Mummy Hey arrives in Krakow, with a smooth pick up from the airport we head into town to our hotel and then a guided tour of the sites from Kris. Including a Polish food and a few of Robyn’s favourite zubrowka vodka with apple juice and cinnamon.
We leave Krakow in the morning and head toward Ukraine, having crossed a few borders easily we thought we may as well try this one, we were wrong unbeknown to us it was a public holiday and high time for crossing, causing us to take 6 hours to cross the border into Ukraine. Had we known it was going to take so long we would have stayed in the EU and skipped Ukraine altogether. We persisted and finally made it in and headed for Lviv, checked into our hotel and found safe parking for Ohno. We then met up with Steven and Geeske who were coming through Ukraine on their way home to the Netherlands.
Our time in Ukraine was not to disappoint the food is very tasty and with the exchange rate we all managed to eat like kings for a very low cost. We spent our time taking in the sites and catching up with Steven and Geeske, Felicity even managed to get a ticket to the Opera for a little price of £3.
We left Lviv reconsidering whether we should just stay in Ukraine and skip Romania, however, we were all looking forward to Romania that we continued on. We arrived at the border expecting ques relieved to find a very relaxed border crossing, in fact, families appeared to cross over for day trips on their push bikes. We made friends with an English man and his children who live in Romanis and even invited us to stay with them for the evening. We declined and entered Romania and found a nice little guesthouse Pensiuea Marinela in the town of Sighetu Marmatiei, warmly welcomed with Tunica a Romanian plum brandy by John and his wife. The area is known for wooden spire churches of the area that Robyn and Felicity explored whilst Tristan caught up on some much-needed rest. Driving around these towns we noticed how horse and cart is a very common form of transport and so getting anywhere in a hurry just isn’t going to happen, Robyn had her best Sunday driving skills on this day, luckily Tristan wasn’t in the car for this kind of driving!
From here we headed south in Romania to the Transylvanian Alps for a week of touring around and introduce the camping experience to Felicity. Our first stop Sighisoara where we found a campsite attached to a restaurant, an easy welcome into camping as we had dinner in the restaurant and warm showers available. We went into the town the following morning and just felt a little let down as it was overrun by tourist shops and touts selling plastic crap from China. So we moved on further down the Alps towards Brasov and found another campsite this one a more European campsite that was quite expensive but we decided to stop driving and stay the night. That night after disappointment from the Alps we did further research as we felt we just weren’t getting the experience we were hoping. We looked at the Transfăgărășan highway, however with all Ohno’s issues decided not to push Ohno over this mountain through this. Instead, we decided on heading into the Piatra Craiului national park for a walk. After a nice walk through the gorge, we looked for accommodation, 3 km up the road was a small village called Magura, with little information in the guide books we decided to go have a look and see what is like. The 3 km was under construction on mountainsides so created an interesting drive, then we the trees opened up and we came out into one of the most spectacular valleys any of us had seen. Within minutes there were a few guesthouses and locals walking around, we pulled over into one and we hit the jackpot.
Villa Hermani was perfect for the evening; Felicity was able to stay in in the guesthouse and we were allowed to camp in the garden overlooking the valley.
The meal was a set dinner that is shared with other guests, we manage to make friends with 3 Americans on our table who were spending 2 weeks travelling around the Transylvanian Alps.
Sadly after finding this fantastic place we had to leave Felicity was flying out the next day so we set off to the airport in Craiova to send Felicity on her way back to the UK and for us to continue our European leg.