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Travel Extravaganza Update

By Thursday, May 07, 2015

A couple of months ago, I posted our travel plans for the next few months, and called our busy schedule a "Travel Extravaganza". We'll be flying back to the States for good on June 29th, so this may be our last chance to visit the cities in Europe for quite a while, not to mention we'll probably never have as many vacation days ever again!

I have a lot of new posts in the works, but they'll take time so I wanted to do a quick update:


  • Seeing the Acropolis
  • Walking along the harbor in Piraeus on our lone sunny day
  • Cool Street art
  • Athens was a lot colder than usual, and it rained quite a lot. 
  • I also caught a really nasty cold, the kind where you'd rather stay in bed all day than go out. 


  • The Old Town
  • lots of good, cheap food (craft beer for ~3 euro a pint)
  • dragon bones,
  • seeing the beginning of the Rekawka festival
  • It was a cold Easter, and it snowed a little bit most days. We were prepared this time and it didn't rain, so the weather didn't impact us too much. Still, I'd love to visit Krakow in the summer. 
  • A lot of museums, restaurants, bars, etc were closed because of the holiday.


(Lisbon and Porto, with a day trip to Sintra)

  • Sintra, possibly the most magical place I've ever been. 
  • The most amazing pie/cake inside a printing factory turned bookstore -  the crust was a giant meringue!
  • I hurt my knee on all those hills and castle steps, and had a lot of trouble with stairs and walking downhill for the next few days. 
  • A lot of closures, either restaurants being closed for good, or just not open when we wanted to eat. 
  • We also got offered drugs a lot, even at 11 am on busy Avenida da Liberdade. 
  • The apartment we stayed at in Porto wouldn't let us flush the toilet paper.


  • The Basilica Cistern
  • Hagia Sophi
  • the Blue Mosque
  • Turkish Delight
  • the sunset over Sultenahmet from the ferry.
  • Kadıköy
  • Apple tea.
  • The packed trams. 
  • The man at the front desk at the hotel was very rude to us, and at breakfast 3 or 4 employees would stand around watching you eat. If you tried to get something to drink they'd rush over and insist they do it for you, regardless of what you wanted. 
  • Lots of people trying to aggressively sell us things, like Ahmed the Carpet Salesman (who will probably get his own post), people touching me and blocking my path, being argued with if I didn't want to eat in someone's restaurant. etc. 
  • Yedikule Castle was closed. 
  • Our flight home sat on the tarmac for an hour and half with no explanation. Finally, they told us there'd been a problem with a passenger, but that was it.
Next up is a day trip to Lubeck this weekend, and then Munich and a couple nearby towns the week after.

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  1. There is *so* much better in Turkey than Istanbul. That country is magic, and you wouldn't know it at all if you only visited the main city!!