17.12.2016 - 22.12.2016
Sweden! Most certainly a country we have been looking forward to visiting! Having worked with a few Swedes a couple of years back I had heard that it was a great place. My language needed a litlle bit of a touch up though, as all I could remember was Snygg Rumpa, meaning nice ass*. This phrase actually turned out to be quite appropriate (or inappropriate depending on how you look at it).
So from Copenhagen we made the 7.8km journey to Malmö, Sweden. We took the train which used the Øresund Bridge, a really interesting roadway, which is a bridge turn tunnel! Part of the journey is underwater (by tunnel), which meets the surface on an island and becomes a bridge... or something like that - Tim did explain, but sometimes I just find I'm not that interested.
Anyway our 'Swedish experience' had us a couple of days in Malmö followed by a few more days in Stockholm, not very extensive but we got a feel for it.
Tim mentioned in our last blog that... "its definitely Christmas, and its definitely winter", well this still rings true in Sweden and let me tell you, its bloody cold and I bloody LOVE fairy lights!! You really get to appreciate them up here too as sun set is before 3pm!
Christmas markets are just everywhere, and in my head they were much bigger, but they seem to be small and many. There are neat ice skating rinks everywhere too. We braved it once in Stockholm and were pretty impressed by some of the kids whizzing past us!
We went and checked out some amazing ice skaters at a local ice hockey match on our last night. Such amazing skill, and WHAT THE PUK!... so aggressive!! That was a blast, and the home team lost to the team lower on the table which made for some great crowd watching!
Scandinavia is known for its social bathing. Not wanting to miss out on anything we popped along to the big one in Malmö, which is pretty old and very popular (with locals).
Men and women are separated at the entrance, and as I can't read Swedish I struggled a bit working out what to do and ended up asking someone, she explained that you had to get naked (*snygg rumpa), then wash off before getting into the saunas (there were three here, all different temperatures and types), anyway you get yourself nice and hot and then you head outside and get in the sea, making sure to dunk your head. I tell you what, in a place where I wont go outside until every inch of me is covered up, the thought of a nudey dunk in the sea sounded horrific, but it was actually quite refreshing after the intense heat (not that I hung around in there).
It was quite fun
Tim showed his inner child by taking me to a couple of museums. The first was the Malmö marine and technology museum (yay). We were the only adults there without any children (well I suppose I had Tim). Jokes aside it actually was quite interesting, it housed a wartime submarine along with many other early technological pieces, all interactive and all thoroughly tested by Tim.
The next museum was the Vasa museum in Stockholm. A museum dedicated to one ship (the Vasa). Basically this ship was built in the early 1600's (looked like a pirate ship to me), she kitted out with 64 bronze cannons, it took 2 years to build. Its maiden voyage was August 10 1628, with cannons on show and guests on board she sailed out of the harbour, heeled over to the lower cannon deck, took on water and sunk after aprox. 1.3km! Oops. Anyways it lay at the bottom of the harbour for 333years and was preserved reasonably well, before being hauled up in the 60's.
While I did enjoy both of these museums my favourite by a country mile was ABBA the museum! Such fun. Man they had some hits! *Agnetha was voted worlds sexiest ass - Snygg Rumpa
We enjoyed walking around the towns, the buildings were all very pretty and there were hundreds of sculptures. Very visually pleasing even if we couldn't afford to buy anything inside those buildings!
Our last morning was spent tasting the tradional Swedish meatballs at Meatballs for the People, before jumping on an overnight ferry to Helsinki where we will be spending Christmas. Fingers crossed for snow!