6.04.2015

Reflections on the Wild East

RIP
It all started with a trip to Prague in 2000. I was there with one of my favorite travel buddies, the vibe was vibrant yet low-key, and the dollar was strong. It was 11 years after the fall of communism and a palpable sense of discovery was felt by locals and travelers alike. It was then that I fell in love with the Wild East.

Over the years I returned to the Czech Republic and bordering countries, but eventually, my wanderlust found me exploring areas further south. I'm fortunate to have made several trips to the Balkans, including the one I just returned from on Sunday evening.

Eastern Europe, especially the Balkans, offers all of the beauty, culture, and energy of more popular destinations in Western Europe but with fewer tourists and an added sense of discovery that comes when exploring an area few Americans have visited or can even locate on a map.

Praha
Communism/socialism fell throughout Eastern Europe 20-25+ years ago and since then the area has been in a constant state of transition. This is perhaps the biggest reason I keep going back. With more and more Westerns influences and foreign investors capitalizing on the relatively cheap cost of doing business there, the Wild East won't be the same forever. France, Spain, and Germany can be "saved" for later but the time for Eastern Europe is now!

My most recent trip to Montenegro was stellar and helped me to fall in love with the Wild East all over again. I can't wait go back!

Montenegro photos and stories to come in a future blog post but a few photos in the meantime...
As seen along the trail to the Sveta Andrerija Fortress

Ladder of Kotor from Vrmac Ridge

Mountain top reflection