Stockholm is a beautiful city, especially in winter time as it snows, but only lightly, covering the tall inner-city trees in a magical white frost and framing the elegant water that travels through the city.
– Go to the elaborate Christmas markets on every corner and buy copious amounts of glögg (Swedish mulled wine… yuummaaaayyy)
– Visit the adorable café ‘Sturekatten’ filled with cosey antique furniture, and enjoy some fika (what the Swedish call going for coffee and cake…. And these people know good cake… and pastries)
– Walk through Humlegarden and enjoy the beauty of this park in the city center
If you are a sucker for fairy tales like me then this place will literally feel like you died and went to heaven. And in winter the snow sprinkled ginger-bread houses and enchanted music filled Christmas markets on every street only make this place more magical. This is the stomping ground of Hans Christian Anderson and you can just feel his spirit all through the city.
– STAY AT: Copenhagen Downtown Hostel Vandkunsten. This place has a really cool young environment and great atmosphere to meet people
– Do a walking tour with ‘Sandemans’. There is so much to see and do in Copenhagen that a walking tour is a great way to ensure you don’t miss out. Sandemans is a good company as the tour guides are always young with a great sense of humor and only work off tips.
– Nyhavn, the beautiful colorful 17th-century waterfront canal that you see in all the pictures
– Den lille Havfrue (The little mermaid sculpture)
– Rosenborg Castle
– Kronborg Castle, the place that inspired Shakespeare’s Hamlet, and where the Kenneth Branagh film version was actually set.
– Frederiksborg Castle, the bee’s knees of castles. And I have seen a lot of castles.
This is one of my favorite cities in the world mainly because of its super hip, multicultural and artistic atmosphere. There is so much to see and do here, I keep going back for more. You will never be short of art exhibitions, the clubs are the most creative and wild by far that I have ever seen, and there is so much history here which really gets your mind thinking. *TIP : Do not under any circumstance buy the wrong train ticket or do anything out of the rules or you will be in big trouble and angry German people are very scary… something to do with the height and the harsh accent (and yet this is what I find so sexy about them at the same time *sigh*. )
– Do a Sandemans walking tour. The tour guides are especially passionate in this city and you’ll need them to make sure you don’t miss out on anything and to help orientate you around this rather larger European city.
– Admire the history of the Brandenburg Gate
– East side gallery. Check out the incredible artwork on the Berlin Wall, an international memorial for freedom.
– Checkpoint Charlie
– The Memorial to the Murdered Jews of Europe, a very quiet, eerie and sad experience.
– Admire the grandeur of the Berlin Cathedral
– Sneak into Spree Park, otherwise known as the abandoned theme park. Very American Horror Story-esque and a super cool visual splendor.
– Sachsenhausen concentration camp. I recommend going with the Sandemans tour company because the guides have a really deep understanding of the history and made this a really moving experience for me. Although the experience is quite depressing, the guide left us with a positive note explaining their admiration for Germany to keep these awful memories alive despite the great shame affiliated, in order to help the world to never forget the devastation and thus to never repeat their mistakes.
– Matrix, a pretty awesome nightclub
– Berghain, arguably one of the best nightclubs… like in the world… and very hard to get into. The ‘who gets in and who doesn’t’ picking is totally irregular and apparently changes in theme every night so my best advice is to just rock up and give it a go!
*Warning : you will see shit you probably could never imagine in some of these Berlin Clubs. So enter at your own risks.
PRAGUE, CZECH REPUBLIC
This place is like being in a Gothic fiction novel (particularly a Stoker one) with the possibility of Dracula greeting you around any corner (here’s hoping it’s the Jonathan Rhys Meyers version). The architecture is like nothing you have seen before and I guarantee will marvel you, especially when it is coated in a thin layer of frost.
– Take a walk over the magnificent Charles Bridge. And if you are there for New Years Eve watch the fantastic fireworks display over the Vltara river from this Bridge.
– Karlovy Lazne, an infamous 5 story nightclub that is a hell of a lot of fun with a different scene on every floor. I remember one of the levels had a floor made up of squares that lit up in different colors, and be sure to check out the bottom floor called ‘the ice pub’ which is literally like a little Eskimo land where you have to put on a special silver poncho to enter.
– Watch the Prague 600 year old Astronomical Clock change.
– Check out Prague Castle and be transported to another magical time in history.
– John Lennon Wall, a wall filled with Lennon and Beatles’ inspired graffiti.
– John Lennon Pub, adorably decorated pub/café with Beatles artwork and paraphernalia.
– St Vitus Cathedral, and the surrounding Christmas markets and celebrations.
Like Berlin, Amsterdam has a great eclectic young atmosphere, with plenty to do. Moreover the city is stunning visually, with the quaint canals framed by cyclists filled pathways and elegant trees. In winter this city gets pretty frosty which only makes it prettier and gives another excuse to warm up in a coffee shop and indulge in Amsterdam’s most infamous recreational activities (besides cycling).
– Go shopping/browsing in a Coffee shop. This is not the same thing as a café where you buy coffee. You will find one of these shops on every corner if your eyes are open to it.
– Go shopping/browsing in a Smart Shop, which is where you will find anything you want that you couldn’t find in the coffee shop.
– Anne Frank House
– Van Gogh Museum, arguably one of the best museums I have been to. Everything is showcased so well and in such a way that I was moved to tears.
– Sex Museum, but only if you have a friend to laugh with and preferably after you have had a trip to the coffee shop. This place is extremely tasteless.
– The Red Light District at night to check out the completely legal window-shopping available of sex workers. It felt like I was in a museum, strolling past the red glowing windows by category so casually, it was almost unbelievable how honest and upfront this city is about an industry so hidden in most cultures.
This place really is just like the movie’s show it. Everything green, everywhere music, and everyone happy. It is magical. And even when they are drunk off their rocket (which is most of the time) Irish guys hit on you in the most endearing way that you can never be mad at them. And they really do all sing! Seriously there are brilliant buskers all through the streets and even more brilliant live music played in every bar, all day long. The first bar I walked into, a 4-piece band was playing, passionately, the P.S I love you song (Gallway Girl) and I almost melted. And everyone just joins in and sings along and parties together like you are at a uni house party, instead of being complete strangers. Oh and beer, beer, beer, beer, beer. I LOVE DUBLIN (and I don’t even like beer)!
– Stay near Temple Bar, coz that’s where its all happening. And plan for your biggest nights out to be weeknights because most of the city leaves for the weekend as it is greatly made up of uni students.
– St Patrick’s Cathedral
– Croke Park
– Dublin Castle
– Cliffs of Moher. This breathtaking scenic attraction isn’t exactly in Dublin but there are plenty of tours that can take you there via bus from Dublin, which means you see the magnificent green scenery on the way and make pit-stops for historic castle and graveyard adventuring. I went with Paddy-wagon tours and was very happy.