Wednesday, 6 April 2016

Tour Bus from Tallinn to Riga

Somehow I feel a bit guilty just doing the big cities in the Baltics countries. Tallinn in Estonia, Riga in Latvia and Vilnius in Lithuania ….. but then again if I think about it I will be doing mostly just the big or the main capital cities from here on out till I reach Nepal. In a way I know I am missing out on something by travelling too fast and Eastern Europe is not being fully explored this way but I guess for now this is the way to go with the money running out and time ticking away.

I could fairly say that I did Portugal and Spain justice …. Even Sweden I guess … but the rest of Europe has always been how it was a passing by fleeting. I finally realized what the difference between backpacking South America and Europe is. It’s the scene ….  where the backpacking trail in south America will softly guide you to untouched backwaters and secluded gem spots, Europe backpacking trail softly guides you from one city to another city. If one likes visiting cities and dun get me wrong, cities in Europe is not like in Asia or Americas where it’s a metropolitan and boring but they have culture as well yet somehow an untouched backwater hidden gem and a known beauty is not the same experience. 
So I went to Riga after Tallinn on the sightseeing bus …. 6 stops, very small stops for about half an hour each to see some sights where the locals with a car visits on a short holiday or even just a weekend trip. Nothing I would classify as awe memorable. Still it was a more interesting way of travel instead of just sleeping on the bus all the way.

The sights of plains and scenic stops sure made the time pass quickly and instead of being bog down on a bus rubbing your leg and ass every 20 minutes this local tour bus kept it small and compact making interaction and minor sightseeing enjoyable if one is not rushing anywhere quickly. It was a refreshing after all those journey alone.
Beautiful Lush Plains in the Summer Tour

One of the stops was a big swing ... a town swing they called it and boy it was fun but scary as hell ... when it went up nearly 90 degrees after the six of us putting it some effort we then realized that no individual effort can stop this big swing .... looking across the mischievous grins of fellow strangers told me that if I slip and fall ... this big swing wont stop and would probably crack my skull open ... Accidents happens sometimes the guide said after the swings finally stops ....
The Big Swing

Ruins Sights Stop

Small Lake stop on Latvia side
There was only 3 of us passengers, Me, Isabell from Germany and a pretty Asian Australian Cynthia. Our guide was John and his apprentice Alisa. I kept stealing glance at Cynthia …. Can’t help it of course, I was week in that department I guess but I did not dare to approach too much and mostly just kept to myself. I can’t remember the context of the conversation during lunch but she did reveal that her dad was Malaysian and her mom was Indonesian …… mix marriage …. No wonder she was pretty.
When we reach Riga, I was the first to be dropped off while the girls was going to the same hostel I was in another. No contacts was exchange and we said our farewells there.

Riga was a less medieval version of Tallinn but also larger and prettier version. If I were to advice people on how to do the Baltics I would say go from Lithuania to Riga then Tallinn …. For it gets more interesting that way.
Like in Tallinn I did the walking tour the very next day and that was about it. A short walk around, bought a ticket to Vilnius, did laundry and go gambling. What can I say, I was burning out again and I could feel it. It’s funny how frequent that happens when travelling long term and how the longer you travel the easier it is to burn out. So Riga was uneventful and I guess the loss of money in the casino and the loss of the pretty face Cynthia to cheer me up cause me to treat Riga differently. I admit that I did not do Riga justice …..

Riga City Walls

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