Time for some humble pie, having been very critical of Polish bike paths on the evidence of our first day cycling here, things improved significantly. Almost the entire 53 miles between Oswiecim and Krakow, our final destination, were on a dedicated, mostly paved, path along the levees of the Wistula river.
There was a bit of a blip 10 miles or so before Krakow, where a section is clearly still on the drawing board; the route followed a particularly rutted and stoney section before depositing us in some woods where even a competent mountain biker would have to get off and push. Despite this and it being only 4°c when we set off, it was a beautifully sunny day to enjoy our final day on the bikes. Getting into Krakow, a city of 750,000 people and the former capital of Poland was a breeze, the route took us to the base of the 13th Century Wawel castle in the heart of the old city. A fitting end to our 904 miles in three weeks of cycling, with no punctures and no fallings off! A big hug to Gavin for all the hours he put in researching and planning another amazing adventure.
Today (Thursday) was no rest for the wicked, we ended up walking almost 10 miles exploring this beautiful and ancient city from our accommodation, wonderfully located on the huge central square. The castle and its huge Cathedral was the seat of the Polish monarchy for many centuries, both have been wonderfully restored over the years. A very pleasant walk up river took us to the site of Oskar Schindler’s factory where he singlehandedly saved 1,200 of his Jewish employees from certain death during WW2.
An afternoon soaking up the ambiance on, around and in the caverns under the main square preceded a busy hour or so getting the bikes padded with pipe lagging ready for our 7.30 transfer to the airport tomorrow morning. As always looking forward to catching up with friends and family.