Crossing the Elbe again.

After another breakfast feast at the hotel, we crossed the Elbe again and carried on down the cycle path. Decin was mentioned in the guide as worth a visit but it was much bigger than we expected so we carried on. Here we had to cross the river again, this time by means of a bridge. The next section was more industrial and the path took us up and down a long flight of steel steps alongside a massive lock in the river. We noticed that others had prior knowledge and took to the road to skirt the obstacle, which we encountered without any warning.

A more rural and tranquil scene rewarded us, passing by Brna and we encountered a shaded picnic bench at just the right time for a lunch stop. We were expecting a bridge to take us back over the Elbe, not having noticed on the map that it was another ferry crossing. From the other side it was a short ride alongside a widened section of river then into Lovosice Station for the 15:59 train to Prague.

There was no lift. I knew that in some countries it’s considered normal for passengers to cross the tracks directly but wasn’t sure about the Czech Republic so we used the subway stairs. Once on the platform we saw locals crossing the tracks. The train was ten minutes late, we looked for the bike symbol as it arrived but could see none. On all the other trains, the bike carriage was at the opposite end from the locomotive so we raced to the end and prepared to bundle the bikes up the steep high steps. Then we heard shouting from the front and had to race back and pass them up to the conductor in the unmarked luggage van with no steps. He directed us to a first class compartment and we settled back until he came back to check the tickets and find out where we needed to alight.

The hotel wasn’t far from Praha-Holešovice, the last stop before the terminus, we arrived hot and tired and desperate for a shower. Luckily there was something for us to eat in the hotel restaurant.