Ok so this is my first ever travel blog post. I am travelling for quite some time now to various interesting places around the world (well mostly in Europe till now) so many of my friends asked me to share my experiences which may benefit people who are planning to travel to similar places. So here I go.
I travelled to Poland to attend a conference on “Molecular Perspectives On Protein-Protein Interactions” organized by ESF-EMBO (European Science Foundation – European Molecular Biology Organization) at Pultusk which is a small town 2 hrs. away by bus from Warsaw, from 25th to 30th May, 2013. Pultusk is known to have the longest market in Europe, well I didn’t get enough time to visit the market but many of the conference attendee went to see and they all enjoyed it. We were around 112 people attending the conference from 27 countries around the world. Unfortunately my new DSLR camera got stolen in the following trip to Prague otherwise I would have shown some really nice pictures from Pultusk. The only picture I have is the group pic taken by the organizers and few others which I found on the internet.
The best part of the conference apart from the interesting talks was the venue where I stayed. I stayed in a three star hotel which is basically an old castle called Dom Polonii. Dom Polonii was build by the Bishop of Polska for the clergy works and its construction started in the 14th century and finished some time in the 18th century. The amazing thing about the castle is that it has three old cannons which were used to be fired whenever the Bishop or any other dignitaries visit the castle. They still continue the same tradition and fired the three cannons in our welcome (of course without the cannon balls). The castle is by the river so there are plenty of options for water based activities however, with lots of mosquitoes hovering around, so always carry the insect repellent spray if you are there. Another awesome thing about the hotel is the food which they served, it was massive with endless variety and taste.
On the third day of the conference we went to see the royal castle in Warsaw. The present building of the royal castle is a rebuild version of the original castle which was destroyed by the Nazis during second world war. Although the whole castle was brought down to dust Poles managed to save some of the articles which were later on used to decorate the castle. Many other countries from around the world also contributed various forms of decorative items to fill the castle and bring it to it’s former glory.
The final departure day was kind of an experience for me, I reached the train station well before time just because I was suppose to buy the ticket for my journey to Prague and I was not sure how much time it would take. The Warsaw railway station is a three floor building and the entrance from the road level enters into the second level which only contains shops and restaurants. I took me a while to figure out from where to buy the ticket, the main ticket counters were on the top floor in the main hall. The most interesting/frustrating thing in buy a ticket in Warsaw is that the ticket counter personnel can’t speak in English very well and the ticket which you will get will be printed in Polish. Now how can you expect a foreigner travelling on an international train will know Polish to figure out his coach and seat number. Fortunately I met a professor from the Warsaw university whom I already knew and he helped me out to translate the ticket to find out my coach and the seat number.
So that was my experience in Poland, I liked it but I don’t think it is worth going again atleast not on my own expenses. I think the other parts of Poland for example the northern coast and Krakow are more interesting to see.