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Last May when I had just returned from the Senegal-Gambia tour and was showing my travel photos to my friends, I was asked: "Why do you always travel so much and I can't travel anywhere? I have never been abroad!". So, I suggested that she (Essi, 12 years) could travel with me next summer. These pictures are from that first time ever abroad trip. Her uncle and my good friend was there too as a backup. After she had made the travel plan, we had tickets, we had a written document to have this kid with us (temporary guardians), her passport was acquired, suitcases were packed and many other things were arranged, we could start this trip.

In the afternoon in the Port of Helsinki we waited to have access to the passenger ship Mariella. And finally, Helsinki was left behind. Finnish flag and beautiful houses in the island near the Port of Helsinki. It's amazing how these "block of flat" size ships can enter the Strait Kustaanmiekka to the Baltic Sea. 


The cruise over the sea takes about eighteen hours. The ship has some activities to spend time, restaurants, a tax-free shop, movies etc. We ate at the Buffet restaurant and later in the evening we went to the music show where adults may drink some drinks and kids can have their own "drinks". Sunset at the sea is always worth watching and we did it from the upper sun deck at 11 pm.


In the morning the ship was finally near Stockholm. Swedish buildings are not so bad either. In Stockholm we jumped in the bus and continued our trip towards Kolmården.


The Kolmården Zoo is a good combination of different activities especially for children. Because we had almost "teen" with us, we focused mainly on animals. We saw practically all species we hoped for (dolphin, lion, tiger, elephant, giraffe, rhino...) and most of them looked to have fairly good conditions except the Rhino, it looked very sad. The animal's cages are built pretty smart and you can not see much iron bars. Hehe, that tiger-feeding machine is cool! They are just waiting when the door opens and it's time for food...


You can look at some animals so close that it's almost frightening. There is a glass between me and the snake, but there is nothing between me and the crocodile.


The birds of prey and the predators of the seas. The vulture is not that big in the real life, my lens just distorted the scale. That shark reminds me of the film The Jaws.


The day in the zoo was exhausting but fun. We stayed overnight in a hotel in Norrköping and in the next morning we continued our tour. First we made a safari tour by bus and after that we drove back to Stockholm.


In Stockholm we had tree hours time to discover the city ourselves. We adults decided to visit the Old Town and the Royal Palace and Essi naturally followed us. Those palace guards must have looong nerves cause every tourist will have a photo taken beside them. We added his agony.


Tree hours are not much but it's always possible to return. Essi's first travel outside Finland was about to be over. Again back to the ship and towards Helsinki via Maarianhamina.


No more pictures! (A lot of candy in the tax free plastic bag - OF COURSE!)

*Photos are published without any unnecessary permissions (especially from the kid) and they are "click to enlarge" mode.
**Kuvat on julkaistu ilman mitään turhia lupia etenkään kakaralta ei ole kysytty mitään. Klikkaa kuvaa päähän niin vot se aukeaa isompana



( 1 comment — Leave a comment )
Jul. 7th, 2007 02:25 pm (UTC)
that looks like a fun trip! I've never been on a cruise but it's definitely on the 'to do' list.

being right in the middle of the tiger enclosure must have been amazing. I love that big head in there too.

the giant vulture! haha, looks like it could eat the keeper in one bite. it's great when scale gets distorted like that.

I'll be leaving in a few hours on my own trip so I'd better finish packing. see you torstaina!
( 1 comment — Leave a comment )