Story Time: Abandoned Beauty

So last time I ended my story to the point where I was deciding should I go to the abandoned amusement park with these people I have just met. In the end it wasn’t hard decision (sorry mum…). Of course I went in! You only live once or something like that…

Part 1: Lost In Abandoned Amusement Park

Part 3: Problems with Police

I will again mention that you shouldn’t be like me. Later on this story I learn that visiting abandoned Japanese amusement park in fact is illegal and you will get in trouble. However I also learn that Japanese people and police are so kind and understanding. And I also may learn that there is something charming and special in abandoned places. It’s feeling I can’t even describe. So I hope you like this long boring story of me being totally lost like usually. Enjoy!

(In the first post I meantioned that I had lost almost all my abandoned amusement park photos. However, now I found a few photos more so I hope you will like them!)

Dreaming in Dreamland

abandoned roller coaster nara dreamland

So I was standing next to the abandoned amusement park and the couple I had just met stared me expectantly. After I answered for them all three of us approached cautiously the park’s gate. There was huge gap in the gate and we went inside without any problems.

My first look to the park made me breathless. Cute pastel houses, colorful plastic balls and eerie huge pink princess castle. It was perfect sight and I immediately knew I had done the right choice coming here. We started wandering around and checking what we could find. The couple was taking photos like professionals while I was just staring everything in awe.

After walking around for a while I decided it was time to part from that kind couple. After every minute I was feeling more and more like third wheel. After our goodbyes they continued towards the castle while I decided to wander deeper to the park. When their voices had faded to the distance I felt the scary “I’m all alone in this world” feeling hit me.

nara dreamland

I couldn’t hear birds, traffic or anything except my own breathing and wind. I have never really experienced anything like that so I decided to enjoy every moment and thing there was to see. First I found old roller coaster loop. I think photo of this exact spot is in every abandoned places article/video there is in internet. I hope I had all my photos because it was beautiful. (I don’t know how the heck did I lose half of my abandoned amusement park photos…)

I just stood there staring in awe and not even wanting to continue. How would anything I saw be more beautiful than that? Sun was shining behind the roller coaster and the sky was blue without any clouds. Once again perfect day and perfect moment.

abandoned_cars

After that I saw so many beautiful sights that lose the count of them. Huge swimming pool and water park are with its colorful slides and small food stands. Abandoned cars just being there behind every corner. Building after building full of stuff.  Park tickets, colorful props and dust covering everything except the foot prints wondering back and worth the floors.

It had been over hour at that point and I haven’t even seen half of the park. I saw some kind of  pond and decided to take closer look to it. The ride was adventure and amazon themed. There was sinking colorful boats in the small lake. Then I turned to look the ride’s ticket booth and at the same second started to run and hided behind wall close by. My heart was beating too loudly and for moment I was sure this place was cursed.

I tried to glance the sight that had scared me almost to death. It still looked same. There was someone sitting in the ticket booth. Someone without head and looking like rotten body. After I had evened out my breathing I decided to take closer look. My reasoning side told me there was no way that it would be real body. My more imaginative and scared side was sure it must be zombie or cursed traveller.

abandoned japanese amusement park

I went closer and closer and soon realized theobvious truth. The scary headless zombie body was just prop or decoration for the ride. Someone had propably stolen its head and arranged it there to scare all the intruders like me. The whole situation was making me laugh and I was letting out the sigh of relief when weird noices broke the silence and made me jump back to my hiding spot.

After listening closely the weird noices seemed to be car driving by except I didn’t see anyone. Later on I will realize that it must have been the guard but at that moment I just tough there may be road close by. The noice was gone almost as fast as it had began and I was ready to continue my exploration.

abandoned mirror house nara dreamland

I saw some more interesting thins: merry-go-round, more rides and another roller coaster. It was silent everywhere. Next spot I spend more time in was mirror house. Once again I was strugling with easy question: to go and adventure the inside or stay safely outside? The broken mirrors and messages left to the walls made the place look like scene from horror movie.

I had to jump over some broken pieces so I didn’t get wounds through my sneakers. I got totally lost. There was mirrors everywhere – some broken and some colored with spray paints. I kept walking around not understanding how would children’s amusement park have this place in it. Then I realised every now and then there was small arrows pointing the right way out.

After exiting the house of horror mirrows I continued towards the huge castle I had decided to visit last. I didn’t know how wrong the end of my happy day in abandoned amusement park would soon go! (Well, I had fun and can now laugh for the things that happened but at that time it was horrible…)

mirror_house2
“Not scared at all!”

So well… I may have problem with writing too long stories… Because of that you have to wait until next week to read the ending of my story (and also the main point where I get caught by Japanese police…) I’m sorry, I’m bad at not sharing too much boring things. But I hope you enjoyed my story or at least the photos.

I hope you are having an amazing week!
With love,

Viivi Severina

Travel Rant: Fall in Love

Don’t be scared to fall in love. And no, I’m not talking about that cute backpacker boy or the hot local guide.

Fall in love with new places, the inspiring experiences and most importantly with yourself.

After that you can hit up with all the handsome and beautiful people you meet on your travels or in life generally. This may sound corny but loving yourself first is important. Trust me I know what I’m talking about.

Being scared of life is somehow been normal feeling for me as long as I can remember. It has been easier to follow someone and make sure you will never be alone. When pushed to experience something new my survival guide used to be: find new friend, follow them everywhere like a lost puppy, a little by little get attached to them too much and in the end get lost even more.

This changed when I did my first solo travel trip year ago. I took my 20 years old self to adventure I had always dreamed about but never believed to accomplish. For the first time in my life I followed my own nose and learned how to love myself.

It’s not easy but it will happen naturally. Just keep doing what you want and don’t always listen to others. Not even if they seem to be the love of your life. Being alone seems scary but it will make your learn a lot about yourself. What do you really like?

You have a whole day ahead of you. No one to tell you where to go. Your day is full of choices and you have to make them. Will you wake up early or sleep until the noon? Do you want to eat in safe McDonald’s or try something suspicious looking local cuisine? What do you want to do with your life?

Loving yourself seems so hard. For me it has meant to like the way I look, decide my own destiny and be proud of the things I have accomplished. At the age of 20 and before I left my home to wander neither of those were true. I hated my appearance and didn’t know what I wanted to do with my life. I was totally lost.

After I had spend some time alone and listened my own opinions there was change. I began to like the person staring me back from mirror. She wasn’t yet beautiful but something in her eyes screamed happiness and that made her perfect in my eyes. That made me love her, myself. Without even trying I had finally fallen in love with myself.

I didn’t still had direction for my life or any remarkable achievements. But I didn’t need them. Twenty years I had tried to form perfect me to fall in love with but it only took one month to realize that wasn’t what I needed. The perfect me wasn’t the one I would love.

What I am trying to say with this somehow confusing piece of my mind is to listen yourself. Love the person you are. Be with yourself before you give your soul to someone else. I have seen so many of my friends falling head over heels and then their relationships have ended because they don’t know their own self well enough.

Traveling solo is the way I figured this out and I think it is the easiest way. Alone in the country you don’t know and people speaking language you can’t understand it’s easier to get closer yourself.

Maybe I’m wrong but this is my opinion. This is how I see the world.

About travelling and falling in love...
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I know I promised to publish the London travel diary today but I have been sick so here is old travel rant I wrote months ago. Suprisingly, travel rants have been quite popular posts in my blog. Also, I have the most fun writing these pieces even if they don’t make a lot of sense. So here is another travel rant and be aware that there will be even more of them in the future!

With love,

Viivi Severina

Photo Diary: Finnish Forest

Today’s Fearless Travel Friday (am I really naming this like that?) has subject that’s close to my heart. Today I am going to present photo diary from last spring. And this is not just any travel diary… The destination was Finnish forest, the place I feel most peaceful and safe.

The sun was shining (well, not really it was quite cloudy…) and all the snow had melted so I wanted to go for small getaway with my dog. After Finland’s long winter I always yearn for green forests and quiet peaceful walks in middle of nowhere. So I got my dog, hiking books and headed towards the closest national park called Seitseminen.

cute_dog
Someone wasn’t as thrilled about this trip to forest as I was…

I have visited Seitseminen million times but this was my first time driving there by myself so of course I got lost. What I didn’t know at that point was how wrong this small trip would go. Like usually everything I screwed I everything and all the possible things were against me getting nice travel experience.

seitseminen

When I finally found the park I though my perfect day would start. The first thing I had to do was get map from the park’s information center. Because you can’t take dogs inside I decided to leave her for a moment inside the car. Between me and the information was huge hill that was full of slippery ice. (I had though all snow had already melted how the heck was there ice?!?)

So I almost crawled on my knees up the hill. I had just done my small victory dance when loud alarm startled me. My dog had somehow set off the car’s alarm system. Now between me and the embarrassingly loud car was that same icy hill. I tried to go down carefully but ended up falling down and sliding down on my butt.

street

After shutting down the alarm, walking up the hill with my dog and finding place for my dog to wait outside I felt like winner. Nothing else would go wrong with this trip! Well at least I though so…

Going to the information center was totally embarrassing because I was probably the only visitor in whole park at that time. The nice person helping me totally knew that I was behind the earlier loud alarm. She also looked me oddly when I realized (and lightly panicked) that I had forgot my snacks and water bottle. But even if I seemed like total dork I get map and was finally able to leave to the forest.

map

It took me few seconds to realize that in fact it wasn’t yet spring but rather winter in the forest. There snow and ice everywhere, I didn’t have enough clothes and it was almost impossible to take photos and hold my super exited dog at the same time. I could have turned around but giving up has never been part of my personality. With insane bravery I walked deeper in to the green darkness.

snow

After walking a while I found the quietness and peace I came for. Few birds were singing and I felt like this was my home. This was the place I had missed every time I went abroad. I don’t have words to describe the rest of my walk. Perfect, refreshing, everything I needed in my stressful life.

Then after walking for good five kilometers (falling over every now and then because of the ice) I came to the end of the forest path. In front of me was yet another icy rise to climb. Of course I sprained my ankle… Well I was able to drive back home (not safe to do that so please don’t follow my example!) and never mentioned my not so successful trip.

sky

There is one more funny thing in this trip. It is part of the reason that I started writing this blog more seriously. The thing is there was this ‘summer job’ in Finland for blogger and I tried to apply for it and my blogging subject was this trip. Like you see I didn’t get the place but like usually when I’m rejected I want to show everyone that I can do it.

The rest is history! Well not history but during juny and july I got over 500 readers for my own travel blog even if I didn’t write everyday like in the job I would have done. I know those people who didn’t hire will never know what they missed when not taking me in but I feel quite good about that. And nowadays I would not imagine my life without blogging.

So thank you for reading my blog! And not judging me even if some of the posts are super boring stuff like this. Thank you!

hiding_dog
This is how my super lazy companion tried to hide from me after our trip. Don’t worry she is only playing angry and in reality we both love our forest adventures like nothing else.

I hope you enjoyed today’s post. Next week I will be on London so I’m not yet sure if I have time to write post for Friday.

By the way does anyone have tips for me what to do in London? I’m going with me sister and we have both been there before so we are trying to come up with something fun to do. Any suggestions are appreciated!

I hope you will have amazing weekend!
With love,

Viivi Severina

Photo Diary: My New Home

Hello everyone!

How are you? I hope you have had amazing adventures lately because I have only been exploring this new city I’m now living in. And I’m sorry if nothing in this post makes sense because I have currently fever and flu.

Today I’m going to share few photos from my new home town. So like usually there is photos and captions for them. In addition to those I will be talking about something else between the photos. (My blogs future… Almost serious stuff…) Now let’s begin!

 

trainstation
I want to start with this train station photo. It starts to be too familiar building for me because when I want to go see my family and friends I need to take three hours long train journey. Tiring but fortunately I have traveller’s mind and can handle long transportation times.

I have been super busy lately and not only because of my new life as full time student. If you know the site Fiverr I just recently started to earn some extra money there. (Takes unexpectedly a lot of time!)  Like you may have realized there hasn’t been many post to this blog and I have been quite stressed to come up with some easy to write ideas.

Before I promised to publish new bucket list destination every Wanderlust Wednesday but now I have to eat my words and just promise to publish something interesting every Wanderlust Friday. (That doesn’t rhyme like with Wednesday… Maybe Fearless Travel Friday?)

hostelroom
Unfortunately this majestic place isn’t my home. But it is from hostel room I lived in my first week here in Kokkola. I recommend Villa Carleborg for everyone. 

So now you can expect new post every Friday. Next week I am going to finally publish that long waited Tallinn travel diary that has been waiting in my drafts folder for too long. I’m also planning a lot of weekend trips in the future so wait patiently for those travel diaries.

busstop
This photo is my closest bus stop. Oddly I haven’t seen any buses here in my first moth. Is there even any of them?

Another thing I wanted to talk about today is my YouTube channel. No, I don’t have one yet but if you have been following me long enough you may know that at one point I promised to start making videos when I get 1 000 readers.

Honestly I though it would take at least year to get so many readers but somehow it has only taken a few months. Thank you everyone who likes to read my blog! And especially the people commenting! It always makes my day when someone drops comment for my text.

kokkola2
This is Kokkola’s public living room or something like that. It’s full of art and you can leave your own piece there or just sit down and enjoy what others have done. 

Yeah, but now back to the YouTube subject. Is there any videos you would like to see? I have many ideas myself but I would love to get tips what you would like to watch me doing. Also I will probably make two channels.

One channel for travel videos I can then share here with my blog posts. And another one for random videos about literally anything. I will inform you more here in my blog when I get to the point where I have enough time to really make the channels. (Maybe next weekend?)

church
Local church in sunset.

 

I think this was everything I had to say today. Thanks for reading and I hope you liked the photos!

And by the way you can also follow me in Instagram, Twitter and Pinterest. I try to be active there but I’m a lot better blogger than I am with social media.

streetart
And today’s photo diary is going to end in this photo of local street art. I totally love it and will take better photos of it for you later on. See you again next Friday!

 

With love,

Viivi Severina

 

 

The Fascination with Bucket Lists

Hello everyone! Today I have my first guest blogger here in my GoTravelGlobal blog. I find Ilona’s blog super interesting and totally fell in love with this article she wrote for my blog so be sure to check out her blog. I hope you enjoy her inspiring bucket list themed post.

Ilona is an avid traveller from Northern Germany who explores the world through holidays in far-away countries and weekend trips throughout Europe. You can follow her adventures and see her bucket list on her blog.

The Fascination with Bucket Lists

I have a confession to make. I am obsessed with bucket lists. Especially travel bucket lists. I can spend hours looking at other people’s bucket lists. Some of them are very simple, merely a collection of places whereas others include specific experiences around the world. Many of them, like Viivi Severina’s bucket list are a mixture of both.

But what exactly is a bucket list and why are so fascinating?

A bucket list is a list of all things you’re hoping to accomplish before you die. The Bucket List Guy says that there are several possible origins of the word ‘bucket list’. The one I’ve seen the most often is that it is derived from the term ‘kick the bucket’. You see, in the middle ages, when someone got hanged, they would stand on a bucket with the noose around their necks. The hangman would then kick that bucket and the poor person would die.

Not the nicest explanation, is it?

sl41ac

It still doesn’t keep me from being fascinated with bucket lists. I’ve set my wordpress reader so that whenever I go online, all posts tagged with ‘bucket list’ are shown to me. I’ll browse through them and see if I get inspired to add items to my own travel bucket list. I do have a bucket list for other areas in my life as well, but let’s focus on the travel aspect here.

So why is a bucket list so fascinating and why should everyone have one?

Bucket lists will help you focus on your goals. Everyday life will try to throw as many distractions at you as possible. Do you know that feeling of just making it from day to day, reacting to what is happening to you? A bucket list can help you focus on what you really want in life.

This goes for travel bucket lists, too. Everybody knows a destination that is safe and easy to travel to. And we all know how much easier it is to stay at home. No flights to book, no risks to take.

Deep down, you’ve always wanted to see the gorillas in Uganda. But somehow, you never got around to looking up tours and flights. A bucket list can help you focus on what you want to achieve, so you don’t end up spending your holiday sitting around in your apartment, wondering what to do.

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Come on, those gorillas are waiting for you.

A bucket list can also help you focus on areas of the world you’ve previously overlooked. I put down pins on a map for every place and experience that was on my bucket list and quickly saw the ‘white spots’ that I didn’t know much about.

Western Africa, for example. I did a bit of research and quickly stumbled on Voodoo ceremonies – attending one was exactly what had been missing on my list. And on that note, if you need more inspiration for Western Africa, the westernmost point is located next to Dakar and very easy to access. Plus, Senegal is an amazingly easy country to travel through (I highly suggest you go in November so you won’t miss out on the pelican migration).

For me, travel bucket lists are not just about location-specific items. I also enjoy adding experiences that can be done all over the world. Sleeping in an ice hotel, ziplining and hang gliding are just a few examples.

Those items will help you focus on enjoying life. Maybe you can tick off one of them while you’re at home. It’ll shorten those months that are left until your next vacation. Or maybe you’ll realise that your next trip takes you to a spectacular hang gliding location that you shouldn’t miss.

No matter what’s on your bucket list, you will want to work on achieving your goals. I think part of the fascination of bucket lists comes from putting a difficult goal on the list and then not having to think about it anymore. Needless to say that this is not the purpose of a bucket list.

If you end up with all those amazing experiences on a list and then never look at it again, you’ll have the perfect excuse to go on with life as it is. Instead, what you should do, is take out your list over and over again and look at it. Read through the goals and pick one or two to focus on. That is why I highly recommend not only to create a digital bucket list but to also write it down on a piece of paper. That way, you can take it with you wherever you go and it’s always available to look at.

The next step to achieving goals on your travel bucket list is to set a time frame. Those goals you picked, choose a specific date to accomplish them. For example, let’s say you want to visit Easter Island. It’s a remote location and deciding to go there within the next two weeks probably won’t work. But it’s achievable if you set a time frame of two years.

As soon as you start ticking items off your bucket list, or even sooner, you should start adding new ones.

Bucket lists aren’t set in stone. You can add whatever you want. There are no rules for what goes on there and what doesn’t and I think that makes up half of the fascination with them. If you want to learn how to scuba dive, add it. If you want to stay in a tree house, that goes on there, too.

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Here’s another suggestion: Volunteer to help nesting sea turtles

Even travelling to remote and inaccessible places like Somalia is a possible goal. There are no limits because no matter how impossible the goal, if you work hard enough, you will get to that place and you will have that experience.

So what are you waiting for? Go and write your own bucket list. Or just browse through existing ones until you’re so fascinated, you’ll automatically reach for pen and paper to make yours.

A photo by Aaron Burden. unsplash.com/photos/xG8IQMqMITM