Eger is a large town or small city (population of about 60,000, you decide which), about two hours by bus from Budapest. It's a pretty place, best know for its' wineries. I got a room in the Hotel Senator for 6400 Florints, about $21. It was really cool, an eighteenth century inn on the edge the main square in the old town. That's a picture of the hotel below. Behind and above Hotel Senator is Eger's castle.
I spent one day touring and one day wining. I don't have any great pictures of the wineries, so I'll inflict pictures of Eger on you.
Other views of the square in front of the hotel.
The castle, what it looks like now and what it used to look like. It is not what it used to be, but few castles are.
This is Eger as seen from the castle
and Eger as seen from the minaret, a leftover from Ottoman rule. Also a collage of the minaret. The spiral staircase was so cramped I couldn't stand up straight and my shoulders were touching opposite sides at the same time. The things I go through for a view.
The Eger picture taken from the minaret has the Minorite Church in the center. I mention that as a clumsy lead-in to showing more of this church. I need to work on my transitions.
Continuing with the church and clumsy transition theme, this is Eger Cathedral and it's pretty ceiling.
Speaking of ceilings (and being consistent on the bad transitions), across from the Eger Cathedral is the eighteenth century Lyceum, which I think is a university. It is definitely a school of some sort. Inside is a library of rare books--the two shown are from 1394 and 1770, a room of antique astronomical equipment, and the painted library ceiling. The ceiling is amazing. It is flat, but I stood under it looking up until my neck hurt and couldn't get past the illusion that it was a domed ceiling. The pictures show where the walls meet the flat ceiling at a right angle, but it still looks like a dome ceiling to me. If you are ever in Eger, you have got to go to the library in the Lyceum and stare at the ceiling for a while. It's hard on the neck but an impressive illusion.
Last and most definitely least, in terms of quality of pictures, is my collage of pictures from the wine area of Eger. In a valley on the edge of town are hundreds of wine cellars carved into the chalk hill side. At the far end of the valley, where it took me a while to find, are dozens of cellars open for tasting. I couldn't find a wine that I really, really liked, and I really, really tried. I tried so hard I am not sure how I got out of there. But at the end of the day I was back in my room with a liter of very young wine. It tasted like grape juice but with a kick.
The day after my wine adventure I returned to Budapest by bus, spent one more night in Diaksport Hostel, gave my young wine to the young lady at the desk, and caught a train to Romania.