Report Cards

From Wroclaw/Boleslawiec, POLAND, June 3, ’07. . .

Hotel-Restauracia Bielany (55-075 Bielany-Wroclawskie, ul. Klecinska 3, Wroclaw, Poland; phone +4871 311 2794,

On a trip from Slovakia to Boleslawiec to buy Polish pottery, I stayed at Hotel-Restauracia Bielany in Wroclaw. The hotel is right off the A4 autostrasse near the large stores Tesco, Ikea, Makro and others. I chose this hotel for its easy access to the A4, but it is also only a 10-minute drive from the center of Wroclaw.

The hotel is relatively new and the price is good: 160 zlotys (about $59) for a single with breakfast (although I was quoted 150 zlotys). My room was not tiny or cramped at all.

The hotel has a restaurant with a very nice menu. For dinner I had a chicken breast marinated in vodka-soaked cranberries with a chanterelle sauce for around 30 zlotys ($11).

• Boleslawiec is about 120 kilometers west of Wroclaw — just a one-hour drive. There you will find stores and Polish pottery factory outlets. The pottery is a good deal, even with the current low value of the dollar.

I had previously bought quite a bit of pottery in Warsaw, but the selection in Boleslawiec is overwhelming. Since Boleslawiec is not very far from the German border, plenty of Germans come to buy the pottery along with American military wives who come up by the busload from the nearby U.S. military base.

Another good buy in Boleslawiec is wicker baskets. You can also find plenty of garden gnomes in Poland and the Czech Republic, if you need any.

• Driving in Poland is easy. The roads are well marked. You just need a good map of the country.

Late May/early June is strawberry season, so you will find plenty of roadside stands. Indulge yourself with fresh strawberries.

— Roseanne Sherman, Melbourne, FL

From Bonneval, FRANCE, April 26, ’07. . .

Hostellerie du Bois Guibert (phone 02 3747 2233 or e-mail, located 20 kilometers south of Chartres, is a delightful place to rest after the long plane ride to Paris. It sits in woods just outside the small, medieval town of Bonneval.

The total price we paid of $275 per night for two included the room ($169) and an elegant dinner ($105) with a bottle of wine.

— Anita Tomasi, Santa Rosa, CA

On ARGENTINA, March ’07. . .

• In Buenos Aires, I was very impressed with the “walking tours in English” led by two men who spoke excellent English. They have two different tours: one of the Retiro area and another that starts at the Recoleta Cemetery. The tours are about 2½ hours each and cost about $25 each. Their telephone number is 15-5773-1001.

— Barbara Woltz, Greensboro, NC