We ended up in Lublin because we missed our bus to Sandomierz. We woke up early in Zamość because HOB was having coughing fits and, though the guy at our hostel had explained how to get to the bus station by local bus, we decided to walk instead and enjoy one final stroll through the glorious old town of Zamość. Well that was a good idea, until we realized we’d walked to the wrong station and had to sprint to another station which also turned out to be the wrong one. (Why does a smallish town have three bus stations?) By the time we reached the the correct station we’d missed our bus (which I’d already bought tickets for, grrrrrrr). Without being able to speak Polish I had limited ability to sort out how to get to Sandomierz but someone told us to get on a minibus to Lublin and make a transfer, so we did.
Since it seems to be a requirement that we have a terrifying minibus ride in every country we visit, our driver to Lublin—let’s call him Mario Andresski—drove like he was making an emergency pierogi delivery to Pope John Paul II himself. Well any way, neither of us threw up and we made it to Lublin with a couple of hours to spare until we had to catch the next minibus to Sandomierz.
Fortunately the old town of Lublin is right outside the minibus station so we trotted up a steep hill into an area of lovely old buildings.
My motto in life is “always stay fit in case I miss a bus somewhere and have to spend the afternoon walking uphill on cobblestones while wearing my backpack.”
Lublin is a 700 year old town with lots of Jewish history: it was once a center for Jewish Universities (and later a place where Jews were slaughtered by Nazis). We stopped into the tourist center for a map and there was a couple from Israel researching their family roots in the area.
We ran around with our map like crazed tourists. This 13th century Tower of the Trinity is mighty handsome, isn’t it?
We peeked into the 16th Cathedral of John the Baptist and John the Evangelist (perhaps affectionately known as John² by locals). This delightful trompe-l’œil ceiling painting is by Jozef Majer.
Long live the mustache-boob pillar.
We were running out of time and didn’t have a chance to find picnic supplies so we bought sausages at a stand. They were pretty tasty and it wasn’t like we were going to leave Poland with trying a Polish sausage anyway….
Our last stop was at the bathroom at Lublin’s minibus station, which in fact was the highlight of our visit. HOB was treated to this mural over the urinals.
And for the ladies? Helloooo!
A town that has a poster of squirrel testicles in the bus station? That, my friends, is a fine town to accidentally detour in.
How we got to Lublin: mini bus from Zamość.
Where we slept: Pokoje Goscinne na Szlak a Jablkowyn (in Sandomierz). Price: €42 for a double. Recommended: yes.