Photo Diary: Cherry Blossoms in Stockholm

Cherry blossoms are usually seen as Japanese thing but suprisingly you can see these beautiful pinkish flowers even in cold northern countries like Sweden. During our day trip to Stockholm a few weeks ago the most important thing we wanted to do was to see the popular cherry blossoms on Kungsträdgården.

Earlier today, I asked my sister if sharing post full of cherry blossom photo would be okay. She said no… Apparently this is boring idea. So, here is post full of only cherry blossom photos I took in Stockholm! I am always been kind of rebel and not so good at listening others’ opinions. I hope you enjoy.

Cherry Blossom Trees in Stockholm

Cherry Blossom Trees In Stockholm

We were scared that there wouldn’t be any cherry blossoms left because it was cold day in Stockholm (and it was even snowing at one point). Luckily for us half of the trees were still blossoming and we got to see these beautiful flowers.

Cherry Blossom Trees In Stockholm

Cherry Blossom Trees In Stockholm

We weren’t the only one who had came to central Stockholm to see cherry blossoms. Under the trees everyone from families to excited tourists were taking photos and admiring pink flowers.

Cherry Blossom Trees In Stockholm

Here I am looking totally lost and awkward like usually. But hey, we traveled to Stockholm to see these trees so at least I can share one photo of me with them.

Cherry Blossom Trees In Stockholm

cherryblossom_in_stockholm

I have to say that seeing a few cherry blossoms in Stockholm made me want to travel back to Japan. Maybe next spring? I love pink and pretty things so seeing even more cherry blossoms would be like a dream. Now I just have to plan this trip, right?

Cherry Blossom Trees In Stockholm

Cherry Blossom Trees In Stockholm

Have you ever seen cherry blossoms? Or what are your favorite beautiful travel spots? Feel free to comment anything like always.

With these cherry blossom photos from Stockholm it is good to start spring. It is snowing today in Finland but my summer holiday started yesterday. Because I don’t have school anymore before autumn I will have more time to write this blog. So, wait for better post next Wednesday! I will come up with something interesting.

With love,

Viivi Severina

Photo Diary: Rainy Day

Time for new Saturday post (that I have published on Sunday because I am hopeless blogger…)! This time I have new photo diary for you from my day trip in rainy day. As traveler even bad weather can’t prevent me from having fun day in city. I hope you enjoy these a few photos I took!

Tampere bridge

I started my day trip from Tampere where I walked alone in early morning hours. Nowadays I can’t visit as often here because I live somewhere else but it is always nice to return and look around.

FInland art

Finland is often seen as dark country of shy people. However we have colorful art and people who are brave enough to try surprising artsy things without warning. This is one example. When I first arrived to Helsinki I walked past this box (that is pink in this photo) and it was grey and boring. Second time I saw it about a hour later and there was sign saying that anyone was welcome to paint. And third time it was already pink while many people were still painting it.

artsy_lockers

senate_square

Senate square is one of my favorite photography places in Finland. And I think many tourists agree with me.

tram_finland

Trams! I am so excited because Tampere is going to have its own trams soon.

menu

Because my sister is vegetarian I have tasted many different vegetarian dishes on the last few years. However for some reason cauliflower hamburgers have become one of my favorite foods. If you ever have change to taste I totally recommend!

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buildings_finland

Finnish architecture is interesting! I don’t have anything else to say about this photo.

tram

vote.jpg

We have soon municipal elections in Finland and that’s why there is promotions, people sharing flyers and other happening in every city. In Helsinki it was even bigger thing than in other places. In this photo you can see some campaign posters.

 

I hope you enjoyed this small photo diary with rainy images. Have you ever explored around city in rain?

With love,

Viivi Severina

Photo Diary: Kokkola, Finland

I never found time to publish this photo diary from last summer. I have now lived half year in Kokkola but when I took these photos it was my first proper visit to this Finnish summer city (and I had no idea I would soon live in this small city). Here is short photo travel around normal small city from Finland. Enjoy!

 

streetart

boy_finland

abandoned_finland

bridge_finland

summer_finland

old_finland

 

I didn’t have any texts to write today (why am I always too busy?) so I hope you enjoyed the photos! I love the last one because I took it when I was totally lost. Those photos usually have the best memories for me… Also the photos are quite dark because it was stormy day so sorry for the bad quality!

Like always all comments are welcomed. Have you ever visited Finland? Or do you maybe live here?
With love,

Viivi Severina

 

Story Time: Lost in Abandoned Amusement Park

Hello everyone! And mum if you are reading this you should probably stop now. Because today after a long time I am going to share with you fun story/memory/warning example from my travels.This is going to be story of me getting in trouble with Japanese police, getting lost in abandoned amusement park and doing everything solo travellers shouldn’t do.

So be prepared once again for too long story from my crazy adventure! (I accidentally wrote so long story that I will publish it in two parts… Sorry, not sorry! And because I have mystically lost almost all my photos from this adventure enjoy the other Japan photos I have picked out for you. Enjoy… )

Finding Abandoned Dreamland

Japanese Abandoned Amusement Park

Even after spending two months in Japan I still hadn’t learned to not trust the free tourist maps. Deciding to visit Nara was kind of quick decision (someone told me about the cute deers and I wanted to go and see them right away!) so I didn’t have a lot of time to research things to do in the city. Then one person from my hostel showed me photos of small Kurokamiyamainari shrine with beautiful long torii walkaway. He even showed me the place from my Nara map I had gotten from Kyoto’s tourist office. It wouldn’t be that hard to find before going to see the deers, right?

When I got off from the train and continued exploring Nara towards the shrine I didn’t have clue that my day would soon turn to thrilling adventure. I kept walking around and at first everything went well I knew exactly where I was and the Nara around me was charming like Japanese cities usually. And then I was lost.

Japanese Forest Path torii

On my left side there was huge amusement park and on my right side huge parking lot. Neither of them was on my map. Because I’m good at getting lost this didn’t cause a lot of panic for me. Confidently I walked the road I thought would be right one and ended to the huge parking lot. I think it was that moment when I realized this must be Nara Dreamland the abandoned amusement park everyone is talking about.

Because I had no idea where I was and around me was just wild abandoned looking area I decided to sit down and eat the breakfast onigiris I had bought from the station. There I sat with my map looking totally lost when group of locals at my age appeared from the same road I had used. Because I wanted to find my way out of this frightening abandoned place I decided to approach them.

Japanese red shrine
I have still million photos of Japanese temples and shrines that I have not shared with you. So here is one more of those photos!

I didn’t get a lot of help. Apparently they weren’t as interested about shrines as I was. But we had a small conversation and they told me they were going to the abandoned huge amusement park next to us. They even asked if I wanted to come with them but I declined. I was left standing alone to the parking lot when they walked in from the huge hole in the main gate. They had probably done this several times before.

I really wanted to go with them but decided to just find the shrine and not do anything stupid. So I continued walking around until older man stopped me and asked if I need help. Another thing I had learned but forgotten while in Japan: don’t trust blindly the people helping you. That old man gave me advice and because of it I got even more lost and walked for three extra kilometers until I somehow found myself again from the same abandoned parking lot.

Nara cute tame deer
Here is one of the so famous Nara deers. I think it wants to kill me…

So there I was again standing on that parking lot staring the amusement park’s gate. Maybe I should go in? If you had been next to huge abandoned Disneyland looking amusement park and the gate open what would have you done? There was no way I would not go in.  This was my adventure and even if I knew it was stupid I really wanted to go in.

Hostel life eating problems
This funny photo is my lunch. If you wonder why there is my name and room number, you have never lived in hostel!

Because I am coward I sat there once again eating and staring longingly towards the hole in the gate. Then I saw once again people coming towards the amusement park. I stood up to say hello (because I didn’t want to seem like suspicious person just staring at them). When they saw me they got totally spooked out. They hide behind one of the buildings close by and I was left there alone like an idiot.

For a moment they kept glaring me behind the building. (Maybe they tought I couldn’t see them?) And then they decided it was safe to come and say hi to me. We talked for a little and like I had guessed this American couple with design clothes and huge camera were headed to the amusement park next to us. 

Once again I was asked to come and do something probably not so safe. (Abandoned places are full of death traps…) If you want to hear the rest of this story I will publish it next Friday. Then you will get to know if I really went in to the abandoned amusement park. (SPOILERS: Of course I did! I’m a little bit crazy like that.)

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By the way this is first time I’m publishing my own photo in this blog. So, hello everyone!

Have you ever been visited abandoned places? And what would you have done in situation like this?

Part 2: Abandoned Beauty

Part 3: Problems with Police

I hope you will have an amazing weekend!
With love,

Viivi Severina

Travel Diary: London

5 days in London is far from enough. This city is full of places to see and things to experience. However 5 days is just enough to fall in love again with the lively city. London, I will return one day and hopefully that day will be sooner than later!

Day 1: To Harrods without sleep

plane

Our bus to the airport left 3am so I didn’t get any sleep before that. We flew with the new Finnair A350 airplane and the movie selection was too good (Now You See Me 2 is everything!!) for me to even try sleeping. My sleepless night plan however backfired right away in London… We got safely and without problems to our hotel where the staff informed us that our room would be ready in four hours. Too much time to kill for me who hadn’t slept and for my sister who just happened to be sick.

harrods2

We left the hotel with a map and no plan. Our first mission was to find food and then while having mini picnic in the Hyde Park we tried to plan our afternoon. The decisions was hard because both of us just wanted to go and sleep in the hotel. In the end we decided to visit the luxurious Harrods.

Maybe not our best decision…

If you haven’t visited Harrods let me tell you it is amazing fancy shop where you would imagine rich people shopping. Fortunately there was a lot of tourists beside us so our “travel day straight from plane” styles almost fitted in the huge department store.

harrods

I have three tips for visiting Harrods:

  1. Get lost. There is no way you can find all the sections, floors and places. There is so many rooms full of stuff that it just is impossible.
  2. Visit the food/tea/sweets floor. So beautiful!
  3. Get amazed by the toys they sell. It may sound funny to recommend Harrods’ kids’ floor but it is the dream of every human. Good looking girls and boys are showing how to use the different toys. There is anything kid can hope for.

So after a while my sister started to complain she was too tired (why is she always sick when we travel together?) so we returned to the hotel and surprisingly our room was ready almost hour in advance. It was time to rest for a while.

rainbow

At the evening I left my sister to sleep and went for evening walk in Hyde Park. I would walk around there forever. The funniest thing in that park are the animals (and people taking photos with them). When you approach the birds with your camera huge gang of different birds immediately come for you to find food. Scary and cool at the same time!

My nature photographer side went crazy so here is some Hyde Park photos:

love

birds

hydepark

hydepark2

hydepark3

 

Day 2: Super Tourists Bus Touring

What would holiday be without hop-on-hop-off bus tour? Because my sister was still sick we decided to take our first day easy and go around the city on bus. It wasn’t as easy as we tought it would be… But maybe didn’t come as surprise for you because a lot of things go like that with me.

 

In the bus company’s website it said their office is in Baddington station. Well it wasn’t. We went to the station, saw place with the bus company’s logos and went in. Then I told I want to buy the tickets but the clerk informed me we were in the wrong place. The ticket counter was outside the station “next to the subway. The fast food subway.” With those directions we found the right place.

goldentours

After that we bought the tickets, tried to find the bus stop and finally our touristy day was ready to began. First stop King’s Cross Station. Or the station known for its Harry Potter 9 3/4 platform. Our first mission was to find breakfast. Sounds easy but it’s not…

We went around the station trying to find something breakfasty (can your ever say it like that?). Somehow we ended up going to Japanese place and eating huge bento boxes. It was so good! I recommend. The restaurant name was Wasabi and they had restaurants all over London. Cheap and tasty.

harrypotter2
All those people lining up to take photo with fake platform 9 3/4.

Conveniently we were able to see the ‘Harry Potter take your own 9 3/4 platform photo here’ -place. It was our next thing to do. We waited for 20 minutes and the line hadn’t moved at all so we gave up. It was good decision because when we visited the Warner Bros. studios there was identical photography point.

So it was time to continue our bus tour. We saw many interesting buildings and drove around London. Next time we meant to drop of next to Tower of London but accidentally forgot so our next stop was London eye and Big Ben.

lontoo

Nothing eventful happened here. Just us taking some photos and looking all touristy, someone playing Star Wars songs with bagpipes and a lot of polices and protesters next to the Big Ben. After getting our cool photos we took the bus and continued towards the amazing shopping paradise called Oxford street.

londoneye

It was almost hour of sitting in the bus before we finally we on the right stop. At this point it has started to rain and we had to run towards the shops. The luck was on our side because we found Primark right away and were saved from the storm.

london

Primark was heaven. Cheap and cool clothes. I bought fake leather jacket, cozy sweater and jeans (that will cause me problems later on…) After exiting the shop with too many bags it was already dark and we were almost dead. It was time to take metro back to our hotel.

 

Coming soon…

London diary pt. 2, review of Harry Potter Warner Bros. Studio Tour and additional photo diary for all the London photos I couldn’t fit to those posts. I release new post every Friday so I will write and publish them some time soon. And to end this posts here is some London photos from my Instagram:

 

Have you ever visited London and maybe the places I went into? And are you as in love with this city as I am?

I hope you will have a good weekend!
With love,

Viivi Severina