Helsinki winter holidays 

We just arrived from gloomy Paris to snowy Helsinki for a two week winter holidays. This vacation is the first real holiday since last summer and very much needed as well. We’re visiting my family, celebrating my new nephew, seeing dear friends and enjoying the northern city life. We flew with Norvegian Airlines from Orly to Helsinki with super cheap flights that were on time and impeccable in all ways. Once arrived at home we had a traditional everyday meal that included potato and sausage soup, rice and rye galettes and home baked brioches. Now B is having a nap and I’m planning our next days program. So many things we want to do and full two weeks in front of us! Let the winter fun begin!


View from my childhood home window tonight 

Nyt alkoi kauan kaivattu talviloma Helsingissä. Kaksi viikkoa aikaa viettää aikaa perheen kanssa ja tutustua uuteen veljenpoikaan, nähdä ystäviä ja käydä Helsingin kivoissa putiikeissa ja kahviloissa. Lennettiin suoraan surkean sumuisesta Pariisista tänne raikkaisiin talvimaisemiin. Kotona meitä odotti maukas perinteinen illallinen, johon kuului siskonmakkarasoppaa, karjalanpiirakoita ja kotona leivottua pullaa jälkkäriksi. Nam! Nyt B on päikkäreillä ja minä suunnittelen seuraavien päivien ohjelmaa. Ihanaa olla vihdoin lomalla!

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Week end in Rome

I haven’t had any real holidays or weekend breaks since last summer but now, after an intense work period, we are going to Rome in beginning of January!

I’m so happy about this and will share our Rome experience with you. I wish to just change from our day to day routine and get in to Roman vibe for a couple of days so no intense museum or sightseeing tours ahead for us.  

I’ve booked a hotel / b&b in Monti district and booked flights via Easyjet for a nice 90€ return flight fare. Not bad I’d say! 

Cactus love 

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This summer we visited Copenhagen and I fell in love with the way the shops displayed their selection outside on the street. Especially at the Jægersborggade street the flower shops caught my eye. How cute are these cactuses!

Kööpenhaminan reissulla ihastuin totaalisesti Jaegerborggade kadun kukkakauppojen esillepanoon. Kaktukset valloittivat kivijalkakauppojen edustat ja osa kasveista koristi, jopa työmaa telineitä! Voin vaan kuvitella tyylikkäät tanskalaiset kodit, joihin nämä kaktukset tulevat päätymään…

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Kaktus København

Jægersborggade 35,
2200 København N

Palermo Hollywood

Jægersborggade 31,

2200 Copenhagen N

Beach day in Zeeland

When the official summer holidays are over there is nothing better than going to the beach on a hot sunny Sunday and pretend that you’re still on vacation. When we’re in Brussels we often head across the border to Holland. Where as Belgium’s beach side is very crowded and full of concrete buildings in Zeeland you can find more natural environment and relaxed atmosphere.

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OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERAThe way to the beach in Domburg

Zeeland is about an 1,5 hour drive from Brussels and the best thing is that it is not on the same road than the way to Oostende or even Knokke so you can avoid the worst traffic jams when getting in and out from Brussels.

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In Zeeland there are many towns and beaches but we often go Domburg. I really like the fact that you can get very near to the beach with car, the parking is free, the town itself is very cute and there are good restaurants.

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Of course when in Holland the bikes are everywhere!

Last Sunday we went to Domburg with B and after a week in boiling hot Paris the fresh air from Mer du Nord felt incredible. After sunbathing and swimming we headed to the town for a meal in our favorite restaurant the Brasserie Domburg.

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Kun lomat on ohi ja koko viikon on talsinut töihin yli 30 asteen helteissä, ei ole mitään mukavempaa, kuin suunnistaa kohti rantaa ja kuvitella, että lomat jatkuu edelleen. Klassinen vaihtoehto Brysselistä olisi suunnata kohti Belgian rannikkoa Oostenden, Knokken tms rannoille, mutta suoraan sanottuna kamalat ruuhkat, väen paljous sekä betonirakennusten runsaus ei ole meitä paljoa sykähdyttänyt. Sen sijaan Hollannin puolelta Zeelandista löytyy luontoa ja söpöjä pikku kyliä ja upeaa hiekkarantaa. Domburg on siellä meidän suosikki kohteemme ja aivan täydellinen pienelle päiväretkelle. Brysselistä sinne kestää n. 1,5h ja suurin osa matkaa ilman ruuhkia, auton saa ilmaiseen parkkiin lähelle rantaa ja keskustasta löytyy paljon kivoja putiikkeja ja ruokapaikkoja. Jos etsit hyvää ruokaa ja kivaa terassia suosittelen ehdottomasti  Brasserie Domburg ravintolaa, jossa tekisi mieli kokeille koko lista läpi! Jälkkäriksi söimme jätskit merenrannalla viimeisistä auringon säteistä nauttien ennen kuin suuntasimme takaisin kohti Brysseliä. Täydellinen kesäpäivä sanoisin!

Let’s go to the market!

I love visiting markets and food halls where ever I go. When in Paris I go to the Marché d’Aligre or Bastille, in Brussels my absolute favorite is Marché de Place Flagey and on our recent road trip I found a new favorite in Copenhagen called Torvehallerne.

We found this market by accident (as usual) when parking our car to Israels Plads and there it was, the most beautiful, all new market that has two covered glass and steal halls and an open market place between them. Everything is beautiful, the food, the people the displays and all latest food trends are available just ready to be tried out.

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Torit on mahtavia paikkoja. Kun olen kotona Pariisissa, hyvä aloitus sunnuntaille lähtee Marché d’Aligrélta tai Bastillen torilta ja Brysselissä suosikkini on Place Flageyn tori. Pariisissa torikassi täyttyy vihannesten lisäksi myös tuoreilla croissanteilla ja ehkä viini pullolla ja Place Flageyllä on joskus pakko syödä ranskikset! Viimeisin tori-ihastukseni löytyy Tanskasta, jossa yllättäen tupsahdimme suoraan ruokataivaaseen, kun olimme etsimässa Israels Pladsin parkkihallia. Torin nimi on Torvehallerne ja siihen kuuluu kaksi modernia lasiseinäistä kauppahallia ja niiden välissä oleva torialue. Paikka on moderni ja kaikki mahdolliset ruokatrendit ovat siellä edustettuina Paleo ruoasta puuroravintolaan. Tuonne on päästävä ehdottomasti uudestaan ja paremmalla ajalla kunnolla maistelemaan!

 

Torvehallerne KBH

Frederiksborggade

211360 København K

Back to Paris

Our three week summer holidays are over and I’m back to Paris and work. We drove to Finland and visited Germany, Denmark and Sweden on the way and it really was fun! Now I’m going through all my pictures and videos and being grateful of seeing all those beautiful places and my family and friends in Finland!

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Mid summer night in our summer cottage in Finland

Kolmen viikon kesäloma on nyt loppu ja paluu arkeen on alkanut. Käyn lomakuvia läpi meidän automatkalta Pariisista Kuopioon ja ihmettelen kuinka yhdeltä reissulta voikin jäädä näin paljon hyviä muistoja! Saimme viettää paljon aikaa perheen ja ystävien kanssa Suomessa ja sitten olla turistina Saksassa, Tanskassa ja Ruotsissa. Nyt jo tekisi mieli palata takaisin muutamiin suosikki kohteisiin, mutta toistaiseksi aijomme nauttia vaan lähimatkailusta Pariisi –  Brysseli akselilla! 

Pintxo week in San Sebastiàn

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View from the San Sebastian harbour

Last year in June 2015 we went to celebrate my friend’s the last unmarried girl’s week end in Spain. What a blast, nothing else to say. But what’s interesting in traveller’s point of view is that now I can recommend the Keler’s Pintxo Week!  The Keler’s Pintxo Week is coming up again in June which is a local beer and tapas festival with excellent prices for food and drink in the city’s best restaurants. Just by chance we happened to be there at that time and got to try and taste plenty of great restaurants with delicious pintxos and local beer.

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Keler Pintxo Week and hen night all together

We stayed in a Airbnb flat nearby the beach and could go everywhere by foot. There were lot’s of surfers, tourists and locals in the city to create a unique cool atmosphere. Other things to do  than eating pintxos there are two excellent beaches in the city and we could have stayed swimming  for all day in the Atlantic Sea. I really loved the relaxed small town vibe San Sebastián has. In the evening we found some excellent bars to go out and during the day we enjoyed shopping in the beautiful fashion stores. A perfect girl’s weekend I’d say!

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The beach in the city center

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Finnish Vikings in San Sebastián 

Dublin

Trinity College

 

Yesterday I got back from a 3 day work trip to Dublin. My first time in Ireland and a new kind of work assignment doubled my excitement for this city.

Dublin was sunny, historical, pretty, rough, original and kind. The kindness of the people really touched me and made me feel safe and relaxed there.


Irish ice cream at Murphy’s

After work I just went quickly to the hotel to get changed in more confortable shoes and then I went to explore the city. I walked along the river Liffey (and almost felt like in Paris), wandered through Temple Bar district with all the pubs and street musicians and was impressed of the Trinity College buildings and parks that made me wish I was a student again (almost).


Jury’s Inn hotel

I stayed in a nice hotel next to Christ’s Church called the Jury’s Inn and it was very easy to walk from there to the city center. I’d love to go back for a week end and really explore the city’s museums and historical sites. Also I didn’t get to taste any Guinness so definitely need to go back!

 Sunset at Christ’s Church Dublin

#tbt The world is your Splashdown

I thought it would be fun to go back in years and write down some of my best (or sometimes worst) travel souvenirs.

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Let’s start from my first trip abroad alone in 1989. I was 13 years old and I had gotten the permission from my parents to take part on a language course in Torquay in England. The course was 1 month long and I had studied English for 2 years. My language skills were non existant but I was eager to learn. I left alone to join a group of other young Finnish people and once in our destination we got to stay with host families.

I stayed with 3 other girls in a typical English house with an English family. During the day we had language lessons and the afternoons we did excursions. I loved the excursion part so much. We went horseback riding in Dartmoor national park, we visited beaches and old historical towns in Devon but the best of it all, we visited England’s largest water park.

I had never seen a water park as glorious as the Splashdown was and we had a blast with my room mates and other students sliding down the tubes and slopes. Once the others started packing and heading back home I said no. No I wanted to stay and because I didn’t have my parents to tell me to hurry up and get out of the pool nobody else said nothing either! So I stayed there alone and once I finally got fed up with it I had this realization that I didn’t actually know how to get back home. And these are the moments that you can be grateful of only crossing nice helpful people and that everything went well. First I had to find the right bus but because I didn’t know which one to take so I just stopped all of them and asked “Torquay?” with my fantastic Finnish accent. The nice bus drivers tried to ask me where in Torquay I was trying to get but I couldn’t answer them because my English was so bad. I finally managed to get into a bus that got me enough near to my house where I could recognize the streets and find my way back home. I must say I was pretty exhausted once I got back to my room.

These kind of experiences define you as a traveler. How to manage in strange surroundings by yourself and how to connect with people when you don’t have a common language. And that’s the whole charm of it all I think. To get out of the comfort zone, trust yourself and trust others as well. That’s when you realize that with a right attitude the world could be your Splashdown!