Saint Tropez excursie cu masina / Saint Tropez road trip

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Vara se apropie rapid si o mini vacanta era ocazia perfecta de a face o excursie pe Coasta de Azur spre Saint Tropez. Dupa ce am vizitat toate obiectivele turistice din Marsilia si imprejurimi, am vrut sa mergem cu musafirul nostru cu trenul pe Coasta de Azur , dar din pacate programul imprevizibil presarat cu greve spontane al putorilor franceze ne-a taiat aceasta optiune. Un alt incomvenient ar fi fost faptul ca trenul nu ajunge pana in Saint Tropez , ci doar spre Toulon sau spre Nisa , de unde trebuie luat un autocar local.

De la Marsilia spre Saint Tropez nu sunt decat 150 km , dar trenul daca nu cumperi biletele din timp poate fi destul de scump. De pe o zi pe alta poti sa dai si 50 de EUR de persoana pe o astfel de distanta parcursa cu trenul, asa ca am luat in considerare inchirierea unei masini. Din pacate si aceasta varianta poate fi destul de scumpa daca nu faci rezervarea din timp , dar pentru 3 sau 4 persoane masina in general se merita. La firma Thrifty un Renault inchiriat pe o zi a costat 60 EUR  + asigurarea care pe internet costa 37.5 EUR … dar noi am luat-o din birou de la ei cu 60 de EUR pentru ca….. (fara aceasta asigurare sunteti dispus sa platiti 1000 de EUR daune chiar si pentru cea mai mica zgarietura) , la care trebuie sa adaugati si costul benzinei care o consumati (masina Continue reading “Saint Tropez excursie cu masina / Saint Tropez road trip”

Saint Tropez road trip France

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The summer is fast approaching and a small holiday was the perfect opportunity to take a road trip on the Cote d’Azur towards Saint Tropez. After visiting all of Marseille’s sights and surroundings, we wanted to go with our guest on a Côte d’Azur train trip, but unfortunately the unpredictable running schedule sprinkled with spontaneous strikes organised by the French SNCF lazy workers deprived us of this option. Another inconvenience would be that the train does not go all the way up to Saint Tropez, but only to Toulon or Nice, from where you have to take a local coach the rest of the way.

From Marseille to Saint Tropez there are only 150 km, but even for this distance, the train can be quite expensive if you do not buy the tickets well in advance. If you get a ticket today for tomorrow you can also spend around € 50 per person on such a train ride, so we’ve considered renting a car to make the trip. Unfortunately, this option can be quite expensive also if you do not make the reservation a few days in advance, but if you are 3 or 4 people in the car it is generally worth it. At the rental company called Thrift a Renault rented for one day costs 60 Euro + the insurance that on the internet costs 37.5 EUR … but if you take it from the office booth you will get it for 60 Euro’s ….. ( without this insurance you are liable to pay 1,000 EUR damage even for the Continue reading “Saint Tropez road trip France”

Romania road trip across the country

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It was the summer of 2017 and the weather was perfect for a Romania road trip. We decided to take advantage of our last vacation days and the available accommodation vouchers, so we jumped in the car and went roaming across Romania for a week. Our tour started at the “Danube Boilers”, stopping along the way at Orsova, Dubova, Timisoara, Deva, Hunedoara, Alba Iulia, Sovata, Praid, Sighisoara, Brasov and via Transfagarasan back to Constanta. As usual, the trip was planned on short notice and the accommodation was chosen from what was available through a travel agency.

Day 1: We hit the roads of our motherland, where, as I have mentioned in the previous article Road trip to Budapest, the experience can be excruciating and you will spend a lot of hours stuck in traffic on narrow 2 lanes national roads. From Constanta to Orsova we chose the route via Bucharest – Pitesti – Rm. Valcea with a stopover at Targul Jiu to see the sculptures of Constantin Brancusi. As soon as you exit A1 motorway in Pitesti, the ordeal starts and doesn’t stop until Timisoara when we return on the A1. Lately on the good roads of Romania we found loose gravel that is not compressed by the special machines, but rather by cars in open traffic, the kind of gravel that shreds your hood and your windshield in a million pieces  – WHAT THE FUCK?! The incident appeared on national news , hundreds of drivers got their cars damaged in the process and nobody was held accountable.

We chose to stop at Targul Jiu specially to see the sculptures of the well known sculptor Constantin Brancusi. The first unpleasant surprise we had was when we were driving to Brancusi Park but along the way we elegantly  drove past the Infinity Column. The column is in separate park on the opposite side of the city from the other representative sculptures , the Kiss Gate and the Table of Silence of the famous sculptor. Once in the park, after seeing the Kiss Gate and the Table of Silence, I left within half an hour because there is simply nothing else to do there. I can say that it is not worth the go out of your way just for this and the sculptures themselves are rather… unattractive. Brancusi’s works are not highlighted, and the only information that they actually belong to Constantin Brancusi are found on a small portable billboard in the park, you know the type of billboard you normally see in front on the terraces showing the daily menu. The Romanian authorities should take a visit to Brancusi’s workshop museum in Paris to get an idea on ​​how to display such a national value.

We go further on to Orsova and to the Danube Boilers. Orsova is one of the most beautiful cities we have seen on our side of the Danube, the river promenade that stretches all along the city is an absolute pleasure to walk, but the real star in the area, besides the superb scenery, is the recently renovated road that cuts the gorge of the Continue reading “Romania road trip across the country”

Budapest road trip

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We wanted to avoid the big crowds of the National Navy Day back home so we decided to leave for the extended weekend on a road trip to Budapest. Like any good idea, this trip came to our minds during a drunken night in Vama Veche. All being said and done, on Saturday morning, two couples were in my car, on our way to the border with Hungary. From Constanta to Budapest there are about 1050 kilometers, of which only 218 km are on national two lane roads and not on the motorway, namely Olt Valley between Pitesti and Sibiu entrance, and the missing A1 section between Deva and Faget – Dumbrava. In theory you should do this trip in 11 hours, in practice we live in Romania and it’s baaaad , very bad. I recommend a lot of patience and cold blood, on the Olt Valley I lost at least 3 hours in the still traffic, blocked between coaches and an infinite number of cars on both lanes, bringing the time up to 15 hours. Once you cross the ring road of Bucharest and the Olt Valley and you reach the A1 highway from Sibiu, it’s clear roads from there. The new section of A1 highway goes all the way to the border of Hungary at Nadlac and on to Budapest. The new border crossing point at Nadlac has enough lanes and works like a drive-in, just show the id or passport at the booth and go on. Immediately after the border at the first car park on the M43 motorway, you need to stop and buy a vignette.  A 10 days pass will cost 2975 Forints (10 EUR) and if you buy it from the Internet you pay this price, if you buy it from the parking lot you will pay EUR 14, as we have discovered. The roads and the highway system in Hungary are impeccable and everybody drives very civilized on lane 1, lane 2 being used on short intervals only when you overtake a slower car from lane 1. Lane 2 is not always busy and when you’re on it no one will come in your back and flash you insistently, but will rather wait calm until you finish overtaking and come back on lane 1 or at worst they will turn on the left signalling to alert you that you keeping the lane busy. The GPS assistance is truly holy during this trip, especially in the city.

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Due to the fact that all the trip was planned at a very short notice, finding accommodation was a challenge. Unlike the previous visit in 2012 Budapest  , when all the travel package came at 100 Continue reading “Budapest road trip”

Cluj weekend trip si Electric Castle

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Dupa aproape un an am zis ca e timpul sa revad Clujul si  ce ocazie era mai buna sa mergi incolo daca nu in perioada Electric Castle festival. Nu am mers neaparat pentru festival dar tinand cont ca in ziua a patra a festivalului canta Prodigy parca imi facea cu ochiul.

Drumul a fost lung si in Romania dupa cum bine stiti infrastructura e in continuare la pamant . De la Constanta la Cluj Napoca sunt doar 687 de kilometri din care daca includ si noua sectiune de autostrada de la Sibiu la Sebes ajungem la aproape 400 de kilometri de autostrada , dar datorita sectiunii critice pe Continue reading “Cluj weekend trip si Electric Castle”