Journey in the archipelago 

My parents and I went on a cruise through the Stockholm archipelago and to the island of Åland. We departed Stockholm at 6 pm on Tuesday evening and came back yesterday shortly before 4 pm.

We had warm and sunny weather and the archipelago was looking fantastic! If the weather is good I’m not sure there is a better place to be. 

We had booked one of the better rooms and it had a huge window towards the side of the ship. Just sitting there and looking out was quite calming not to mention waking up with that view. I think I slept with the best view ever! 😍 Wish I could wake up that way every morning.  

The most difficult part of the trip was probably the buffet on Tuesday evening. It was so much people and lots of noise so I had a hard time enjoying eating. It was a quite stressful setting. Some people really get loud and shameless when the have a good buffet in front of them. Next time I travel I will remember to book the later dinner slot.

I took plenty of gorgeous photos, here are a few…

Our cabin
Leaving Stockholm, here is the amusement park Gröna Lund
Car ferries by Oxdjupet
Sunset in the archipelago

I guess we’re going too slow as another cruise ship quickly passed by us.
Morning view from my bed! 😍

The outer Åland archipelago

View of Furusund from our cabin

View from the rear deck.

One of the longest cruise ships visiting the Stockholm area this summer.

Hello Stockholm! To the left is the old town.

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Kick off of 2016

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We started the new year with a trip to Nerja, Spain in order to visit my sister-in-law and to see her newly purchased apartment. We’ve had 6 great days in Spain and enjoyed being away from home and just relaxed and gathered energy. Of course we’ve had lots of tasty tapas too!

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Tomorrow it’s time to go back to work after 3 weeks of vacation. I’m quite eager to get into the normal daily life again, although it’s been very nice not having to wake up at 5.15 every morning. 🙂 Pretty soon life will be busy and stressful again and then I will remember this fantastic view. Can it get any better?

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Beautiful Värmland

During our first week of vacation we travelled to a province called Värmland. It’s a three hour car drive from Stockholm. We went there in order to 1) visit old friends from Colorado (they are visiting the area for the summer) and 2) stay at one of the best spa hotels in Sweden. We had a fantastic trip and here are some highlights from the roadtrip!

On a boat cruise along the canal in the town of Karlstad together with our friends.
On a boat cruise along the canal in the town of Karlstad together with our friends.
The beautiful summer house were our friends are staying each summer.
The beautiful summer house were our friends are staying each summer.
We slept in this cute little house during our stay with our friends.
We slept in this cute little house during our stay with our friends.
We visited the home of the author Gustaf Fröding...
We visited the home of the author Gustaf Fröding…
...and the home of another famous author, Selma Lagerlöf.
…and the home of another famous author, Selma Lagerlöf.
Statue of Selma Lagerlöf
Statue of Selma Lagerlöf
In the middle of nowhere an 1950's styled American diner is located
In the middle of nowhere an 1950’s styled American diner is located, called Diner 45. It’s amazing but it is actually required to reserve a table in advance because the restaurant is so popular!
They offered lactose free milkshake and the best tasting burger I've eaten in a long time!
They offered lactose free milkshake and the best tasting burger I’ve eaten in a long time!

The land of tulips

After thinking about going to Amsterdam and visit Keukenhof ever since we moved back to Sweden (December 2008) we finally managed to do it this year!! I was so excited ahead of time and I did not get disappointed at all. What a place! Not only is Amsterdam nice with all the canals and beautiful historic houses but Keukenhof was simply WOW. There is nothing I can write that will give it justice, only a visit to the park will do. I will definitely go back again!

Arrived to the airport. Hello Amsterdam! :)
Arrived to the airport. Hello Amsterdam! 🙂
We used Airbnb instead of staying at a hotel. The place we originally booked got a water leak shortly before our arrival but the owner managed to find a new place for us to stay at in the Jordaan area. Very stylish apartment with the typical steep stairs.
We used Airbnb instead of staying at a hotel. The place we originally booked got a water leak shortly before our arrival but the owner managed to find a new place for us to stay at in the Jordaan area. Very stylish apartment with the typical steep stairs.
A canal in Amsterdam
A canal in Amsterdam
Beautiful windows and shutters.
Beautiful windows and shutters.
A view of tulip fields on the bus to Keukenhof.
A view of tulip fields on the bus to Keukenhof.
The main entrance at Keukenhof. Yes, we were not alone. :) I have so many pictures from the part, and it was very hard to pick, but these are a few of my favourites. 
The main entrance at Keukenhof. Yes, we were not alone. 🙂 I have so many pictures from the park, and it was very hard to pick, but these are a few of my favourites.
Keukenhof
Keukenhof
Keukenhof
Keukenhof
Keukenhof
Keukenhof
Keukenhof
Keukenhof
Keukenhof
Keukenhof
Keukenhof
Keukenhof

I remember my (paternal) grandmother talking about the garden of Keukenhof and wanting to go for a visit, but she never managed to do it. I know she would have loved it too!

Adios Espana

It’s time to say goodbye. We’ve checked out and are waiting for the bus to take us to the airport.

It has been a fantastic week. Sunny and warm most of the time. I’ve tried new types of exercises and have lots of motivation to continue on when I get home. I’ve also meet many new friends.

I could definitely have stayed a little longer in this climate but I’m looking forward to come home and see my hubby again.

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Windy!

Today has been an extremely windy day. This morning when we had Qi gong on the beach it was hard to keep the balance. It’s hard to keep the balance even without the wind so it was quiet challenging during some of the poses. I really like Qi gong and plan to continue with it when I get home.

I think my joints don’t appreciate the wind though because today I have had pain in several places. That has never happened during vacations to warmer climates before. I decided that I’d skip the afternoon exercises and only attended the two “lectures”, one about functional training and the other about staying motivated.

Tonight was the last night for some of the people so we had a little goodbye mingle and said adios. All trainers lined up for a photo session.

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There was a triathlon competition at the resort (and the island) today and we watched some of the competitors at the finish line.

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Rest day

This morning when we woke up we decided that we would take it easy today as yesterday was a very ruff day! After a spinning class and a dance class my hip did not appreciate life. Luckily I did not have any issues with it this morning but thought I better give it a break from exercising.

The afternoon we spent in a bus together with most of the other people in our group. We visited three places on Fuerteventura. First off was a aloe vera factory.

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Next was the medieval town of Betancuria. On our way there we passed a fantastic view point towards the ocean.

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Our last stop of the day was in a small fishing village where the have caves by the water. Lots of steps to get there but a very cool place so totally worth the effort!

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On our way back to the hotel three goodie bags where given out and I happened to win one of them! 🙂

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