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terratin
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Anyone been to Addis Ababa? Our absolute favourite band is playing a concert there, and it's a rather short flight. Is there anything to do and see next to finding two caches? Safety?

 

I've been there twice and will be going again, probably in November. The Addis Ababa #1 micro is *in* a hotel and the Inside Outside Nano is on the grounds of another hotel (probably the one I'll be staying at in November). Did you look at the listen for "Fresh and Green Academy"? Although it's 6 miles from city center it's easily accessible. From reading the logs, it's one I definitely want to do next time I go.

 

Both times I've been there it's been for work so I really haven't had a chance to do much exploring. The National museum is supposed to be good, and although sometimes the exhibit is on loan, the 3.2 million year old "Lucy" skeleton is something you might not see anywhere else. Enoto Natural Park, just north of the city, is supposed to be nice and there are two other caches near there.

 

Addis is the third highest capital city in the world and due to it's elevation there are no mosquitoes. There is, of course, the food. Some find injera to be an acquired taste but I found all the different ingredients served with it to be quite tasty. We went to a place called YOD Abyssinia that not only had great food but also put on a traditional music and dance show that was quite amazing. Ethiopia is also the birthplace of coffee. The hotel I stayed in the last time had a traditional coffee ceremony (they're serious about coffee) every morning in the lobby.

 

My impression of Addis is that it is pretty safe, relative to other large cities in Africa. The Mercato area is known for pick-pockets but like any other large city just keeping aware of your surroundings will keep you out of trouble. Overall, I like Addis quite a bit. There is still some planning to do for my upcoming trip there but most likely I'll be spending a few days in Addis then going down to Jimma (about a six hour drive) for a few days

 

You might try looking up DuneBuddy. He's pretty much the only active geocacher in Addis. I just missed meeting him the last time I was there when he hosted a WWFM there (I was on a plane on the way from Istanbul when it happened) and I believe ended up being the only attendee.

 

Thanks a lot NYPC!

Some really good advise, also about DuneBuddy. Email sent! Lets see if he replies with some further ideas.

I didn't realise Addis is situated so high, and a place I'd love to visit (I have a thing for EarthCaches) is even higher. Great :) To be honest, we're really excited and would really really love to go. Costs is not really an issue: in we could use airmiles and back a lowcost airline. I'm sure we'll find a ok hotel for a few nights as well. The big questions: how to get around and out of town (haven't found any car rental companies yet) and how to get tickets for the concert :laughing: I guess Istanbul for now is a bit less interesting :anicute:

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Anyone been to Addis Ababa? Our absolute favourite band is playing a concert there, and it's a rather short flight. Is there anything to do and see next to finding two caches? Safety?

 

 

Thanks a lot NYPC!

Some really good advise, also about DuneBuddy. Email sent! Lets see if he replies with some further ideas.

I didn't realise Addis is situated so high, and a place I'd love to visit (I have a thing for EarthCaches) is even higher. Great :) To be honest, we're really excited and would really really love to go. Costs is not really an issue: in we could use airmiles and back a lowcost airline. I'm sure we'll find a ok hotel for a few nights as well. The big questions: how to get around and out of town (haven't found any car rental companies yet) and how to get tickets for the concert :laughing: I guess Istanbul for now is a bit less interesting :anicute:

 

Those earth caches are a pretty fair distance out of the city. Even though there's one that's 61 miles away, that's still probably going to take 2 hours to get there. The Sheraton and Raddison are probably a couple of the nicer, more western hotels, but they're fairly expensive. Last time I was there I stayed at the Bole Ambassador. It is close to the airport and decent quality for the price. The staff was really nice there and it was easy to get a cab from the hotel. For getting around the city taxis work pretty well, though some of them are in pretty bad shape. I may have a phone number for a guy I used a couple of times that had a fairly new Toyota. If you can find a good cabbie, get his card, and you can make arrangements with him to take you wherever you want to go. A lot of cabbies will ask about giving a tour of the sites, hoping that you'll hire them for a few hours or the day. Prepare to negiotiate rates. The traffic in Addis can be pretty bad so renting a car might be a headache but it would come in handy to go for those earth caches.

Hiring a taxi for the day is a viable alternative.

 

You can also get around Addis on those blue and white mini-buses, if you don't mind cramming yourself in a mini-van with about 15 other people.

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Istanbul is amazing (currently the #1 rated city on tripadvisor IRC, for good reason!). Spent four days there once and really could have done longer, and it was really a shame that I didn't get to explore the rest of Turkey too!

 

Note though, even if all your geocaches are on the European side of the isthmus, it counts as a country in Asia on your maps. ;)

 

News from the front here, going not this but rather next weekend for my Prague weekend (went when I was 7, well before geocaching existed), and also booked a weekend to Krakow, Poland. I'm rather excited about the last one, as I've wanted to go to Krakow for a long time! And not just for the food... I lived my entire life before now in areas of the USA with huge Polish communities (either present or times past), so it was really disappointing to move and learn pirogues aren't just something you can buy in a grocery store like normal pasta in most of the world. <_<

 

Then likely the USA for Christmas, but no other real plans really for new countries. I am thinking of a week in Israel/Jordan in the spring, but of course a lot of people freak out around me when I mention that because of all the stuff going on lately in the Middle East. I'm more of the opinion that something is always happening in the Middle East, but it should be fine sticking to the safer areas/ far enough in time removed from the latest Palestinian conflict that it won't be more unsafe than usual.

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and how to get tickets for the concert :laughing: I guess Istanbul for now is a bit less interesting :anicute:

 

Forgot to ask..so who is playing at the concert? Istanbul is certainly no less interesting. I got a taste of it on a 9 hour layover last year. Made me want to go back and spend at least a couple of days.

 

In Addis it's a Dutch kind of punk band (The Ex) together with an Ethiopian saxophone legend. Really great music, if you like this kind of music, and the shortest and cheapest trip for us to see them again :) In Istanbul it's a German experimental band, Einstuerzende Neubauten. We've been fans for both for ages, literally. Think early to mid 80s.

 

Yes, Istanbul is great! I had a lengthy layover there as well almost two years ago and did a bit of sightseeing. We really want to spend a few days there together, but Addis does sound a bit more exotic at the moment, and that's the music I've been humming all day :P Plus it would cost me less airmiles :lol:

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and how to get tickets for the concert :laughing: I guess Istanbul for now is a bit less interesting :anicute:

 

Forgot to ask..so who is playing at the concert? Istanbul is certainly no less interesting. I got a taste of it on a 9 hour layover last year. Made me want to go back and spend at least a couple of days.

 

In Addis it's a Dutch kind of punk band (The Ex) together with an Ethiopian saxophone legend. Really great music, if you like this kind of music, and the shortest and cheapest trip for us to see them again :) In Istanbul it's a German experimental band, Einstuerzende Neubauten. We've been fans for both for ages, literally. Think early to mid 80s.

 

Yes, Istanbul is great! I had a lengthy layover there as well almost two years ago and did a bit of sightseeing. We really want to spend a few days there together, but Addis does sound a bit more exotic at the moment, and that's the music I've been humming all day :P Plus it would cost me less airmiles :lol:

 

It sounds like, like me, you are a lover of music. I've actually heard of that German band. Tell me it's not just me, but whenever I'm going to be visiting some new country I'll do a little research on the musical styles of that region. I looked up "The Ex" on youtube and in one of the videos it included the kind of dancing you'll find at that restaurant I mentioned (Yod Abysinnia). If you want a taste of what it expect if you go there, you'll find lots of videos on youtube if you search for yod abyssinia.

 

We had a meeting today and it looks like the locations for my trip will change a bit. I will still spend a few days in Addis, but rather than going to South Africa first and going down to Jimma, I may be spending a few days in Nairobi instead (woo hoo, new country!). Anyone been to Nairobi within the last six months or so?

 

 

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Sitting in a friend's apartment in a little town north of Seoul. Hoping to get our first Korean find today. (As soon as the lazy bums get out of bed, that is.)

Coincidentally, I stumbled across your note on a cache page last night as I was exploring the potential of Seoul & area for a possible upcoming trip. Small planet - we meet (sort of) at a cache listing.

 

Bummer you weren't able to make it to that one, but congrats on hitting 6000 in Korea!

 

(PS: if you're not going back, mind if I grab the FTF?)

Edited by Viajero Perdido
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Congrats on Korea!

 

I guess Ethiopia is pretty much settled now. We're not thinking about Istanbul anymore at the moment and also took Ex music along on a cache outing :laughing: *sigh* I'm not quite sure if it's a good idea or not. We're currently preparing our main vacation to Java, Indonesia and potentially Lombok. And now we also have to think about Abbis, while Istanbul would be quite a bit after our vacation and would give us time to focus on one trip at a time. Oh well...

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Some nice caching abroad photos from southern Oman:

 

Camels walking along the road

bcd1ac17-c202-4d54-8046-740c6cb50075.jpg

 

There were cows here as well at a certain time in the past

9b0e3819-bb07-41ec-beb4-ae6eb25a5fed.jpg

 

Baobab trees. Didn't expect them there.

2b6557e0-c220-4484-9b75-0270208151e4.jpg

 

Nice stretch of coast towards Yemen. One of those occasions where simple sunshine would have been less interesting

6b970db3-3349-4ece-b51b-10815fb8a1c9.jpg

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Congrats on Korea!

 

I guess Ethiopia is pretty much settled now. We're not thinking about Istanbul anymore at the moment and also took Ex music along on a cache outing :laughing: *sigh* I'm not quite sure if it's a good idea or not. We're currently preparing our main vacation to Java, Indonesia and potentially Lombok. And now we also have to think about Abbis, while Istanbul would be quite a bit after our vacation and would give us time to focus on one trip at a time. Oh well...

 

I don't know what your citizenship status is, but there is a somewhat long list of countries (which includes Denmark) for which you can obtain your visa at the airport. It was pretty painless and was worth spending the extra time there rather than sending out my password to get a visa stamp before traveling.

 

After another meeting this morning it's now likely that I *won't* be going to Addis, but will be spending a week in Nairobi. I kinda wanted to get that Fresh and Green academy cache in Addis but I'll settle for adding a few finds from a new country and I might be able to arrange a layover in the UK, Austria, or UAE and add an additional country as well.

 

 

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Visa is generally not a problem for us. Yes, Mr. terratin would need one for Istanbul, but that's a 5 minutes affair online. For Indonesia and also Ethiopia we qualify for a visa on arrival. And we found out that waving our Qatari ID card at airports in the region reduces VOA fees bigtime :) Guess the wording 'citizen' doesn't mean locals but really anyone who lives there.

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Visa is generally not a problem for us. Yes, Mr. terratin would need one for Istanbul, but that's a 5 minutes affair online. For Indonesia and also Ethiopia we qualify for a visa on arrival. And we found out that waving our Qatari ID card at airports in the region reduces VOA fees bigtime :) Guess the wording 'citizen' doesn't mean locals but really anyone who lives there.

 

Obtaining a visa upon arrival sure makes things a lot easier. The process you went through in Istanbul (I did as well) is quite similar to what you'll find at Bole airport in Addis. One of my colleagues recently went to Nairobi and told me that I'll be able to obtain a Kenya visa at the airport as well.

 

The first time I went to Ethiopia I spent a couple of days in Rome at the Food and Agriculture Organization of the UN, then traveled with a couple of people from FAO to Addis and quickly went through the immigration process. We knew that one of the other attendees for the meeting was coming in on another flight just after ours so we stuck around a bit. Apparently he didn't read the "fine print" because the country he was from (Peru) is not on the list of eligible countries for an visa upon arrival. His "friends in Immigration" as he called them, put him in a chair and then just kind went about their business for awhile. Meanwhile, one of my colleagues at FAO contacted the local FAO office and got an official invitation letter on United Nations letterhead and got it immigration and our friend from Peru was out of immigration in 15 minutes.

 

It looks like there are a fair amount of geocaching in Nairobi including an earthcache and 3 multi caches in a park close to where I'll likely be staying. One of the multis and a nearby traditional have not yet been found. A user named SawaSawa owns most of the caches in Nairobi so once I make travel arrangements I'll be contacting him to get more local geocaching info.

 

 

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Ok, Addis is indeed booked :) That will be two crazy months! First I'm flying to Denmark again *sigh*, then Addis pretty much afterwards with a concert to visit every evening, and then our trip to Indonesia, which still needs some serious planning :lol:

 

Nothing interesting in Denmark I think. There's a challenge near my hotel that I've been trying to grab for ages but never got to that area: find all caches in a country (Vatican City State for us) but that's probably the only half interesting cache. Stopover in Frankfurt, but probably no time. I might just fall down in the lounge there and wait for my onward flight.

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Ok, Addis is indeed booked :) That will be two crazy months! First I'm flying to Denmark again *sigh*, then Addis pretty much afterwards with a concert to visit every evening, and then our trip to Indonesia, which still needs some serious planning :lol:

 

Nothing interesting in Denmark I think. There's a challenge near my hotel that I've been trying to grab for ages but never got to that area: find all caches in a country (Vatican City State for us) but that's probably the only half interesting cache. Stopover in Frankfurt, but probably no time. I might just fall down in the lounge there and wait for my onward flight.

 

I'm looking forward to hearing how you like Addis and about the Indonesia trip as well. When I found the caches at Vatican City there were just two of traditionals. Now there is 1 traditional (I believe it was the first cache there), three puzzle caches, and an earth cache. I've solved one of those for a future visit and one them is currently disabled, but sounds like it can be found after construction workers have gone home for the day. Of course, you're also in the middle (sort of) of Rome, a place I'm happy to visit even if I don't find any cache. The number of caches in Rome has really grown since the last time I was there.

 

I'm looking at some travel options for my Kenya trip, and a long overnight layover in Istanbul looks like a possibility. Another potential itinerary, which could give me another country, would have a long layover in Dubai.

 

 

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Actually, next to the EC there's only one traditional cache actually within the Vatican city boundaries. All the mysteries are situated outside the border. Shame. But we fulfill this challenge with one cache or four - doesn't matter.

 

That one traditional is outside the Vatican wall but, still technically in Vatican City State. I've only solve 1 of the 3 puzzles and can't remember where the final is, but I wonder how many caches there are where the published coordinates are in a different geographic region than the final. Is this challenge to find every cache in a country. Where's the final?

 

 

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Hey NYPaddleCacher, I've also been checking out the Nairobi caches already. Tomorrow my parents will move to Nairobi, they'll be living there for 4 years, and of course I'm eagerly looking forward to do some geocaching down there! Please let us know about your Nairobi caching experience. I guess I'll only be able to go there for a visit once during those 4 years, and I don't know when that'll be.

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Just back from Austria (Country #16). I was "georunning" 30 min south of Vienna. It was interesting to see the amount of letterbox caches in the area (a rarity here in Belgium). Next stop should be Slovakia, 4 days meeting in Bratislava. Time to start planning the caches around the convention hotel B)

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That one traditional is outside the Vatican wall but, still technically in Vatican City State. I've only solve 1 of the 3 puzzles and can't remember where the final is, but I wonder how many caches there are where the published coordinates are in a different geographic region than the final. Is this challenge to find every cache in a country. Where's the final?

Yes indeed, that traditional is on Vatican soil; Personally I find it questionable to have a cache listed in one country and the final (which is the actual cache) in another country; which is the case with all three Vatican mysteries we found when there. (I just saw there's a new mystery in Vatican city, but that one is -assuming properly- listed as being in Lazio, Italy).

 

Anyway, the (or more likely one version) of the "empty a country" challenge: GC1XV73.

 

Cheers,

 

Mr. Terratin

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Personally I find it questionable to have a cache listed in one country and the final (which is the actual cache) in another country;

 

I think that this is the only solution that makes sense for a lot of caches. Of course the hiking cache from Munich to Venice has to start in Germany and end in Italy. There are many other caches that are shorter and still cross borders.

There are also many puzzle caches that involve several stages and in case of a very small country like the Vatican it might not always be easy to have coordinates inside the country without giving away too much.

 

If someone wants to collect a statistics with respect to the countries/states/counties etc where they found containers, they can make up such a statistics on their own.

It seems crazy to me to restrict caches to a single country/state/county (I mention states and counties as well as those play a role for others as well).

 

Furthermore, I do not agree with your statement that the final is the actual cache - the final is part of the actual cache. If you hike from Munich to Venice and visit many stages on your way and experience a very special adventure, then certainly the container at the end is only a small part of the endeavour.

Edited by cezanne
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Mr. terratin does not argue against the hike Munich to Venice, but what he, and also I find questionable is the practice of some people to place a questionmark in a place that is more difficult accessible, and the final on the other side of the border. I think there was one such cache place just inside Belarus, with the final in Lithuania or so. Just placed for the sake of a megaevent nearby so that people could easily get another country 'point'. That's ridiculous in my opinion. The Vatican caches are rather close to this practice and I bet there's a reason why there are no actual caches there: Reviewers being told to not publish caches there or some-such. Seriously, if you cannot place a cache there then don't. Simple as that.

 

Btw, we just changed our vacation plans and are not going to Java this year, but to Thailand and Cambodia. The last-minute planning for Indonesia was just getting too much, and here we're mostly done already. Only need to find a nice, quiet beachside resort in Thailand for a few days and that's it.

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Personally I find it questionable to have a cache listed in one country and the final (which is the actual cache) in another country; which is the case with all three Vatican mysteries we found when there. (I just saw there's a new mystery in Vatican city, but that one is -assuming properly- listed as being in Lazio, Italy).

 

I used to think that Caches are generally listed where the header is, although you can choose a country/state yourself for your listing.

 

The one ? stating Lazio with header in Vatican State seems somehow 'wrong' to me (personally). If I want Lazio, I would move the header a bit.

 

Concerning Vatican I remember a ? that had a stage and final at places regulated by the 1929 Lateran Treaty (Extraterritorial property belonging to the Holy See). To me that was 'sufficient' Vatican for all of header, stages and final.

 

I also don't like traditionals to be listed with 'wrong' state in border regions. A cache in the mountains I visited was definitely on one side of the crest separating the states and you also could see on which side of the boundary stones nearby the cache is located and 3rd-party software also has correct boundaries in this area. In such cases I'm very ungenerous about the 'it's at most 10 meters to the border, so it doesn't matter'.

 

I would prefer state/country to be populated automatically based on header-coordinates, not by (new) users that maybe don't have any idea what to fill in oder have special ideas what to list.

 

Besides this special cases it would be very unfortunate for me if the country/state information on the page would be removed as that information allows filtering. Exept for special occasions I don't want to see the near slovak/czech/hungarian caches on my list, as they are mostly in slovak/czech/hungarian without translation and prefer so see only the Austrian caches within certain distance from home.

 

The first cache (a multi) I visited in Burgenland, Austria turned out to have some of the stages and the final in Hungary (also first time geocaching there). As now this one is not the only one I found in Burgenland/Austria or Gyor-Moson-Sopron/Hungary, it doesn't matter to me which country/state gets colored by this specific cache.

 

In Istanbul we took a ferry to the asian side, I wanted to have visited at least one cache in Asia as Groundspeak (not 3rd-party-software) isn't able to determine that Istanbul is partly in Europe, partly in Asia and counts all turkish caches for Asia.

 

Istanbul is definitely worth visiting (more than once). And around me, it seems to be THE booming top city destination everyone (people with different background) wants to go now, like London or Rome.

 

Collecting countries? Yes, I do, but on small scale. All eight neighbouring countries of Austria: completed this year. Apart from that I try to do some geocaching in each country I visit, that added another five contries. Next will be UK. I don't have any fancy exotic plans overseas.

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but what he, and also I find questionable is the practice of some people to place a questionmark in a place that is more difficult accessible, and the final on the other side of the border. I think there was one such cache place just inside Belarus, with the final in Lithuania or so. Just placed for the sake of a megaevent nearby so that people could easily get another country 'point'. That's ridiculous in my opinion. ´

 

I find that questionable too, but cachers driven by numbers come up with all kinds of such ideas (like setting absurd D/T combinations for events to help people fill the D/T grid, absurd attribute settings etc).

Of course many who like to visit caches in as many countries as possible want to achieve this goal by really visiting those countries, but there will always be others who mainly care about the resulting numbers.

In some challenge caches that require a certain number of countries, mysteries and also virtual caches that are easier to fake log are excluded, like for example here

http://www.geocaching.com/geocache/GC1WKZF_travel-bug

where only traditionals and multi caches are allowed.

 

In any case it would be hard, however, to come up with some rule as a cache with header coordinates in one country and the final in another is not necessarily questionable - it very much depends on the case.

 

 

Cezanne

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In Istanbul we took a ferry to the asian side, I wanted to have visited at least one cache in Asia as Groundspeak (not 3rd-party-software) isn't able to determine that Istanbul is partly in Europe, partly in Asia and counts all turkish caches for Asia.

 

Istanbul is definitely worth visiting (more than once). And around me, it seems to be THE booming top city destination everyone (people with different background) wants to go now, like London or Rome.

 

Collecting countries? Yes, I do, but on small scale. All eight neighbouring countries of Austria: completed this year. Apart from that I try to do some geocaching in each country I visit, that added another five contries. Next will be UK. I don't have any fancy exotic plans overseas.

 

Welcome to the country collectors thread.

 

I didn't realize that all of Turkey was considered Asia by Groundspeak until after I had found and logged a couple of caches in Istanbul. I was only there for about 6 hours so I didn't get across the bridge to the asian side of Istanbul. I do a fair amount of work with geographic location ontologies and looked up Turkey in the country profiles ontology created by FAO of the United Nations. It lists Turkey as a "memberOf" Asia as well.

 

Istanbul first got on my radar when, while waiting to board international flight to somewhere else I overheard the pilot talking about going to Istanbul on his next flight, and that it was his favorite city in the world. I figured a commercial airline pilot that flies international routes probably visits a lot of places and if Istanbul was his favorite, it had to have something going for it. It's one of my options for a layover city on the way to Nairobi at he end of the month so I might be visiting again. I should be able to add Kenya to my countries list on this trip, and now there is a possibility that I might spend a few days in Uganda. That would bring my countries in Africa total to 6.

 

 

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Here's another questionable cache: http://coord.info/GC4KRD4

It's on the Bahraini site of the border crossing, but the cache description claims the island belongs to Saudi. We've been to Bahrain and refused to do this cache simply because we've not been to Saudi. It might happen one day, but still I don't think we'll go and find this cache.

 

I wonder what the maintenance plan is on that one.

 

The latest for my travel plans for my upcoming Africa trip is that I will probably spend a few days in Nairobi (and might do a day safari in Nairobi National Park) and then a few days in and around Kampala, Uganda. Two new countries!

 

 

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Sitting in a friend's apartment in a little town north of Seoul. Hoping to get our first Korean find today. (As soon as the lazy bums get out of bed, that is.)

Coincidentally, I stumbled across your note on a cache page last night as I was exploring the potential of Seoul & area for a possible upcoming trip. Small planet - we meet (sort of) at a cache listing.

 

Bummer you weren't able to make it to that one, but congrats on hitting 6000 in Korea!

 

(PS: if you're not going back, mind if I grab the FTF?)

We're back in Oklahoma. Go for the FTF. Though I have to wonder if folks have tried for this one and are just not posting DNF logs -- I know there were a few in Seoul that haven't been logged in a year or more that are clearly missing, but there were few DNF logs, only one NM log, and no one left any NA logs. Saving face, perhaps?

 

We (ok, I) had a nearly horrifying experience at Incheon on the way home. We got there, checked in, checked bags, and had 90 minutes until the flight left. I figured I'd hop the shuttle and go get the Incheon TB hotel. Well, turns out you need to pay a bit more attention to the shuttle you get back on -- I thought if I got on the same bus I got off it would take me back to the passenger terminal, but it ended up taking me on a 35 minute jaunt to a cargo terminal. Then I switched buses and took another 35 minute jaunt back...I ended up pleading my way into the priority security line, cutting in line at passport control, and making the flight 2 minutes before the doors closed. The wife made me take the center seat the whole flight back to Atlanta, and yeah, I think I earned it.

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Just got back from the Prague weekend- yay for country #33! Glad I finally went back- when I was last there it was still part of Czechoslovakia, so needless to say it's been awhile. :ph34r:

 

Heading to Rhine River region in two weekends with some friends (already got Germany, but don't think I have that state so I get a new souvenir), then Krakow the weekend after that so Poland will be #34. Really been looking forward to that one awhile now, as I've never been before!

 

Then thinking even further ahead on countries... starting to plan a spring break week in March, and for whatever reason Israel is calling my name. Just noticed though that the hostel I am eyeing in Jerusalem runs a 3 day/2 night tour into Jordan where it's one day Petra and one day some other sites in Jordan. So if Israel happens I think Jordan will too! B) I'm also toying around with a few days in Morocco but am not certain yet about it- basically I'd want to fly in/out of Marrakech so a few days there/ a few days into the Sahara Desert, but I don't like traveling to countries where they harass me a lot as a solo woman.

 

Also it's funny, but I am getting annoyed by the countries in Europe that are hard to visit just on their own. Liechtenstein is so hard to get to! :mad: And Slovakia has very little interesting just for a weekend... luckily I have a Hungarian cousin getting married next spring, and their place is just over an hour from the border near some UNESCO-listed caves. So with luck I can convince someone we should go tour the caves for the day and then run across the border to Slovakia so I can stop being annoyed by that gap in my map.

 

Second annoyance: Slovenia is still white but all the other countries around it are dark, and there are no direct flights there from Amsterdam. Argh! Ah well, I knew you guys would understand. :P

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Also it's funny, but I am getting annoyed by the countries in Europe that are hard to visit just on their own. Liechtenstein is so hard to get to! :mad: And Slovakia has very little interesting just for a weekend... luckily I have a Hungarian cousin getting married next spring, and their place is just over an hour from the border near some UNESCO-listed caves. So with luck I can convince someone we should go tour the caves for the day and then run across the border to Slovakia so I can stop being annoyed by that gap in my map.

 

Second annoyance: Slovenia is still white but all the other countries around it are dark, and there are no direct flights there from Amsterdam. Argh! Ah well, I knew you guys would understand. :P

 

I think there are a few people here that have found caches in Slovakia and, if I recall, they enjoyed it there.

 

There are no direct flights from my local airport to other countries. The closest airport with an international flight to another country is about 60 miles away and that is to Canada. If I want to fly to any other country I have to go to NYC (about 220 miles away).

 

I should find out more detail about my pending trip to Africa as I have to coordinate my visit with someone from a well known foundation out in Seattle. I will most likely spend 3-4 days in Nairobi, Kenya, then 3-4 days in Entebbe/Kampala, Uganda. Right now the best flight option has an overnight layover in Dubai. I can schedule my flights such that I get into Dubai at 7:45PM and leave at 3:30PM the next day. That should give me plenty of time to grab a few caches. If all goes as planned I should get three new countries.

 

 

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I think there are a few people here that have found caches in Slovakia and, if I recall, they enjoyed it there.

 

I found 3 caches in Slovakia. I did it as a day trip from Budapest. We took a train to Esztergom (Hungary) which was just over an hour I think. We explored Esztergom (I recall the Esztergom Basilica was very impressive). We then walked over the bridge into Štúrovo, Slovakia. There didn't seem to be much in Štúrovo, though there was some wine fair going on and that was nice. We found 3 caches; I think that was all there was at the time. One was on the bridge itself, but I see that is now archived.

 

I'm sure there are lots of interesting places in Slovakia. One thing Geocaching has taught me is there are interesting things to see everywhere; even where there aren't major tourist attractions.

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I think there are a few people here that have found caches in Slovakia and, if I recall, they enjoyed it there.

 

I found 3 caches in Slovakia. I did it as a day trip from Budapest. We took a train to Esztergom (Hungary) which was just over an hour I think. We explored Esztergom (I recall the Esztergom Basilica was very impressive). We then walked over the bridge into Štúrovo, Slovakia. There didn't seem to be much in Štúrovo, though there was some wine fair going on and that was nice. We found 3 caches; I think that was all there was at the time. One was on the bridge itself, but I see that is now archived.

 

I'm sure there are lots of interesting places in Slovakia. One thing Geocaching has taught me is there are interesting things to see everywhere; even where there aren't major tourist attractions.

 

I'm sure there are, so perhaps I should rephrase: as a gal with Hungarian relatives, I can't think of a good reason to present to go there instead of just visiting my 90 year old grandmother!

 

I've been there a few times, many years ago, just haven't gone out of my way since geocaching (so past 5 years). For example, I remember when I was a kid we once drove across the border on a dirt road and rolled some hay bales down a hill in a farmer's field, then promptly drove back to Hungary. So now you know the truth- I can never return to Slovakia because I'm on the lam. :anibad:

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Second annoyance: Slovenia is still white but all the other countries around it are dark, and there are no direct flights there from Amsterdam. Argh! Ah well, I knew you guys would understand. :P

 

I think there are a few people here that have found caches in Slovakia and, if I recall, they enjoyed it there.

 

When we lived in Wiesbaden, I took a 4-day weekend and drove down south. Started out on a Thursday evening, stopped for the night south of Munich. Friday, stopped in Salzburg, drove down through Austria and stayed the night in Slovenia. Saturday, drove west through Austria and nipped into Hungary, stopping for the night just outside of Bratislava. Sunday, hit Bratislava and started back into Austria, and Monday drove back home and spent the afternoon with the wife.

 

If you flew to Vienna and rented a car, it'd be easy.

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When we lived in Wiesbaden, I took a 4-day weekend and drove down south. Started out on a Thursday evening, stopped for the night south of Munich. Friday, stopped in Salzburg, drove down through Austria and stayed the night in Slovenia. Saturday, drove west through Austria and nipped into Hungary, stopping for the night just outside of Bratislava. Sunday, hit Bratislava and started back into Austria, and Monday drove back home and spent the afternoon with the wife.

 

If you flew to Vienna and rented a car, it'd be easy.

 

Even with trains it would work. The question is just whether it is all just about colouring a country on the geocaching map or whether about visiting some interesting locations and having enough time to enjoy them.

 

As Slovenia is regarded, there are many places there that definitely deserve a visit on its own right - going there just to find one cache would be a pity in my eyes, but that's of course subjective.

 

In any case another option to colour Slovakia despite the family issue might indeed be to fly to Vienna and just quickly hop over to Bratislava.

Edited by cezanne
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Nice thread! Two weeks ago wife and I went from Zagreb, Croatia to Katowice, Poland by car and added 5 countries to our collection (Slovenia, Austria, Slovakia, Czech Republic and Poland). About 850 km trip in one way. Mainly motorway rest stop caches but also did some Earthcaches along the way. It was great time and looking forward to add more countries to our collections :)

Edited by GCEdo
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Vienna seems to be a suitable hub city for Central Europe and worth a journey itself. :D Only Liechtenstein is too far away. ;)

 

Bratislava/Slovakia can be reached easily from Vienna/Austria, there is a high speed catamaran 'twin city liner' on the danube, duration 75 minutes. Many international tourists go to Bratislava by bus, duration 80 minutes. One-way EUR 7,20 retour EUR 12, that's cheaper. Eurolines bus(s)es start at Vienna International Busterminal, you can go there by metro U3 from the heart of the city.

 

Budapest/Hungary is less than three hours away from Vienna by bus, EUR 22 one way,

Prague/Czech Repubilic less than 4 hours, also EUR 22 one way.

Even Zagreb/Croatia is only 5 hours from Vienna by bus, EUR 29 one way.

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Bratislava/Slovakia can be reached easily from Vienna/Austria, there is a high speed catamaran 'twin city liner' on the danube, duration 75 minutes. Many international tourists go to Bratislava by bus, duration 80 minutes. One-way EUR 7,20 retour EUR 12, that's cheaper.

 

There are 1 hour train connections too and the EURegio ticket http://www.oebb.at/en/Travelling_abroad/EURegio/EURegio_Slovakia/index.jsp

is also valid as 1 day pass for public transport in Bratislava on the day of arrival (price for Vienna-Bratislava round trip 15 Euro). So that adds another alternative.

 

There are also EURegio tickets for the Czech republic and Hungary.

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Vienna seems to be a suitable hub city for Central Europe and worth a journey itself. :D Only Liechtenstein is too far away. ;)

 

Bratislava/Slovakia can be reached easily from Vienna/Austria, there is a high speed catamaran 'twin city liner' on the danube, duration 75 minutes. Many international tourists go to Bratislava by bus, duration 80 minutes. One-way EUR 7,20 retour EUR 12, that's cheaper. Eurolines bus(s)es start at Vienna International Busterminal, you can go there by metro U3 from the heart of the city.

 

Budapest/Hungary is less than three hours away from Vienna by bus, EUR 22 one way,

Prague/Czech Repubilic less than 4 hours, also EUR 22 one way.

Even Zagreb/Croatia is only 5 hours from Vienna by bus, EUR 29 one way.

 

If I lived in Europe I'd have a lot more countries in which I've found a cache. I only live about 3 hours by car from the Canadian border. Mexico and countries in the Caribbean are at least a 6 hour trip by air and Europe is at least 7.5 hours away. For my next trip, the total flight/layover time on the way there will be 36-40 hours.

Edited by NYPaddleCacher
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Yiha, currently in Denmark again but for a change not in Copenhagen but on the island of Fyn where I finally picked up the long awaited All Caches in a Country Challenge. Next week it's Addis Ababa :)

 

Have fun in Addis. I'm hoping to finalize my plans for my Kenya/Uganda trip today or tomorrow.

 

 

I just got an email message from the person I was going to be traveling with to Kenya and she said the institution we were planning on visiting is not ready for us. Looks like my Kenya/Uganda trip will be postponed for awhile.

Edited by NYPaddleCacher
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Back from Addis. We had a marvelous time, seeing a fab concert every evening, twice with the wonderful Getatchew Mekuria. On the first evening the rather full National Theatre went into standing ovations as soon as Get appeared on stage. The second evening was really interesting. Apparently we ended up in a reoccuring poetry slam event. The room was so full that we first got plastic chairs outside, but then ended up sideways in front of the stage as friends of the band. Not that we asked for it. Suppose it was a skin-colour thing. For a long time various people came on stage to read what seemed like very funny poetry (not sure, our Amharic is somewhat patchy :anibad: ) with various musicians and dancers improvising to it. Interesting: there were people taking orders and saving food. I'm surprised how they managed to get through the crowds. Great music, full house, smell of fries :laughing: Third evening again had a very different audience, probably more the serious jazz fans, of whom some didn't really understand what was going on. This time we were real guests :yikes: Again a great concert and the band was in a marvelous mood. The stage was a bit too small for all the dancers, but it looked like the singer has spent some time with them. I'm glad we went to Addis only for the music!

 

Though the rest was great as well. We only went to Mount Entoto and otherwise didn't leave town, but we've seen so many interesting things that we weren't bored at all. Great place to visit, so colourful, so chaotic yet very organized. The food was wonderful as well.

 

Caching was a bit more disappointing: found one cache, which was in a hotel (normally don't really like those, but it makes sense there). two DNFs as the containers were clearly gone, one note posted as GZ seems to be next to a police post where everyone warned us going close to. But at least Ethiopia is on the map. Now we need to come back and see a bit more of the country next time. Or go to Djibouti, which is still on my travel wishlist.

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Back from Addis. We had a marvelous time, seeing a fab concert every evening, twice with the wonderful Getatchew Mekuria. On the first evening the rather full National Theatre went into standing ovations as soon as Get appeared on stage. The second evening was really interesting. Apparently we ended up in a reoccuring poetry slam event. The room was so full that we first got plastic chairs outside, but then ended up sideways in front of the stage as friends of the band. Not that we asked for it. Suppose it was a skin-colour thing. For a long time various people came on stage to read what seemed like very funny poetry (not sure, our Amharic is somewhat patchy :anibad: ) with various musicians and dancers improvising to it. Interesting: there were people taking orders and saving food. I'm surprised how they managed to get through the crowds. Great music, full house, smell of fries :laughing: Third evening again had a very different audience, probably more the serious jazz fans, of whom some didn't really understand what was going on. This time we were real guests :yikes: Again a great concert and the band was in a marvelous mood. The stage was a bit too small for all the dancers, but it looked like the singer has spent some time with them. I'm glad we went to Addis only for the music!

 

Though the rest was great as well. We only went to Mount Entoto and otherwise didn't leave town, but we've seen so many interesting things that we weren't bored at all. Great place to visit, so colourful, so chaotic yet very organized. The food was wonderful as well.

 

Caching was a bit more disappointing: found one cache, which was in a hotel (normally don't really like those, but it makes sense there). two DNFs as the containers were clearly gone, one note posted as GZ seems to be next to a police post where everyone warned us going close to. But at least Ethiopia is on the map. Now we need to come back and see a bit more of the country next time. Or go to Djibouti, which is still on my travel wishlist.

 

I found the one in the hotel as well. It looks like DuneBuddy replaced the Inside Outside cache for the CO a few days after you were there. It's too bad about the caches up at Mt. Entoto. I had solved the Meneliks Home cache and might have gone to find it the next time I was in Addis. One of my co-workers is going to be in Addis in a couple of weeks and going up to Bahir Dar for a couple of days. Last year I was asked by some people at Jimma University (about 4-5 hours south of Addis) to do some training there but that fell through. My original plans for a trip to Nairobi and Kampala, Uganda have been delayed until at least December. I wouldn't be surprised if the trip doesn't happen until next year.

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I found the one in the hotel as well. It looks like DuneBuddy replaced the Inside Outside cache for the CO a few days after you were there. It's too bad about the caches up at Mt. Entoto. I had solved the Meneliks Home cache and might have gone to find it the next time I was in Addis. One of my co-workers is going to be in Addis in a couple of weeks and going up to Bahir Dar for a couple of days.

 

No problem about the Mount Entoto caches. We've been there (meaning the taxi driver managed to get up in his old Lada) and enjoyed ourselves. That's the important part. Though we did notice the height quite a bit. The brisk walk to the missing cache from the Palace was more tiresome that we thought :laughing: Writes Mrs. terratin who wanted to climb an equally high mountain in Turkey last year but was fortunately stopped by a cold :anicute:

 

I don't like speculating about new countries, but I hope there's a chance to cache in Saudi next year. Discussions are currently ongoing :yikes: - that means, we need to find fellow cachers to drive us as we aren't allowed to take our company car out of the country.

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