Henrik’s Travel Year 2015 | What happened?


From north to south in Europe

Another year has gone by and as such, it is a great time to reflect. Where did we go, what did we do and what can that tell us about the future? Today, I will tell you about my year in travel. A year that took me from north to south as I visited some of the most beautiful capital cities in Europe.

 

Edinburgh and the Scottish countryside

My first trip this year lead me to Edinburgh, the capital of Scotland, the town with the charming nickname Auld Reekie or Old Smokey stemming from the time when buildings were heated by coal fires and thus leaving giant clouds of smoke over the city. Today, the smoke is gone and what is left is a beautiful city with a history that is ever present, where the great Edinburgh Castle isn’t only a great monument but also a symbol of the past.

edin

One of the best things to do in Edinburgh is to just walk around and enjoy the atmosphere, the views and the people. We spent many afternoons and evenings on Rose Street, which is the best place in Edinburgh to go if you are looking for a great meal or drink.

edin2

After a few days in Edinburgh we decided that we wanted to see more of the Scottish countryside. We hopped on the bus with the final destination St. Andrews. I must say, while St. Andrews was great with one of the world’s most famous golf courses and a rich history with structures, buildings and institutions, it really is an experience to just see a country like Scotland by bus. You get to see the green acres, sheep strolling about and the occasional forts and picturesque buldings and you get to see it while peacefully relaxing in your seat.
 

Idyllic Öland

Öland is a small island located in the southern part of Sweden, right next to the town of Kalmar. Every year people from all over Sweden travel here to enjoy an idyllic Swedish summer. Some camp, some live with the locals at small BnBs and some stay at trailer parks.

oland1

If you start feeling like taking a swim or just cooling down from the heat, it is almost always just a couple of steps away. If there is one thing we all share, children, teenagers, adults and seniors, it is the joy of being in the water.

oland2

Taking part in the idyllic small town Swedish summer is something everyone should do at least once. When I’m looking back at this here in the cold winter, I get a small tingle in my stomach, knowing that this is what awaits around the corner.
 

The streets of Lisbon

During the last weeks of the summer, I went to the capital of Portugal, Lisbon. You could argue that maybe it was the wrong season since it was extremely hot! At least for someone like me who prefers more mild climate. But at the same time, it is a pretty special thing to experience that immense heat. Your muscles relax, and you can almost feel like you are becoming a more natural version of yourself.

lisbon1

Lisbon is a city made for strolling. There are so many streets to see, and the hilly nature of the city will give you vantage points where you get a fascinating perspective on Lisbon. I really recommend to travel up the hills of Tejo, sit by one of the cafés and just take in the atmosphere.

lisbon2

Here is a picture of us sitting in a tree. One of many activites one can do in Lisbon. =)

All in all, I am very pleased by 2015. It was a great year for travel, and I can only hope that 2016 will be just as magical.


Henrik Vilén
Loves architecture, old landmarks and prefers to spend his time abroad in quaint, small towns or in the countryside. Is the happiest when sitting at a local café with the only sounds being a dog distantly barking in harmony with chatter in foreign languages. The next item on his bucket list is the Easter Island.