I first decided that we’d go on a Nordics trip back in December.
Robert and I had been living in USA for nearly 5 months, and I was itching to have some more travel on the horizon. When I discovered that a travel blogging conference was going to be held in Stockholm, I just couldn’t say no.
I purchased my conference ticket and started planning a 3 week trip around it. That trip starts this week! I’ll be ticking off 4 new countries in a part of Europe that I’ve never been to before – the Nordics.
If you’re wondering what the difference is between the Nordics and Scandinavia, you’re not the only one. Those are some blurred lines, to be sure, and you’ll probably get a different answer depending on who you ask. As a geography nerd, I decided to find out the differences:
Scandinavia is generally referred to as Denmark, Norway, and Sweden. The Nordics usually include all the Scandinavian countries, as well as Iceland, Finland and their associated territories (Greenland, Faroe Islands, and Åland Islands).
If you’re a Game of Thrones fan, you might enjoy this fact: In Northern Europe, the Nordic countries are often referred to as Norden meaning “The North”. If I come across any castles that look vaguely like Winterfell, I’ll be sure to post it on Instagram.
Now that we know all about Scandinavia and the Nordics, it’s time to show you my trip itinerary, which literally has me squirming in excitement.
days 1-5: Iceland
I’ve been wanting to go to Iceland for a while now, but from Australia, it’s a b*tch to get there. The two countries are literally on opposite points of the globe.
Luckily I now live in NYC, which means Iceland is only a 5 hour flight away! Robert and I will fly from New York to Reykjavik, where we’ll spend 5 days doing road trips around the west and south of this incredibly scenic country.
As someone who thoroughly enjoys photography in naturally beautiful places, I’m pretty damn excited for this part of our summer trip!
Days 6-8: Denmark
From Reykjavik we fly into Copenhagen. We weren’t even going to include Denmark on this trip, but the flights were cheap and conveniently timed so we decided, why not spend a few days exploring the Danish capital.
I expect that we will consume many pastries, and if I get a sighting of the Crown Princess Mary, I imagine her and I will promptly go to tea and discuss our Tasmanianism. (Don’t know the story? Check out this article on the official website of Denmark, which hilariously refers to Australia as “a remote country” and regards Mary’s parents as “commoners”).
Days 9-15: Sweden
We take a fast train from Copenhagen to Stockholm and follow it up with a few days exploring the city. I’ll be interested to see whether Stockholm will impress me with its Scandinavian beauty and culture.
Robert will then head back to New York while I stay on for TBEX. I have 2 days free before the conference activities start, which I’ve decided to use for few days of R&R (most likely consuming numerous coffees, and not much else) in the university city of Uppsala.
On the day before the conference, I’ll be taking a day trip to the historic township of Sigtuna, sponsored by Visit Stockholm for TBEX attendees. From then on, there’s parties and events and conference galore up until the weekend.
Days 16-21: Finland
The day after the conference, my press trip with Visit Finland officially starts! Along with 9 other bloggers, I’ll be jumping on an early morning ferry which will take us to Mariehamn in the Åland Islands, situated between Sweden and Finland.
We spend 2 days in Åland doing some outdoorsy activities and getting to know this picturesque area before taking a ferry to the Finnish mainland.
We spend another 2 days in Turku exploring the Finnish archipalego before heading back to Stockholm on an overnight ferry, where I’ll then jump on a flight back to New York.