Wednesday, June 29, 2016

The rest of Lithuania

This post is about places we visited near spots we camped for free. It is amazing what you find traveling through the countryside.

Near the town of Trakai is the Hill of Angels

One of the wooden angel sculptures

Bill swinging with the angels

Trakai Island Castle in Lake Galve

Inside the castle walls

The inner court yard houses an interesting museum of Lithuanian history.

Weird suspended rocks sculpture in a rest area.

Bill swinging one of the rocks.

Hill of Crosses

People started placing crosses on the hill in the mid 1800's.

During the Soviet Union occupation it was a symbol of peaceful resistance.

There are layers and layers of crosses.

The underground Plokstine missile base was the first nuclear missile base of the Soviet Union. We were able to tour the base on our own because the guided tours were only in Lithuanian. We rented an audio recording that explained everything in English. They let us tour the underground facility on our own at our own pace.
Dome covering a missile silo.

This guy is the first thing you see as you enter the facility. He was very creepy.

Some of the weapons.

Cold War propaganda. One side of the room had Soviet and the other U.S.

The nuclear missile silo.


We really enjoyed Lithuania. For such a small country it is amazing all the interesting places we visited. This post is about Vilnius, the capital city.

View of Snipiskes Neighborhood.

View of Old Town.

Hot air balloons over Old Town.

There are beautiful tree lined shopping streets.

Gediminas Tower

Vilnius Cathedral

The ceiling of the entrance to Vilnius Cathedral.

Gates of Dawn

View in Old Town

Interesting doorway

Interesting building

New use for an old church tower - at the top tier you can see it is now a cell tower.

We took another free walking tour - our guide is telling us about St Anna's Church.

The Republic of Uzupio neighborhood. The sign says you must be smiling when you enter. The speed limit is 20 kph. You must love art.  Don't drive into the river.

The symbol for Uzupio

Street art in Uzupio. It is everywhere you look.

Stebuklas Tile - Marks one end of the continuous chain of people stretching across Estonia, Latvia, and Lithuania in protest against Soviet Occupation in 1989.

Sunday, June 26, 2016


Poland is a large country and we don't have much time before meeting JoAn in Helsinki, so we concentrated our time visiting Krakow. Krakow is a wonderful city. We only spent two days, but you could easily spend much more.

Krakow - We stayed outside of town and took public transportation into the town center. It was easy to do and very convenient. The first thing we did was take a free walking tour. The guides work for tips, so they are inspired to do a good job. We have taken them in several different cities. The guides are usually college students and have lots to share about their city. In addition to an excellent tour, our guide suggested a good inexpensive authentic polish food restaurant favored by the locals. We had a delicious dinner.

Damian our Free Walking Tour guide. 

There is lots of street entertainment in the main square.

The horse carriages are amazing.

Rynek Glowny - a covered market in the center of the main square.

The dragon of Krakow

Man covered in mirrors on the sidewlk.

There are shops selling amber everywhere.

Graffiti art in the Jewish Quarter.

Love locks on a pedestrian bridge. 

Vistula River with the Wawel Castle in the background.

 Wawel Castle

One of the many churches in Krakow

Views of inside the church.

The main square in old town in the evening. It is still crowded with tourists.

Rural Poland - The countryside is very similar to Romania and Slovakia. Lots of green rolling hill and lakes. It is beautiful.

Near the boarder between Poland and Slovakia.

View from our camping spot on a lake. We had a nice evening walk around the lake.

Another camping spot on a lake. We had another nice evening walk along the shore.