Travels with V

Vienna

Crossing the border

Vienna part three

Waking up to our third day in Vienna we act on an impulse and decide to go on a boat trip along the Donau river. There’s a couple of companies arranging cruises but we chose the one going to Bratislava, the Slovakian capital right on the other side of the border.  It’s a beautiful day on the river and we pass forests ans small villages, many of them once guarded by hilltop fortresses, now mostly picturesque ruins. In some areas huts line the river banks, And all buildings are elevated on stilts. Probably as protection for when the river is overflowing.

After just over an hour on the river we arrive in Bratislava, a city also protected by a hilltop castle, shiny white. This castle was first built more than eleven hundred years ago. And before that there was a kelt settlement here. In the distance we see high office and apartment buildings but here by the ferry landing is the old town with low houses and narrow streets. The town hall is said to be the oldest in Europe. Here and there you can spot unusual and funny statues, one of them surprisingly represents the Danish storyteller HC Andersen, another depicting a sewage worker peeking up from a well. As we stroll around this rather sleepy and silent city we can’t get rid of the feeling  that this is not a capital, it’s a small country town.

If you read guidebooks on Bratislava you find that there really isn’t a lot to be seen. But we wander to the outskirts of the old town to find one of the sights, The Blue Church. Obviously designed by someone with a child’s mind, the building looks like it’s made of blue marzipan. Then we cross the old town again to climb up to the castle. At the top we find that it’s not so impressive as it is from below. Maybe because the old castle burned down in 1811 and wasn’t rebuilt until some hundred years later. So if there were any decorations on the walls they were probably destroyed in the fire.

There are two or three museums inside the castle today but we skip them, entrance fees are a bit on the expensive side. Near the castle (and even higher up) is a modern building housing the parliament, and by it a nice restaurant with fantastic views of the surroundings. And, finally, by the castle entrance there’s an impressive statue of a horse and rider. It represents Svatopluk, a local prince who in the 9th century defended his country called Moravia. He was successful, but after his death Moravia was invaded and forgotten. 

After lunch we walk through the city one last time to get to the railway station and board a train that takes us back to Vienna. With no hassle. Once again we pass a border but just as when we came here the crossing is extremely un-dramatic. And anyway, these lands have during the millenniums constantly passed on from one conquerer to another, so maybe borders are still seen as temporary here. Bratislava for instance was the capital of Hungary for some  two hundred years.

OLD PART OF THE OLD TOWN
LADIES HAVING A DISCUSSION WITH MR ANDERSEN

Vienna is a city most visited for its grand history. For it’s magnificent palaces and art museums. And to learn something about Europe and European history too. Austria was once a mighty empire in the centre of the world but now it’s a small republic in a corner. Where every restaurant makes wienerschnitzel and the skiing is superb. Where the tempo is slow and transportation works perfect. Vienna is absolutely worth a visit!

Jag som gör den här resebloggen heter Lars Aldman och jag har tidigare jobbat som journalist mm på SR och SVT. Och "V" som jag reser med är min älskade hustru Veronica, journalist och fotograf.

Vår favoritsysselsättning är att resa runt i världen och se andra kulturer och samhällen. I flera år har vi äventyrat i Asien, Afrika och Latinamerika, och även naturligtvis i Europa. Och vi vill gärna dela med oss av våra erfarenheter och glädjeämnen, och hoppas att ni vill följa med oss!

PS. På sajten aldmangallery.com hittar ni mina bilder från både när och (mest) fjärran. Djur, natur, samhällen och människor.
Resebloggar finns det gott om men vi har en lite annan tanke med våra berättelser. Vi vill främst beskriva våra upplevelser av udda platser, människorna vi möter och miljöer som är rätt annorlunda mot vad vi möter hemma.

Därför hamnar vi ibland i avlägsna indianbyar i Guatemalas berg eller bland andetroende bybor på en ö i Indonesien. Men också på mer kända platser som Machu Picchu i Peru eller sandstränderna i Goa. Allt sett genom våra ögon och kameror.

Den som vill ha restips får också sitt - varje resmål har en avdelning med sånt vi kan rekommendera. Eller undvika. Vårt fokus är framför allt att sporra er läsare att göra som vi - resa rätt ut i den vida världen.

Jag heter Lars Aldman och har bl a jobbat som journalist mm på SR och SVT.  Och "V" som jag reser med är min älskade hustru Veronica, som också är journalist och fotograf. Vi älskar att resa och uppleva andra kulturer. I flera år har vi rest omkring i världens fyra hörn och vi vill gärna dela med oss av våra erfarenheter och glädjeämnen på dessa upptäcktsfärder. Hoppas ni vill följa med!

Hej!

Vår senaste resa gick till Albanien där vi under tre veckor upplevde detta okända men så spännande och vackra land. Från de hisnande höga bergen i norr, de gamla städerna och de djupa floddalarna i landets mitt, till de långa stränderna med sitt klara vatten i söder. Klicka på Albanien och läs om landets dramatiska historia och dess vänliga och gästfria invånare.

NYTT!

There's now a new addition to the blog, about our trip to Albania. During three weeks we traveled up and down this unknown but beautiful country. From the high mountains in the north to the ancient towns and the deep valleys inland, to the sandy beaches and the clear green water in the south. Click on Albania in the map and read about its dramatic history and kind and hospitable people.

NEW!
I'm Lars Aldman from Sweden. I worked for many years at the Swedish National TV and Radio, but now my main interest is traveling around the world with "V", my lovely wife Veronica, who is a freelance journalist and photographer.
For the last ten years we have traveled through Asia, Africa, Latin America, and Europe. We love to experience different cultures and societies and we hope you'll join us!