Hello everyone! Today you can read about my current family trip to Sweden. I have done this particular cruise for millions of times so for me writing about it sounds quite boring. However I know there is many people out there never heart about day in Stockholm cruises.
Basically the idea of this cruise is to spend one night in the ship, be seven hours in Stockholm and then spend second night on the cruise on your way back. Very popular thing in Finland and always as fun to go. I hope you enjoy my travel stories!
For those not having the patience to read check out my photo diary from this trip.
Day 1: Family Gambling Time!
The plan was leave at one pm so of course I hadn’t packed my things the night before. Bad idea? Probably. At least when I realized afterwards that I had taken three bras (for two nights trip) but no jacket or hoodie to go with my t-shirts. Don’t be like me and always pack your bags with time.
So after some panicking around the home my mom, little brother and sister were ready to leave. Don’t however think that getting to the cruise would be that easy! First my grandpa drove us 20 minutes to the train station from where we took the two hours journey to Helsinki. From Helsinki railway station we got tram to the harbor. Over four hours from home to the ship but totally worth it.
The funny thing in these cruises is the amount of Asian people growing every year. I mean when I was younger there was only Swedes and Finns but nowadays almost half of the people are Asian. But good for them if they have discovered the beauty of Baltic Sea. Until now it has been our well kept secret.
To return back to my long story after boarding the ship it was time to find our cabins. My mom went to luxury when she bought our trip and we slept in two different cabins. Let me say no one would have survived if we had been in four person room. I love my family but spending two nights with them in small room would have made me crazy…
So if you are now wondering what the heck would we do on the cruise here is some of the activities…
- Drinking. Embarrassing to admit but a whole lot of Finns go to the cruises (and lets not even mention the ones never leaving the ship in Sweden because of hangover…) I don’t drink but my mom like any great parent did buy me a breezer that my sister ended up drinking.
- Eating. We didn’t drink a lot but ate behalf of that. There is lunch and breakfast buffets in the ship. At the first day we went to the lunch buffet and I was ready to die for the full stomach afterwards. Sushi, ice cream, cakes, fries and just so much food I don’t even remember them all.
- Gambling. The main activity we had on our first night was playing games to win money. Yep, gambling with family. The first night didn’t look that good in the playing for me and I went 5 euros to the minus (thanks mom for the money). However the idea isn’t get rich but rather have fun.
- Tax free shopping. Perfumes, make-up, candies and alcohol.
Our mission at first evening was to buy Oreo Milka chocolate. Lats time we were on cruise it was my mom’s bright idea to buy it at the second night. That time the chocolate was all gone and we didn’t get it. This is something you can’t buy from Finland and its taste is from heaven.
Day 2: Museums, shopping and dead legs…
Between Finland and Sweden we have one hour time difference. So when my sisters clock wake us up and we started to wonder why my alarm didn’t went off we soon realized that we had woken up hour too early. Well I always receive the extra sleep with joy.
Like I mentioned about the first day one of the most important part of cruise is eating. Breakfast isn’t exception. The tables are full of food for you to take and sometimes even too much options. (PS. Pancakes look good but after seeing the small children taking them by hand I decided to stay in the adult section.)
So we ate and then was the time everyone has waited… We arrived to Stockholm and our seven hours long adventure began. That is quite short time to experience city so we had one destination in our minds. Mordena Museet. (For those who don’t understand Swedish or can’t reason the meaning: Modern art museum.) It was short bus trip and walking away from the bay so definitely recommend for everyone.
In the museum we first went to see Yayoi Kusama exhibition. Totally loved it. Colorful, photogenic and full of feminist/equality references. Those huge red balloons were just a start. After that came infinity rooms, bright colors and unusual pieces of art. Infinity rooms were my favorites (mirrors on walls, ceiling and floor. Makes it look like the room continues to the infinity.)
Funny story about problems taking the yellow photo and my shy personality. So we walked with my brother and sister to this small yellow room full of huge dots. In the middle of room there was a big box with small peeking hole in it. My sister looked in. My brother looked in. They were amazed. As good big sister I waited until they were ready, walked towards the hole and then group of small people were all around the box.
I lose my turn to group of kindergartens laughing and looking trough the hole. Great. I just left the room quietly while the kindergarten teacher ignored me and tried to make the kids calm down. Later I came back to see what was inside the box and took that photo in awe.
After leaving the museum and walking towards the shopping areas we get a lot of complaining from my brother. Despite that we continued following my sister who is the fashionista of us. She had decided the shops we visited including Victoria’s Secret and Urban Outfitters. by first look Urban Outfitters looked like over priced teen shop but I fell in love. Guess what I bought! Lonely Planet’s Ultimately Travel List book. It has 500 destinations long bucketlist of the most amazing travel destinations in world.
After the shopping it was time to return to the ship. At this point my feet were hurting so much I was barely able to walk. I am still a little bit sick so walking so much wasn’t good idea. Fortunately my family (or at least my mom) was patient and walked slowly with me.
So we were back to our ship, half dead and half anticipating the coming evening. How did we start our return trip? Of course eating! If on the first night we had amazing buffet dinner now we had even more spectacular a la carte dinner in this Italian restaurant on board.
I don’t know what they use in that sauce but it was heaven. Usually the not so generous dishes get critic from me but this time it was blessing. I had enough space for the dessert. White chocolate cheese cake with berries. Once again HEAVEN.
So the eating went well and after some shopping the gaming machines called for us. If last night I lost today we had good forces on our side. I left the cruise with 28 euros richer.
One boy looked with jealously when I played with my sister. We had decided that from this game we would share the money with family. The boy told us he had lost 30 euros after we won 20. It was only 5 euros for everyone but even small money is money.
Now I am going to add one more thing to the list of things to do in cruise:
- Enjoy the show. There is stage and dance floor next to the gambling are. Changing performances from Moomins disco to dance performances and drag shows are presented here. Check out before your cruise who will perform when it’s your trips time.
The last thing we did this night was see the dance performance. To get places to sit we had to go there early. That meant looking intoxicated Finns jamming on dance floor and Asian tourists laughing for them. There was band playing and they were semi good.
Changing people danced to the music. No club dancing but rather tango etc. because whatever the music is people from Finland can do that. The show ended to the singer announcing we had birthday girl in the crowd and we should all sing for her. The older lady looked pissed of for her husband arranging this.
Once again the Japanese guys in front of us had fun laughing for the scene and shyly singing Finns. After that started the real dance show. Eurovision themed powerful and fun performance started of course with Lordi. If you don’t know what Lordi is, they are the only band that has made Finland to win Eurovision song contest.
After that it was time to do some backing and end our last night on the cruise.
Day 3: The last morning and crying sky
Another great breakfast and trip towards home. Once again I tried to walk towards the pancakes but then one pair of messy hands was trying to find the best pancake and I decided to just drink tea. Why I always end up drinking too many cups of tea when I travel?
Leaving the ship is always crazy. Two nights is enough time to put all your things around the cabin, lost pair of socks to small room and panic around the ship to get out. After that fiasco and trying to not crash with the other people running away from the ship we survived to the train station.
Everything was still seeming sunny at this point but it quickly changed the closer we got our home town. Fortunately we didn’t get wet (a lot) but the weather has totally changed when compared to the perfect two days we had. Even the sky cried for our holiday’s end. (Or maybe not?)
So this was my travel diary. I hope you enjoyed it. And for those who have read my blog with sharp eyes and are interested if I did get in the university… No, I didn’t. Or I still have change if someone decides to not take their studying place. This means I will probably leave to explore the world at any moment (don’t tell my mom. She doesn’t know yet.)
Safe travel for everyone! With love,