A Travellerspoint blog

August 2009

Krakow - living in luxury in Poland

sunny 27 °C
View Around the world ın 8 months on chrisvasil's travel map.

First off - our place in Krakow was amazing. A Sodispar Apartment Hotel, in the old walled town about 30 sec walk to the town square, with kitchen, laundry, 12 foot ceilings, and huge room. All for 37 Euros. The manager was great too - offered very early checkin and late checkout for no extra charge - we were there 8am to 10pm on one day's fees. Only complaint about the place - the office is 1km away from the old town, so I was cursing them a bit between the train station, the office, and the hotel. Here's the entrance (not really lobby, more of a hallway to a clothing and crafts store. The company's apts are scattered between buildings in the area)
20090901_282.jpg

The square is filled with people hawking handicrafts and souvenirs - a bit touristy, but some of the things were nice.
20090901_106.jpg
20090901_110.jpg

We passed by this fountain and the barbican at least a dozen times between the old and new towns. It's a good one - and the wall around the old town is surrounded by greenspace, so it's very parklike.
20090901_123.jpg
20090901_125.jpg
20090901_127.jpg

A war monument. Europe has a lot of those. Travelling here it's amazing how WWI and especially WWII left a toll on the cityscape and psyche on each part of the continent.
20090901_131.jpg
20090901_138.jpg

Krakow castle. The coolest was a museum of war things -
20090901_287.jpg
20090901_291.jpg
20090901_305.jpg
20090901_312.jpg

Posted by chrisvasil 12:35 Archived in Poland Tagged lodging Comments (0)

克拉科夫 (Kracow)

有的不仅仅是熏肉香肠香肠

sunny 25 °C

刚进德勤的时候,坐在我一排靠窗位置的是我们部门的一个Senior Manager。此人语言表达能力超强(这是含蓄的说,用直白的汉语表达就是屁话超多)且对食物有着特别的兴趣。特别是当我们赶工的时候,一边盯着屏幕的模型,一边听他声色俱全地向人描述他周末熏制的波兰烤肉和香肠,口水都能把键盘给淹了。(现在想来在我坐在那个位置的一年里换了3部电脑原来是有客观原因的!)去波兰的火车上,我唯一的念想就是香肠。

Kracow是波兰的第二大城市。城市虽大,但是主要的景点(老城区)都集中在一起,所以游览起来特别方便。在一路露营和Hostel之后,我们打算豪华一把,定了公寓酒店,后来总结绝对是物超所值 (因为公寓里有洗衣机,我们终于洗了睡袋,毯子,鞋子和所有的衣服。我们总算和中东的灰尘彻底告别了!)

公寓离中心广场只一步之遥,在房间就能听到广场的钟声。广场的特别之处是它的集市,小摊上摆满了当地人做的工艺品。比起其他国家和广场摊贩兜售的中国进口的千篇一律的旅游纪念品,这些工艺品的确是独树一帜的。

篮子,又见篮子。我老娘就喜欢这些玩意,让她亲眼见到这个估计都快激动疯了!可惜,我们还得继续旅行,不然给她带一打!
20090901_090.jpg
20090901_091.jpg

稻草(?)做的插花和玩偶
20090901_094.jpg
20090901_093.jpg

木制玩具
20090901_095.jpg
20090901_104.jpg
20090901_110.jpg

刺绣品,要是我那心灵手巧的外婆看见,保准能给我绣上几个一摸一样的。
20090901_096.jpg
20090901_097.jpg
20090901_098.jpg
20090901_099.jpg
20090901_103.jpg
20090901_105.jpg

广场的旁边是一个中心花园。它是从广场到市中心的必经之路。所以在那里的两天里,我们来来回回穿梭了公园5,6次。虽然没有杭州的孤山和中山花园的规模和精致,但是开放式的公园是却让人们在喧嚣的城市中心找到一份宁静。
20090901_121.jpg

Kracow的整个城市规划的极其整洁,现代,而且规模毫不吝啬。似曾相识的圆形房顶。不管它是前苏联的建筑风格还是波兰的本土风,我就是喜欢圆形的屋顶,因为他们是童话里城堡该有的样子。
20090901_130.jpg
20090901_289.jpg
20090901_296.jpg
20090901_300.jpg
20090901_304.jpg
20090901_305.jpg
20090901_312.jpg

在8条车道的中心马路上有绿化,座椅和雕塑。
20090901_144.jpg
最醒目的则是高达10多米的二战的英雄纪念碑。这场半个世纪之前的战争给世界,尤其是欧洲留下了太深太深的烙印,以至于此后我们经过的任何一个国家城市在近代史上都围绕着它而进化演变。
20090901_133.jpg
20090901_135.jpg
20090901_140.jpg

提到了二战,不得不说起希特勒的集中营。离Kracow市区仅一个半小时车程的Auschwitz曾是法西斯屠杀犹太人的屠宰场。对于二战,我此前所有的印象便是历史书中对战役,联盟的基本概念。Auschwitz Camp带给我的是震撼,是用人的鲜血和骨灰堆积的震撼和对后人的警示。我们两人鲜有地安静,如果我们出生在50年前,我们会扮演什么样的角色呢?
20090901_266.jpg
20090901_268.jpg
20090901_269.jpg
20090901_270.jpg

犹太人从这个入口进入死亡之门。他们的行李被没收,名字被代号取代。
20090901_155.jpg
20090901_162.jpg

在进入这个门口之后,法西斯的军医潦草地决定了所有人的生死。老弱病残直接进入毒气室,火化间,剩下的成为法西斯工厂的工人。
20090901_165.jpg
20090901_262.jpg

毒气室使用的几十克就能在几十分钟内杀死几百人的化学药品。
20090901_168.jpg

巨大的烟囱里曾经飘出的不是炭灰,而是人的骨灰。
20090901_197.jpg

集中营 - 如果不是导游的介绍和房子周围的电网,也许我们会认为这个是整洁的军营或是工厂的工人生活区。
20090901_153.jpg
20090901_156.jpg
20090901_159.jpg
20090901_202.jpg
20090901_206.jpg

这些房子原来是马圈。后来却用来关犹太的劳工。老鼠,蟑螂,虱子,跳蚤遍布。。。
20090901_222.jpg
20090901_214.jpg
20090901_256.jpg
20090901_258.jpg

底层的窗户被封了。这是黑房,是用来处罚政治犯的。
20090901_160.jpg

女人们的头发在进集中营的头一天被剪短。各色的头发竟然被法西斯制成了毯子。
20090901_169.jpg

在这里,犹太人失去了财产,生活必需品,家人,人格,甚至生命。各种被没收的物件:
眼镜
20090901_171.jpg
毯子
20090901_170.jpg
拐杖
20090901_172.jpg
皮箱
20090901_175.jpg
鞋子
20090901_178.jpg

用来做医学实验的男孩和他们畸形的身体
20090901_181.jpg

150万生命曾经在这里消失,历史不能被从写,只能被后人谨记!
20090901_229.jpg
20090901_244.jpg

Posted by suevasil 09:20 Archived in Poland Tagged backpacking Comments (0)

Auschwitz

overcast 25 °C
View Around the world ın 8 months on chrisvasil's travel map.

Auschwitz is big. Actually the name of 3 main camps and 40 sub-camps, and we spent time at Auschwitz 1 and 2. To look at the Auschwitz 1 complex from the outside (and ignore the electrified barbed wire) one could assume it's a fancy suburban boarding school or some such, but one would be wrong.

20090901_159.jpg
20090901_201.jpg

This is where the guy would decide if people look fit enough to go to the labour camp, or if they would go straight to the gas chambers. 3/4 didn't make the cut.
20090901_165.jpg

Those that did generally lasted anywhere from a couple weeks to a year and a half, no longer than that. The wall with pictures and dates of entry and exit (to slaughter) is particularly harrowing.

They took everything from the people that got into the concentration camp, and mostly sent them back to Germany for use by civilians.

Here are glasses
20090901_171.jpg
prosthetics
20090901_172.jpg
shoes
20090901_178.jpg
hair and textiles made from hair. There's a room (no pic) with hair about 3 ft high, 3 ft deep, 20 ft across, that was going to be made into textiles.
20090901_169.jpg

May they rest in peace, and may similar atrocities never again take place
20090901_188.jpg

One thing that struck me is that the exhibits and (mandatory) guides didn't seem objective, there seemed to be an anti-Nazi slant to descriptions. Now this is clearly justified given the context, but is in contrast what I was used to in museums and readings of history (which strive to appear neutral while often subtly communicating bias).

Auschwitz 2 is bigger, with capacity apparently for 200,000 people before part of the complex was burned to the ground by retreating Germans. This is where most of the killings took place.
20090901_206.jpg
20090901_213.jpg
20090901_259.jpg
20090901_268.jpg
20090901_269.jpg
20090901_271.jpg
20090901_273.jpg

The original barracks were built as stables, meant to hold 52 horses, but converted to hold over 200 people.
20090901_256.jpg

Posted by chrisvasil 12:37 Archived in Poland Comments (0)

Kocise, Slovakia - SNP 65th anniversary in a small town

rain 22 °C
View Around the world ın 8 months on chrisvasil's travel map.

Aug 29 - Kocise, Slovakia - SNP 65th anniversary in a small town

We wanted to go to Slovakia because my dad's family is from there, and reading through Lonely Planet nowhere else looked interesting (except Bratislava, but everyone that's been there thought it a waste of time). So to Kosice we went.

It's a great place - supremely walkable, with a lovely main street and the whole of the downtown being under 1x1 km in the lonely planet map - we initially missed a few spots because what seemed far on the map was 100m away. The main street is wide and seems to be pedestrian-only, and most of the attractions can be seen going up and down main street - very close together. The buildings are all old but well-maintained, there's a lot of character in the town. The town can be seen and everything done in a couple hours, and I would recommend it for anyone that will be in Eastern Europe.

We happenned to be there on the 65th anniversary of SNP day, when Slovakia revolted against Nazi rule, which had the advantage of hosting festivities but the drawback of almost everything being closed.

The festivity we saw involved a group of people singing Slovak songs
20090901_006.jpg
20090901_007.jpg

A Soviet monument to people that died in and around SNP day
20090901_019.jpg

The main cathedral
20090901_024.jpg

Also on the main street.
In the background, another church. In the midground, the musical fountain -- they play music, and the fountain height changes with the music. Kind of like the visualization thing in Media Player, only it actually moves with the music. In the foreground, is Sue.
20090901_054.jpg

Other side of the same church - there's a stream constantly going in the middle of the main street.
20090901_085-1.jpg

The underground city, a series of underground tunnels that are a few hundred years old and were used for a combination of military purposes and sewage. Doesn't quite compare with the underground city we saw in Turkey (this one was a long hallway, that one was 4 stories down and labyrinthine), but it was well worth the 50 euro cents admission.
20090901_035.jpg
20090901_038.jpg

A side street we took
20090901_061.jpg
20090901_065.jpg

Try as I might, I couldn't get this guy to see my point of view. Oh well. Maybe I can charm him instead.
20090901_069.jpg
20090901_072.jpg

This town has the best ice cream and cake store, Cukraren Aida - 70 euro cents for a big slice of cake, 30 for an ice cream cone. Needless to say we had several of each.
20090901_083.jpg
20090901_086.jpg
20090901_087.jpg

Posted by chrisvasil 12:32 Archived in Slovakia Tagged tourist_sites Comments (0)

连中文都不知道怎么翻得斯洛伐克城市 ( Kocise)

rain 21 °C

Kocise带给我们的除了惊喜之外还是惊喜。之所以去那里是因为正好有一辆夜车,而它也刚好是去波兰的中间站。

下了火车是周六早上9点。天气灰蒙蒙的。这是从中东一路走来,我们遇到的第一个阴霾的天气。换做往日,可能我会抱怨,不过这种潮湿的天气像极了江南,让我想到了家乡,于是也不自觉地陶醉在其中。想来,离上一次漫步在家乡的梅雨天气里,已经有8年之久了。 从20出头,到了20之尾,其中无数的变迁,挑战,沮丧,奋斗……索性我的人生还有30出头,40出头,50出头,60出头……希望他们能像我过去的20几年一样精彩。

这个小的不能再小的城市,从头走到尾也用不了一个小时。我们到得时候正是周六,也是他们庆祝革命成功的65周年,大多数的店铺都关门了,只剩下广场上欢庆的人们。

麻雀虽小,却五脏俱全。小城里的景致却一点不差。别致的古城墙,精美的教堂,音乐喷泉(这是我们这次旅行途中首次见到的音乐喷泉),地下古城,共产党的纪念碑,浮雕纪念碑,纵贯老城区的山泉……

20090901_002.jpg
20090901_018.jpg
20090901_024.jpg
20090901_019.jpg
20090901_025.jpg
20090901_028.jpg
20090901_032.jpg
20090901_034.jpg
20090901_036.jpg
20090901_044.jpg
20090901_048.jpg
20090901_049.jpg
20090901_054.jpg
20090901_055.jpg
20090901_056.jpg
20090901_058.jpg
20090901_065.jpg
20090901_081.jpg

因为我们已经定下了傍晚的火车票,所以被“陷”在了这个小城。从头走到尾,从尾走到头,我们大概走了3,4次,静静地观看周围当地人的生活。

广场里正在拍婚纱照的新人!(看他们那个费劲的样子,我还是很庆幸我们没有自虐)
20090901_057.jpg
下午再看到他们的时候,他们已经在神父和亲朋好友的祝福下步入了教堂。

无聊之余,Chris和哲人进行了一次亲密的会谈。内容我不得而知,因为那是一次无声的会谈,我看见的只是两个人激动地手势。(确切地说是一个人,对于一个不说斯洛伐克语的后辈小生,哲人是不屑一顾的,他始终保持着他淡定的神色!)
20090901_069.jpg
20090901_070.jpg
终于 Chris的情绪大爆发! “我叫你不理我!我粘定你了!”
20090901_072.jpg

冰激凌!杀伤力实在是太强了,连旅游书都强力推荐!我大概吃了4个,5个,大概6个吧。隆重推荐:柠檬霜,野果口味,早点发现这个店铺,我一天大概都凉在那里了。
20090901_084.jpg
20090901_086.jpg
我们走的时候店铺已经关门了,还是忍不住回头缅怀一下我最爱的冰激凌店!
20090901_088.jpg

Posted by suevasil 09:01 Archived in Slovakia Tagged backpacking Comments (0)

(Entries 1 - 5 of 35) Page [1] 2 3 4 5 6 7 » Next