I visited Warsaw, the Polish capital city, for the second time in 2015. Just like the first time, the main reason behind my visit was a music concert. The first time I had arrived on an early summer afternoon, just days before the UEFA Euro 2012 would kick off in that very city. Everybody had told me that Warsaw was grey and ugly, but I found it exciting and vibrant and unexpectedly colourful.
I am writing this after reading a trending post on some Italian travel blogs I follow (linked at the end of this post). I don’t blog in Italian and I don’t blog about travel (as my main topic), but I like to share stories and this trending post felt like a good opportunity to write about stuff I love. The original post was called #prime10volte, that is to say “ten first times” when travelling. Travel is about exploration and learning so it should come as no surprise that while travelling one gets to experience many “first times”. So here’s 10 of my first times while in travel. Continue reading
I like to say that with the Norwegian capital I’ve had a serious love affair. We first met in 2007, a bunch of sunny April days; Oslo was the destination of a spontaneous trip with my parents. We never take spontaneous trips in my family, but 2007 had not had a good start and a spontaneous trip somewhere new was what we all needed to heal our wounds. Oslo healed my wounds. I was young, I fell in love so desperately. Continue reading
Everybody had told me that Budapest is beautiful. It really is. I visited the Hungarian capital in 2013, a stopover during a road trip from Krakow to Turin with stops in Hungary, Slovenia and Trieste, an itinerary along some key places of the Habsburg Empire. Again, just like when I had visited Vienna, one of my main interests in this trip had been a cake. It’s always cake that drives me to the former Austro-Hungarian Empire! But let me start from the beginning… Continue reading
Krakow is the second largest city in Poland. It is a very important place for me for two reasons. First, it is where my mom was born and where my maternal family still lives. All my life I have always been spending a month every year in Krakow visiting family (my parents’ annual leave, basically). Second, I have lived in Krakow myself for two years and a few months, between 2012 and 2014. Over those two years I got to explore the city much more than I did as a kid and found a few places I like to back go to whenever I come back.
Earlier this year, during my Easter break, I visited Amsterdam for approximately 20 hours. My friend, co-worker, fellow expat and fellow blogger Ania (girl, the list is getting longer, and I haven’t even mentioned our shared taste in music here) was with me. We were headed to Italy and chose to fly KLM in order to have a stopover in the Dutch capital to catch a favourite artist of ours performing there (here comes the shared musical taste). The first time I visited Amsterdam was back in 2010 and the main reason for my trip was to go see Anneke van Giersbergen, my favourite singer. The very same reason why I ended up in Amsterdam for 20 hours again this year. Continue reading
It was drizzling and the sky was grey. The lush vegetation at the side of the road didn’t look as bright as it should have. We were driving along a bumpy road on our way to Kutaisi, our second destination in Georgia, and for the first time since we got there I felt unsafe. What if the car breaks down in the middle of nowhere? The idea of waving for help to other drivers – mostly Turkish truck drivers – was unsettling me, especially since I can speak no Georgian, nor Russian, nor Turkish. So I sat in my seat, hoping that if anything was to happen, it would happen in a village and the famous Georgian hospitality would come to our rescue. Continue reading
Whenever asked what is the most beautiful place I’ve been there is no room for hesitation, the answer is only one: Lofoten. I know I’m biased when it comes to Norway, but I can’t help it. I like to say that I have a special connection with that country, but it doesn’t take all this love for Norway to come to appreciate the jaw-dropping beauty of that archipelago up there. If spiky mountains rising straight from the sea and unexpected sandy beaches sound like something you’d love, you’ll probably agree with me about Lofoten. Continue reading
I visited the Åland islands for the first time two years ago, soon after our move to Sweden. The archipelago is the region of Finland laying closest to where I am located, yet despite belonging to the Republic of Finland (and the eurozone) Åland has always been enjoying a status of almost independence, raising its own flag and speaking its own language – Swedish. The islands are notable for their peaceful rural landscapes, the red granite beaches and for having one of the highest employment rates in Finland. Quite an intriguing combination. Continue reading
As a person who loves to travel, I have logged a considerable amount of hours spent on a plane, especially over the past ten years of my life. Since I have mostly traveled around Europe, most of my flying experience is short-haul on planes no larger than a B737. Despite my irrational fear of takeoffs (I really dislike that feeling of weightlessness as the plane breaks the laws of gravity) and the uncomfort of the occasional light turbulences, I can say that I actually like to fly and have enjoyed every time I have been airborne. Except for one time, when I got seriously ill in the middle of a six-hour flight. Continue reading