The plus point of these was that one could get off at any stop in between, visit the place and then hop on again into any of the later buses. It also had headphones for an individual audio tour in many languages, which gave a commentary about the various places being passed by. Thus, we passed by the cultural centre and Sweden house. We got down to see the famous Vasa Museum, which is a museum built around a ship. This ship was made in early 17th century and on the day of its maiden voyage, in all splendour, the ship sank, the moment it set sail (in 1628). A case of bad design it seems. The ship was salvaged in 1961 and a museum was built, after restoring the worlds only 17th century ship to what it would have looked like then. We were told that our exorbitant “hop on – hop off” bus ticket included free admission to almost all museums, but that was not the case. Thereafter the hop on – hop off bus got coined as the hop on, hop off and f**k off bus.
The best way to see a place is anyway peripatetic. So we gathered our maps and our bearings and walked our way to the ship. On the way back, we went by the narrow cobblestoned streets of Gamla Stan, saw the sparkling water all around and the various ships and tours available to the Viking village. I personally didn’t find much difference in Stockholm and Helsinki. The architecture seemed the same due to the Swedish influence in Finland. Only the signs were not bilingual but only in Swedish this time. The same brands and the same stores are in both places. I didn’t even feel as if I visited another country due to the seamless integration of EU. The only difference is that Sweden doesn’t use the Euro as its official currency, otherwise everything else seems the same. A few things reminded me of back home though. For some reason a lot of the crowd in the cruise consisted of Bangladeshis. Also, surprisingly there were tongas being used in Gamla Stan! One of my colleagues even distorted Gamla Stan to gamlistan and then to gulistan.
Here’s a nice bird’s eye view of Stockholm. It has overhead videos and is really like flying to that place.
After getting into the ship, once again it was some more of the sun deck followed by some more music, dance and drinks, since it got quite cloudy instantly. There were lots of pets on board and I met a couple of them. Pendo and Jerry were two of the dogs I met. Pendo is an Alsatian, known as German Shepherd in this part of the world. The ship even had a pet’s corner. On the return trip, we had the tax free shopping to take care of. I bought loads of chocolates. We also had the karoake bar to try again. But this time again, by the time we got to the karaoke bar, the timings were already over. We went exploring the lower decks of the ship which were meant for the cars and other vehicles. Unfortunately, we were imagining them to be in some large yard kind of thing, but it wasnt like that. We couldn’t see anything except for endless rows of cabins. We also visited the Sauna centre and managed to take a peek in as it was closing down for the night. After partying for some part of the night, we retired slightly early as we had to get to our workplace, straight from the terminal the next day. The next morning, 8 weary travellers got off at the Viking Line terminal at Helsinki, tired, hungry and pleased.
Ok! so this I hadn’t read.
sorry..I guffawed when I read the name of the amusement park..sheeeesh..how juvenile of me.
The cruise seemed fun so at least you don’t get sea-sick.
Patrix, believe me, I had to stop myself from cracking a joke on that name 🙂
ah-ha! girls are no different, eh? Why doesn’t that surprise me?
Well *some* girls are no different..most can abs NOT stand such jokes.. they actually get shocked if you would crack a joke like that! I could write essays on such girls 🙂
I love that fifth photot, fairy … boy do I envy you and your darned cruise ! 🙂
And oh, the park reminded me of this building in Bombay townside called Lund & Blockley …every time we bunked college and took a cab to Regal, we guffawed insanely while passing it !
Ash, I abs love that photo too.. it’s so ethereal!! so surreal…
even the last one, where a saegull is hitching a ride is close to my heart 🙂
and dont worry.. all good things come to an end..and so did the cruise.. no more of it here now..
but the next thing would be Paris.. yeah you can turn green again 🙂
ok..so that makes me having visited two countries without moving an inch from my office chair..how gud is that 😉
chocos.. u bought chococs @ duty free shop.. u know u r a darling :o) when r those chocos being parcelled to me :o)