A hop over to Hven

Long, long ago, a.k.a before Ella joined our travelling band, we used to venture to more exotic and rugged places with G Adventures.

Along with G Adventures doing all of the planning and legwork, one of the nice things was meeting some great people along the way, and a few… interesting ones. We seemed to have particularly good luck with the Danes we met, which is part of how we find ourselves in Denmark now.

One of those nice Danes was Tina, also known as Danish Katy. We met Tina when we were travelling through Belize in 2009 and she and Katy hit it off immediately. Though they only spent 10 days together on that trip, they quickly discovered they had much in common. Then years, distance, and the arrival of children got in the way, so we were looking forward to catching up with her.

When Katy reached out about connecting on this trip, Tina suggested that we join her family for a camping trip to the island of Hven. Continue reading “A hop over to Hven”

What a bike tour of Copenhagen has in common with winning the Tour de France

After a night’s sleep (I won’t say good, as Ella had me up a few times) we were ready to get back to exploring Copenhagen.

We had booked a city tour with Copenhagen Bicycles. Located in Nyhavn near the new bicycle bridge, they were just a 10 minute walk from our apartment.IMG_0947

Continue reading “What a bike tour of Copenhagen has in common with winning the Tour de France”

Arriving in Copenhagen

We’ve arrived in Copenhagen and just like that our latest adventure is underway.

For the first time in years, this trip won’t include any new countries for me. I was here 20 years ago. (I still have a hard time believing that I did anything “20 years ago”, let alone visiting a country.) Both Ella and Katy will be adding to their lists though. This is Katy’s first visit to Denmark while Ella will be visiting both Denmark and Sweden for the first time. Continue reading “Arriving in Copenhagen”

A taste of Estonia’s past and present

Between trying to see as much as possible in a limited time and trying not to forget to actually relax on holiday, it can be tough to find time to exercise.

For a while there our trips themselves, e.g. climbing Kilimanjaro in Tanzania, were exercise in and of themselves so we didn’t need to worry too much about it. In fact, I used to lose weight on every trip because we spent so much time being active. Then Ella started to join us on our travels and there was a period there where I was gaining weight every time we left the country instead of losing it. Now that Ella’s getting a bit older we’re starting to have access to more active options and when we find one, we tend to leap at it.

In Tallinn this came in the form of 250km of bike trails and a bike rental company called City Bikes. IMG_6815 Continue reading “A taste of Estonia’s past and present”

Wait, why does the ferry have mini-garbage bags on the tables?

With our time in Helsinki at an end it was time to head over to our next destination: Tallinn, Estonia.


How does one get from Helsinki to Tallinn. There are a few options, but we opted for the fastest, most direct – a high speed ferry across the Gulf of Finland.

If you’ve been following us on this journey you might recall my saying that I always enjoy a boat ride, well, there are some exceptions to that. Our ferry ride to Tallinn from Helsinki might just qualify.

Continue reading “Wait, why does the ferry have mini-garbage bags on the tables?”

Porvoo – maybe it’s for you. (I’m here through Tuesday don’t forget to tip your waitress)

The other day we decided we would hop on a bus and get the Helsinki out of … well, Helsinki. Our destination? The town of Porvoo.


As it turned out hoping on the bus wasn’t quite as simple as we thought it would be. We were only a 5 minute walk from the bus terminal in the Kampi shopping centre. From there, buses run frequently to Porvoo, a 50 minute drive away. It all seemed so easy, at least until we got to the bus station. Once we were there we found very little information on where to get the buses and no transit people to talk to.  Continue reading “Porvoo – maybe it’s for you. (I’m here through Tuesday don’t forget to tip your waitress)”

Helsinki by sea

Back in Helsinki we woke to find the clouds had cleared leaving us a beautiful day to continue our exploration of the city. With perfect weather we decided it was about time we took to the water to get a different perspective on the city.DSC_0559

Continue reading “Helsinki by sea”

Learning to “smile like a hangon keksi biscuit” in Hanko

If Helsinki is a city dropped in the middle of what we would think of as beautiful cottage country, what do you call a coastal retreat that to which you might escape from Helsinki? Hanko.

IMG_6109 Continue reading “Learning to “smile like a hangon keksi biscuit” in Hanko”

Hopping around Helsinki

How we chose to spend our first full day in Helsinki won’t be a shocker to anyone who’s read this blog before. That’s right, we started with a hop-on-hop-off bus tour.

Helsinki Market Square

Having already seen the Market Square, there were three stops we figured we would hop off and take a look around, the Temppeliaukio Church (aka the Rock Church), Sibelius Monument, and Olympic Stadium.  Continue reading “Hopping around Helsinki”

Getting to Helsinki – boringly easy

After reviewing this post Katy commented (i.e. politely complained) that there are no laughs. Well, I’m sorry dear reader, but getting to Helsinki is too uneventful to be funny. If you still want to read on after that intro, well you’re probably part of the 90% of readership that are family.

No, we are not on a cruise. That must be the most common way for North Americans to see Helsinki, Tallinn and St. Petersburg because it’s the first question anyone asks when I tell them that’s where we’re going. Nothing against you cruise faring folk, it’s just not our thing. As usual we’ll be travelling by plane, train (tram) and automobile.

Ella in finland

Continue reading “Getting to Helsinki – boringly easy”

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