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Romania & Hungary trip went well - many thanks due

Romania & Hungary trip went well - many thanks due

Old Nov 7th, 2004, 05:43 PM
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Romania & Hungary trip went well - many thanks due

Just wanted to say thanks to those that contributed to my many questions on these places.

julies, BATUFFOLINA, Ben Haines, mirela, isabela, joegri, flanneruk, Octavian and the amazing Romanian_Bat from LP's TT...

Thanks to each of you, the trip went off great. Had a wonderful time in these places that aren't often discussed (as well as Budapest, which is)

Very unusual trip it turned out to be, especially the driving in rural Romania. And being spontaneously both blessed in Sighisoara and cursed in Maramures. Unexpected personal sightseeing tours in the castle ruins in Cris and the monastary in Sinaia and the church of Densus by caretakers, despite the lack of a common language. Horse carts and livestock all over the roads everywhere in Romania and nowhere in Hungary. Roman ruins in Sarmezegetusa and the pieces built into the walls of Densus. The towns of Eger, Sarospatak, Sibiu and Medias... beautiful. The painted monasteries of Bucovina..

So much to be grateful for. Thanks again!
Clifton is offline  
Old Nov 8th, 2004, 03:39 AM
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Topping, in case some are among the morning visitors.
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Old Nov 8th, 2004, 05:32 AM
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Dear clifton,

We would love a trip report.
ira is offline  
Old Nov 8th, 2004, 12:11 PM
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I'll be trying to put some notes (and photos) together here in the next few weeks. I'm glad to see that there's some interest, as they're truly a unique and fascinating places.

More to come...
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Old Nov 8th, 2004, 12:15 PM
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Hi Clifton,

I too would love a trip report! We are very interested in doing an E. European trip in 2006
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Old Nov 8th, 2004, 12:18 PM
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Thanks for the post. I'm glad you had a good time! I too would love a trip report. We are planning on visiting Eastern Europe (possibly end of next year), and my husband and I would love to explore both Romania and Hungary.

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Old Nov 8th, 2004, 12:34 PM
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Clifton: I am really glad you had a good time. Your notes will help others who haven't had a chance to visit this beautiful area. Looking forward to your comments.
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Old Nov 10th, 2004, 05:15 AM
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Thanks all...

Just an FYI that I *am* working on it. But confronted with the 300+ emails that were waiting at work and a pending business trip, it'll probably be a couple of weeks before I can post something useful. Bear with me.
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Old Nov 10th, 2004, 03:29 PM
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I am happy that your trip was full of memorable memories. We are ALL waiting for your trip report which will surely help other travelers in the future.
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Old Nov 19th, 2004, 09:39 AM
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Good to have you back Clifton; OK, We'll wait a few days for your report
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Old Dec 6th, 2004, 01:30 PM
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I hope no one minds that I'm jumping in. I was in Romania the same time as Clifton. I read all of your emails and took notes for my trip. Thought I could give some info on my trip to help others.

Sorry to say I really didn't care for Bucharest although our hotel was wonderful. It's called the Flanders Hotel and the staff was wonderful and the food is terrific.

We spent 4 nights in Brasov at the Hotel Coroana. Very nice "communist era" hotel. Kind of shabby but the rooms were very large and clean....and the location...well, you just can't beat it.

We took the local bus to Sighisoara for the day. I must say that the transportation to each location can be quite an adventure in itself. We met some interesting people and had lots of laughs trying to squish into the buses. Anyway, we had lunch at Vlad's birthplace. The food was not very good but the atmosphere cannot be beat. Excellent service and the Tuica is burning hot!

The next day we hired a minivan with a driver and interpreter. We wanted to go to Castle Poinari (sorry about the spelling). It is supposedly "the" dracula's castle. Our driver had never been there and they thought it would take 2 1/2 hours. Well, 5 hours and 3 bottles of wine later, we arrived at the base of 1,425 steps. Our driver and interpreter joined us to the top. It was grueling but oh so worth the climb. We were lucky to have a beautiful fall day and the views were simply amazing. Plus we were the ONLY ones there! All in all the trip was about 11 hours (from Brasov) but it was well worth it.

The next day we took a taxi to the Bran Castle. What a superbly kistchy experience. The castle is fun to check out but the best part is the stalls for shopping. They had everything from dracula's teeth, to dracula's vodka and wine, to beautiful hand sewn peasant blouses and sweaters. Even my brother shopped...and he NEVER shops. Dracula's pub is a must see with coffins for the sitting area and lots of dark corners. So fun! Lunch was a small restaurant behind Dracula's market. We were able to order chicken from the non-english speaking staff by flapping our arms and clucking. Sign language is a wonderful thing.

Took the bus to Siniai (whatever you do...take a taxi instead...TRUST ME) and walked into a beautiful old hotel at the cost of 37 euros! Unfortunately we waited until the next morning to visit the Peles Castle along with 10 huge buses of tourists. It was awful. You have to stay in groups within the castle and we couldn't find an english group so we joined a spanish one. Then we snuck ahead to a Romanian group and then I just played sick and got out of there. Very beautiful but hot and irritating with too many people. This was the only place we encountered more than a 1/2 dozen tourists the entire trip.

If anyone wants further info or more specifics, please let me know. I have been all over Europe but this was my first time to Eastern Europe and it was the best trip ever. Very few tourists and a gorgeous autumn week.
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Old Dec 7th, 2004, 01:30 PM
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Clifton and Jotravel-- Thanks for your comments (including Clifton's trip report on a separate thread). We've been to Poland, Slovakia, Hungary and Croatia in the last two years but never really considered Romania. After reading about your experiences, we've added it to our short list of possibilities for next fall.
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Old Dec 7th, 2004, 02:51 PM
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Many Fodors readers with a bit of adventure at heart have started to go to central and even eastern Europe, and so long as they do not expect international levels of care they have a good time at low cost. I hope and think that sight of people from established democracies is a part of the shift to freedom across the former Warsaw Pact nations, and the Baltic countries, though Belorus, Moldova, and Russia will take more time still.

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Old Dec 7th, 2004, 10:36 PM
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jotravel, I'll say thanks here too for the addition, but have mostly commented back on the trip report thread I've been doing.

For those who asked for one here and haven't seen it, I started it and then it got out of hand. Horribly long and not quite finished. If you've the patience:

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Old Dec 7th, 2004, 11:35 PM
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Clifton, why do you say it's out of hand? I'm sure it would be quite reasonable to write a book about what you saw, and it's somewhere so few of us get to see. So continue writing away .
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Old Dec 8th, 2004, 05:25 AM
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Will Travel, I guess that was mostly tongue in cheek, but with a grain of truth too. I hit the first places where I knew not a high percentage of people have been and thought I should try to describe what we saw a little more thoroughly. I wouldn't have done the same for a popular destination, but in this case, I set myself up for a lot of typing. Fun though...

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