Malta, o insulita mica si superba in mijlocul Marii Meditaraneene. Este o destinatie cunoscuta oricarui vaporean, fiind astazi un centru International de transbordare marfa, in special containere. Desi am avut ocazia sa vizitez de nenumarate ori portul, datorita sederii scurte in port de 12-18 ore, nu am avut niciodata timp sa savuram insula cum trebuie.
Asta pana in vara lui 2016 cand datorita unei probleme tehnice neasteptate, am fost instruiti de armator sa mergem catre santierul naval Palumbo din Malta. Cand m-am apucat sa fac ruta, spre surprinderea mea am vazut ca santierul este fix in inima orasului Valletta, capitala statului insula Malta.
Intrarea in golf a fost foarte stramta, pilotul manevrand cu grija nava noastra de 300 de metri printre zidurile si fortificatiile medievale de la intrarea in portul Valletta. Dar in acelasi timp ofera privelisti de vis, fiind aceleasi privelisti care le au si turistii de pe navele de croaziere care vin aici.
I heard great things about Krakow and thought we give it a try. This medieval city, which was voted the most beautiful city in Poland and in the region did not disappoint us at all. I can say that it was a very good holiday choice.
Poland is very similar to my home country Romania, and the feeling here is remarkably similar at first sight. Appearances fade away quickly from the moment you land on John Paul II airport (named after Polish Pope). The modern airport is very organized and clean. From here we easily found our way to the bus station.
A single ticket from the airport to the city center costs 9 Polish Zloty (2.1 EUR) or 16 Zloty (3.8 EUR) for a return ticket. You can buy tickets at the airport but also inside the bus at the dispenser, where you can pay cash or by card. Beautiful isn’t it? I look forward to seeing something like this in my country Romania.
Am auzit lucruri foarte bune despre Cracovia si am zis sa incercam si noi. Acest oras medieval votat cel mai frumos din Polonia si din regiune nu ne-a dezamagit deloc si pot zice ca a fost o alegere foarte buna de vacanta.
Polonia este foarte similara cu Romania, si peisajul pe aici chiar seamana cu ce vezi la noi la prima vedere. Aparentele dispar repede din momentul in care aterizezi pe aeroportul John Paul II (denumit dupa Papa Polonez Ioan Paul al doilea). Aeroportul modern este foarte organizat si curat. De aici am gasit lejer statia de autobuz catre centru.
Un bilet dus de la aeroport costa 9 Zloti Polonezi (10 Lei) sau 16 Zloti (18 Lei) pentru un bilet dus intors. Exista tonomat de bilete in aeroport dar si in autobuz unde se poate plati Cash sau cu cardul. Frumos asa nu? Astept ziua sa vad si in Romania asa ceva.
After visiting a large part of Europe, I present you my top 10 of the most beautiful cities that have left a memorable impression. The top is composed only of the cities I visited, I’m sure there are other beautiful cities out there that I have not yet had the chance to visit. For these I’m waiting for your suggestions in the comments section. We have included only the cities that have preserved their character and authentic beauty, not including those who have sacrificed their personality just for the sake of tourism (I can give Venice as an example of this)
10 Paris – France
I wasn’t sure if this city deserves to be included in the top because it can also easily be included in the list of the most overrated cities to visit and depending on the area you stay, it can also be included in the list of the most dangerous cities to visit. In principle, the French capital lives on the laurels of the past, but although the city of lights doesn’t shine so bright as it used to, it is still quite bright and appealing. The central area that you see as a tourist is still very beautiful and an example of urban planning to be looked up to. Also, the city offers a very large concentration of attractions that will keep you busy for at least a week, so it’s always a safe bet for a successful holiday. Protests, strikes and locals who do not speak English and who do not stand criticism towards their city or their country, all make sure you get a really authentic experience.
Dupa ce am vizitat o bucata mare din Europa, am sa va prezint un top 10 al celor mai frumoase orase care mi-au lasat o impresie memorabila. Topul este compus doar din cele vizitate, sunt sigur ca sunt si alte orase frumoase unde nu am apucat sa ajung, pentru acestea va astept cu sugestii in sectiunea de comentarii. Am inclus in top doar orasele care si-au pastrat caracterul si frumusetea autentica si nu am inclus pe cele spoite sau pe cele care si-au sacrificat personalitatea pentru a da bine la turisti (va pot da exemplu Venetia aici)
10 Paris – Franta
Nu eram sigur daca orasul merita inclus in acest top datorita faptului ca poate fi lejer inclus in topul celor mai supra evaluate orase de vizitat si in functie de zona in care esti acolo, poate fi lejer inclus si in topul celor mai periculoase orase de vizitat. In principiu capitala Franceza cam traieste pe laurii trecutului dar desi orasul luminilor numai straluceste atat de tare, este in continuare destul de sclipitor si atragator. Zona centrala pe care o vezi ca turist este in continuare foarte frumoasa si un exemplu de urbanistica demna de urmat. De asemenea orasul ofera o concentratie foarte mare de atractii care iti ocupa lejer o saptamana, asa ca este intotdeauna un pariu sigur pentru o vacanta reusita. Protestele, grevele si localnicii care nu vorbesc engleza si care nu suporta critici la adresa orasului si a tarii lor se asigura ca vei primi o experienta cu adevarat autentica.
Lisbon, an unpolished diamond at a finished price. The first vacation in 2019 found us in the capital of Portugal, Lisbon. I have wanted for a long time to reach the Western End of mainland Europe and now I am glad to have had this opportunity together with my friends from Romania.
I was pleasantly surprised to see that Ryanair has daily flights from Manchester to Lisbon, and the UK’s logistics, organization, prepaid airport parking, transfer to the terminal is simply impeccable. The first thing we had to do when we landed was to search for a means of transport to the city. Against my reason and judgement, we proceeded in to being stupid tourists and we went to the airport information desk to ask how we can get to Lisbon city center. They sent us to the Aerobus 1 service, which costs 4 EUR per person. Later I found out that there is a subway station inside the airport and also other normal regular buses where you pay € 1.5 per person ticket. That’s it, what to do now, so my first tip for everyone who wants to get to Lisbon, take the metro from the airport!
We found a cute apartment on Booking.com next to Rossio Square, which looked very nice in the pictures, but it proved to be lacking when we got there. The first thing we were asked by our host there was to pay the Lisbon tourist tax of 2 EUR per person per night, which must be paid separately on arrival. We knew about the tax from the site, but an extra cost of 48 EUR besides the already paid accommodation seems a bit expensive. I know all cities have a similar charge, but everywhere I have been, I didn’t pay more than 10-15 EUR, which were already included in the accommodation price. I have figured that it is for a good cause and at least something good is done with that money. I can not say that at the end of the holiday that I saw any great work done for tourists, but rather more for the locals.
Lisabona, un diamant neslefuit la pret piperat. Prima vacanta din 2019 ne-a gasit in capitala Portugaliei, Lisabona. Am vrut de mult sa ajung in capatul Vestic al Europei si acum ma bucur ca am avut aceasta ocazie impreuna cu prietenii din Romania.
Am fost placut surprins sa vad ca Ryanair are zboruri zilnice din Manchester catre Lisabona, iar organizarea in UK la capitolul logistica, parcare la aeroport preplatita, transfer catre terminal este impecabila. Primul lucru de care ne-am lovit cand am aterizat a fost cautarea unui mijloc de transport catre oras. Fiind turisti prosti, ne-am dus la biroul de informatii din aeroport si i-am intrebat cum ajungem cel mai usor in Lisabona. Ei ne-au trimis la autobuzul Aerobus 1, care costa 4 EUR de persoana. Mai tarziu am aflat ca exista metrou si alte autobuze normale, unde platesti 1.5 EUR pe bilet de persoana. Asta e, am muscat-o, deci un sfat pentru toata lumea care vrea sa ajunga la Lisabona, luati metroul din aeroport!
A month ago we were packing again our luggage to move to another country. After the very useful experience in France, we were now ready to move to England, UK. After living for a year in France, we left with mixed impressions. I knew we had to move somewhere where we speak the language and where we can really integrate into society, and I believe we could not truly achieve this there.
When the expiry date of my fixed-term contract in France was approaching, I started looking for work options in England. After some promising interviews, I still had nothing safe and signed in my hand, but I did had an invitation to come for a follow up face-to-face interview that seemed 80% sure. I took a risk and quickly bought a one way only plane ticket and I came with all my luggage. I was aware that if I came only for a few days visit just for the interview and somehow it failed, I would return to Romania with the tail between my legs and depressed and it would be very difficult for to ever come back. Fortunately, the interview here went very well.
Trebuie sa specific mai intai ca nu am locuit chiar in Franta , ci in Marsilia (Marseille), oras care chiar si multi Francezi zic ca nu e chiar Franta, si pe buna dreptate. A trecut un an de cand am venit aici cu munca. Orasul este unul al contrastelor , in centru ai portul natural si zona turistica Vieux Port, si la doar 2 strazi departare ai Piata Noailles, o zona inghesuita , urat mirositoare si mizerabila, plina de colorati unde auzi numai araba, unde se vand tigari de contrabanda in gura mare pe strada si unde te simti mai mult ca in Maroc sau Algeria decat Franta. De asemenea la Sud avem zone superbe cu parcuri , plaje si lume buna precum Prado , Point Rouge , si imediat la Nord de Gara Saint Charles ti-e frica sa mergi pe strada.
Venind din Romania, poate ca nu mi s-a parut mare lucru sa vad boschetari pe strada sau care dorm in statia de tramvai, cersetori la colt de strada si colorati care stau la gura metroului si beau bere fumand iarba, dar chiar si asa numarul de astfel de specimene pe metru patrat prezente in centrul orasului depaseste orice asteptari chiar si fata de Romania. Ma gandesc din perspectiva unui turist sau a unui Francez din alt oras mai “Frantuzesc” , probabil pare ceva ireal.
Probably the last of the great capitals that I have not been able to visit until now. It was in my plan to visit for a long time and I even had the plane ticket to London bought in the past but due to unfavorable circumstances I could not go. We left from Marseille, where we are now, and with Ryanair, we paid for 2 people return tickets just 97 EUR! Long Live Ryanair! The plane drops you at Stansted Airport which has a direct train connection to London. The train journey takes about 40 minutes and cost us 30 pounds (2 people). We arrived in London at Liverpool Street Station, one of the many giant train stations of this 10 million-strong metropolis. Getting out of the train and crossing the central corridor of the train station at rush hour, the atmosphere is simply overwhelming. Thousands of commuters traverse in a hurry between the subway and the numerous platforms that serve the suburban trains. But fortunately, the many signs, screens and information points make your life easy. We found our way to the subway entrance, we only had to find the platform of our line, which is not easy considering the fact that there are 4 subway lines serving this station.
The use the public transport, you will need an Oyster card, which is a universal card that is valid on the subway, train and bus, and prices for it may be shocking. The city is divided into 9 zones, and rates vary according to the number of zones you will cross. Avoid as much as you can buying one-time use tickets, they are the most expensive with rates starting from 5 pounds per trip. Better buy daily or weekly passes. To reach our hotel located in zone 4, we bought 2 weekly passes with unlimited trips valid in areas 1 to 4 for which we paid “only” 108 pounds (54 pounds per person). Fortunately, this is the only big expense you will encounter, during the rest of the holiday I had the pleasant surprise to discover that everything is cheaper here than in the South of France.
To reach our hotel near the Wembley Stadium, we used the Metropolitan Line, which is one of the newest line. It has large spacious trains lines and runs in express mode with few stations along Continue reading “The London Week”→