After having a late night in Budapest, the plan for our journey to Krakow came to a very hard start. The alarm rang at 6.00 am. Our plan was to visit a thermal bath, something everyone who visits Hungary has to do. Especially if you’re in Budapest as you can find there the Széchenyl Medical Bath which is know to be the largest medical bath in Europe.
But what actually is a thermal bath?
A thermal bath or spa is a natural bathing resort where natural and mineralised groundwater with a temperature from over 20°C is used. Due to the minerals you find in those hot baths it’s known to have medical and healing qualities. Important to mention is that not like in an ordinary public bath you can stay in the pool for hours. Due to the concentration of the minerals it’s recommended not to stay longer than 15 minutes at a time in the pool. The skin is not only the biggest organ it is also very good in absorbing all sorts of stuff. So if you’re swimming in one of those baths your body is absorbing quite a bit of whats in the water and as with everything: too much is not healthy anymore… 😉
And healing water was exactly what we needed. Just picture two zombie-like humans who had less than 4 hours sleep wandering around. The best place to regenerate and prepare for a journey to an other city in an other country is to get pumped up on minerals and while doing it, floating in a well tempered pool… it is just EPIC 😉
So after revitalising the day officially was allowed to start (yes, you read correctly we allowed the day to start and not the other way around). Our goal for this day was to cross the border between Hungary and Poland to reach Krakow our first destination in this country and we succeeded with a few breaks in between. Even swimming in thermal healing baths and an obnoxious amount of caffeine drinks (we drunk basically everything where power and/or energy was written on) can’t erase the lack of sleep, but hey we made it and that is all that counts, isn’t it?
We arrived quite late in Krakow and after a short nap and some freshing up we decided to find something to eat and what would be dinner if we wouldn’t share it with a new friend yet to be found. So the plan stood and the new friend was found quite quickly and Elvis was his name. As already in previous countries and through or whole journey this will not be the last time that we will meet him as he lives in Riga, one of the capitals still on our list of cities to visit. But now back to where we are right now.
Our first evening was quite short as we were quite tired and after having dinner and a short walk around the city the day already ended in a well deserved portion of sleep…
The next day we had quite some things to do. At first we had to explore Krakow and after that continue our journey to Warsaw the capital of Poland and our next big stop. So with our further ado we started into the day. After walking around the ancient city centre we actually managed it to get a picture with the pope…
Okey maybe not the the real one but a wax sculpture of the one and only holy father Pope Francis. But let’s start at the beginning. While walking around the centre we spotted a wax museum and due to our curiosity we went strait in there and we’ve met some important people Mother Theresa, Pope Francis, Pope Ben, The former polish president, Daniels new pet aka the creepy cat and Robert Lewandowski!!!
And if we would have stayed for a few days longer we actually could have met the pope as he was visiting Krakow because of the World Youth Day which was held in Krakow this year.
The World Youth Days
“WYD is open to all young people who want to take part in a festive encounter with their contemporaries centered on Jesus Christ. This event is an opportunity to experience in first person the universality of the Church; to share with the whole world the hope of many young people who want to commit themselves to Christ and others. World Youth Day is a unique way to deepen your faith and grow closer to Christ, by means of prayer and the sacraments, together with thousands of other young people who share your interests and ambitions.”
online-source: http://worldyouthday.com/about-wyd, 16.09.2016/14:45GMT.
But we didn’t just looked around the sunny side of Poland, we also took a walk down Europe’s dark and disturbing past. Our next stop for this day was the enamel factory of Oskar Schindler, commonly known through the movie Schindler’s list played by Liam Neeson.
We highly recommend watching the movie as it is a very good and realistic one portraying a shimmer of light during a very dark part of european and world history – TRAILER.
The famous theme song played on the violin by Itzhak Perlman – THEME.
How was our experience visiting this museum? That’s is actually a good question and not an easy one to answer. On an objective level it was quite an informative, gigantic and well structured exhibition with some interactive stations like stamping cards and a 3D movie theatre. You walk around the grounds of the factory and get a good insight in the past. On a subjective level it was oddly disturbing and highly upsetting. Especially facing the fact that it is not that fare back in time…
After visiting this – let’s go with – oppressive place we decided to visit the temporary art museum next which seemed to have an exhibition on the human body and psyche. Quite an interesting place to be and as usual if it comes to some pieces of art, the question what raised “Why is that art again?”. Nevertheless considerable as time well spent 😉
As it has gotten late now we we went back to our dearly beloved Ursula and started our tour to our final destination of the day.
WARSAW we’re coming…