5 Reasons to Love Long-Distance Flights

Usually, we complain when facing too long travel times. 5 hours sitting on a train, 12 hours flight from Europe to the USA or cheap but forever long bus trip. First thing coming to your mind is probably torture. You can’t move or do anything. You just have to sit there in this small seat you get and wait for a long time so you can exit the vehicle in your dream destination.

I admit that if I can make a choice taking the longest route would be my pick but that doesn’t mean I hate long-distance flight or any form of long distance traveling. That’s why I decided that today I want to share 5 reasons I think that every once in a while all of us should sit alone in an airplane for hours. If you don’t think too much, it will be an amazing experience.

1. Get unplugged from the world

Okay, this isn’t as true anymore as it was about a year ago because most airplanes start to have wifi in them. But you can still do the choice to not use it and be unplugged during your long-distance flight. In the current world of social media and always being available being off the grid for hours is a luxury. No need to worry what everyone else is doing at the moment or telling everyone what you are experiencing. Just enjoy the moment and amazing views outside your window.

2. Read a book, watch a movie or just sleep

People often complain that there is nothing to do on long-distance trips. But I want to disagree! You can read a whole book during that time or even watch few movies. If you are a blogger like me, it’s a good moment to try to write some random posts ready beforehand. (Totally have never done that because I am lazy but in theory!) Most modern airplanes and even some of the cheaper options have movie screens.

In some cases, you have to share the screen with others and watch whatever the airline has decided but increasing amount of airplanes have gotten own screen for everyone. You may not believe me but the movies, music, audiobooks, games and TV series you can find are amazing! There is often some of the latest and hottest entertainment available. I can’t even remember all of the movies I have watched in airplanes but for example Wonder Woman, Now You See Me, Me Before You, Descendants, Tangled, Brave, and so many more!

3. You never know who you will meet

Sometimes long-distance flight will be like winning a lottery. And sometimes it’s like losing badly. You will never know who you will sit next to. Have I ever told about the time when I sat next to someone who told me that if the airplane dropped he had a parachute and the two of us would survive (I am low-key scared to death of flying so I was probably looking like the hell was breaking loose…) Also during my first solo trip flying from Finland to Japan, I met this super nice girl during layover who made me realize that maybe I truly could survive traveling alone in foreigner country.

Sharing armrest with someone for hours is a surprisingly intimate experience. Don’t be that annoying person who talks nonstop during the ten hours flight but you can always try to start a conversation. Every person has their own story and something new to teach you.

4. Get things done easily

You have a lot of time so why not to catch those undone things that have been waiting for too long! Those who are still at school like me can do their homework that they for some reason didn’t do before the trip and others can just plan their budget for the trip, work or really anything you can do sitting without internet. If are guidebook kind of person and not online travelers, sitting on a plane for a long time is also a perfect opportunity to plan your coming trip. One of the best tips I have for those who are a little late with their travel planning is to look through the destination introducing videos most long-distance planes nowadays have.

5. Dream eyes open (or closet)

Maybe it’s just me but there is nothing better than daydreaming for hours and napping in between. Stare out of the window or close your eyes and let your mind wander. What you want to do at the destination? What kind of dreams do you have? Or maybe you have had these amazing ideas lately you have wanted to think over? And you can always just create a million stories in your head during the flight. There is enough time to make your own mini-movie in your mind. But like I said maybe this is just my creative writer’s brain loving this? In that case, you can just sleep and try to prevent the lack of sleep caused by traveling.

airplane

Hello everyone! Look I didn’t have another few months break between the posts this time. Today’s post is a little different from my blogs usual style. What do you think? Some of you may know that I currently mostly work as (travel) content writer for other people. The style I use for those articles is starting to rub off on my own blog writing too. Maybe it’s a bad thing maybe not…

Like always any comments, feedback, and opinions are more than welcome. Next week I will be sharing photos from my Iceland trip with you but if you want early sneak peek check out my Instagram. And those who miss my random rambling should stalk my surprisingly active Twitter.

I hope you enjoyed this post!
Safe travels and merry Christmas,

Lost Viivi

10 Things to do in Kyoto, Japan

To my own surprise after  wondering what would be my top 10 places to visit in Kyoto most of them were free things. It’s not only because I’m broke and cheap (okay, maybe it has something to do with that fact…). Kyoto just has many free and beautiful attractions!

So here is my top 10 list of things to do when visiting Kyoto (most of them free or cheap). I spend almost two months in Kyoto so I visited most of them several times. If I had only a one day in Kyoto these are the ones I would be considering to visit.

10. Philosopher’s Path & Ginkaku-ji

 Whatever you were deep thinker or just doing touristy things around Kyoto Philosopher’s Path is something you shouldn’t skip. I recommend visiting during fall (the colors are BEAUTIFUL) or during cherry blossom season. Philosopher’s path follows small canal for two kilometers.

There is cute small cafes, shops and small temples to visit during your walk. Or if you are deep thinker you may want to follow the foot steps of Nishida Kitado who is one of Japan’s most famous philosophers and who used to walk this route and meditate. Philosopher’s path starts/ends to Ginkakuji temple that is place worth of visit on its own.

 

9. Kyoto Aquarium

Kyoto, japan aquarium

It may seem stupid to include aquarium in this list because you can find them from anywhere in the world. Fortunately I am not one to follow general opinions. I think I have said this before but if you want to make me fall in love with you just take me to the aquarium. Seeing colorful fishes, sharks, etc. is amazing what ever country you are currently.

Penguins, jellyfishes and pet a sea animals corner made me spend too many hours in this dark huge aquarium. There was also dolphin music show and a lot of souvenirs to buy. I recommend this for all fellow aquarium lovers!

 

8. Train Station

happy_terrace_kyoto

This may sound lame but Kyoto’s train station was one of my regular places to wander around. There is three shopping centers, countless restaurants and city’s best tourist information. One of my favorite things to do in Kyoto was to eat evening snacks in the free observation deck after I had bought them from the basement floor’s food stalls. (BTW. free food samples are offered there if you go on the right time.)

You can use hours after hours just getting to know all the shops and trying different foods. Get your the best city tips and current events from tourist information. And like I said that observation deck and its Happy Terrace are one of the secret wonders of Kyoto.

 

7. Manga Museum

My plan was to visit here on my last week in Kyoto but then I didn’t have a time. I can however recommend it for everyone because I did hear so many good reviews of it by the other hostel guests. Manga museum is just what it sounds like… building full of mangas you can read! Majority of the books is in Japanese but there is also section for other languages.

Manga museum is located in old elementary school so in addition to all the mangas you can experience the atmosphere of Japanese school life. Admission costs 800 yen (and special exhibitions have their own prices). However there is “special” days when the admission is free for everyone.

 

6. Gion

gion

Let’s play association game once again! When I say Japan what do you think? I would guess that at least some of thought beautiful geisha. If that is what you wait from Japan then going to Gion is your best bet of succeeding in ‘geisha hunting’. (Don’t hunt geishas please… They are working so if you see them be considering).

Gion is often referred to be the old district of Kyoto. The buildings are photogenic and the shops offer free food samples of traditional Japanese snacks. There is one ‘main street’ but don’t be scared to part from it and wander around the smaller streets. I don’t recommend eating here even if the restaurants seem tempting (the prices are totally touristy/expensive).

 

5. Kinkaku-ji (Golden Pavilion)

Travel Year 2016: Japan Kyoto

The Golden temple is one of the most touristy places in Kyoto. It is still worth of visiting. The main thing to see is the gold-colored temple in water. Just to take pictures with that temple is worth of paying the 400 yen entrance fee. -That however is just my opinion…-

Be aware that there will be a lot of people and possibly waiting to get in. In the end of this walk through the area you can find small food and souvenir stalls. Don’t just run past them even if I don’t recommend buying anything (the prices are high). Try the free food samples because they have some options that aren’t so popular in other parts of Kyoto.

Read about my adventure to Golden Pavilion

 

4. Kiyomizu-dera

kiyomizu

I tried to not put too many shrines and temples to this list but with Kyoto it is impossible. I would do own list for those because I visited so many on my time in this historical city. Kiyomizu-derra is place I hope I could have found earlier during my stay. It’s not even the temple that charmed me but the area around it. All the small shops, tiny alleys and old buildings. 

Even if you feel like paying the 400 admission fee is too much for you to handle I recommend visiting the area. You can’t see the main temple but there is a lot more for this place. There is also many pop culture (and kpop culture) shops for those who share my interest in this area.

 

3. Arashiyama

bambooforest

Arashiyama is area in western Kyoto. There is located two must to go places: Bamboo forest and Monkey park. Also the area of Arashiyama alone is fun to explore. There is a lot of souvenir shops, temples/shrines and free food samples. Just be careful or you will get hopelessly lost…

When you see cool Japan travel photos with bamboos I would bet they are taken in Bamboo forest. It is one of the places Kyoto is popular for. Warning: Its popularity means too much people and if you go wrong time you probably can’t take that perfect bamboo photo without dozen tourist heads disturbing you. I recommend morning or just before sunset. 

 

2. Kyoto Municipal Museum of Art

At first I was surprised that Kyoto doesn’t have that many museums. But after visiting the ones this traditional city has I didn’t have any more complaints. Municipal Museum of Art was amazing and I didn’t even go inside the museum. Unfortunately when I meant to visit I hadn’t checked the timing correctly and it was already closed. However you can always visit the museum’s garden and let me tell you it was enough art for me. There was countless amount of modern art pieces during my visit.

And when you are at it Kyoto Municipal Museum of Art is located perfectly. It is separated from Kyoto’s National Museum Of Modern Art by huge torii gate (see photo above). Close to the museum is also Kyoto zoo and popular Heian Shrine.

 

1. Fushima Inari

torii

My favorite place in Kyoto, Japan and maybe even in the whole wide world! If you have learned about Japan and/or about it religions you have probably seen photos of Fushimi Inari and its endless rows of torii gates. Fushimi Inari, Fushimi Inari Taisha or Mt. Inari is mountain dedicated for fox god. The mountain paths are surrounded by thousands of red gates that are donated by Japanese businesses.

Hike up the mountain is going to be tough so I recommend good shoes and a lot of snacks. Don’t be scared to take the not so beaten path because this mountain is full of surprises and secret wonders.

Read about my adventure to Fushimi Inari

 

I know, I know… Once again I was late with post. Sorry, but I think you are already used to me not following my own rules. I’m waiting excitedly the day when I can write all my posts on the right days. We are going there (slowly) so please bear with my laziness for a little while longer.

Like always comments are welcome! Have you visited Kyoto and what were your favorite places? Or would you like to visit there some day?

With love,

Viivi Severina

Travel Rant: Traveling the Wrong Way

By all means I am not professional traveler. My solo trip to Japan for three months was one big catastrophe, last year my holiday to France was far from smooth and let’s not even talk about the times I have been travelling my home country Finland. Too many embarrassing memories there.

Making plans and following them isn’t my strength. At Tokyo I forgot to visit some of the must see places (when I say must see places I mean the most popular attractions). My two days in Paris went by sleeping in the hotel and not doing anything. Usually the new streets and sights may steal my attention and make me forgot all the cool places I came to visit at the first place.

In the other hand I act like tourist. Taking pictures of any silly new thing, going to familiar McDonalds and singing up for too expensive tourist tours. Sometimes I decide not to go for some cool place because it’s too expensive and I rather buy more food or souvenirs.

Socializing, partying or getting friends has never been easy for me. In the end I always say something wrong or make the person lose interest. I get scared shitless if someone starts conversation without warning. My fear of human contact gets so bad that I can’t even ask help from locals while traveling.

When I told my family and friends for the first time that I would leave and travel alone they laughed at me. No one believed that me, shy awkward girl, would really make my words true. They didn’t believe until I packed my backs and left. And even after that everyone seemed to think I wouldn’t survive.

I have this unexpectedly way of finding trouble anywhere I go. At Japan I accidentally went to closed amusement park and got in trouble with police (fortunately they were totally cool). While using train in France I booked trip that had under 5 minutes changing time and almost missed my second train. Those two are just examples of many others.

So like you can see I am far from professional adventurer. For everyone’s sake I probably shouldn’t travel at all. Then how did I end up having this feeling inside of me? Why does my soul want to leave every time I come back home? There is wide world outside and I just don’t seem to have the self-control to stay in one place for too long.

I may not be born traveler but that is never been the point for me. Some may say I do everything wrongly and this way I will never experience all my bucket list items. But I visit foreigner countries to learn, to get in trouble and feel like living. Inside of me lives lost soul and it encourages me to leave. For me this is the only right way there is. For me this is the life style making me happy.

So for all of you who travel “the wrong way” let’s just continue our own way of travelling and prove everyone else wrong!

.    .    .

 

So I didn’t have post for today because I decided to do last minute trip to travel writing lecture on Friday and didn’t have time to write. But here is older post I must have written last summer! I don’t know why I never published it… Maybe because it is kind of embarrassing?

You can read more random Travel Rants from here. And like always feel free to comment any thoughts you have.

With love,

Viivi Severina

My Travel Year 2016

It’s the last day of year 2016 and I have decided to (totally not be original and) write summary of my travel year 2016.

This year has been eventful one for me. A lot of travelling, move to new city and starting studying again. Because everyone else is doing these year 2016 things I decided to gather together my own travel memories and best post from the present year (four hours till midnight!)

Missing Japan

Travel Year 2016: Japan KyotoMy year started with being happy to be finally back at home but still missing my amazing three months in Japan. At this state of my mind I also started this blog! One of the best decisions of my year I think. Who said after travel blues can’t cause good things to happen.

Surprising Trip To France

Travel year 2016 MontpellierThe first trip of my year was to France! I was invited to spend two weeks in sunny Montpellier. I got to see the beautiful beach towns, old streets and kind French people.

Too many cruises

Tallinn's Old Town QuoteThis year was also full of shorter cruises because my schedule was quite booked with the school. I did family cruise to Sweden and travelled to Tallinn for the first time (and for the second time to see the Christmas Market).

Travelling in Finland

Travel Year 2016 Helsinki

End of my summer was full of university exams around Finland so I did more than a few trips around the country. Sometimes it’s good to explore your own home country and see what is has to offer. For example I visited Helsinki, Seitseminen National Park and moved to new city.

London Holiday

Big ben and Telephone box London

The biggest travel I did this autumn was to London. I got to visit Harry Potter attractions and see a lot of things I had seen when I was younger. Everything is in different point of view when you see it for the second, third or fourth time.

 

My Blogging Year 2016

When this year changes we also come closer to my blog’s first year’s end. I have written many different posts but here is some of the best/most popular ones:

insane

My travel bucket list post of me explaining what are my biggest travel dreams.

My travel post about seeing Tallinn’s Christmas market.

My travel diary to London.

Kiasma museum helsinki

30 travel things I want to do before I turn 30 years old.

Travel rant: being scared…

So all in all I have had quite good year, right? A lot of travelling but I think my next year is going to be even more full of adventures. How has your year been? And how are you going to spend the coming year 2017?

Happy New Year for Everyone!

With love,

Viivi Severina

 

 

Photo Diary: Helsinki

So, I may have been lazy once again… If you are new here in my blog: Hello, I am the person who never follows her own schedules! But well because I have been busy (this not excuse, okay? I have really been busy) I can’t publish today the last part of my abandoned amusement park story time. I’m sorry everyone who has now waited for too long for me to finally finish it.

Right now I am in train going back home. Today I had crazy fun day in Helsinki. (And I even met up with fellow blogger for the first time! Thanks for Anub who was nice enough to not complain about my bad pronouncing or the terrible Finnish coldness.) So because I have nothing else to share with you today here is small photo diary from Helsinki. I hope you will enjoy it!
Photo diary: Day in Helsinki

I admit that I still love this view even after seeing it one time too many. In moments like this I can kind of understand why people want to visit Finland. However that doesn’t mean I will stop making fun of my beloved home country and our non-existing tourist attractions.

Travel Destination: Suomenlinna, Helsinki, Finland

Unfortunately, there wasn’t any snow in Helsinki. But even like this the city is beautiful and has its own charm. And we of course saw a lot of frozen places so maybe that makes up for all the missing snow? It’s not true Finnish experince if you haven’t almost fell over while walking on ice!

Travel Destination: Suomenlinna, Helsinki, Finland

One of our day’s major things to do was visiting Suomenlinna sea fortress. It’s been over five years from my last time here and I didn’t even remember how much I used to love this place. Suddenly I even remembered that as child my dream used to be grow up and live my life in this tiny cozy island.

Travel Destination: Suomenlinna, Helsinki, Finland
Helsinki Finland Travel FoodIt took us a while to find the right restaurant (that may totally be my fault and it probably has something to do with my bad luck while travelling) but finding the place was totally worth it. I haven’t eaten falafel for so long time so our choice was the best possible.

Photo diary: Suomenlinna, Helsinki, FInlandSun is setting in Finland guess what time it is! So if you don’t know northern countries have super short day’s at winter. So the sun was setting already at 3pm.

Travel Destination: Helsinki, Finland

Travel Year 2016 Helsinki

The last photo is me sharing my favorite Helsinki spot with you. I have always loves Senate Square. Now there was huge Christmas market but at other times of year you can meet funny tourists taking photos and just enjoy the beautiful view. I may have biased opinion about this matter so you shouldn’t probably believe my tip… I have had some of my best teen memories in this square. Being part of flashmob, meeting amazing people and doing crazy things.

I hope you are having an amazing weekend and that you are being more productive than I have lately been. And like always all comments are welcomed. Have you ever visited Helsinki? Or met fellow bloggers for fun travelling day?

With love,

Viivi Severina