In the midst of all the rain today, I found a sparkling web on my balcony. Below are some of the photos I captured of it.
Now, I do have to admit that I have Photoshopped this sparkling web a little bit. But I have not changed the motive, just adjusted the contrast, tone, colour and sharp some. Felt like experimenting today. ;p
Recently I went on a day trip to the lovely city of Vaxjo, or in Swedish - Växjö, here in Sweden. Vaxjo is located about 111 kilometers from Karlskrona, where I live, so it took about one and a half hours to drive there. The reason for my excursion to Vaxjo was that my mum had a meeting there and she asked me if I wanted to tag along, which I thought was a great idea. Because while she was in the meeting, I walked around in Vaxjo and snapped some shots of the city with my camera. So in this post I will share some of those photos, along with a bit of information about Vaxjo and the sights I saw on my walk there.
But first I want to share a few quick facts about the city of Vaxjo: Vaxjo is located in Kronoberg County in Southern Sweden and has a population of about 82,000 people. The land area is 1674 square kilometers. Vaxjo was granted city privileges in 1342 and became a university city with the Linnaeus University and its campus in 1999.
Now on to the Photos From My Day Trip To Vaxjo In Sweden. :-)
So the first thing that caught my attention in Vaxjo was this stunning church, The Vaxjo Cathedral.
The Vaxjo Cathedral is Vaxjo's tallest building with a height of 63 meters. The church has its roots in the early Middle Ages and is tied to the legend of Bishop Saint Sigfrid (portrayed in the statue). The Vaxjo Cathedral is the oldest cathedral in Vaxjo and was a bishop church already in the 1100s.
Now the Vaxjo Cathedral has burned down twice, the first time was in 1276 when the church was set on fire. The second time was in 1740 when the tower and the church was badly damaged by fire after a lightning strike and had to be rebuilt again. So even though the church is of medieval origin, it has largely been characterized by 1800s and 1900s restorations.
The Statue Of Saint Sigfrid. Saint Sigfrid was a Benedictine monk and bishop in Sweden. He came from England to Värend with his nephews Unaman, Sunaman and Vinaman in the year 1000. And it was Bishop Saint Sigfrid who ordered that the Vaxjo Cathedral be built. This statue of the bishop and his nephews was consecrated in 1999 by Bishop Anders Wejryd.
I guess that is his nephews, not sure why there is a dog there though? But it was a really nice statue.
Another renowned Swede was this man, Carl Linnaeus (Swedish original name Carl Nilsson Linnæus, 1707 – 1778), who was a Swedish botanist, physician and zoologist who laid the foundations for the modern scheme of binomial nomenclature. Today Linnaeus has an entire park named after him in Vaxjo - the Linnaeus Park, which was where I saw this statue of him (well, of most of him... Hehe.). The Linnaeus University in Vaxjo is of course also named after this very Carl Linnaeus.
And Carl Linnaeus did spend time here when he was alive, in fact in the early 1700s he attended school in Karolinerhuset at the edge of the Linnaeus Park.
Which certainly was a charming park.
The Linnaeus Park was also where I found this beautiful creation known as the Cactus Group.
This feature has been in the Linneaus Park since the 1920s and every year it is given a new theme.
This year, 2012, the Cactus Group's theme seemed to be Tree City - that is what the text said anyway.
Just a few steps from the Linneaus Park and the Cactus Group I stumbled on to the stunning Lake Vaxjo.
Where you could go for a quiet little stroll...
... or simply take a seat somewhere and enjoy the view.
Which was what this gentleman did.
Ahh. :-) But not only can you enjoy a walk, bike ride or a relaxing
afternoon by Lake Vaxjo - you can also fish crayfish here. Yupp. Although, you will have to sign up for it and wait for the traditional crayfish premiere to start - which usually take place in early August. Nevertheless, there sure are a lot of things to do around, and in, this lovely lake.
And all of these sights I saw in Vaxjo were not far from the city center at all.
So after a bit of quick sightseeing I also took a little stroll along Vaxjo's shopping streets.
And I was not the only one out on a walk. (I just seem to be drawn to doggies no matter where I go. Lol!)
A fun feature I noticed on the streets was these quotes that had been carved into the stone, something I remember I also saw when I walked along Queen Street in Stockholm. But it turned out that these quotes had been chosen from writers, such as Vilhelm Moberg and Elin Wägner, who have a connection with Kronoberg County. These quotes can be found along Storgatan and Västergatan, also known as "Kulturstråket" - "Culture Lane".
I particularly liked this quote, in English - "Now it is your moment on Earth", by Vilhelm Moberg.
Actually, it felt like I bumped into art wherever I turned in Vaxjo. Hehe. No idea what this green thing is, but it looked quite intriguing.
As did this cute fountain...
... and this little mini "Caesars Palace Fountain" copy. Lol! Nah, there was no music. Hehe.
Now there are of course a lot more to see, photograph and experience in Vaxjo than what I had time to do on my day excursion there. But I must say that, even though I have been in Vaxjo many times before, this was the first time I actually took the time to walk around and really take in what the city had to offer and is all about. My conclusion is that Vaxjo is indeed much more than just a University City you go to and study and then leave, which was the impression I had of it. I now think, after my attentive walk around the city, that Vaxjo is an attractive, lovely little historic Swedish city which I am sure must be quite nice to live in. But although I have no plans to move, I certainly plan to return to Vaxjo so I continue my exploration of this very enjoyable city. :-)
Sounds weird, huh!? I could not believe my eyes when I saw it for the first time, which actually was on my recent trip to Rhodes in Greece. Where it turns out that fish pedicure is quite popular. But I have since then learned that we also have fish pedicure places in Sweden, so perhaps it is just I who am not up to speed on the latest pedicure trends. Hm...
Anyway, in case I am not the only one who have not heard of this? I thought I would share a bit about what Fish Pedicure actually is. The photos below are from Kiotari in Rhodes.
So fish pedicure is when you put your feet in a sort of aquarium and let the fish in there eat all the dead skin off your feet. The fish specie that feast on your feet is called Garra Rufa, also known as Doctor Fish. This species of fish feed on eating dead cells from other fish - and humans. Actually, the little ones are even used against skin conditions such as psoriasis.
Around 100 fish are used for a pedicure treatment. And because these fish have no teeth, they cannot bite you.
In fact, apparently it feels like getting kissed when they work their magic.
Hm... still not sure I would ever try this? Lol! But is certainly sounds fascinating though, and natural. And I guess one never should say never... right? :o
So now we are in the one of those In Between Seasons of the year here in Sweden, where it is no longer summer - nor is it quite yet fall. It is actually what I call - Fall In Transformation.
Fall In Transformation in the forest.
Fall In Transformation in a garden in Lyckeby.
Fall In Transformation in a sheep pen.
Fall In Transformation along a walkway in Lyckeby.
And, Fall In Transformation close up...
... near the sky.
Indeed Fall In Transformation is a mesmerizing and vibrant In Between Season to contemplate and follow along I think, it is actually one of those times of the year where I feel like I get to see a painting come to live right in front of my eyes. And I certainly look forward to see how this year's painting of "Fall, After The Transformation" will turn out. ;-)
Though I love traveling, it is also very nice to be back home here in Sweden and enjoy every day life with my doggy Lisen again. And because it was a while since I took a proper photographic walk with Lisen in the forest, I decided to do just that today. So earlier this morning I grabbed my camera, Lisen and off to our favourite forest in Rödeby we went.
Strolling in the forest earlier today.
And while Lisen and I were strolling around in the forest, I got a strong urge to take some photos of this lovely lake we frequently pass in there. However, it has never been very easy to get good shots of this particular lake due to the fact that there are a lot of trees in the way (of course...). It is also very hard to walk down to the lake, or even get close to it, because the terrain is quite rough. I have tried before, and it has not been fun... But today I felt like giving it another go, taking photos of the lake that is. So when I saw a tree sticking up on a little hill overlooking the lake, I thought - YES!
The little tree overlooking the lake.
Though it was a while since I climbed a tree, I did think that this one looked quite easy to climb up on. And it was not that hard to climb up to the top of the little tree, but once I had reached the top I realized that it was not that easy to hang on to the tree while trying to take good, steady photos with my camera at the same time. Hm... Nevertheless, I did manage to get a few OK shots while I was hanging up there.
Like this one. A photo of the lake taken from the tree I climbed.
And this one. Though there were still trees blocking the view of the lake...
Now the little tree I climbed up on to take the photos had of course small, frail branches on it. Many of which, unfortunately, broke while I was climbing on them. This meant that the only way for me to come down from the little tree was to slide down it - ouch!!!
Not many branches left to climb down on, especially on the left side.
Therefore I now have quite a few scratches and bruises on my legs and stomach from my little tree climbing adventure earlier today. But it was fun, I have to say. I also had a lot of laughs out there in the forest, thinking I must look quite funny up there on the little tree waving around with my camera while holding on to the tree for dear life. And I can only imagine what Lisen must have been thinking while I was up there... Lol!
Me having fun in the tree. ;p Lisen, behind me, not looking very impressed. Lol!
And of course Lisen came over to the tree to give me one of her intense looks while I was up there. Hehe.
Anyway, in the end I had a very fun and rejuvenating morning. As well as a morning which really made me appreciate how nice it is to be back home again, walking my doggy, photographing and, ehum - climbing trees. Lol! ;p But really, to simply embrace life's every day opportunities is one of my favourite things to do. And it is something I truly can do every day, everywhere. It just happened to be in the form of a climbing (and sort of tightly hugging) a tree for me today. :-)
By the way, the photos above makes it look like it was easy peasy to climb this little tree - which it was not. So, below are two "behind the scenes" photos too. Hehe. ;-)
Now this is a more realistic photo of how it was up there in the tree, me frantically trying not to slide down it before I had managed to take some steady photos of the lake.
And it was not all that easy to get the little lady behind me to cooperate when I wanted her to either.
Lol! Now THAT is the real
story of me, just climbing a tree in a forest. ;p
In this final post about my week in Rhodes in Greece I will share lots of photos from my excursion to Rhodes City Centre. Now to get to Rhodes City Center from the little Greek village of Kiotari, where we lived on the island, we had to take the local bus. And because there were a lot of people on the bus and many stops along the way, it took about two hours to get there (one way). But the bus had good air conditioning and I got to sit down all the way, so luckily it was quite a good bus ride.
Now the main events of our excursion to Rhodes City Center was the lovely walk along the beach and the absolutely breathtaking ocean there, eating the traditional Greek food Gyros and our visit to the beautiful Old Town of Rhodes. Of course I had my camera ready in my hand to take photos with all day long! And I definitely used that camera!! Yikes. So after having gone through quite a massive editing process, below are some of the photos I took on My Excursion To Rhodes City Center In Greece.
The bus stop outside the hotel we stayed at in Kiotari, we were not the only ones in excursion mode. ;p
Arrived in Rhodes City Center.
A typical street in Rhodes.
Gas prices in Rhodes. I always think it is interesting to see how much gas costs in different countries, these prices are in Euros.
Another street in Rhodes.
Which lead to this statue...
... and this magnificent ocean!
Such a stunning beach! I so fell in love with these colours!
Ahhh!!! I could have sat here forever.
The beach going north.
The beach going south, which is where we went.
There were lots of people soaking up the sun in Rhodes.
Many felt a bit adventurous in the ocean, while others had second thoughts there...
After a little while we reached the port in Rhodes.
Where there were lots of boats.
So another lovely place to stroll at.
You could actually go on excursions to Turkey with some boats. Or, why not jump on the Love Boat?
But in case you did not feel like going on a boat, you could go on this bus for a ride around Rhodes.
After all this walking though, we got a bit hungry. So we went to a restaurant in the yellow building.
And had the classic Greek dish Gyros, which is sort of like a kebab. I had chicken Gyros in pita with another Greek classic - tzatziki and fries. It was really yummy, though I was not prepared to get two pitas on one plate. Lol! So I certainly got very full. :p
Gyros. A very common sight in Rhodes, you could buy Gyros pretty much everywhere.
Entrance to Old Town in Rhodes.
Map over the Old Town in Rhodes, which was a lot bigger than I thought.
And of course the Old Town had guards all over the place. ;-)
There were also lots of charming, narrow streets there.
As well as a bit more modern, wide streets.
Lots of people enjoyed a visit in Old Town.
I even saw a Swedish flag there.
And this place - Swedish Ice Bakery.
Yum! The funny thing is that I actually bought an ice cream here before I noticed that the shop was called "Swedish Ice Bakery".
And the reason I bought an ice cream here was this - Macaroon Ice Cream. Wow! I had never seen that before, and it was super delicious! I especially loved the macaroons in there, not sure what was Swedish about it though? Hehe.
A cute square.
View from the opposite side of the square.
The center piece of the square was this friendly looking fountain.
Where lots of birds hung out and had a drink and chat with each other. :-)
Part of the wall which surround the Old Town in Rhodes, seen from the outside.
Because unfortunately we had to leave the Old Town of Rhodes eventually, and Greece too. So Bye Bye.
I truly did have a great week in Rhodes, beautiful beaches, perfect weather and many charming places to see. It is definitely a place I can see myself returning to in the future. But for now I have been back in, the somewhat more and more fall like, Sweden for over a week. Though it took a few days for me to realize that flip flops were no longer suitable to wear here at home, a bit too cold for my toes, I have now adapted to the weather here. Which has actually been quite nice lately. And of course I reunited with my beloved dog Lisen the same day I returned home, who, yet again, had survived my absence. Hehe.
So it is back to life in Sweden with Lisen and me in my next post - ahhh! It is actually going to be quite nice to return to the present again. Lol. ;-)
My favourite part about my visit to Rhodes in Greece, more specifically the Greek village of Kiotari, was the awesome beach and amazing ocean that was there. I spent every day, except the one day we went on an excursion to Rhodes City Centre, on that lovely beach. And because it was more than +30 degrees Celsius every day, I spent a lot of time in the beautiful crystal clear ocean cooling off of course. So below are some photos from my days at the beach in Kiotari. :p
Good Morning! :-) View over the beach in Kiotari from the hotel lobby.
The beach in Kiotari was about 300 meters from the hotel.
To get there we had to cross this bridge...
... walk down these stairs...
... and walk along this walk way, it took about five minutes - tops.
Now we usually got to the beach about half past nine in the morning, so there were always lots of available sunbeds to choose from.
And you could pretty much move them around as you wished there, hehe.
At 10 AM the very popular Beach Bar opened, where we could get as many drinks and snacks we wanted to until 6 PM. This was a part of the All Inclusive at the hotel we stayed at, which was excellent!!! :p
And you could either enjoy your drink/snack at the bar...
... or bring it to your sunbed to enjoy there, which was what I preferred to do. :p
But of course the best part of the beach was this amazing crystal clear ocean.
Where I spent a lot of time!!
And there were plenty to see and do in the ocean as well. :-)
Like have a closer look at these little guys (which I lured to me with some bread so I could take some photos of them).
Turned out that these little guys were also hungry, hehe.
Other activities you could engage in at the beach were, for example, water aerobics.
Ride a Jet Ski (or swim).
Or ride on a banana boat.
You could even play volley ball on the beach if you felt like it.
But, despite all these choices of activities in and out of the water - I preferred to simply reeeelaaaax in my sunbed or in the ocean while I was at the beach in Kiotari! Which was absolutely splendid. :-)
Now the beach in Kiotari was mostly sand, though the last ten meters just before reaching the ocean consisted mostly of pebbles. So I always wore my flip flops down to the ocean and took them off right at the edge there before I headed into the ocean. It was also a good idea to wear flip flops while walking to the ocean, because the sand/pebbles were extremely hot from the sun. The bottom of the ocean was mostly sand though, so it was ok to walk there. And I must say, even though there were several great pools at the hotel, we definitely preferred to spend our days at the beach in Kiotari. I mean everything was there, sunbeds, umbrellas, drinks, snacks and lots of activities to choose from in case you got bored. So simply wonderful!
In my next post I will share lots of photos from my excursion to Rhodes City Centre, Old Town and the beautiful blue coloured rainbow beach in Rhodes. Hope to see you all then. :-)
This Sunday I arrived back home here in Sweden from a wonderful, sunny and very relaxing week on the beautiful island of Rhodes in Greece. I truly had a lovely trip and finally, for the first time this summer, I got to enjoy real warm temperatures (a minimum of +30 degrees celsius every day) as well as lots of splashing around in a stunning crystal clear ocean. Needless to say, it was an amazing week!
Now I went on this trip with a friend and we lived in the southern part of the island of Rhodes in a little Greek village called Kiotari, about one hour by bus from the airport. The hotel we lived at was an all inclusive hotel about 300 meters from the beach, which was where we mostly spent our days. However, we did go on one excursion to the gorgeous Rhodes city center and the island's amazing ancient Old Town area. But despite the fact that the week was mostly about chilling out by the beach, I still managed to take tons of photos (of course, hehe). Therefore I will do three posts about my travel and experiences in Rhodes.
In this first post I will include photos from my trip from Vaxjo (Växjö) airport here in Sweden to Rhodes in Greece. I will also post photos from the hotel I stayed at, the Rodos Village Beach Mitsis Hotel in Kiotari. The other two posts will include photos from the lovely beach in Kiotari as well as my excursion to Rhodes city center.
So here we go, post number one - My Stay At The Rodos Village Beach Mitsis Hotel In Kiotari.
Boarding the airplane to Rhodes at Vaxjo (Växjö) airport in Sweden.
Bye bye Sweden.
We had to take a bus from the airport to Kiotari, about a one hour ride.
Along the way we saw these cute goats.
And lots of...
Finally we arrived at our hotel in Kiotari, the Rodos Village Beach Mitsis Hotel.
Which was like a small pink village on a mountain. Hehe.
The hotel lobby.
Where you could use WiFi, which many did of course (including me). It was a bit slow at times though...
Another popular area, the buffet restaurant.
With lots of pretty food.
As well as salads.
More mains. Now I would give the mains here about 3/5 if I were to rate them, mainly because I found that the cuts of meat and fish here had a lot of fat and bones on them.
My favourite, meringue pie - yum! I had never eaten one before, but will most definitely do it again!
And lots of fruits.
I preferred to sit outside and eat.
And this is how one of my meals looked like.
View from the buffet restaurant.
Also view from the buffet restaurant over the lower level pool area.
Which was a lot busier during the day of course.
You could also get as many drinks as you liked, so cheers!!! And the drinks were ice cold and tasty too. :p
View over Kiotari from the hotel.
The upper level pool by the Italian a la carte restaurant, which you could eat at once during your stay.
Which we did. I had carpaccio as an appetizer - delicious! It was also another first time tasting for me. :-)
Mushroom risotto for main, it was quite good. Though I would have liked more mushrooms and I thought the rice was a bit odd for a risotto.
Dessert, insanely delicious! It said on the menu that it was a chocolate soufflé, but I think it was more like a fondant. On the other hand, I have never had a soufflé - so what do I know? Lol! But it was tasty. So all in all the Italian restaurant definitely deserve 4/5 points in my book.
View from the Italian restaurant.
On our way back down the hill from the Italian restaurant in beautiful moonlight.
And to finish off post number one, an early sunrise view from our balcony. :p
So I would say that I enjoyed my stay at the Rodos Village Beach Mitsis Hotel, though the hotel is definitely in need of some refurbishment. However, the service was great, the food quite alright, drinks were yummy and plenty to choose from. Also the location was lovely, but be prepared to climb a lot of stairs. Hehe. Other than that, fabulous.
Now I am off to work on my next Rhodes post, all about the beautiful beach in Kiotari. Already miss it!