Wednesday 2 March 2011

Frydek-Mistek, Czech Republic to Novi Sad, Serbia

Frydek-Mistek, Czech Republic to Novi Sad, Serbia:

The route down left must to be desired in scenery, but not because it wasn’t there. This time of the year, there is a lovely dose of wog (winter smoggy thick fog), which sadly covers most of the view that is out there. The countryside of Czech Republic was same old, with nice old buildings in a very Eastern European style of building. Onto the portion that was through Slovakia, similar sort of style, although personally I find everything just a bit more disorganised. Throughout Hungary the style changes a bit with things slightly more confined and houses being a bit smaller in the countryside then previously seen. The border between Hungary and Serbia was interesting. For the first time I had trouble with my new pasport (the black very colourful NZ/Aotearoa one). Due to my cover having the word Aotearoa on it, everyone was confused. It took us an hour to get through the border (surprisingly the Hungarians took longer with it than Serbian, but I suppose once I had gotten through one the other shouldn‘t‘ be as bad). Onto Serbia, which like Hungary in that it is very very flat. Although it had a unique twist, with silos for grain being everywhere, which totally relates to the communistic view that Yugoslavia was the silo of Europe. There was still evidence of the crops around with pockets of Hops still standing through the snow. On top of the interesting crops, the roads are quite fun. They are similar to India, in that people tend to use the road fully. There are actually only 2 lanes for most of the journey down to Novi Sad from the border. However, thanks to the large shoulders most people seem to convert this into a 3 lane motorway.

Novi Sad, Serbia

This city is quite fantastic. It is small enough to enjoy the main sites in an evening, leaving enough time to truly taste the Serbian experience. We found a fantastic little (3 tables in total) restaurant just behind the main square that was just us. Had a lovely Slavic soup with noodles, followed by the super main course. We had a shared mixed meat platter that had an extremely wide selection which was amazing. But the best bit was the salad. It was a simple tomato, cucumber, and onion mixed with the best tasting soft cheese I have had in a very long time. It was comparable to sour cream made into a cheese (Sopsky). The wine was also very nice, a earthy tasting red one from somewhere in Serbia. Mmmmm, soooooooooo yummy. Had a mini foodgasm.  Obviously the sites are also worthy of a mention, with the fantastic Fortress on the hill with a colour changing “rainbow bridge” in the foreground. The main square has a number of interesting monuments, but my particular favourite was the church with the coloured tiled roof. Very interesting. Another great side point of Novi Sad in particular, is the honest and cheap cabs. We decided to take a cab in from our hotel (thanks to my ankle still playing up) which round trip journey cost under 4 EUR (which is impressive considering our hotel was an hours walk from town centre).  They cab drivers actually take less than the meter states, and are happy about it. They also do sincerely take the quickest route. Would definitely recommend using this wonderful service if you are ever here.

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