Friday, 5 September 2014

Experience: Amorella + Stockholm

This is the 4th part of a trip report; The whole story can be found under the tag I Must Travel Otherwise I'll Die 2014; First part can be read here.
Missing dearly my poor imprisoned suitcase and cursing the cold rainy weather I returned to my hostel. This time I was staying on board a small ship named Gustaf af Klint. The location of the ship is perfect and the stay was quite cheap, but so was the quality, not to mention having to pay additional fees for things that are elementary elsewhere. Unlike on the Bore in Turku it wasn't easy to forget being on board a ship here because she was swaying remarkably. It was never a problem, though. I was in a very tiny cabin with three other people. Although I hardly spent any time at the hostel during the Stockholm days, having no space whatsoever bothered me. Joining Hosteling International earlier in Turku didn't benefit me either because Gustaf af Klint is simply not a member. I'd suggest the place if you only wish for a bed.

Gustaf af Klint as seen on; I didn't take any photos of her.
I had arranged to meet a friend at 9 the next morning and needed a couple of hours to prepare. The terminal opened at 6:15 in the morning. I was wide awake about an hour before, after only four hours of bad sleep made much worse by concerns about the safety of the suitcase and even a related nightmare. I was the first person to rush into the terminal once it was opened; the relief when the locker opened revealing my untouched suitcase was undescribable. Happy, I returned to the hostel and started getting ready.
After collecting my suitcase I witnessed the arrival of the gorgeous Viking Grace
... exactly 24 hours after arriving with her.
I met my friend Steven at 9 in the morning, just as planned. We spent the morning walking around the city until Gröna Lund was opened at 3 in the afternoon. I found Gröna Lund surprisingly small, in fact, even Linnanmäki seems to be on a larger area.

Jetline and Vilda Musen
Insane really was insane
It's the same type of rollercoaster as Kirnu in Linnanmäki, just about twice as big and three times as intense.
World's tallest chain carousel, apparently. Amazing view up there.
Lustiga Huset, or funhouse. I think there's one of these in some form in every amusement park, with mirrors, crooked stairs, illusions, spinning rooms, angled rooms, bridges etc. 
Vilda Muset, or Wild Mouse. In the background the tall drop of Jetline.
"This. Ride. Sucks."
Well, not really. 
A nice fountain and Kvasten on the background
Gröna Lund in one photo
After Gröna Lund we went to a cinema. Since I'm not exactly a movie person, the pick was almost random. I went there hoping for a laugh and I got more than plenty of that, so I'm satisfied.

The next morning I had a plan of going to Vaxholm, taking a Waxholmsbolaget boat my friend Nelly was working on. The departure was at 8:15 in the morning; I returned to my hostel at about 2 o'clock at night. Before getting on the boat I would've had to get ready, check out from the hostel, find a shelter for my suitcase and get to the ship. Considering the fact I was already severely sleep deprived it didn't seem wise, so instead I slept as long as I could and chilled with Steven for the rest of the day. 

Europa was anchored there all day, transporting passengers ashore with tenders.
Birka Stockholm coming
Birka Stockholm moored...
... and maintained
Birka Stockholm going
Viking Cinderella going
Amorella coming to pick me up
In the evening I boarded the Amorella to return to Turku. I had quite the average B2 cabin in a remote location on deck 6, aft. The walk to civilization from there was long, but I enjoyed being able to go to the ship's spa in a robe and flip flops without the fear of being seen too much, because the spa is located at the forward part of the same deck. Alas, it wasn't even close to what I experienced on the Grace. It wasn't bad; a couple of nice jacuzzis and saunas made it a nice relaxing treat, but I really missed having big windows or, in fact, any windows at all.

My little cabin
There was no TV in my cabin, but this was just as nice
Bye bye, Sweden.
Stairway to heaven
Wonderful sunset as we sailed from Stockholm
Mandatory funnel picture
met Teaterskeppet on our way out
Halfway from my cabin to the spa - or was it vice versa?
The general plan of the ship. There are C class cabins under the car decks that I might even try out one day when I feel crazy enough.
Restaurant deck. The ship was quite empty and there wasn't much to do on board...
except for watching the show...
... which was a really well done tribute to Madonna.
Silja Galaxy in Turku as we approached the next morning
Quite a lovely name, huh?
Sea Wind coming in after us
In the morning I woke up early again as it was necessary, this time without any mishaps. I had plenty of time to get ready and pick up my takeaway breakfast, which proved to be useful. After disembarking in Turku I only had a couple of hours as I was just passing through. I would've gladly spent a few more days there, but my plans didn't allow it. I walked straight to the train station and took a train to Kirkkonummi.

Next post - Final days & Gabriella

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