During the month of November Helsinki has a total of 16 hours of daylight in the whole month! It was ruled by the Swedish for 650 years and then ruled by the Russians for a hundred years. One architect named Engals designed most of the buildings in Helsinki. This beautiful nordic country has the second largest icebreaker fleet second only to Russia. Helsinki has two very interesting churches, the first is a three story wooden sphere and the second (called The Church In The Rock) is built right into the rock!
We sailed in through a beautiful archipelago to enter Stockholm, there are a few cabins on many of the islands. In the archipelago most of the cabins are painted brown for it is the cheapest paint, sometimes if the owner had a very good year of business he would paint the cabin white to show their prosperity. As we were exploring through Stockholm the Swedish guard marched down the sidewalk almost knocking us over! The property tax of an apartment in Stockholm used to be determined by how many windows you had, so poorer people would paint on windows hoping that future generations would have enough money to install real windows.
The beautiful city of Rostock, Germany was the last stop on our cruise. Rostock was a walled town but now only the gates and a few pieces of the wall remain.The tallest gate is the Kropelin Gate at 54 meters high! Rostock is a very beautiful city with many scenic pathways to walk along. As we left the port at dusk we saw the beautiful city of Rostock, golden in the sunset.
During our final two days we explored Copenhagen and it’s beautiful old port with colourful buildings and boats ranging from small dinghies to huge lighthouse boats. One of the most interesting things we did was walk through Christiania, an old abandoned military base that, when initially abandoned got populated with hippies, where there were no rules and they called it the free state. We also visited an amazing candy store which makes designs in their candies, one (apple flavor) had a Danish flag in it!
This has been an amazing trip as we visited some of our past favorite places and found new and amazing ones. We traveled through the heat of the Greek islands and explored Northern Europe under gray rainy skies. Some of my favorite tastes were filo wrapped feta with honey in Naxos, taramasalata in Milos, gyros in Athens, goat in Folegandros, coffee in Naxos, Meatballs in Stockholm, high tea in Oxford, and hotdogs in Copenhagen. Some of my favorite experiences of our trip were Getting stung by a jellyfish in Folegandros, Playing in the giant waves and relaxing in the hammocks on the beach in Naxos and walking on the old Byzantine trail on Paros. What an amazing adventure this has been!!!