Wednesday, October 20, 2010


Moving around Europe there are a couple options as far as places to stay while on a budget. One option is couch surfing. I never tried this, but I know several people who have. Basically people allow others registered to sleep on their couches, or where ever. I visited my friend in Rome while she was couch surfing and she had a pretty good set up. She even had a bed in his spare room. She didn't have many problems with it, although there may have been some she chose not to go to because she didn't feel safe.

As I said, I never tried couch surfing. Your other options would be to stay at hostels, or stay with friends. You are limited to where you have made friends for the latter option. As far as hostels goes, there are some good ones and bad ones. I was pretty lucky as far as hostels goes, ending up in some pretty good ones.

The best as far as what the hostel offers goes was called Wombats. It was the first I stayed at in Berlin. They provided a roof top bar which was great to socialize on and meet fellow travelers, a key part of traveling especially while alone. The rooms had lockers and provided locks for them as part of your nightly cost.

Each bed also had individual lights and outlets. This was great to help stop disrupting others when you come in at night and need to sort through your things. I think it was the only hostel I stayed at with this feature. I brought a flashlight with me, which was useful in the places without the individual lights. The only problem with this place compared to others that was in a sense lacking was you had to pay for the Internet on the computers. Others offered free Internet on their computers, however sometimes there weren't many computers and the computers weren't always the greatest. Wombats, as well as most others, had free WiFi, so if you had your own computer or a phone with WiFi you'd be okay.

Wombats also had hostels in Munich and Vienna. I never went to the one in Munich although I had intended to.

My favourite hostel however was the mountain hostel in Gimmelwald. As you can see from prior posts, the view was amazing. The atmosphere was relaxed and care free. I met a lot of really cool people in this hostel. Some were from upstate New York and others were from Arizona, and of course Canada. I talked a lot about baseball with some of the New Yorkers, one was a huge Red Sox fan while another was a Yankee fan.

On my final night there, a little disappointed due to the weather, I was just hanging out playing cards anticipating the next portion of my adventure in Rome. I was playing cards with a girl from Nova Scotia and a guy from Arizona. During one of our final games some more Canadians came in. They were a little louder and were pretty proud of being Canadian, nothing wrong with that.

They had two questions for everyone in the hostel, first if anyone knew how to play euchre and second if anyone had a deck of cards. I happened to have both and my deck of cards was a Canadian deck of cards. They quite enjoyed that aspect and insisted on getting me a beer and we played some euchre with a guy from Michigan.

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