Thursday, 26 July 2012

Staying Small in Sweden

So, Sweden. If you're a regular here, you'll already know how long I've been waiting to visit. You'll know that, when I was six, I got so fed up listening to tales of my classmates wonderful holidays that I made up, invented, a trip to Sweden. My Mum was pretty surprised (make that speechless) when the teacher asked about it.

I wondered for years why I'd chosen Sweden and I've just remembered. My aunt had given me a Lundby dolls house catalogue. Made in Sweden. I loved the houses then and I still do today.

Just look at the fishing village:


And the there was Sofiero. There I found my holiday highlight. You know, that one special thing you see, the one you keep going back to? the thing you'll never forget?





We were walking among the trees when suddenly we came upon a clearing and in it was the most enchanting children's playground I have ever seen


I waited ages for a clear view, and then when I got home I realised that was pointless because I needed someone in the picture to show the scale! It's just the right size for Little E to potter in.

Eventually we had to move on. To the craft shop


Somehow, pictures of "things to buy" really capture the character of a place.


And then it was back to the ship. New day, new country..




30 comments:

Julie Kirk said...

Lovely! I'd love to see any of Scandinavia and your photos have reinforced that!

Amanda said...

Wow, the playground looks amazing as does the craft shop love the blackbird.

Amy said...

The fascination with Sweden knows no bounds, I have also wanted to visit for a very long time. However, my interest in this Scandinavian country comes from a preoccupation with Mats Wilander, the tennis player, during the 80's. I will even go so far as to say that I began to learn the language when I was 12 or 13 - needless to say, it is a very difficult language to learn and all I could possibly sort of say now would be 'ya'!

Fiona@staring at the sea said...

My daughter would have loved that wonderful playground. What I am saying? I would love that playground!
Sweden is somewhere I would love to visit or, like Julie, any part of Scandinavia. Although Wallander does make it feel like quite a dark place at times.

helena said...

funny how little things trigger an interest in a particular place - as a child I had a fascination with tropical islands after treasure island / robinson crusoe etc - and I did love the islands of the pacific

the palyground is fabulous - are thsoe dragons carved into the tree stump in the first few pictures - i love dragons

and now you need to take little E to the playground !!

S said...

That is an enchanting playground, more so I imagine to people of a smaller scale. Great pics, Sian.

Lisa-Jane said...

What a great secret playground! Love the first few photos too, looks very picturesque.

Carmen said...

Oh that birdy would SO have come home with me ;)

Gorgeous photos Sian x

Barbara Eads said...

Those houses look like doll houses! it sure must have been fun visiting a lifelong dream!

heart.hearth.home. said...

How delightful and how fortunate children who live there are. Every day must be enchanting.
Love the photographs and, in particular, the one of your husband looking out over the sea.

Maria Ontiveros said...

I love your description of "that one thing which keeps you coming back." I definitely have vacation moments like that in my travels.
Rinda

laurie said...

what a delightful surprise that playground must have been to stumble across! i'm so glad your dream came true and you got to visit sweden - life works out like that sometimes!

Melissa said...

I loved seeing these photos of little places - and I'm enjoying your posts with highlights from your trip. It must have been fabulous!

Mel said...

Looks so quaint and it's one of the places I have always fancied visiting too.

Paula - Buenos Aires said...

Oooohhhh! I´m so thankful we live in this digi age that allows us to see your trip´s pictures from anywhere in the world! Such beautiful place, lovely light and steady hand.

Sue Althouse said...

I loved traveling vicariously to Sweden through your camera lens. And your pretend visit story is priceless!

Denise said...

The way you decribed this has transported me right there and I love the final photo - can't wait for the next bit x

alexa said...

I can see why you fell for it ... and I am enjoying your photos very much. I have always wanted to visit the Swedish archipelago near Stockholm. One day ...

scrappyjacky said...

The little houses are wonderful....and your first few photos remind me of cabins found in parts of our own country as well....we holidayed in a perfect little wood cabin in Devon one year.

Ginger said...

I have told Marvin our next trip has to be Europe! I'm putting my foot down so to speak :)

Beautiful photos Sian :)

Louise said...

It does look beautiful Sian!

Lizzie said...

Ah the Scandinavians can "do" playgrounds alright! We went to Kristiansand Zoo/Park when James was little. Not only was the zoo fabulous, but they have children's rides and a theme park, "Kardemomme by", based on a popular children's book, with the characters from the book. They had little houses to play in and explore, great toys to play on/with... there was a big sand pit in the playground, with diggers to sit on, so you could dig holes. And other playgrounds around the park, with great climbing and swinging toys, forts etc etc. The same thing in Arendal, where my in-laws lived, Oslo and surrounding areas... Little villages and towns - everywhere!
Also when I visited Sweden, I noticed lots of lovely play areas too. Children are Important People in Scandinavia!
That playground was lovely. Isn't it so nice that there were indoor play places - so important in a country where the weather is often too wet for outdoor play!
And I also love Scandinavian houses - the wooden ones especially - and how they are painted, roofed etc. We were taken on the river and fjords at Arendal, for a little tour. We saw so many beautiful wooden homes, with gardens reaching down to the water's edge. There were a number of discussions about why we couldn't just up-sticks and move straight to Norway!

Love that papier-mache blackbird. Very realistic. I think I would have bought him!

Glad you had a lovely time!

Karen said...

What delightful photos! I'm afraid that black bird would have hopped right into my suitcase.

Sandie said...

Your photos are beautiful and I'm sure my granddaughters would love the play area you found. I'm glad Sweden was worth waiting for.

scrappysue said...

How cute that you made up a holiday to Sweden when you were little Sian! And how lovely you finally got to visit; the huts are adorable as is the playground! x

Becky said...

Love the blackbird and the children's playground looks fantastic! I am enjoying your holiday :-)

Missus Wookie said...

I've wanted to visit since I first heard/read Pippi at very small, plus the Burberry children and many many others - my parents went looking for positive girl heroines.

Lovely photos - the playgrounds are amazing looking. There were some gorgeous ones attached to the cohousing projects I was reading about earlier this year.

Chipper said...

I love the dragon heads. A large part of my heritage is Swedish and I have always wanted to visit. I shall one day :-)

Gail said...

The playground looks wonderfula nd what neat looking items you found in the gift shop.

Jennifer Grace said...

Ooh, it looks lovely and inspiring. I like the little blackbird, he reminds me of one my grandad used to feed raisins to on his patio, until one day the bird got bold and came in through the patio doors and freaked my granny out. She'd been scared of birds since seeing the Hitchcock film. I think Grandad was in a lot of trouble that day. x

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