Novi Sad -so sad to leave...
Trip Start Sep 07, 2009
65Trip End Ongoing
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Went to catch the 6pm train from Belgrade to Novi Sad but when we got to the station found out the online timetable was wrong... next train not til 9pm or something... walked to the bus station and there was a bus to Novi Sad in 8 minutes! Woohoo!!
Only $5 or $6 AUD more for the bus and 30 minutes quicker so all good.
Checked into Hostel Sova which was one of the nicest I've stayed in. Really big airy and bright apartment with a big comfy common room and big clean and comfy beds and good bathrooms. Miki and his wife and all the staff were great hosts too making sure we had everything, offering coffee and drinks, calling up the bus and train station for info on ways to get where we were going next etc.
Met Myles from the UK who is cycling from London to Istanbul. Crazy!!!
Went to Astal Saren for dinner as recommended by Miki and Myles. Awesome meat dishes as has become the expectation all throughout the balkans.
Friday had an awesome breakfast of egg, ham, cheese, olives, tomato and lettuce on a roll with Nonie, Viktor and Myles and learnt about Viktors plans to travel to Hawaii to work with a physicist applying physics to psychology and the affects of electromagnetic fields on a persons behaviour, mood, tendencies etc. Fascinating stuff.
First day since Zagreb that I haven't had burek for breakfast!!!!!
Walked across to the Petrovaradin Fortress which was huge and would be AMAZING when the Exit festival is on there.
Wandered around Novi Sad and the beautiful Liberty Square.
Novi Sad is such a beautiful place, especially in contrast to being in Belgrade just beforehand which seems just like any other big city. I originally thought we would just need half a day to walk around the town and then another day to visit Fruska Gora but I think we could easily spend a few days here and not get bored and it's a really nice place to just relax and recharge.
Nonie and I caught a bus out to Sremski Karlovci as we read it was a preserved old town. Unfortunately most things were closed including the bee keeping museum that we particularly wanted to see as they made their own honey wine - which sounds like mead and was apparently served on the Titanic ...
Back to Astal Saren for dinner with Ben and Myles for another meat fest.
Then headed to Martha's Pub with Nonie, Myles and Flo for honey rajkia and beers.
Honey rajkia is a lot sweeter than any other type I've had in the last 3 weeks or so. Still a strong alcohol hit, but a smooth honey taste to ease it down.
Saturday Miki arranged for his friend Dragan to take Nonie, Ben and me on a tour of Fruska Gora in his car. We visited the Krusedol and Grgeteg monasteries and needed Dragan to translate the monks information from Serbian to English for us.
Dragan lives in Sremski Karlovci and also gave us a bit of a tour of some of the buildings there including the Chapel of Peace where some historic agreement was signed by 4 countries in the 1800's and also a cool spot on the Danube that Dragan likes to go for a drink and watch the local fishermen work their boats. Had some grape and pear rajkia there then went on a nice boat ride along the Danube on a friend of Dragan's boat with Dragan's son.
Awesome sunny afternoon and beautiful on the water.
Went to Skochko bar with Ben and Flo on Saturday night for some honey rajkia. Really cool bar - DJ Saturday night playing funky groovy stuff, but we heard a live band Thursday night when we walked past.
Sunday we walked to the Novi Sad markets in the morning and had burek.
Went back to the hostel to work out how to get to Zagreb or Ljublana as we needed to get back on track to heading towards Italy, but had no luck or confidence in online info.
One of the hostel staff called bus and train stations for us and found out there is an 11:30am bus to Ljubljana - it was 11:10...
We hurriedly packed, paid for our extended stay and said goodbye. Jumped in a taxi and got to the bus station with 5 minutes to spare.
Found out the bus to Ljubljana left at 11am... next one not till tomorrow morning!
Decided to catch the next bus to Belgrade where we would have a lot more options to get to either Zagreb or Ljubljana by either bus or train.
Managed to find a 3:30pm train from Belgrade to Ljubljana. Was told the ticket was 3002 Dinar - so had to go to the ATM.
Asked whether I could use my Eurail ticket for the Croatia and Slovenia part of the journey and then found out I only needed to buy a ticket to the border which was 305 Dinar!!!
So lots of Dinar left in my pocket with an hour to kill so had lunch and bought up on drinks and snacks for the train along with a pack of cards for the long journey.
Only planned on staying 1 night in Novi Sad but ended up staying 3 and loving it.
Didn't even plan on visiting Bosnia & Herzegovina or Serbia, but really glad we did decide to at the last minute as it has been wonderful and I've seen and learnt so much and met some awesome people.