September 2016 - July 2017
  • Day276

    ...just another brick in the wall-Berlin

    June 6, 2017 in Germany ⋅ ☀️ 18 °C

    Sailed from the port of Gedser, Denmark today. Total bus and ferry ride was 7hrs and 15 min. Great way to travel in Europe. The ferry ride was only two hours from Denmark to Germany. I booked my hostel last minute and when I arrived at the main bus station my hostel was at the other side of the city. So....I walked it. I went through many interesting suburbs and even the seedy side of town. What a dump and boy the pros were in really rough shape. Nothing like the other side of life. I picked up the pace here and my pack was so uncomfortable because it was humid and hot and I overdressed. I did catch a couple of landmarks but mainly couldn't wait to drop the bag and hit the grocery store. I'm in luck and there's a Lidl right next door to the hostel and finally with decent food prices than I've had in 5 days. Steamed broccoli and yogurt for dinner and two cheap beers. Shower and early night because I want to get an early start before I check out. Don't know if I'll see it all.Read more

  • Day275

    The land of HC Anderson-Copenhagen

    June 5, 2017 in Denmark ⋅ ⛅ 18 °C

    Great breakfast and a sauna before I left Malmo today. A quick 25 minute train ride over Orestud bridge and I'm in Copenhagen Denmark. Sun is shining and looks like there's lots to see here. Waiting to get my bed at 3pm so I can tour the city. That is one pain in the butt waiting to store your bag. Finally away I go. I have become really skilled in this leg of travel in seeing a lot in very little time. I catch all the sights, walk Christianhavn the boardwalk with tall ships and boats that wind in and around Copenhagen. I'm glad I made sandwiches and grabbed some fruit and hard boiled eggs at the hotel in Sweden. The price of everything seems to be almost double here. Five hours of walking and back to the hostel. There is a lot if rebuilding and restoration going on here so it's hard to take decent pictures. I booked my bus to Berlin tomorrow for €19 and that includes the ferry over. I love this bus line, fast and economical. I watch five Polish guys play pool tonight and they comment on me smiling and how pretty I sit in the corner watching. I laugh and thank them for the compliment in Slovak and they are all surprised.Read more

  • Day274

    Malmo snd Landsroku

    June 4, 2017 in Sweden ⋅ ⛅ 13 °C

    Rain, rain go away. It really sucks walking in the rain some days. It felt like a Vancouver spring day and the girl at reception told me this was Swedish spring. I believe it. Everyone rides their bikes with shorts and sandals in the rain. Not even cold. Toured this the third largest city in Sweden. Lots of new buildings and humongous statues everywhere. Everything is big. I only walked 10 km today and walked through three different parks, not a sole in sight. Took the train back to my hotel and hit the fitness room and sauna for an hour. Time for some relaxation. Meeting for dinner tonight with Tyler and Amanda in Landsroku which is 45 minutes by train. I haven't seen Tyler for years and am happy we can meet(Judy's nephew and Bonnie's son). And what a great meeting it was! We had dinner and then they showed me around this lovely little town. We walked to the citadel which has two moats along the sea where there are weapons bunkers from WWI and the allotment lands. These lands are long term lot leases for gardens and the enjoyment of country life. People have to be approved by all the other land tenants before they are accepted.Read more

  • Day273

    8 hours in Stockholm

    June 3, 2017 in Sweden ⋅ ⛅ 15 °C

    Nice journey on the cruise ship except for the partyers a few doors down. I woke up for docking but wasn't aware of the time change((could have slept an extra hour). We docked in Stockholm at 6:10 am. After walking 2 hours I finally found a coffee shop to grab a coffee, muffin and to charge up my phone. Coffee and muffin $12. I tried to find a reasonably priced hostel or hotel but couldn't find anything central for under$150. Quick decision to head straight down to Malmo on the 13:45 bus (8 hr trip) for €12. I spent the next four hours trekking around and getting to know Stockholm. It's a lot like Venice with bridges and canals everywhere and so many islands. However the streets are wider and names of streets easier to identify. I watched the Stockholm marathon and the first 12 runners were black and looked like they weighed 75 pounds. There were a lot of helicopters flying above keeping tabs on things. I'm looking forward to sleeping on the bus for a bit.Read more

  • Day272

    Maiden Voyage-Finland to Sweden

    June 2, 2017 in Estonia ⋅ ⛅ 5 °C

    I left Helsinki this morning by bus to Turku, the original capital city of Finland, founded in 1236. It only took 2.5 hours to get there. I read up on the city but there was not a lot too see. I decided to check out the price for an over night cabin to Stockholm. A shared cabin was €44 and the agent said more than likely I would be alone in the cabin. I went for it because the cheapest accomodations were €63. So I saved €19 and got to take the Baltic Princess across. I found a buffet restaurant to have a late lunch at and spent awhile there eating a lot of veggies I hadn't had in a while. I walked the pier down to the dock and was glad the rain held off. I visited The Turku castle but only from the outside and then headed to the pier. I was there about 3 hours ahead of time so I finally got a chance to read in quiet a book I picked up at the Dream Hostel in Warsaw. Holy crap , one hour before boarding and the waiting area was filled with at least 150 South Koreans and the decibal level went way up and my book was put away. I was watching the Finns and Swedes and the look on their faces told a story. Hmm probably exactly what I was thinking! Behold I made it to my inside cabin 5322 and prayed I would be alone. YES....the whole cabin to myself and my own washroom too. I headed onto the deck to set sail and the shoreline was gorgeous with sun beating down. I checked out the duty free and bought a bottle of DiSarinno for under €10, which is cheaper than back home. I bought a corkscrew too so that I could finally open a bottle of red wine I bought a week ago. I haven't drank wine in two weeks. The cruise is 10+ hours and I'll be landing on the shores of Stockholm at 6:10 am.Read more

  • Day271

    Helsinki, Finland

    June 1, 2017 in Finland ⋅ 🌧 6 °C

    Planes, trains, automobiles and ferries! I have covered all forms of transportation so far, except ballooning. This is still a possibility. Today's weather featured sun, high winds, rain and hail. Forecast for Helsinki 7 degrees. Yikes, winter again. So glad I have stayed healthy so far; must be all the cheese I'm eating. Twenty minute trek to the hostel and a one hour wait to check in, followed by a one hour circle tour of the campus before I finally found my dorm. Totally wasted 2 hours. Dropped off my pack and hustled out for 3.5 hour tour of the sites and the city. All can be done rather quickly as it really isn't a big city. It rained and hailed three times and the weather changes every 10 minutes. No wonder this is the country of the highest suicide rate-enough to put anyone over the edge. I walked along the harbour front and was surprised by a moving object and lo and behold to my surprise two jack rabbits. So cute and so huge! Helsinki is very expensive and so I've decided to move on to Turku tomorrow heading west to Stockholm. Hoping to meet up with Tyler and Amanda in the next few days in Malmo.Read more

  • Day270

    Trekking Tallinn

    May 31, 2017 in Estonia ⋅ ☁️ 11 °C

    Misty and raining today but that can't stop the exploring. I covered a lot of ground today from the Old Town to the Kadriog Palace which was a the opposite end. Found the view point of the city, embassy corridor and the medieval market. Had a nice long talk with a local girl, Mironika, who gave me good knowledge of the culture, economy, and general life in Estonia. Her English was perfect and she said most people speak between 3&4 languages here. I'm so impressed with that. I couldn't find the festivities of medieval times and I think they were postponed by the rain. I had lunch back at the hostel and then headed to the gardens, presidential palace and Peter the Great's summer cottage (that was disappointing).walking through the park I found the statue of independence and alas access to the beach. I did some beach combing in search of amber and found a couple of interesting rocks. The beach wasn't very pretty and was littered with cigarettes butts. I walked down to the port and purchased my ticket to Helsinki for the 12 pm ferry tomorrow and bought some groceries. The Finns were buying tons of alcohol and I was told it's very expensive too drink there and there are restrictions for purchase. Hmm curious about this culture. 12km day today.Read more

  • Day269

    Tallinn, Estonia

    May 30, 2017 in Estonia ⋅ ☀️ 12 °C

    What a gorgeous bus ride from Riga to Tallin. Four and a half hours of national parks, sandy Baltic Coastline, and sunshine. Reminds me of Vancouver Island. Quick and easy 30 minute walk to my hostel which is uber modern and only a month old and feels more like a hotel; ten minutes to old town and a five minute walk to the port. I walked down to the quay(Kai in Estonian) and picked up a few items. I found some interesting smoked sausage and asked the girl what the meat was and all she said was cheese! I found out later it was reindeer meat and the sell a lot of game in the stores here. Caviar us €5 a jar and I am getting a jar for my trip home. I priced out the ticket for Helsinki on Friday and they gave me a price of €15 one way. It's 2.5 hours by ferry. Apparently you can barter for a better deal with the ferry companies. Next I hit the Old Town which is very medieval and has a lot of stone and wooden buildings. Tomorrow is Old Town days and the have a knights tournament, parrot shooting (not to sure about that) and the election of the May Count (this intrigues me). The forecast calls for rain but I still have my umbrella.Read more

  • Day268

    Riga finale

    May 29, 2017 in Latvia ⋅ ⛅ 13 °C

    Last day here today and so off to the other side of the Daugava River for a different view. Cool and windy this morning so I doubled back to change and grab a jacket. Walked four hours and then went to the museum at the Powder Tower. One of the best historical museums I've been in in all if Europe. These poor Latvians were constantly at war and being over thrown by someone. I spent 4 hours in the museum. Next was the arsenals, along the park, groceries and back to the hostel for prepping tomorrow's trip to Tallin Estonia.Read more

  • Day267

    Riga-Latvia

    May 28, 2017 in Latvia ⋅ ⛅ 21 °C

    Beautiful luxury bus and a four hour ride with gorgeous scenery brought me into Riga in the early afternoon. Wowwww! Another great feel city and super friendly people. Had a beer in an underground cellar recommended by Jana (yup) at the hostel and super cool (beer was great too). Walked along the river to the cruise ship area where a huge luxury liner from Panama was docked. It was 27 degrees and the Latvians were swimming in the river. I dipped my feet in and it wasn't too cold. Walked through the magnificent parks where people were laying in the grass, talking and snoozing. There is a water taxi you can take up and down the river. I came across some kids playing in the city water fountain to keep themselves cool. This city is a hidden gem in Europe and has almost a Swedish feel to it. I walked for five hours straight. Picked up a salmon cheese and chive triangle tart for dinner which was very yummy. I can't understand the Latvian language but there is a lot of English and Russian spoken here.Read more