Scenery at the town of Uelzen, Germany .
Where are Kevin and Ruth now? Hamburg, Germany.

Where are Kevin and Ruth going next? North to Denmark!

Thursday, May 26, 2022

Made it to the big city of Hamburg

Lots of driving the last few days. Max's odometer crossed the 14,000 km (8,700 mile) mark yesterday. We picked him up on June 18th of last year. It's hard to believe we have had him for almost a year already! 

That's quite a few miles in the first year, but I think the second year will be much less.

Wednesday, May 25, 2022

The pretty town of Schöningen , Germany

Although we had no problem finding decent overnight spots during the past seven months, it is refreshing to be back in Germany where it's downright easy. Many towns and villages have dedicated motorhome parking, and many of those have facilities for emptying and refilling holding tanks.

We did a longer drive yesterday... got up at 6:30am and drove non stop for an hour and a half before we stopped for breakfast.

Tuesday, May 24, 2022

Heading for Hamburg

We crossed from Czechia into Germany yesterday. Welcome home Max! Germany is Max's home country because he has German licence plates. 

We're on a bit of a mission now, so we're doing a fair bit of driving. We want to spend a day or two in the city of Hamburg. Some of you will remember that we sometimes try to match up some of my father's photographs from his European travels in the 1950's, and he spent quite a lot of time in Hamburg, so we have several photos we would like to try to recreate.

Monday, May 23, 2022

Well that was a fun reunion!

Between 2010 and 2017 we used the couchsurfing website a lot to find shared accommodation with local people in the countries we were visiting. We met a lot of wonderful people, many of whom we are still in touch with today. In fact, we stayed with over 50 hosts during those years.

One of those hosts was a young lady in the village of Istebne, Slovakia. Jana was only 20 years old at the time and still living with her parents, but she said she would be happy to show us around the area, and even arranged for us to stay at a nearby student residence that was vacant for the summer.

Sunday, May 22, 2022

We are happy taking the back roads...

We did a fair drive yesterday, again on the backroads. One thing about Czechia is that there are lots of paved backroads that are easily passable by all vehicles. No need at all to get on the freeways if you're not in a rush to get anywhere.

And, the freeways in Czechia are all toll roads. You need to buy what they call a "vignette" in advance. It's essentially an e-pass that registers your vehicle's licence plate. Many European countries have this system in one form or another, but sometimes it's just for heavy trucks, and sometimes it's for all vehicles. You need to check each country in advance to see what the rules are.

Saturday, May 21, 2022

Sometimes we meet a vehicle larger than us...

Other than driving, we didn't really do much yesterday. We're staying off the main highways, which makes for some interesting scenery and sometimes interesting driving conditions!

And it's pretty slow going, but we'd rather do this than be on the main highways. I actually timed some of our drive this morning and we drove for a full hour non stop and put on 62 kms (39 miles).

Friday, May 20, 2022

We've never done a cave tour by boat!

We were originally planning on visiting the city of Brno, but it was such a nice day and there are so many hiking and biking opportunities that we decided to visit Vývěry Punkvy National Park instead. 

I had also read there are a lot of caves and sinkholes in the park, but we didn't know until we arrived that there is one popular cave tour that you normally have to book weeks in advance. And they just happened to have two openings for the 2:00pm tour!

Thursday, May 19, 2022

It didn't take long to remember why we love Czechia

Up early and driving right away Wednesday morning. The cloud and rain from Tuesday was a one day anomaly, and we woke up to clear blue skies and sunshine!

The original plan was to head for the city of Brno. But when we pulled over for a breakfast break I was looking at the maps and noticed all of the cycling routes at the large town of Uherské Hradiště located on the Bata Canal.

Wednesday, May 18, 2022

Now this is a castle!

We love visiting castles, and there are a lot of castles in Europe. And they range from castle ruins that are free to visit to spectacular opulent fully furnished castles that are very expensive to visit. You can even overnight in some castles that have been turned into hotels.

Yesterday was a rain day, so we took the opportunity to visit Bojnice Castle, located in the village of Bojnice, Slovakia near the Czechia border.

Tuesday, May 17, 2022

Welcome to Slovakia, and a traveler mistake!

Once again, Slovakia is not a new country for us. We were here for almost three weeks in August 2012. This will be a much faster visit, although we are in a different part of the country than we were then so we are seeing some new scenery.

There are a couple of things we need to do when we enter a new country. The first is to make sure we have cellular data access, and the second is to make sure we have local cash!

Monday, May 16, 2022

Somebody's idea of modern art? Who knows??

Taking the backroads through eastern Hungary. There's not really a lot to see in this area. It's flat, with mostly farmlands. We were headed to the hills though. I had read about a great hiking area near Hungary's Bükki National Park which is closer to the Slovakia border.

Another gorgeous day though... we've been really enjoying the weather lately.

Sunday, May 15, 2022

Welcome to Hungary

Hungary is not a new country for us. We were in Budapest for a few days in September of 2012. But at that time, we were only in Budapest and didn't really see much of the countryside. Unfortunately we're not spending much time in Hungary this trip either... just two nights as we cut across into Slovakia.

We got up early Saturday morning so that we could go for another wander around the town of Oradea, Romania. 

Saturday, May 14, 2022

Back on the road

We have to drive almost 2,000 kms (1,240 miles) to get to the top of Denmark for our ferry crossing to Norway June 1st. And we have 18 days to do it in, so that's an average of 110 kms (68 miles) per day.

Easily doable, but of course we want some rest days in there as well. And we try to keep our driving days under 200 kms (124 miles). We're trying to avoid the motorways and toll highways as much as possible.

Friday, May 13, 2022

Yet another adventure!

When Ruth and I were married 38 years ago yesterday, I promised her that our life together would never be boring. So in keeping with that promise, we did an adventurous canyon hike on our anniversary!

Our friend Gabi had told us about Ramet Gorge (Cheile Râmețului), a fairly short but tough hike through a canyon where you are aided by chains and steel rods to get through some of the more difficult sections. Sounds like an adventure to us!

Thursday, May 12, 2022

Vietnamese breakfast in Romania

We are heading out today. We were actually planning on tomorrow, but Gabi told us about a canyon we need to visit that it sort of along our route and he was going to take us, but something else came up. So we will head out today in Max, see the canyon, and perhaps spend the night up there before heading up to the Hungary border tomorrow.

We've had a great time here though! I wanted to tell you more about Gabi and Ha. Gabi is an avid budget traveler like ourselves, so we have a lot in common in that regard.