My Summer: Highlights of Family Travel in Europe

by Lukas Bruihler / Sep 05, 2012 /

This summer I did a lot of things, all of which I cannot tell you, because it would be too much. I will include as many highlights as possible, and will tell you a little about each of them.

First, a few days after school ended for us, we went to the part of Tara Canyon in Montenegro. Tara Canyon is the second deepest canyon in the world, only 500 meters shallower than the Grand Canyon. We spent two days there, the first one we went rafting, and the second day we went hiking to the highest point in the canyon.

Tara Canyon in Montenegro

Tara Canyon in Montenegro

On the bridge in the picture there are two lanes of traffic, and two sidewalks. That should help you figure out how high it is.  The camera was zoomed in when we took the picture from the raft.

On July fourth, my family and I left Montenegro, where we had been living for three years, for a year traveling around the world. Today is day 63, and we have stayed in 14 countries so far. I will tell a little bit about some cities.

The first city was Belgrade, Serbia. In Belgrade we went to a lot of places, but the most interesting place we went to would be the Choco Café. It sold mostly desserts and drinks, and we ordered some stuff.  This is my brother, Anders standing with the sign.

Belgrade, Serbia

Belgrade, Serbia

After we went to Belgrade, we traveled to Budapest, Hungary. It was really hot there, and Pest literally means oven. We stayed in a hostel with no AC, but didn’t get burnt to a crisp. We did get to go to a water park, and in the park there were waterslides, a wave pool, and some thermal pools. We went in them, and Anders immediately felt better than before. I don’t know what had hurt him.

Budapest, Hungary

Budapest, Hungary

After a while, we drove to Krakow, then Warsaw, both in Poland. I had friends living there, and they let us stay in their house. I would call their house a castle, compared to our usual six-person tent.

Warsaw, Poland

Warsaw, Poland

Finally, we drove to Vilnius, Lithuania, the city that I had been born in eleven years ago in. We visited the hospital I had been born in, re-enacted when I was leaving the hospital at five days old, and also visited the school that my parents had been teaching at during the time we were there. My mother had made a song for the school and was delighted to know that it was still being sung. There was even a picture of Einstein with the first line of the song.

Vilnius, Lithuania

Vilnius, Lithuania

Vilnius, Lithuania

 On our way from Vilnius to Nida, Lithuania, we stopped by the Hill Of Crosses. The Hill Of Crosses has a history from when the Russians occupied Lithuania. The Russians kept bulldozing the crosses down, but more crosses appeared, each day, as a sign that the Lithuanians were stubborn and didn’t back down easily. When the Russians left, the number of crosses kept getting more and more, and today there are an average of three million crosses on the hill. My family added four more crosses to that number.

Hill Of Crosses, Lithuania

Hill Of Crosses, Lithuania

Hill Of Crosses, Lithuania

After staying in Nida for a couple of days, my family took the ferry to Sweden, then drove to Copenhagen, Denmark. Some of my friends live there, so we decided to stay with them for a while. Coincidentally, one of my friends had a birthday then, and we got her an amber necklace. My mom sprained her ankle on the last day we were with them, though.

Copenhagen, Denmark

Copenhagen, Denmark

When we got to The Netherlands, we stayed with my mom’s old teacher-friends Johnny and Coby in The Hague. While there, we visited the Escher Museum and saw many of his original drawings.

The Hague - Escher Museum

 After The Hague, we stayed in Paris for five days. Mom was in bed with her foot elevated, all of the days we were there, so the only view she had of Paris was her view of the room we slept in. I got sick and shared that view after our second day there.

Paris hotel room

Finally we took the ferry to England. More specifically, the White Cliffs of Dover. My first impression of England was: we were on the wrong side of the road. My second was that, somehow, we weren’t. We visited our friends, and saw London and Stonehenge.

England - White Cliffs of Dover

Stonehenge

When we crossed back over the English Channel, we spent two more days in Paris. Then we went to take a tour of the giant particle collider, the main part of which is housed 100 meters underneath the otherwise normal city of Geneva.

CERN

During our tour, we saw one of the control rooms, and also saw a half scale mural of the actual collider part.

CERN

CERN

So far I have had an awesome time on the Europe leg of our trip around the world, and I had fun sharing some memories of my summer so far.

 

 

 

Lukas Bruihler is a member of the Youth Travel Blogging Mentorship Program.

All photos courtesy and copyright Lukas Bruihler