A group of three of us from Murray Edwards college went across Eastern Europe, stopping at Berlin, Prague, Vienna and Budapest for a total of 11 days.
In Berlin we saw the Berlin wall and went to a number of museums about German culture and also about what life was like during the Holocaust. We also went to a number of vegan cafes, which I was surprised to find such a propensity for in Berlin, and we also tried some of the more classic German dishes, at one of the restaurants, I had goulash and Sophie and Beth had Schnitzel. From Berlin we went to Prague, which architecturally was my favourite city. We went on a boat tour where the tour guide pointed out some of the historical buildings and told us about the local customs, in particular touching a different statue along the main bridge crossing Prague was said to bestow different blessings. We also went around Prague Castle, which was a magnificent building right on the top of the city.
From Prague we went to Vienna, which had a much slower pace as a city. Here we wandered around some of the markets, which had amazing fruits on sale and went to some of the coffee shops, all of which displayed beautiful patisserie cakes. From Vienna we hurtled into Budapest, which is the city that never sleeps. It was in stark contrast to the sedate pace in Vienna, with 24hour coffee shops/breakfast shops/ any kind of shops. Here we got a tour from one of the local people who told us about the roaming history of Budapest and the complicated language – with 46 letters in the alphabet and one word taking 5seconds to say, it is very different! We also went to two of the thermal baths here, which were a unique experience and I personally loved the availability of non-dairy alternatives available throughout the city.
All of our accommodation had been arranged in advance of travelling, so we had no issues with finding places to stay, the part I found hardest was the travelling between countries itself, I feel allowing a day for travelling would have been easier, instead of trying to pack everything into a short space of time as we did – so this would be my future advice, as staying an extra night in each place would have only added on a total cost of around £40, or travelling to less places instead and just allowing more time to travel and rest. From this trip I have learned that people are more capable than you think and generally if you stay calm and think it through, you can normally do whatever you desire.
Natural Sciences (Biological)