stayed at another AirBnB place. It was very close to the centre of Milan, within walking distance to all the major sights. The apartment was up on the 7th floor, and the elevator was very very small. Gaffa and I only just managed to fit in it with our massive backpacks on. It was one of those older style lifts where you have wait for the lift to arrive and then open a second door to get in – hilariously, the inner doors opened inwards which made getting them shut and open again tricky since we were oversized and just able to squeeze in!

Sunday, March 18, 2012

Lyon, Nice & Monaco, France

Happy Days are here again, ETDers!!

The WINGAZ Grand Prix of Lyon, Nice & Monaco!

My "toy" car collection.
We have decided to combine the 2 days we spent in Lyon and Nice, since we don’t have a lot to talk about…even for me!  I could elaborate on how we spent the time relaxing, but that doesn’t make for much of a blog post.

To start us off, we travelled 2 hours south of Dijon to Lyon.  Lyon was a lovely city, lots of shops bistros and sunshine, meaning that since Dijon the weather was definitely turning for the better and spring is finally reaching Europe!

We arrived at our lovely Air BnB, a short walk from the train station and the heart of Lyon.  After quickly dumping bags, changing into shorts (me) and a glass of water we headed into town.  We walked along trying to decided whether to cook or eat out – we decided on lunch at a bistro and home cooking in the evening for dinner.

Saturday, March 17, 2012

Dining in Dijon, France

Bonne Journée, Readers!

Dropping a gear, relaxing in authentic France, Dijon!

Leaving Paris on our 9:43 am train bound for Dijon I couldn’t help feeling an intense sense of relief to be heading towards the slower, more sedate pace of the more rural towns in France.  Paris was an amazing experience; we crammed a bucket-load of touristic endeavours into our action packed couple of days and made the most of our Paris museum passes, but now it was time to kick back and enjoy a couple of well earned days rest.   Honestly, I cannot think of anywhere better to take in a few days of authentic FranceDijon has touristic wonders to be uncovered by the inquisitive, it has sights to spend hours taking photos of, but for WinGaz this location was slotted into our itinerary for one reason:


Friday, March 16, 2012

Paris, France


The express 2 day tour of Paris begins!

We arrived in Paris after a long journey on the TGV from Munich. The TGV is a bit overrated. The seats are not as comfortable as other trains we’ve taken, mainly the German and Scandinavian trains we preferred.

For our accommodation in Paris we booked an AirBnB place rather than a hostel as it was the cheaper option… but not always the best! Normally the host has photos of the apartment/house, the room you’ll be staying in, kitchen, bathroom, etc, but this host didn’t at the time. I picked it because they had good reviews of other properties that they let out, but none for this particular one. I booked it, hoping for the best…

Thursday, March 15, 2012

Munching in Munchen, Germany

Good Morning, Readers!

Munching in Munich, Bavaria

Leaving Vienna was hard.  Winnie and I both had such a great time in Vienna, as by now I hope you have read.  Nevertheless we jumped on the 08:14 train bound for Munich, arriving approximately 4 hours later.  The journey was comfortable, but all OBB German Trains are plush, luxurious and fast.  It was nice to sit in a comfy seat, plugged into the mains power.  The train even had screens overhead displaying the journey, maps and estimated time of arrival at each stop.  Only the Germans could go that extra mile!  Awesome.

Our prompt arrival in Munich allowed us to quickly and easily walk from the train station to our hostel.  We were glad to only have a 2-3 minute walk from the station.  We decided to stay at the Euro Youth Hostel, in a mixed dorm room with 12 beds.  The Hostel was nice, very clean and had a pretty good bar.  The shower facilities were on the floor below us, but had complimentary shower products (I like free stuff).  All in all a very nice, secure hostel (3 secure coded doors between reception and our dorm) with helpful knowledgeable staff.  The bar was reasonably priced, with a 50cl beer (Augustiner) for around 3-4 Euros.  It does get noisy at weekends, but remember you are in Munich, and noise and beer drinking are why you go there!

Tuesday, March 13, 2012

Viennese Whirls, Vienna

Guten Morgen ETD Followers!

From Hungary to Austria we took another morning train and arrived in Vienna in the late morning. After dropping off our bags at our hostel, Wombats; we again picked the brain of the guy on the counter of the hostel. The hostel was very helpful; they even had a pre-planned itinerary for travellers that only have 1-2 days. So we decided to follow the itinerary so we could cover all the main sights.

First stop we headed south to Schonbrunn Palace and Garden. This is where the beautiful Austrian architecture started. Grand buildings surrounded by wide open green spaces. It would be lovely in the summer time. There was a maze/labyrinth there also, but unfortunately it was closed as there were no leaves on the trees. I was a bit disappointed, oh well.

Thursday, March 8, 2012

We're Engaged!

To all of our Eat Travel Dive followers:

We write our blog, and hope that you are enjoying it – whoever out there is reading!  Since we write to you and tell you about our lives, we have something massive we’d like to share with you – Gaffa proposed to Win in Prague on 20th February 2011….  Read on to find out how it all happened!!

Monday, March 5, 2012

Prague, Czech Republic

Berlin to Prague is a fairly pleasant trip by rail.  We’ve been getting into the swing of waking early, jumping onto empty trains and sleeping (or in Gaffa’s case writing blog posts or editing photos).   This train passed through Dresden, then into Czech Republic in no time at all…maybe that’s due to my being asleep! 

On arrival in Prague’s main station we were given directions to take any tram heading to the left and get off and Delnicka tram stop.  We jumped on, jumped off a few moments later and walked about 100m to Sir Toby’s Hostel.  Not knowing a work of Czech/Russian, we made it! - without paying for the tram ride. After dropping off our bags we picked the brain of the girl on the counter about what to see and do in Prague, oh and of course the best places to eat and drink too!

We set off on the tram again into the Old Town. With it's cobbled streets and magnificent architecture, the old town was filled with souvenir stores, restaurants and clothing stores - a tourist haven.

Sunday, March 4, 2012

Berlin, Germany

Welcome Back! 
To all of our Eaters, Travellers and Divers.

Another early start; jumping eagerly onto another empty tram and yet another chilly train station platform.  Keen to crack on and get to Berlin, we opted for the first train out of Amsterdam heading into Germany.

It’s not a short hop and jump to Berlin.  It’s a fair distance, but a pleasant journey through The Netherlands into Germany via Osnabruck, then Hannover before hitting the platform in Berlin about 6 hours later.  Needless to say, Winnie did her best to catch up on the previous nights’ lost sleep – I even visited sleep-land for a few hours!

On arrival in Berlin we headed straight to our hostel – Schlafmeile Hostel.  Schlafmeile was a hostel that I’d classify as average, instantly forgettable (I had to ask Winnie to remind me).  Take that as you will, but I must point out that it’s lack of Wifi in anywhere except the bar was a let down.  The kitchen was useable (not user-friendly) with an oven that looks like it was last serviced in the dark ages.  I did use it, but with difficulties!  The rooms had sturdy, large wooden bunks – we opted for the 10 bed mixed dorm, which wasn’t at full occupancy so it had space.  The lockers were big enough to hide even the biggest of backpacks, but the lock hinge bits were a bit shitty though – we arrived early to the hostel so they let us get first picks on bunks and lockers.   The hostel staff were very helpful, giving good directions, and tips about trains etc so Schlafmeile sits on the balance for that.
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