madrid day two pt 1

The next morning we headed out to conquer the other side of town, which included visiting the palace, the palace gardens, the cathedral and the basilica. On our walk over in the morning we had no idea that our hotel was right by the palace so we made good time and enjoyed walking through the palace gardens. Seriously the flowers there were incredible.

We couldn’t actually go inside the palace, I’m not sure if you can on a normal day but there was some ceremony going on that day. Because of that you couldn’t even go into the palace square as it was all blocked off. We were still able to walk around and see the outside, which was just as spectacular.

After that we checked out the cathedral and basilica, which were both very nice. Before our afternoon tour we wanted to find the place we had heard of yesterday on the hop-on hop-off were you could get a 360 degree view of the whole city…my mom couldn’t remember where they told us it was and I happened to be napping during that part of the bus ride so we wandered around looking for some time…

Little did we know that it was the cathedral that gave you access to the views. But it was a separate entrance so that’s why we hadn’t seen it before when we were there earlier. Anyways, we made it to the top and the views didn’t disappoint. I will say thought that there were these giant statues up there and it was creepy being so close to them because they were triple our size (see photo below).

After that we picked up lunch at the San Miguel Mercado, again and sat in the square listening to some lovely music being played by a sweet old man. He was amazing and had a dog so we gave him a couple of euros because we enjoyed it…

p.s. stay tuned for part 2 of the day


lazy and confused: vienna

The train ride to Vienna was as per usual. And we got to the hostel only to find we had 3 flights of stairs to climb to get to our room. But it was kind of cool becasue since there were other apartments in the buildings it felt like we were living with the locals.

Since we got in late afternoonish we took some time just to veg and relax as it was much needed. When traveling nonstop for a month, sometimes you just need a break. When we got hungry we found a place around the corner to grab a nice traditional Austria dish, Wiener Schnitzel…along with a nice Austrian beer it was just what we needed to refuel.

After a good night sleep we were finally ready to see what Vienna had to offer. And we headed towards what we thought was St. Charles Church, apparently it’s a must see. And, we got lost. Vienna is a really confusing city to navigate even with a map. The streets are all named the same thing and nothing really makes sense….we ended up at the Votive church instead, which was pretty nontheless, lol.

We managed to get our bearings and started to make our way to St. Charles (sidenote: when I wrote St. Charles the 1st thing I thought of was the road that runs through Elmhurst, got some home vibes going) and managed to see most of the city along the way. We finally made it to the right church, even though the girls tried to challenge me that it wasn’t the right place…hey I was just following the map.

The church was actually kind of a let down, they made it seem like there was this great panoramic view from the top but once you got up there you couldn’t even see out becasue there were grates on the windows. Not to mention the scaffolding all over the church just to support the stairs the lead up there. V odd, if you ask me.

From there we headed to the Nasch Market which was only a few blocks over. This might have been my favorite part of the city. It was everything a city market should be. Vendor after vendor selling veggies, fruits, dried fruits, sweets, falafel….anything and everything really. We found something to eat there before we headed to the palace.

It was a easy train ride over on their metro system. And once we got to the palace we got to walk the grounds for free and it was absolutely gorgeous. I wish that it was later in the season so that we could have seen the flowers in bloom, but still it was nice to enjoy the views. I was actually really jealous becasue there were a ton of people running through the grounds and I wish that Leeds had a place like that. But, it’s so hilly here running really is no fun. In that respect, I’m ready to get back to the flat land in Illinois.

                                                         Only about 2 weeks till then.



P.S. Shoutouts to my viewers from the Netherlands and Philippines you guys are the best! ….now giving shoutouts so you know you want to get involved and maybe you’ll get one in the next post.

Vienna pics

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