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MY JOURNEY AROUND EUROPE

All the cities in Europe I have been to before.

Enya Ratkic, Staff Writer

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I have been to Europe 7 times. I have encountered many wonderful cities like Frankfurt, Zagreb, Otocec, Brcko, Sarajevo, Tuzla, Neum, and Orebic. I will tell you about each and every single one of them and what I have encountered there. I will start with Frankfurt, Germany.

Frankfurt is a pretty big city in Germany. It is beautiful with lots of forests and wildlife. I only spent 1 night here for a layover on a flight back to America. The other times I spent in the airport, waiting to fly to Zagreb. If you ever want to go to Frankfurt, make sure you pack some jackets because it is always cold there, no matter what season it is. In the summer, the nights and mornings are cold! I was in a jacket, and yet it was summer! Can you just imagine the winter? Germany must be freezing in the winter with lots of snow. I went to a restaurant in Germany and I got to try sauerkraut. Sauerkraut is basically finely cut cabbage with a sour taste. The sour taste comes from the lactic acid bacteria. I tried it and I actually liked it. I really wish I could visit more of Frankfurt!

Zagreb is a big city in Croatia. It has mountains, just like Frankfurt. It is pretty close to the Alps. Although Zagreb is not as cold as Germany, it still wasn’t like typical Texas weather. There are also lots of forests in Zagreb, too. I know that they have a castle in Zagreb, but I have not been there yet. I only spent 1 night in Zagreb downtown, and Zagreb, downtown is pretty cool, especially at night. The other times I just drove through Zagreb.

Otocec is a small city in Slovenia. Just 30 minutes from Ljubljana and 30 minutes from Zagreb, Otocec is a splendid city with a castle I’ve been to and the Krka River. Otocec is in the Alps, so there is lots of forests and wildlife there. I stayed in Otocec to play a tennis tournament on red clay, and I really liked it. It was my first time in Slovenia, and boy is Slovenia pretty. I played my tennis match in the Alps mountains, so I was a little elevated and had a little less oxygen. The Krka River is freezing cold! I put my toe in it and it my toe froze. Yet there was people still swimming in it. Next there is the castle, which I’ve seen. The castle is hotel now. Otocec also offers a wide range of service for golf fans and other sports fans. The castle was first mentioned in the 13th century, although the walls said the year 1252.

Brcko is a city in Bosnia and Herzegovina, right by the Sava River and Croatia. Lots of places in Brcko are a walking or bicycling distance, so don’t worry about needing a car. Center Grad, or center of the city has so many wonderful buildings. The Trg Mladih is a building that may be known the most, and it is in the heart of Brcko. The city hall has NeoOttoman architecture, making it look more than a city hall. It is painted Orange and Yellow stripes. I have already asked my Mom several times what the building is for, and I wouldn’t believe that it is a city hall. There are lots of Cafés in Centar Grad, too. You can also enjoy scenic views of the Sava, especially at sunset. You can also swim or boat in the Sava, which I have done several times before. I remember swimming in the Sava, and the water was really cold. Brcko is also close to the Dinaric Alps, which I have been in before. The food in Bosnia tastes great, too. Bosnian Pita is oven baked dough rolled up in the shape of a snail. You can either, have Cheese, Meat, or Spinach rolled up inside. There is also Cevapi, where lean meat is rolled up into the shape of a small sausage. Cevapi is usually served with flatbread, onions, and a Coke or Cockta for a drink. Cockta is basically the Bosnian version of a Coke.

Sarajevo is the capital of Bosnia and is the largest city of Bosnia. There are lots of mountains, too. I have not seen a lot of Sarajevo yet but I hope to see more. I have been to the Sebilj in Sarajevo, or the wooden fountain in the town square. Lots of birds hang out here, and I remember feeding the birds and taking a picture with the Sebilj in the background. There are also some Cafés, too. There is also a replica of Sarajevo’s Sebilj in St. Louis, Missouri that was gifted by the Bosnian community. I have also crossed the Latin Bridge in Sarajevo. The Latin Bridge is an Ottoman Bridge and it goes over the Miljacka River. The northern side of the bridge was the site of the assassination of Archduke Franz Ferdinand who was from Austria. The guy who assassinated him was Gavrilo Princip, and that happened in 1914. This became the act that justified war of World War I.

Tuzla is another city in Bosnia I have been to before. Tuzla has 2 man made salt lakes, and I’ve swam in it every time I came. Once you get in the water, you will have a hard time getting out. In fact, it is Europe’s only salt lake as part of its central park. More than 100,000 people visit the salt lakes every year. Tuzla is home to 2 universities and has an educational center, too. Tuzla is also known as one of the most multicultural cities of the country. The modern city goes all the way back to 1510 when it became an important garrison town in the Ottoman Empire.

Neum is a city in Bosnia that borders the Adriatic Sea. The Adriatic Sea is freezing cold and I remember that the beach had stones, not sand. It is the only town in Bosnia that borders the Adriatic Sea. Some other beaches have sand, though. Neum also has steep hills and some big tourist hotels. Neum also has a rich archaeological history and wilderness that has not been bothered by humans. Neum is planning to be a freight port later.

Orebic is a town in Croatia that also borders the Adriatic Sea. Lots of tourists come here, especially in the summer. Orebic is located very close by Neum. The waters in Orebic are freezing cold, since it is the Adriatic Sea. I remember riding on a ferry and looking around. It was a very cool experience. Orebic has ferries that go to to the town of Korcula and back. Korcula is located on an island nearby. Orebic now has some big hotels and has some camp sites located around the town that have access to camper vans. The Mount of Saint Elijah is located behind the town and offers a nice view of the Adriatic Sea and the island of Korcula. There are also many hiking paths.

Whether the water was cold or the weather was cold, I still had a great time at all of these cities! The Adriatic Sea is cold but beautiful, and so are other places! I had a great experience in all of these cities and I hope I can come again and again!

                 

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