Hieveryone i’m back in London again so thought i would write and updateyou all on what i have been up to in the late 36 days on my Scandiand Russia tour.Day 1: A short flight to Tegal airport, Berlin were i made my way toWombats Hotel to meet our trip leader Blake Muir, our cook KimbaBrookes, coach driver Matthew Lord and fellow passengers. We hada free drink at the hostel before heading for dinner at a localresturant. Day 2: Started with a comprehensive city tour taking in the sites ofthe Berlin Wall, victory momument, Brandenburg Gate, Reichstag, Ku’Dam,Checkpoint Charlie were just a few. Tonight there was andoptional pub crawl but as i had a mirgraine i didn’t go so i stayed atthe hostel and got to know my room mates.Day 3: We headed north to Rostock to catch a ferry to Denmark. After ashort drive we stopped at Copenhagen. The evening was fulled inby visiting the Hans Christian Anderson,a hippy area.Day 4: We visited the Christianbourg Palace, the little Mermaid,chruches, museums. With the afternoon completed by having a fewbeers in a park and watching the locals and jazz festival. Dinner wasan interesting experience as we had beef, (german beef) they tried totell us that german beef is different, it white and last like pork,yeah rite!!!!Day 5: An early start to catch the short ferry from Helsingor to thehome of shakepeares Hamlet in Helsingborg, Sweden. Todays driveconsisted of lakes, forests and farmlands of Southern Sweden.Day 6: We visited the old and new city where we saw the Changing of theguards, the sing spotting area. At the end of the day we visited an icebar for a drink which was a great chilly experience. Huggie and imet some other campers and learnt how to play Viking Chest.day 7: Today Eva and i headed to town to do the walking tour, and wewere lucky enough to be graced with blakes presents as the Hong Kongflights were changed. After a walk around the in cirles we endedup back where we started and saw the small red house, churches and walkfront. We spent the avo taking the coach mascot (Lord Tobby) around andtaking random photos. In the Eving we were graced with 13 HongKong passengers, some without luggage we sat about having a few quiteones and palying UNO.Day 8: After a stop at the airport to collect the lost luggage wetravelled along the shores of Lake Vattern to Norway the land of theVikings and Midnight sun. We had 5 new passengers join us at out Olsocampsite.Day 9: We visited the Holmenkollen Ski Jump where we had a ride in theski stimulator. A stop at the viking museum, Vigeland Sculpture Park.Day 10: Farewell to Olso as we stopped at Lillehammer, home of the 1994 olympics.Day 11: A full day excusions to the breathtaking Geiranger Fjord wherewe saw stunning waterfalls, drove along the hair-raising Trolls Passthen back to Andalsnes campsite for a punch party to celebrate Michealbirthday, 6 ltrs of wodka later and a few sore heads and otherparts!!!!!Day 12: Off north again which only means more sunlight. we stopat Trondheim to repent our sins at the cathedral before stopping atHell!!!!!! We posted mail and took photos to prove were all beenthere and back. Tonigth stop was at Steinkjer, which had a lot ofexcellent football (soccer) fields which we had a kick around on.Day 13: On our way to Korgen (100kms short of the Arctic Circle) westopped at the old rock carving, and a waterfall. Lunch stop wasfunny was we washed our dishes using the car/truck wash which was anwater blaster.Day 14: After an early start we headed for Svartisen Glacier, along theway we got lost but it worked in our favour and we saw moose. Ashort boat ride and then walk up the the huge Glacier (better thanNZ). We crossed the Arctic Circle and stopped for photos asyou do.Day 15: we drove to Skibotn with a stop in Narvik which is the home ofthe ugly people. At the campsite we completed the polar plungeconsisting on sitting in a sauna and then running down the road ansjumping in the frezzing cold river.Day 16: Olderfjord and Nordkapp here we come. it was a wet daybut we still headed to the further part of Norway to watch the sun setor well not set, but all we could see was fog and more fog.Day 17: As we returned back at campsite early in the morning 2-3am we had brunch and relaxed around the campsite as it was wet.Day 18: Goodbye to Norway and hello to Finland. We stopped atSantas Finnish home and the arctic circle then we stayed at Rovaniemi.Day 19: Today we headed south for Jyvaskyla so to pass some time awaywe watched a few movies andlong with amiring hte many lakes.Day 20: The captial of Finland was set in our sites today, on arrivalwe stopped and looked at the underground church, Uspensky Cathedral,and Senate Square before heading to our hostel which was a schoolcoverted into a hostel in the summer time. We meet up withsome locals and they took us out on the town.Day 21: An early start with Breakfast at 5.15am to drive a total of11km for the day to the ferry and then crossed into Tallinn. Fromthe ferry we walked across the road to our first hotel. A walking touraround the old town was completed.Day 22: We farewelled half of the passengers and greeted some newones. Let the fun start for crossing into the Russian boarder where wehad to unload the coach then along the bumpy roads to StPetersberg. The city was buzzing as they were celebratingsomething with the navy. so we saw heaps of sailors and fireworks.Day 23: We had a russian guide and expolred the citygreat by Peter theGreat by bus. Tonight we sat up and watched all the bridge that foldedup so the ship could enter and exit.Day 24: Today we expolred more of the large city and then had dinner out before going to see a Russian Ballet Performance.Day 25: We travelled through the Russian countryside to Novgorod theoldest city in Russia. We completed a walking tour around 7 churches,visited the markets and then headed to the hotel.Day26: The drive to Moscow along the bouncy roads with lots oftrucks. Along the ay we saw lots of small wooden houses (moreshacks really). Today we celebrated mels Birthday by having yetagain another room party.Day 27:Today we drove around the city looking at Red Square, St BasilsCathedral (totally cool), the Kremlin olpymis stadium and manymore. we had dinner and then went to watch the BallerinaWechecked out the markets and then topped the day off by going to watchthe moscow circus. Day 28: A free day of explore which we visted Lennox tomb, the Armoury topped off by going to a Ballet performance.Day 29: The drive to Velikie Luki hotel which was a small looking town but it was well populated.Day 29: The fun of crossing the Russian boarder again which only took2hrs 15mins, not bad really. As we entered Latvia they are in thepocess of trying to reach EU standard so it took us 2hrs to travel40kms. We passed some time away by watching a movie. We had ashort tour of Riga the captial before dinner.Day30: a free day of exporling so Eva and i headed out of the city tothe 100acre open air museum which showed how things were many yearsago. Back into the city to redo the city tour and takephotos. Dinner was had at a medival resturant, which was lovely.Day 31-32: We headed for Vilnius in Lithuania, along the way we stoppedat the hill of Crosses, so many in one small place. we lookedaround the city checking our Peter and Paul cathedral, Gediminas tower,before having a traditional meal and then visiting the local pubs withsome locals.Day 33-34:Times coming to an end as we looked around Warsaw in Polandwhere we checked out the old prison, the old city etc, then we had tofind our way back to campsite which provided us with a challenge as thebus we were told to catch didn’t exist so we had to find the new one.Day 35: our trip is almost over as we head back in to Berlin,tonite we celebrated our freindships made and the memories that we havetogether over dinner and drinks. we partied on to the early hoursof the morning.Day 36: We said our final goodbyes 🙁 to those up early and then headed for the airport.
posted Sunday August 2008