What would live be without plans for future traveling.
After my trip to Porto and Bratislava, I had nothing planned until Easter 2024, if you do not count my normal visit with my parents in December.
But smaller and bigger plans are in the making – and I am not talking about my upcomming weekend in Trondheim.
SAS has decided to end all service from my home airport MOL. That is terrible. Now I will not be able to have tickets that take me to my destination, without chenging airlines in OSL (Norwegian and Widerøe are still operating routes to OSL and BGO). But I had a few bonus points left that I wanted to use next year for a long weekend with a domestic flight. That is not happening.
What to do… I checked for flights this year, but the timetable and connetctions are terrible. I would lose a day just going to another place than Oslo. I am there so often, that I want to go other places… But where to?
My TRUMF-account hat some kroner on it. With a little transfer I got enough Eurobonus points to get a flight in the nordic countries. And then it was no question where to go. Stockholm! Again… I know… But christmas markeds in Gamla Stan and Skansen, the beautiful waterfronts, nice cafes. Who can say no to that. So I booked a trip from the 1.12.-5.12. Four nights (bonus nights with Strawberry of course) in central Stockholm and the whole trip is about 70 EUR (just taxes for the flights). I call that good use of bonus points.
But three and a half days in Stockholm must be used. And as a Geocacher, there is a hunt for countries not logged (and the souvenier you get for it). So I did the next crazy thing… a daytrip to Mariehamn on Åland. Officially part of Finland (but swedish speaking), the island(s) have a special status that makes every ferry stop there to get the right to sell TaxFree goods while traveling between two EU countries (and an extra souvenir for geocachers). Unfortunately, the direct ferries from Stockholm give you no time in Mariehamn (the main town on the island). So I had to find alternatives.
I found one. Eckerö Linjen that offers day trips to Åland, including bus transfer from sentral Stockholm and to Mariehamn (and back of course). Why transfer? The ferries start at the harbour of Grissleman (the town is as big as it sounds). You have to get there – 117 km from Stockholm. Then you take the ferry over to Eckerö – and that is ONLY a ferry terminal. Then you have to get to Mariehamn – only 32 km. I will take the early buss at 7:30 for the ferry at 10:00 and back from Eckerö 18:00. Some hours in Mariehamn.
And the price? 4 bus trips and a return ferry? 20 EUR! Amazing! Very happy about my trip planning so long.
Then, 13.12. I will leave for the holidays and new year in Germany. This time driving all the way. Two stops down to Germany (in Oslo and Copenhagen) and 4 stops on the way back (Hamburg, Helsingborg, Gotheburg and Oslo). Just family time.
Eatser 2024 the whole family goes to Paris. 8 nights in an AirBnB. I am so much looking forward to that. No real plans in place yet, just the flight from OSL and the place to stay. We will work out the details later.
And then the grand happening in the second half of September. The tour that I planned and booked in 2020 and could not do thanks to some stupid virus. Japan! All in the planning, but this time no bonus ticket, but payed. And that hurts (in a good way). Tickets to Japan are expensive. Even in economy – and I plan on flying in premium economy for mor legroom on a long flight. about 1600 EUR. But then I want to go three weeks. Tokyo, Kyoto, Osaka, Hiroshima and if I am crazy the ferry from Fukuoka to Busan in South Korea (you only live once^^). But that is to early to really plan. If things go south and I cannot do it, I will use the money (that I already have saved up) for another destination. South Africa is a hot candidate (especially for 2025).
You see, I cannot live without having travel plans. Let’s hope everything goes as planned. Updates of course here on my blog.