Monday, 19 May 2014

Day 14 - Krakow to Wieliczka to Warsaw - Mon 19 May

Day 14 - Krakow to Wieliczka to Warsaw - Mon 19 May
Drove out to see Wieliczka Salt Mine. 


Mining started 13th Century when briny water sources ran out. Such an amusing guide, we walked down 800 steps (135mts) plus double that on pathways along levels. Had wobbly knees! Wooden chandeliers and poles holding up mine walls were white from salt encrustments, helped reflect light. 
Don't look down....
Don't look up...


Many salt carvings (Oh yes, including the 7 dwarves...)
The underground caverns were enormous, some with deep still lakes. Interesting to hear culture/ values but disappointing lack of non-technical/ geological information.
Pope John Paul ll (newly a saint...)
Princess Kinga (now a saint)

The cavern holds receptions, balls, church services....


Drove on to Warsaw, late lunch at roadside restaurant, waitress contradicted our orders and told us we'd like her choice better, so GirlRob ended up with spinach chicken, and BoyRob with beef burger (actually a steak) and 4 types of slaw. As enjoyable as she promised….

Driving in traffic between Wieliczka and Krakow was like a time warp, Michael Buble on at Arena and Stanley Kubrick at theatre (who never actually produced Aryan Papers, a film that he was adapting from Louis Begley's 1991 novel, Wartime Lies, which tells the story of a young Jewish boy hidden as a Catholic by his aunt). Took highway via Czestochowa, amazed at so many prostitutes standing smoking on side of roads!! Sun stayed out all day, amazing 24 degrees. Can't believe its same country as day before yesterday! 

We'd avoided putting too many 400+kms in our itinerary, but today couldn't find free or paid camping grounds before that. Nothing on Garmin or Park4Night app; two tent symbols on Pocket Earth around Lodz but one was cabins only, other chained off. VERY tired by time found real camping ground right in midst of Warsaw city- pulled in 8pm after 7hrs driving, on top of 4 hour tour. Wine, cheese and bread rolls for dinner, didn’t even wash-up before fell into bed.....

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