Howdy! So, travel restrictions were eased back in August I believe and every month since then I have dedicated my annual leave days for my trips abroad. Since August I have travelled to Venice, Italy, Amsterdam, The Netherlands and Estonia. I have two or three more trips planned this year but I’ll walk you through the ones I have already taken and tell you all about how fun it is to go on short, spontaneous trips fueled by depressive episodes and Ryanair sales.
In August I was officially fully vaccinated and therefore I was ready to take on Europe. My partner and I always wanted to see Venice. It’s a magical place although it does seem like a fake city of sorts. Let me explain, we went for a week, stayed at a fab hotel that for some reason never turned off their AC’s even at night.
The city is filled with tourists and sales merchants but here’s the thing that threw me off. The city felt a little empty, or to be more clear, it felt as though it was specifically manufactured for tourists and holidays for Italians from other regions. There are no taxis (apart from boat taxis which are expensive) and no roads, it’s all canals.
The best way to travel around Venice and the surrounding Islands is to purchase a three-day pass which gives you unlimited journeys. It was a great trip where we met people from Austria that we actually still keep in touch with and will be meeting this New Year! I would suggest going to Venice for no more than four or five days as the city itself is quite small and unless you plan to spend a fortune on food, there is no point. The trip cost us 20 euro for return tickets for 7 nights and 521 euro for the hotel for the entire stay with breakfast included in an ensuite room.
September – Amsterdam
This trip was heavily influenced by my love of windmills and the bike culture of the country. My partner has never been to The Netherlands and this was my third time going. The tickets were equally cheap as they cost us 39 euro return excluding luggage. This trip was really fun but the downside was that it rained for the entire four days that we were there.
Most sightseeing buses were out of service due to the pandemic so we took the Lover’s cruise around the city canals which is fun no matter how many times you’ve taken the tour. We also visited the flea market where my partner and I bought a lot of items that we probably did not need but loved anyway!
I bought a strawberry hat. I spent three days convincing my partner it was a great investment. Of course, it’s not a trip to Amsterdam without a trip to the Ice Bar and a visit to the coffee shops. All in all the trip was well worth it and the hotel we stayed in had a wonderful location and only cost us 107 euros as I had multiple discounts and credits on my Booking.com app.
October – Tallin
This trip was not so much for a holiday as it was to meet my future in-laws. Yes, you heard that right I am officially going to be somebody’s Mrs. I didn’t expect too much from Tallin but I was taken aback by how much a fellow post-Soviet country has developed itself into a full-blown European city.
The old city was so well preserved and I was shocked that polluted streets were not a thing in Tallin, and don’t get me started on the E-scooters you can rent for 12c a minute! The flights cost us about 40 euro return including priority and one carry-on bag.
We saved a ton on rent as we lived with my partner’s parents who had plenty of room for us to rest and work. We wanted to visit Finland as there is a direct Cruise route but the weather was quite frosty so we bookmarked it for next time.
So here you have it. A summary (be it a short one) of my travels so far this year. Be prepared to see a few more of these in the coming issues.