My Travel Bucket List: The Nordic Countries

My Travel Bucket List: The Nordic Countries [petiteadventures.org]

As mentioned last week in my Travel Bucket List Sweden, one of the things I’m looking forward to now that we call Stockholm home is exploring more of the country, as well as its Nordic neighbours.

The Nordic countries generally refer to Denmark, Finland, Iceland, Norway and Sweden, and their territories including the Faroe and Åland Islands. This is an area of the world I’ve long been fascinated with, and have had the opportunity to explore a little bit.

But a little bit is never enough! Over the next few months, I’ll hopefully be getting up and out, and exploring and experiencing as much of the Nordic countries as possible.

Here are the top five things I want to see, do and eat in Denmark, Finland, Iceland and Norway:

Continue reading

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#Take12Trips Challenge Update

Petite Adventures' #Take 12 Trips Update

Earlier this year, I shared with you my intentions to take part in the #Take12Trip challenge and given that we’ve pretty much hit the half-way point in 2016 (sidebar: how are we already half-way through the year?!) I figure this was as good a time as any to check in and see where I’m at.

Before we get started, as a reminder, the #Take12Triips Challenge is designed to inspire travellers to make a commitment to getting out once and month and exploring – whether that’s day-trips, month-long adventures, or anything in between.

In my post, I described some of my dream trips for the months ahead. And, as with all the best-laid plans of mice and men, most of the months did not go as expected.

So, let’s take a look… Continue reading

Six Month Retrospective: Adventures in Europe and Beyond

PA-RetrospectiveEuropeAndBeyond-

This week marks six months since we left Canada and moved to Madrid. In some ways, it feels like we’ve only just arrived, and in others it’s like we’ve been here forever.

This week, I’m taking a quick break from the regularly scheduled travel programming to take a look back at the last six months – the adventures we’ve been on, the places we’ve seen, the foods we’ve eaten, and to look ahead at what the next six months has to offer. Continue reading

Packing Light: Helsinki & Tallinn in Winter

PA-Packing Light-

At the end of December, immediately following our week in Las Palmas de Gran Canaria, Dave and I were off to explore two of Europe’s northern most capitals: Helsinki and Tallinn.

From +20°C to -20°C in a matter of days; it was a shock to say the least.

The temperatures throughout our five day trip ranged from 0°C when we arrived to -20°C the day we explored Tallinn. Although there was quite the difference, it was all just varying degrees of cold.

About Helsinki

Finland’s capital city is situated on the shore of the Gulf of Finland, an arm of the Baltic Sea. It has a humid continental climate and temperatures in winter are much higher than the northern location might suggest (source). Temperatures in January/February average -5°C, and the snow season is much shorter than in the north.

Our trip to Helsinki was definitely not average: temperatures reached -10°C and we were treated to snow each and every day.

About Tallinn

80km south of Helsinki, across the Gulf of Finland lies Tallinn, the capital of Estonia. Just like Helsinki, Tallinn enjoys a humid continental climate. The winters are cold but mild for its northern latitude, thanks to its coastal location. During the winter months, temperatures tend to hover around the freezing mark and are characterized by low amounts of sunshine (source).

Again, our time in Tallinn was anything but average: Temperatures never rose above -15°C, but the days were very sunny (between December and March, sunshine hours usually range from 0.5 to 4.1 hours, so this was quite a treat).

When preparing to explore in sub-zero temperatures it’s easy to want to throw on everything you own, but I’ve found with a few key pieces and strategic layering you can ensure you’ll stay toasty warm even when the air around you is anything but.

Here’s how I packed for a week with just a carry-on: Continue reading

Euro Decor: Doors

PetiteAdventures.org

Apparently, I have this thing with doors.

Which is a good because Europe and Europeans are great at doors. No matter what city we visit, the doors are always on fleek! From bright colours and interesting shapes, to peculiar and unexpected adornments, Europeans really go all out with their front doors.

To kick off this week, I thought I’d share with you some of the good, colourful, and plain old interesting doors and doorways we’ve encountered (so far) in Europe. Continue reading