18 July 2006: Breakfast was composed of a variety of hams and cheese. It’s typical for them, but not for me. For that reason, 2 croissants were enough for me. Right after my breakfast, I packed my luggage and at 8:30 in the morning, I was already en route. Following the road signs (and not my GPS) I said goodbye to Brno. I would possibly visit it again on my return.
Travelling experience up to the borders was quite descent. No fast driving speeds and mediocre road conditions. Distance from Brno till the borders was a little bit less than 200km. The route I followed was Brno > Vyskov > Olomouc > Ostrava. At the borders, the not-so-talkative border officials asked me for my passport, they looked at me and then they let me go. I still can’t figure out what did they actually understood by watching me, since I was wearing my helmet and all my motorcycle clothing …
Leaving the borders, road condition was a getting a little bit worst. The whole road had patches (at least they have patches, not bumps!) and everybody was driving according to the road sign limits, meaning 120km/hour, not even 1 km more!
What really impressed me in Poland once entered was that EVERY driver that was driving a car or lorry, were moving their vehicles immediately to the right lane once they saw from their mirrors that someone is trying to bypass them and he’s moving with higher speed than them. I believe that this kind of driving behaviour is really stunning, especially for Poland and Czech! After all, it wasn’t as bad as everybody was keep telling me. It only needs attention. The only negative part on the highways was that there were a lot of pedestrian crossings right in the middle of nowhere, and this demands extra attention and decrease on speed.
Around 5:30 I finally reached Warsaw, having already made 3-4 stops. In order to find a hotel to stay, I’ve opened my GPS and I asked it to show me the hotels. Of course, I filtered the obvious expensive ones, like Ambassador or Holiday Inn. I spent 40 minutes again to find a medium category hotel, so I finally settled with the known branch of IBIS hotels, with around 260 zlotys per night, more or less 62€. I thought that it was too expensive for Poland; perhaps next time I could take a look outside the main cities, like in road motels, where they should definitely be cheaper!
In Warsaw, I didn’t have the courage to wander myself. It just looked so big (similar to Athens). I didn’t have any maps of the city nor the strength to do that. After all, my main target was Lithuania and her wereabouts. Everything else in my trip was a typical stop.
I finally decided to stay in the hotel to drink my coffee and to eat, since I was too tired to look in the city for lunch without money or a map. By mentioning money, I had to change euro to zlotys and I didn’t know how much I had to exchange. You see, in countries outside EU, currency exchange is required; something that I didn’t had the mood for. Generally, I needed around 110€ on a daily basis, fuel and staying included.
While relaxing, I was thinking that the best option for my return would be through Krakow, since a friend of mine from my work, told me that it’s one of the most beautiful cities in Poland. Since I trust my friend I thought that it would be a good option…