Since we’ve booked this trip, I was looking forward to Bratislava the most. In principle, it was because the Slovakian city was on a track less beaten than the other three places we would visit after.
Being lesser-known is an attractive quality in a place. Sure, it raises a few question marks. Why isn’t it as popular as other places – does that mean that it has its faults?
Probably, is the answer to that question, but a trip to Botswana seems so much more adventurous than a trip to Brussels, for example. It’s lesser known in the part of the world where I’m from, which means that travellers are more prone to discovery, to adventure, to expanding their horizons and learning new things.
Out of the four, Bratislava stood out in that way. Its charm was not what it didn’t have, it’s what I didn’t know it had.
Yet despite my enthusiasm for Slovakia, coming in at a close second on the excitement-o-metre was Berlin.
Berlin is a city steeped in history, and is one of the most culturally and historically significant places of the past century.
Its attractions are also up there with some of the best in the world. Whether it’s Museum Island, Checkpoint Charlie, the Reichstag or Olympiastadion, there is no denying that Berlin has a lot to offer.
The food and drink are famed, and there’s also the small matter of ticking off another item from my bucket list.
At the time of typing, I’m currently sat on a coach heading for Dresden. It’s just gone 10pm and we won’t arrive in Berlin itself until after three in the morning.
You would imagine that a night coach would provide the perfect opportunity to get some shuteye ahead of our arrival. Unfortunately, there are a group of 10 people, who I can only assume are Indian, doing their best to keep the decibel level as high as possible. There are occasional pockets of silence, but then one talks and set the others off.
If I was more tired, and you think I would be after only getting about four hours of sleep last night, it might annoy me, but instead I find it quite amusing. They seem to be travelling in a large group to – impressive if they have come all the way over from Asia.
But for now I can reminisce about Bratislava and look forward to our next stop: Berlin.