Summer 2017 - pt.1 Scandinavia and Estonia


2 months of endless travel across Europe

My summer holiday began in the early hours of the 2nd July, Leavers Ball had finished less than 3 hours before I left Tudor to head to Banbury bus station for a 4am bus to Gatwick Airport. I arrived at Gatwick at around 6am having had very little sleep on the bus ready for my 9am flight to Copenhagen where I arrived dreary eyed and extremely tired.

Somehow I managed to make it through that day without napping once to regain the sleep I had lost that night. The next morning I attempted to wake up for sunrise at Nyhavn, a 4am wake up, sadly there was no sunrise as the sun barely peeked through the clouds that morning so I went back to bed sleep some more hours before more exploring that day and an overnight bus to Oslo that evening.

the sunrise attempt

After my overnight bus to Oslo I arrived having slept a total or probably half an hour in the very last moments of the bus ride. Arriving at 7am, my hostel was not ready for check in, so I dumped my bags and slept for about 4 hours on the foyer sofa. Having previously visited Oslo twice before there wasn't much left that I wanted to check out, so I headed out for a wonder going via the Royal Palace and then to the waterfront to an area I had never been before.

Next stop was Gothenburg and Jonkoping, two cities that I had kinda found on the map of Sweden, google imaged and decided I wanted to check out. Both a little underwhelming and of course, being Scandinavia, seriously overpriced.

Gothenburg was a cute lil city on the water, extremely walkable and home to a cinnamon bun that was legit bigger than my head, and yes I did order one and yes I managed to finish it somehow.

Gothenburg from above
After Jonkoping I headed for the Swedish capital, Stockholm, a city I have wanted to visit for quite some time now and it did not disappoint.

I also met up with a friend of mine, Rita, from Finland who happened to be working a summer job in Stockholm this summer, we hadn't seen each other for over 2 years so it was lovely to catch up with her again and wonder about the city.

As I had previously noted to myself, Sweden is home to cinnamon buns, so of course I had to hunt down some of Stockholm's best whilst still trying to not spend too much in this expensive country.

After two nights in Stockholm, I boarded an overnight ferry over to Helsinki. The ferry was one of the coolest things/places I've spend a night on, I had a room to myself with fold down beds and a private ensuite bathroom and could wonder this massive ship all I wanted, there was a duty free store on board and a whole heap of other things as well to help pass the time. As it was a ferry, I braved the cold air and winds (it was COLD and I did not have enough clothes for this) and went on deck to watch the sun set, which was absolutely magical and being this far north (well not really, but pretty north), the sun refused to fully set until after 11pm!

Luckily my hostel in Helsinki was legit right next to the port we docked in, so an easy walk over there allowed me to dump my luggage and set off for the day exploring Helsinki again. Having previously visited Helsinki in 2012, walking everywhere seemed like deja vu, I somehow retained quite a lot of sense of direction in the Finnish capital.

I began by walking from my hostel into the centre of town, past some of the churches on the way and then wondered through the market square and down the side streets.

After purchasing a punnet of strawberries at the extremely low price of 8, I made my way to Suomenlinna and Vallisaari islands to have a wonder about, which were absolutely gorgeous! Then it was back to the mainland and my hostel to sleep before heading off to Tallinn the next day.

The next day I boarded a ferry to Tallinn, which was only 2 hours away from Helsinki! Upon arriving at the port on the edge of town, I made my way through the old town to my hostel, which was located within the old town walls before heading out for some exploration. The old town of Tallinn is incredibly cute and gorgeous, locals go to lengths to dress up in period clothes and many of the eateries were traditional and came with potential grumpy and rude waiters.

After exploring the old town, I headed beyond the town walls to the newer sections of Tallinn and at that moment it decided to rain. Stupidly I had thrown away the umbrella, which I bought back in Copenhagen, in Gothenburg, so I was left to the mercy of the weather and quickly made my way to a nearby shopping centre, where I discovered Estonia has Boost Juice!

And that is part 1, phase 1 of Summer.


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