Okay, we're finally here! After days and days of cycling through Germany, Austria and the Czech Republic, we've arrived in Prague just in time for "Prague Spring".
Cycling through the terrain has been amazing, challenging and appetite-inducing! I swear, I've never eaten so much meat and cheese in my life. We usually make our own food, and so are able to get some veggies in amongst the countless beer... Luckily we bike an average of about 4hrs a day, so we aren't getting too fat!
I've been on cloud nine this entire trip. Travelling with Jason has been amazing for a number of reasons. Even though we're doing things on the cheap, we've made our homemade dinners and wine stops on the road quite romantic! He's been very patient with my bonking at the end of long days and my inability to read topographical maps! Seriously, if I were leading, we'd be in Russia by now. Every morning my map-fanatic-fiancé (I love that!) charts out our territory and tells me where we will be sailing like clouds with a tailwind on the downhill, or climbing like monkeys over fields of lush greens, yellows and browns. I don't have to think - just pedal!
Austria and Germany were immaculate - full of well-kept farmhouses decorated with wood panelling, flowers and perfectly-groomed shrubbery. Even the trees in the fields seemed to line up perfectly in rows. It was actually very strange to go days not seeing anyone of a different ethnicity, yuk. We cycled from Salzberg, along the Salzach and Inn rivers (gorgeous) to Passau, where we connected with the Danube and headed East. To Linz we travelled, camping, taking in the breathtaking scenery and fighting a bit of a headwind. Wonderful. For most people, that trip would take a few hours in a car. For us it was days! We also stopped at Mathausen to see a former concentration camp, a very depressing and disturbing (but much-appreciated) stop. At that point, we headed north for CR.
CR has been beautiful and challenging. The language barrier was quite brutal in some of the small towns we stopped in after a day of biking. Cesky Krumlov was achingly gorgeous, we holed up in Krumlov House hostel for 3 days waiting out a bit of weather and letting our legs relax a bit. Although, we walked around so much taking in the castles, churches and restaurants (and brewerys!) that we didn't really relax toooo much. But it was nice to fatten up a bit on the tasty Czech food - gulas, potato pancakes, smoked ham and dumplings, spit-fired meats, garlic soup... did I mention the beer???? OMIGOD, so good! Jason is so happy! Beer, 500mL, is 20K, about $1.25 CAD, so you can imagine how easy it goes down. AND of course, it's damned tasty.
Our last three days have been 75km, 70km and 80km. We stayed in a nasty dorm last night and have found a beautiful hotel to spend the next 4 nights in - Miss Sophies, 1500K a night. A little expensive for CR, but not for Prague. Everything in Prague is ridiculous. But it's a beautiful city. Lots of grafitti and garbage - surprisingly, but young and full of culture and buzz.
So we are off this afternoon to start our city touring... so many things to see and do here. I think I'll start with a coffee though. I can guarantee that Jason will opt for beer! The bikes are stowed away safely and I'm actually wearing civvies! No padded bum! Wahoo!
Oh yeah, and our tans rock!! Very sexy bike-shorts and t-shirt tan lines.
It was wonderful to hear from all of you on my last entry! We are both very excited, making plans and talking about what lies ahead. And the ring is stunning, you'll have to see!
SnowVixen, I love it! I can picture you on your snowmobile right now! Vroom!
Love to all!