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22nd April 2019
At the mouth of the Baltic sits Copenhagen, the capital city of Denmark. Copenhagen defines the fairy tale like persona of Denmark, complete with it’s picturesque candy-coloured buildings, restaurants and bars lined along its distinctive 17th century waterfront. Opened in 1843 Copenhagen’s famous Tivoli Gardens is the second oldest amusement park in the world with a Victorian style grand ferris wheel and its ornate gardens is a must to visit. Furthering it’s fantasy appeal are the many castles in the surrounding area. The Kronborg Castle, home to the setting of Shakespeare’s Hamlet may be the most special complete with its rich history and medieval architecture. Copenhagen’s beauty doesn’t end when the sun goes down. The ambient lighting down the leafy walkways of Stroget, make it’s shops and restaurants the perfect evening activities.
Denmark’s second largest city, Aarhus has a super chilled vibe. It’s laissez-faire atmosphere makes it the perfect place to relax. The city itself is also packed with culture. Popular cultural attractions in the region include the Aarhus Cathedral which is the largest church in Denmark as well as Marselisborg Palace. The city is also regarded for it’s high number of parks. There are 134 well maintained public parks which during summertime host several popular music festivals such as the NorthSide Festival.
Denmark has a seasonal climate similar to other areas in northern Europe. During summertime temperatures reach around 20℃ benefitting from very long day light hours thanks to it’s northern location. Denmark is also the perfect place to embrace a festive wintertime getaway with it’s cosy cabins complete with log fires, Christmas lights and ice-skating, not forgetting the locally made mulled wine.
Venturing deeper into the Baltic sea the ship will arrive in Sweden. Sweden is among the richest countries in the world. This wealth is evident in the old city of Stockholm which is both the capital and the heart of the country. Stockholm boasts exceptionally clean streets and cobbled paths complete with chic boutique shops, restaurants and cafes. Stockholm also has a rich heritage, dating back to the 13th century. This heritage can be seen in any of it’s 100 museums, in the architecture of the old town Gamla Stan or within the masonry of its old stone bridges.
Breathtaking scenery surrounds the city center with forests and lakes within touching distance linking the city perfectly to the nature surrounding it making it ideal for an adventure into the natural world. Just outside the city is Djurgarden island. On the island you will find the world’s first open-air museum, Skansen founded in 1891. Containing within it pieces of Swedish history taking you back in time over 500 years. One of the most beautiful natural aspects of the city are its dramatic sunsets. The mesmerizing light shows should be capture at every opportunity.
Across the sea from Stockholm is Helsinki the Finish capital. Helsinki is Finland in a nutshell. Situated on a peninsula surrounded by the sparkling Baltic and over 300 islands. The positioning of the city gives it a real nautical feel with many sailing events taking place during the summer. If sailing isn’t for you then the long day light hours and warmer temperatures also lead to an array of outdoor events all around the city such as the Coming of Spring and Midsummer festivals, the Helsinki Festival, and the Annual Night of the Arts. Due to the small peninsula on which Helsinki is located, the city of Helsinki itself is quite compact. This makes the pocket size city easy enough to walk around or take any of the modern and well provided public transport to get to where you want to go. Finland is also renowned for its numerous public lakes, beaches and saunas. All of which are worth exploring to take full advantage of the finish experience.
Riga is the enchanting capital of Latvia, and the largest city among the Baltic States. Riga sits on the Baltic Sea coast at the mouth of the River Daugava. Like many of the countries in the region it has a rich history of occupation from various other nations. This can be further explored in the ever popular Occupation Museum. The museum will show off areas recent history such as its horrific occupation by Nazi Germany and then the Soviets, up until Latvia became an independent nation in 1991. Latvia’s history filled with various invasions gives it a wonderful range of influences from abroad such as bright pastel coloured buildings and architectural cues such as its soviet-esc churches. The various foreign cultures tied to Latvia make it a truly unique country.
Bordering Latvia is Estonia. Like Latvia, Estonia also has a sea front capital of Tallinn. To visit Tallinn is to go back in time. Filled with archaic medieval architecture and narrow cobbled streets housing numerous artisans crafting fine jewels and ceramics vessels. Discover the remains of the once Polish and Russian occupiers as you walk through the old town or experience the oldest brewery in Estonia for yourself. Other popular attractions include sampling one of the many local dishes in a traditional Estonian restaurant. The mystical Kadriorg Palace shouldn’t be missed complete with its pristine grounds and water features, make for a perfect day in the Baltics.