Travel log

Bohemian Paradise
The holiday and the following weekend around May 8 saw the very best weather that one can imagine for a bike ride – warm, sunny, but not yet too hot. I could not miss that, so I went for a three-day trip crossing the river Elbe behind Poděbrady, through the rolling plains following the river Cidlina through Nový Bydžov and Jičín to the sandstone rocks of the so called Bohemian Paradise and back through the groves near Mcely and around the dead arms and wetlands of the Elbe river in the Káraný area. The nature this week decided to show some of its best – so in addition to the usual roe deers, hares, buzzards or lizards, a fox also showed up in the evening, I saw beavers for the…
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Pandemic Prague
The Coronavirus epidemic swiftly cut off any possibilities of travel to so far unknown places. However, then it turned out that this is not true exactly – for example, the below kinds of views of quiet Prague during a workday, including, for example, a clean and empty Charles Bridge, were completely unknown to me up until now.
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Sázava

Sázava

During the beautifully sunlit but pandemic Easter I went for a small two-day trip, following the river Sázava upstream to the hilly area around the Želivka dam.
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Kyrgyzstan

Kyrgyzstan

Last year I enjoyed a holiday in a bike saddle in somewhat remote places. So even if this year I had just two weaks off, I went to Kyrgyzstan, which again promised both remoteness and travelling in saddles. In addition to it I found here a landscape that is worth visiting due to its variability – from the hot valley around Bishkek, around local “see” Issyk-kul, through steppe plateaus with grazing horses and cattle, green mountain valleys all the way to snow-covered tips of local peaks reaching over 7000 m. The capital city itself does not offer many attractions. However, just south of it already raise the mountains – here Ala Archa and a route around the stream of Ak Say to the mountain camp of Racek under the Pik…
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Nearby the Ohře river
During two July weekends I was attracted towards the Ohře river. First time I went by train to the industrial town of Lovosice and from there I trekked through the green Oparno valley, visited the castle ruin Oparno, Lovoš hill with beautiful vistas all around and then another ruin Košťál, again providing views all the way to the river Ohře, the legendary peak Říp and Elbe river and beyond. The second time I went by bike from Roudnice nad Labem, took a pleasant cycle path around Ohře to the Nechranice dam, where I spent the evening by the water and the next day returned back home via Rakovník.
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Třeboň

Třeboň

During Easter, the forecast promised irresistibly beautiful weather. And it was true – no wind or tailwind, sunny, warm but not too hot, cloudless sky. Such weather had to be used for a bike trip. So I set out to admire the sights of South Bohemia – through Písek, Týn, Temelín and Hluboká to Třeboň, where I wandered around the ponds and branching streams of river Lužnice and thereafter back through Choustník and Chýnov.
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Back home
I crossed the border at the Czech-Saxon-Bavarian border tripoint, heading to nearby Aš. So, with a small detour, I linked the most eastern and western towns of the inter-war Czechoslovakia, Jasina and Aš. And on my way back to Prague I verified that in Czech we have something for every taste – for example: mountain pastures in the remote border area, a bit excluded locality of Aš, where time slowly peels colours off the signs of night clubs and pawnshops that flourished during the just-post-communism era, medieval castle in Ostroh, beautifully repaired from a ruin thanks to stubborn volunteers from late eighties, pensioners’ spa atmosphere in Františkovy Lázně, in contrast to the luxurious spa for noveau riche Russians in Carlsbad, cycling trail in shadow of trees around Ohře river, which…
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Germany again
I continued south via very relaxing cycling trails along the Oder meanders, most of the way in a pleasant shade, and turned away from the river just before Berlin. Berlin clearly demonstrates that it is the capital of all federal offices, all German hipsters, as well as those who arrived to Germany from Turkey, Poland and the rest of the world. Nevertheless, you can find places in the busy city where you can have a calm rest. And they are also well prepared for cyclists here. After inner Berlin I stopped at the seat of the German emperors – Potsdam – a town from all sides surrounded by parks, river and canals. While local palaces may not match Versailles in spectacularity, it seems the Kaisers decided to compensate that by…
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Poland

Poland

Along the coast, over the islands of Usedom and Wolin located between the sea in the north and the lagoons at the mouth of the Oder river in the south, I got to Świnoujście. Here they also have no bridges, but the city ferry is free to use. There I turned south towards the Polish-German border on the Oder, arriving into the port city of Szczecin, which, while a sea port, is quite deep upstream on Oder. I just quickly passed through Poland towards the Oder-following bike trails back on the German side of the river. But on the way I had after a long time a chance to buy supplies for reasonable prices.
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Eastern Germany
After some time spent in rich Denmark, Rostock made really East German impression: an industrial harbour, infrastructure more for cars than for people, housing projects made of prefabricated blocks.
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