Friday, September 16, 2011

Summer Travels with Marie and Jessi

Marie and I flew from Baku to Kiev on August 26. It only took a couple hours but it definitely brought a lot of changes, including cool weather. St Sophia's Cathedral. Marie and I are in the bell tower and if you look closely you can see St Michael's Monastery over my shoulder.
St Michael's Monastery.
We just couldn't help ourselves, this girl was so adorably sweet we had to buy honey from her. She was selling it right outside of the chruch.
Entrance to the Cave Monastery Complex-you have to cover your head in Orthodox holy places.
Marie looking around in one of the many churches in the complex.

We got to Lviv by way of night train. This man, sanding just outside one of the churches, was desperately trying to convince us he had drawn these photo copied pictures himself.
Marie and I in Ploscha Rynok, one of the cities main squares.
The view from the top of the town hall building's tower in Ploscha Rynok.

The train from Lviv to Bucharest was a 20 hour journey, and mostly during the day.Marie sitting by the beautiful, but dirty, fountains that start one of the main squares, Piata Unirii.
Some of the old alleyways and walk ways were filled with vendors selling this and that. I bought a hand painted picture of Mary here.
This was Andrew, our Bulgarian tour guide for the free walking tour. He was just too much fun not to share.
We also spend one of our days away from the main city in the huge Herastrau Park. We rented bikes and made our way around the lake.

We had to get back on the same Moscow to Sophia, Bulgaria train we had take to Bucharest to get out and to Plovdiv. Unfortunately we weren't lucky enough to get beds this time around and spent the 11 hour night sleeping in chairs that couldn't recline. Uncomfortable then but laughable now :).Making our way to Plovdiv in the morning.
Plovdiv's old town is full of well preserved old, traditional, houses. This is the Hindliyan House, built in 1835.
The tower of the Church of St Constantine and Elena. The old town was just full of fun cobblestoned streets with something hiding around every corner.
Like this arch.
Exploring Ukraine, Romania and Bulgaria was such an amazing experience. Every city we went to and hostel we stayed in brought new friends. That was one of my favorite parts of the whole trip-simply meeting people from all over the world doing the same sort of exploring that Marie and I were doing and spending the day or evening or both with them. We had an amazing time.

Pulling into our next adventure...ISTANBUL, TURKEYStay tuned for the next blog post all about Turkey with Liz in the next couple days!