Thursday, June 6, 2013

Enjoying some afternoon downtime here in Sofia, Bulgaria, I was browsing our recent photos and discovered some must-shares from the past month or so.  Over the next few weeks, I will be formulating some (hopefully) coherent posts on the European destinations I have not yet covered, as I prepare my mind to switch gears on July 1, when we initiate the Asian portion of our trip!

One of the most unique churches we have visited on this trip is the Kostnice "Bone Church" in Kutna Hora, Czech Republic.  Built in the 1300s over a popular medieval burial ground by a semi-blind priest, it contains the bones of over 40,000 people, formed into chandeliers, pyramids and other structures.  Though macabre-sounding, we considered it a really lovely and peaceful place.

This spider statue was one of many interesting public works of art in Bilbao, Spain, located outside the Guggenheim Museum.

Here we are in front of part of the red-light district in Amsterdam.  There is a soccer team behind us.  People of all ages were out for a stroll in the area.

Eating one of our great culinary discoveries of central/eastern Europe: motanec, a bread coiled around a wooden pole and then roasted over open coals.  Crusty with sugar, almonds and vanilla on the outside, and soft on the inside, it is simply amazing.  In Prague, Czech Republic.

This is the stunning medieval St. Charles Bridge in Prague.  The weather was chilly and drizzly while we were there a couple of weeks ago, a prelude to the current floods.

While in Budapest, Hungary, we experienced a bit of "austerity fatigue" and decided to splurge on one of the area's famous Turkish baths.  We selected the Szechenyi thermal baths, consisting of over 20 pools of different temperatures, housed in a huge, gorgeous building.

It was a bit bright out, hence the squinting.  The water in the largest (outdoor) pool was the perfect temperature for an extended soak.  By the end of our four-hour stay, all of our backpacking aches and pains had left us.  Ahhh.

The next day in Budapest, we continued to live large by splurging on a drink at the New York Cafe, the self-proclaimed "most beautiful cafe in the world".  It was pretty spectacular, with live piano music and art-museum worthy interior decorations.  However, I don't think forking over $7 for a coffee is an experience we will repeat on this trip!  

Thanks for checking our blog, and have a wonderful day :)

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