My granny and I have travelled all together over 11 European countries (not including Slovenia). We were usually an attraction for the locals, because my granny was 81 years old and I was six months pregnant – while we were on the way. All things set aside, we got along just fine in every country. We don't see age or pregnancy as an obstacle to travel.
From Belarus to Andorra
The planned journey was really long – from the far east to the far west of Europe. But in the end we realized Europe is actually quite small. We’ve imagined to visit tourist attractions along the way, stopping in Warsaw, Berlin, Luxembourg and Paris. Naturally along the way you always get to see and experience something new. Among the cities mentioned, only Warsaw did not represent anything special. Berlin, on the other hand, with its varied history, was a city well worth a visit. The landscape between Warsaw and Berlin and then from Berlin onward towards Luxembourg was really monotonous and changed only slowly. But the tiny, although very neat, state of Luxembourg was really a pleasant surprise. We visited most of the tourist attractions, with the emphasis on the countryside. The well tended to farmlands, mostly vineyards, and some natural and cultural sights give a special feel to Luxembourg. The capital, bearing the same name, is also very neat. And then driving on towards Paris. We usually avoided motorways, not only are they pricey, but we also wanted to get to know the countryside more. And it was the French countryside that proved to us what we’ve always heard about it – it really is well developed. We were there at the time when Rapeseed was in bloom, so we had perfect endless yellow carpets of fields stretching just to be photographed. And then the sharp contrast – Paris. If you ask me, it’s a city with way too many tourists and crowds. We’ve lost four hours on the Eiffel Tower, not during the tourist season. France really is huge and we got a different view of it, from before. We’ve both visited it before, but only main attractions, never before have we been visiting the country side. The whole trip towards Andorra continued along the countryside and a bit along the western coast (passing St. Mont Michele) with the Atlantic on one side – all the way to the Pyrenees. Here we’ve entered the second state, we haven’t been to yet – Andorra.
Both, granny and me, really love nature – most of all mountains. No wonder Andorra was the most beautiful country for us, of the entire trip. The drive through the French part of the Pyrenees towards Andorra was very nice. Driving along the steep mountain roads, with huge piles of snow on the edges. But when we entered Andorra, we soon saw skiers, descending the steep slopes away from the roads. The biggest of the six smallest countries of the world is almost completely placed above the upper forest border. The main attraction for tourists to come to this small country is tourism – mostly in winter. Another reason is that this country is a tax oasis, so many go there to shop. Granny and I were mostly fascinated by their nature and mountain roads. We were able to drive to a great lookout point. Returning back to France we both agreed this was the highlight of our journey.
To make our trip more exciting on the way back, we decided to visit the Airbus factory to the south of France. You must announce your visit forehand, or better said, you must have a reservation. We made it three days beforehand. It’s interesting to see the airplane construction factory of a plane we sometimes use. After visiting the factory we took the fastest road to get home, according to our navigation. We still had a half an hour stop in Monaco. Since we’ve seen most of the attractions along the way home, so we decided I’d drive until I got tired and we’d have to stop and sleep over. It might be incredible, but I’ve lasted the whole 1650km of driving after the 8000km trip.
The strange travel fellows we were, were quite dissatisfied at the beginning of the trip, for “only” travelling around the Europe. Maybe it was because for the past few years we’ve been travelling to far off places. But in the end this turned out a great journey. We could only confirm the rumour that traveling around Europe is expensive. We’ve made adjustment to our travel plans and have slept most of the time in our car, where we had an inflatable bed, which made it all quite comfortable. It was this bed that drew the attention at the Belarus border. But we really were an attraction for many people, with many of them, who claimed it was the first time they’ve seen a pregnant girl travelling with her grandma. But for the two of us, neither grannys age nor my pregnancy presented a problem along the way.