The dwarfs of Wroclaw

The Polish city of Wroclaw has many hidden jems in the form of dwarf statues. They are small, multi-talented and scattered all over the city. Since 2005 they started appearing in different places and nowadays it’s almost impossible for a tourist to find all of them. I can’t even tell you how many there are because their number increases constantly. There are maps, marking their locations for the more organised hunters. For all the others, there’s the option to stroll around the town keeping your eyes open. That’s what I did and here are some of the dwarfs I found.

The Museum of Broken Relationships

I read about the Museum of Broken Relationships before I travelled to Zagreb. Once there, I knew this was one of the places I wanted to visit, as it had grabbed my attention with its unusual premise. It began with two artists who broke up and met to give each other their belongings back. But then they had the idea to put those items in a museum as a tribute to their failed relationship. Over the years their museum grew with thousands of people sending their stories along with mementos from their broken relationships.

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Laxenburg//autumn

No, Laxenburg isn’t how I misspell Luxembourg. It’s a place, close to Vienna with a castle, a park and a lake that I’ve been to a couple of times, but only in the summer, so I thought it must be wonderful in autumn. I was right, of course. Laxenburg is a great place for a walk on a sunny Saturday and a convenient day trip from Vienna. The bus ride takes only half an hour from the main station. In the park, you can rent a boat or just walk around with your legs. The castle itself is rather small and on an island that could be reached through a bridge or a very short “ferry” ride (it’s a platform on underwater rails). You could also take a guided tour around the castle if you like and although I haven’t done it, I can tell you that you don’t need to go in to have a good day. I recommend strolling around the park or sitting on a bench by the lake, looking at the people passing by with their tiny dogs.

The statues of Budapest

Budapest has a lot of statues. Perhaps its most famous monument is the group of shoes on the bank of the Danube, honouring the Jews who had to take off their shoes before they were shot and fell into the river. But there are many other, far less heartbreaking statues sprinkled around the city. Like this fat policeman, whose belly you should rub for good luck.

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Tourists

Ah, tourists. Aren’t they the worse? They walk slowly, drive up the prices, gather in front of beautiful buildings like pigeons around a piece of bread. They form long lines and are somehow always confused about which direction they are going. You always wait patiently in line to take a picture of something and just when your turn is coming up a kid runs out and starts posing for a hundred photos. Then it forgets it’s being photographed and starts jumping around so that no one can take a picture without this kid on it for the next twenty minutes. The worst thing about being a tourist is other tourists.
But in the end you know you can’t blame them. Especially not when you are one of them.

For the Tuesday Photo Challenge.

Copenhagen by boat

Last November my boyfriend and I spent a weekend in Copenhagen. We usually love exploring a city on foot, unless we absolutely have to use the public transport, but in Copenhagen we decided to take a canal tour for a different approach than the one we were used to. It was a wonderful way to get warm next to the boat heating and see a big part of the city without being exhausted at the end of it.

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High above Valencia

Valencia was one of the nicest trips I’ve taken. Our apartment was in the centre, the weather was nice, the food was delicious and we had enough time to see everything and to take it easy. And so when we went up the Cathedral at the end of our 4 day trip in May, we knew what we were looking at. We saw the terrace of our AirBnb where we had breakfast, we saw the City of Arts and Sciences in the background where we went to twice, we saw the Gate Tower we had just climbed and we looked at people’s terraces, longingly, as people who don’t have such a luxury at home. We saw the old town and the modern part. The palm trees and the brown buildings. The view was well worth the small entrance price to the tower of the Cathedral and the climbing of the winding steps that I so viscerally hate.

Climbing towers is the most exhausting and yet most rewarding thing a person can do in a new city. I’ve climbed towers in Pisa, Prague, Copenhagen and Edinburgh. And yet, if there is an option for an elevator, you can bet your ass you will find me on the queue for the elevator.