Trip Start Nov 01, 2006
168Trip End Oct 15, 2008
Map your own trip!
Show trip route
We got to have breakfast with Mai and Charlotte, it was nice to see people we knew, and be able to catch up on what had been happening at home. It was also good having someone to translate the menu, no guess work that morning!
The drive to Sweden meant traveling over Europe's Largest Bridge, I think it is 7.8kms. It was very long, high and expensive (about 27pounds). We were now officially over schedule, and by deciding that we would have to be in Prague by the 5th of June we stopped quickly in Malmo to see what would be the best things to see in Sweden in a shorter time span. So with a little help from the tourist office and Sofia my Swedish work colleague, we decided on Gotland and Stockholm.
Sweden has given me the first real feeling of space since traveling so far. This is not because I can see around me for miles on end, but more that you can drive for an hour along a fairly major road pass about 15 cars, and see only forest, tree after tree with a few houses dotted here or there. Every where else we have been there is farm land, you may pass the occasional wooded area, but it has all been farm land and houses and you certainly see a lot more cars.
The drive to Oskarshamn on the other side of Sweden took about 3hrs. This is where we would get the ferry over to Gotland. We turned up expecting to buy a ticket for the next morning and find somewhere to sleep, but it turned out a ferry was leaving soon, and there was still space left. So we got the 9pm ferry that arrived in Gotland at 12MN. We drove off the ferry, found a car park, set up our bed and slept, ready to discover tomorrow.
Visby is the capital of Gotland, and was made a UNESCO world heritage site in 1995. It is an old medieval walled town which has seen many changes through its past. Most of the streets were cobble stone, and during the summer, no cars are allowed through the town gates. There were not many people about, but it is meant to be absolutely packed during summer. I have been told Gotland is to young Swedes what Ibiza is to Brits, but as it was out of season we didn't really see much of this party atmosphere. There were a heap of weird looking people though in overalls of different colours which were covered in patches. When we asked someone who they were all he said was 'students', well they looked strange. Visby was lovely, it is a mix of old and new, with ruins of 13th century churches next door to modern buildings, and lovely park land
We were told to visit the top of the island where a smaller island called Faro is located, this was said to have a spectacular coast line. A little car ferry took you over the small gap of water, and after following a dirt track for 15mins we ended up at a nice little wooded area where we decided to camp for the night. The coast is unique here due to the rock formations all along it. I think they were formed from some sort of volcanic episode millions of years ago, but do not quote me. Either way they were very cool, set on a shelf of rock that seemed to drop off into the ocean. After playing around for a little while we were subject to one of the most beautiful sun sets I have ever seen. The reds and pinks where amazing, and kept changing as the sun gently slipped over the horizon, the photos I am afraid do not do it justice.
Unfortunately the weather had been getting gradually worse since we arrived in Sweden. It had started off sunny as we came over the bridge, poured with rain as we made our way across the country, and as we spent time in Gotland it went from sunny spells to completely over cast and cold! Snow jackets were on and later that night we even had to use the heater (it got below 8 degrees)
We had planned to get the ferry back that afternoon, but it seemed so had all the 'students' that we had seen, so the ferry was booked out. Instead we opted for one the next morning at 7am! This has certainly been the earliest morning yet, damn schedule! Either way the sun is now shining, we are on our way to Stockholm and the journey continues.
Miles so far: 3329