Monday, July 18, 2011

helsinki & viking line

Following Ari's car (with Linds, Will, Mom and Jackie in it) to the airport. We were dropping Ari off for his flight home, turning in the black rental car, and sending my mom with Marketta's car that we were driving, since she was staying a week longer than us. 

We checked out rental cars and shuttles, but since we still had 8 people with us, the bus was the cheapest way to get us to the harbor to get on the overnight cruise. Good thing we dropped our BIG luggage in storage at the airport. 

Notice the beautiful wildflowers on the roads? We drove for almost three hours from the cabin and they were there the whole time. As if the green weren't enough. But it was also stormy. This is what I thought it would be like the whole time in Finland, but we just got a couple days and it wasn't too bad. 

Oh yeah, Elliott got a little car sick, but since we were following Ari and we didn't have cell phones, I grabbed a bowl for E to puke in. It was soo full so we drove ahead of Ari and started to pull over so they would follow us for a sec. But I just ended up dumping it out the window, without stopping and we carried on. Gross!
At the airport figuring out the bus tickets.
boys, boys, boys

 The bus dropped us at the train station- it was pretty!

First things first- we stopped for lunch. We wanted to try somewhere cool in Helsinki, but the rain and our bags led us to the glowing yellow arches- McDonald's.

You can't get these shakes in America:
Vanilla w/licorice, Strawberry w/chocolate, Pear w/chocolate and Chocolate w/chocolate. 
We walked through the city in the rain, after we bought some umbrellas at the train station. This statue is famous in Helsinki, and you can see the bullet holes from WWII on it below. 

Stockman department store is one of the oldest and nicest in the country.
But it was really hard for me to pass all the H&M's around town... it just wasn't possible with all our stuff!  
Beautiful green park in the city!

water closets 
some exhibition was going on with grass covered cars

and old electronics

Just fyi- Adam is carrying all of our stuff for the next three days which includes: 15 pairs of clothes, lots of diapers and wipes, tons of kids undies... you know, just in case, shampoo, makeup and a hairdryer. In my purse I had snacks, toys, 1 giant camera, a small camera, phone cords and battery chargers... and since Adam had the heavy bags, I was in charge of Linc. Whew! Next time we'll pack a backpack because those bags weren't shoulder friendly!

mister Linc

This is an old restaurant we wanted to try, but we didn't get to it.

We thought we finally made it to the harbor- but really we had another mile walk to go. See our boat behind Jackie? The red Viking Line- Cinderella was our boat's name. There were a few stands set up selling things- Adam and I got some new house slippers (my old ones from Finland have holes worn through the bottom) and Elliott got a knife with a reindeer antler handle. Too bad I forgot to take it out of my purse and it was confiscated at airport security on our way home. Woopsie. 

in front of the parliament house

Viking Line and Silja Line compete against each other in the Helsinki to Stockholm market. We passed them and lots of other companies the whole boat ride. We saw so many boats- it was like a boat freeway.

We finally made it to our fabulous (tiny) room. It was so fun to look out the window! 

We got wool slippers with rubber soles so they won't get holes now!
We went outside for sendoff, but it was crummy weather, so we didn't stay out too long.

Can you imagine living on some of these rocky islands? Amazing!

This was their cheese day for some reason...

It was finally time for dinner. The buffet had so much food to choose from! Crazy that our food cost more than our tickets to get on the boat. We could have brought a picnic on, but where's the fun in that? I had the most delicious salmon and potatoes on board. And lots of Finnish bread. The ice cream dessert bar was amazing too. They even had a kid buffet with nuggets, fries and chocolate covered raisins. 

The sun came out and the boys went to the front of the dining room to watch the other boats pass. We had to pry them off these seats.

Tired after a long day of travel and walking in the rain. It was nice to sit and relax. 
After dinner we happened to walk by the kids club. They loved it of course.

We did a little shopping at the duty free shop and filled up another bag to carry full of chocolate and candy. Have I mentioned Finland has the best of both??
From our window.
We had the boys sleep on the bottom so they wouldn't fall off. It was funny sleeping on the top bunk. 
P.S. We didn't find the ladder until the next night, so getting up on the top bunk was hilarious.
See you in Stockholm!


The Nielson Family said...

That is hilarious! Poor Elliot (and poor you!!!) And don't worry about all those h&m's we'll have our own soon :) The scenery is gorgeous as usual!

Melissa said...

Sounds like such a long but fun day!! I am still loving all your awesome pictures.

Senja said...

oh i love to see all the finland/helsinkin posts :) i just clicked on the Finland label.. i love sleeping on the boat, the rocking and the machine sounds are just so soothing :)

it's always a little adventure on the cruise and i feel like a little girl on my way to finland..

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