#JanuaryJoy: Plan a Trip

Todays #JanuaryJoy prompt is definitely one of my favourites and sure to become a Florence Finds tradition. For last years ‘Plan a trip’ I talked about safari and what became my epic trip to South Africa. I’m so glad I took some time over planning it and your advice. Today after hearing a few people talk about it (and having a long term ambition to visit myself,) I’m sharing Becky’s trip to Norway, Sweden and Denmark, in the hope that it inspires you to explore. Please do sure your travel plans for this year in the comments!

Oslo


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SLEEP
We enjoyed our stay at the Hotel Guldsmeden

EAT
We ate a fantastic Easter lunch at the Ekeberg restaurant. Ask for a table by the window or if you’re visiting in the Summer, the terrace would be my choice.


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SEE
A lot of our exploring was on foot. Walking to the top of the opera house roof was fun – A fantastic example of architecture and landscape rolled into one.
We took a boat trip to The Viking Ship museum and The Norsk Folk museum.
We also got the underground to the Holmenkollen ski jump and museum. The view from the top of the ski jump across the fjords is breathtaking and certainly made us want to return to do a fjords trip one summer.

Stockholm


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SLEEP
The Rival hotel is a converted cinema owned by Benny from Abba. It was great and the cocktail bar was buzzing every night as was the adjacent cafe every morning which does a good breakfast. The location was amazing for getting around too.


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EAT
As I was in the first trimester of pregnancy and feeling pretty ropey, dining out in fancy restaurants wasn’t a priority but we had a good meal at Riche restaurant and the bar had a great atmosphere too.

Under Kastanjen cafe was a nice stop for a coffee whilst walking the streets exploring Gamla Stan

SEE
The Vasa Museum
Skansen open air museum – A combination of a Zoo and folk museum. Probably best seen in late Spring and Summer.
Hallywyl Museum.
We also wandered around Gamla Stan – The Old Town and got around predominantly on the underground or walking.

Copenhagen


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SLEEP
We stayed in the Marriott as my husband had points from work so got a free night. Sure you can find something with a bit more character – We did walk past the ‘floatel‘ a few times and thought it looked interesting… as long as you don’t suffer with motion sickness!

EAT
We decided not to go to Noma due to the bump but if you fancy it, I expect you’ll need to book your table now for June.

We enjoyed a really good fish lunch at Kastellet, Nordre Toldbod 12-20… a warehouse style informal dining restaurant & foody supermarket next to the water. Expect it’s lovely on a sunny day

SEE
Again, we explored the city on foot unless we got a boat. A visit to Christiania was eye opening.
Nyehaven shouldn’t be missed and a good point to start a boat tour from. I found the most dreamy shop… Illums Bolighus, Amagertorv 1-11
See The Little Mermaid – the clue’s in her title….she’s little!
Rosenborg Castle
Tivoli gardens…. All in all a pretty naff amusement park. The lights make it look pretty at night!
Louisiana Museum of modern art is a pleasant train ride north of the city and on a clear day you can see over to Sweden from the galleries gardens.

So readers… have you ever been on a Scandanavian trip? It’s Stockholm that has always tempted me – all the islands are supposed to be beautiful in the summer.

Where are you headed in 2014?

Love,
Rebecca (& Becky)
xo

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15 thoughts on “#JanuaryJoy: Plan a Trip

  1. We went on a family trip to Copenhagen & Malmo for my 30th last year as is always wanted to go and we all loved it. With a then 9 month old we wanted somewhere family friendly and found both places to be. I really want to visit Norway, a few friends have been on a Scandinavian cruise so I’m looking into that, but will def check out your recommendations 🙂

    • Oooohhhh….could I asked where you stayed. We’re going to Malmo for the day. Just so we can go across the Bridge. Assuming you’re a fan #Sagaismyhero

      • Yes massive fan lol! I’ve just started watching the killing too have you watched any?
        Stayed at the Scandic Triangeln, definitely worth a look. As for airbnb, we’ve booked an apartment in Barcelona this weekend and the lady leasing it seems lovely, so fingers crossed!

        • I’ve just re read and realised you’re not staying in Sweden so that was a useless recommendation! In Copenhagen we stayed at an apartment (suits us with a baby) called the adina apartment hotel which is near the little mermaid

  2. Good timing. We just booked Stockholm and Copenhagen for our first wedding anniversary in June. Great deals on flights with Norwegian Air (and they text you your seats and tickets….awesome). I think the return into Stockholm and out of Copenhagen is about £50 return each. We’ll get between the two by train…which should be about £100 each I think.

    We’ve not booked our accommodation yet….I had considered air bnb for two nights, just to try it, but I’m a bit scared to go and live in someone’s house. Has anyone done it? Our main motivation was price….hotels in Scandinavia seem off the scale (hence why our original two weeks from Oslo to St Petersburg got massively scaled back!). Even a double with private bathroom in a hostel would set you back £120 (usually its about £40 in any other European City!).

    God I need more holidays.

    • We’ve used air bnb a few times and really rate it. You can rent entire properties too so doesn’t have to be a room in someone else’s home. Read the reviews on the site and you’ll be fine!

      Px

  3. We’re staying in the UK this year, we got a pup last year so dont want to leave him, sad I know !!

    I really looking forward to it, we have a log cabin booked at Loch Ness in May for a week. Loch Ness is my haven, we stay for a week every year and its perfect for recharging the batteries.
    I have 2 trips to London planned, one for the marathon and the other for London Fashion weekend. Later on this year we plan to go up one side of Scotland and down the other.

    Would love to go to the lake district too but don’t know if my works holidays will stretch.

    I’m actually enjoying not having to find that perfect trip abroad this year! Just pray for sunshine for me !!

  4. I actually have all my holidays already planned this year! (Planned… not yet booked!) Scandinavia isn’t on the list but some friends went to Norway last year and raved about it so maybe one for 2015…

    I’m going skiing in France this Friday (can’t wait!). Then to Hay-on-Wye in May with my best girlfriend for the Literary Festival. Glastonbury in June and finally, the big one, my first ever trip to the US. California in Sept/October. Plus maybe a Parisian weekend to visit my friend Emilie thrown in the mix somewhere too!

    Can’t wait for the 2014 holidays to start!

  5. We’re off to Barcelona (thanks to Victoria’s recommendations we’re staying at the Melia Sky!) in August for our 1st anniversary/honeymoon. I cannot wait for a bit of sun – this will be our first holiday in 3.5 years, faaaaar too long!
    A close friend is moving to New York in September, so there is talk of booking some flights to visit her in early December which would be fantastic. New York in the snow – it’s every Christmas film ever made!
    Finally, the grand plan is to book a trip to China for April of next year. We’ve been talking about it for 6 years, but finally we should be in a position to go! Anyone with any recommendations, particularly re. self guided vs. tour would be welcomed with open arms as we are struggling to decide x

  6. We’re actually heading to Sestriere in little over two weeks – your write up sold it to me Rebecca (that, and the great deal 😉 ) … any recommendations?

    To cheer ourselves up after missing out on Glasto tickets, we’ve booked Dubai and Mauritius for (much!) later in the year. My thinking: book now and then we’ve got plenty of time to save up.

    I’m itching to squeeze in a city break too if we can so this write up has definitely given me food for thought!

  7. Been booking our holidays this weekend, so your post is timely. We’re looking to go to Copenhagen in December to see the Christmas markets and general prettiness there then. Last there over ten years ago, so really looking forward to get back there.

  8. I’m hoping to get on a city break this year if funds will allow (more on this in my post tomorrow on my savings plan!). I am however going to Stockholm next month with work, but it’s a flying visit and basically will involve me going from the airport direct to the hotel, followed by a day of meetings and then back to the airport! It’s my first flight in nearly 4 years!! I travelled so much when I was growing up, but very little of late what with the children and being on my own.

  9. Great timing! I’m off to Oslo in April to visit my best friend and hubby who live there. I couldn’t get the link to work for the restaurant recommendation – but would love to see it so i can hopefully book it up!

  10. Ok so I’m killing time on an SJ train between Stockholm and Copenhagen and thought I’d give an update for anyone yet to visit.

    We flew from London with Norweigen air. £30 single including taxes. A two hour flight and I’d really recommend Norweigen. Text messages reminding me to check in, a text telling us the plane was delayed by 10 minutes. A completely brilliant service.

    We stayed at Best Hostel Old Town (the Skeppsbron address looking out on the water). It wasn’t brilliant….the private en suite room was small but the location smack bang at Garla Stam was perfect given that we really only had over a day and a half in Stockholm). Breakfast was also included and it was CLEAN.

    We:
    (a) walked around Gamla Stan and along checking out the views of the Royal Palace and Parliament. Had I not been pregnant, a bike tour would have been absolutely fantastic.
    (B) looked inside the Storkyrkan (Cathedral) on the basis that it was raining and we needed shelter – 40 SEK entry fee (£4) worth it for the warmth and its actually very pretty
    (C) visited the Vasa Museum (£13 entry) following Becky and some other friends’ recommendation. Worth it, especially the free English tour which was informative.
    (D) otherwise wandered

    We ate:
    We had lunch at the Vasa Museum which was good. Costs are generally more expensive than in the UK but we found the lunch menu good value in comparison. Unlimited salad and bread and then a choice of open sandwiches/meatballs for £13 or so.

    For dinner, we strayed into Sodermalm and found a great little square called Medborgarplatsen with some food options. We sat outside in blankets and just soaked up the atmosphere. I’d recommend avoiding tourist places like Gamla Stan. Dinner for two of us, including beer was about £40 including tip.

    Getting around
    Like Becky, we mainly walked everywhere. You can do red bus tours for £28 or a canal tour for £16 each but we soon realised that Stockholm is tiny in scale and you can pretty much walk the route in an hour (money well saved). We got SL cards for £3.60 a single trip (you can buy them from tourist information vans or shops around). We took the tram out to the Vasa Museum and caught the public ferry back to get the traditional ‘Stockholm’ shots from the water.

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