Easter break suggestions

Easter is just around the corner and with it comes some days off for you to enjoy anywhere you want! So have you already thought where is the special place you will spend your Easter break? Here are my top suggestions!

1.Amsterdam, Netherlands

Amsterdam is beautiful city and it gets even prettier when Spring comes because it is the time when all the tulips fields gain their colors. Along with a beautiful landscape there is a lot to visit in Amsterdam during Easter time such as Paaspop festival in Schijndel and Zieuwent festival in Gelderland. It is also common to see their traditional camp fire which they light up during Easter time. There is also their fantastic and diverse Easter market to shop! There is a lot of things to get entertained!

The easier way to get there is by airplane. Amsterdam has an airport (Amsterdam Airport Schiphol) which is only 20 minutes way from the city centre by train.

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2.Madeira, Portugal

Madeira is one of the two Portuguese islands located in the Atlantic ocean. Just like Amsterdam the island gets especially pretty when spring comes because all nature gets greener and the flowers gain bright colors.

If you are religious Madeira is definitely a great choice! During Easter there is religious parades to watch in the streets such as the recreation of Jesus suffering in the streets and where people can participate. For example one person from the audience  carries the Cross and enacts the crucifixion. On the Good Friday there is also a special mass in the church dedicated to Easter. On Sunday, Easter day, there are many religious parades and some small stalls selling local pastries and sweet breads. Make sure to try the honey cake and also the caco cake!

To get to Madeira you can take an airplane to their airport (Santa Cruz Airport) and then from there a taxi which takes around 20 minutes to Funchal.

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3.Berlin, Germany

During the Easter week the capital of Germany has a lot of cultural activities to do and also specific events dedicated to Easter such as the big fire camp of Britz Garden and the Easter Market in Breitscheidplat. For the little ones there are thematic activities in Tierpark, one of Berlin zoos. If you have some free time from the Easter activities ther is also many monuments in Berlin to visit such as the Parlament or the Wall of Berlin.

To get to Berlin you can take a flight to Berlin airport (Berlin-Schönefeld Airport) which is about an hour way by train from the centre.

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4. Disneyland Paris, France

Easter also means family time and what better way to spend some family time than in Disneyland? The Disney themed park is a fantasy world for everyone, from kids to adults everyone will be surrender to its magic once you pass the main gates!

“From the 28th March to the 12th April 2016 Disney will welcome you with magical Spring parades, friendly smiles and fairytale fun.” – Disney website

Disneyland has a variety of Disney hotels with different themes where you can stay at. If you go on a longer vacation you can also take some time to visit the capital of France which is about 40 minutes from Disneyland.

Paris-Charles de Gaulle Airport is the closest to Disney so I would recommend flying there and from the airport take shuttle or taxi which will arrive at Disney land in about 30 minutes. The shuttle stops at every Disney hotel making it very easy for you if you have chosen to stay at one of them.

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5. Barcelona, Spain

Barcelona is considered by many one of Spain prettiest cities! If you have never been there Easter is a great time to do so. With the Spring coming the weather will warm up in the city which will make it look even prettier!

Plus just like Madeira, Barcelona is a very religious city and there is many Christian celebrations and parades also. They have the “Semana Santa” (Holy Week) which goes from 20th of March until the 27th of March (Easter Sunday) and it marks the end of Lent and commemorates the death and rise of Jesus. Barcelona, as part of Catalunya, is traditionally less religious than other parts of Spain. However, it still has its fair share of celebrations during this period. Holy week begins on Palm Sunday, when a procession traditionally takes place around the cathedral with people holding palms. A week of religious ceremonies follows, ending on Easter Sunday. Barcelona looks beautiful during this period. The sun is beginning to return to the city and chocolate and cake shop windows are filled with every sculpture imaginable made out of chocolate.

Barcelona airport the only 25 minutes by train or taxi from the center making it the quickest and easier way to visit Barcelona.

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Tallinn, a capital to explore

I am a student of nursing and for my Erasmus program I have chosen to go to Tallinn. I am going to share with you my experience in this beautiful city so I hope you enjoy!

TRAVEL TO TALLINN – ESTONIA

  1. AIRPLANE to Talinn Airport (companies such as Ryanair fly there)

From the airport to the centre

  1. TAXI FROM £5/6.3€/$7 (duration: 10 minutes)
  2. BUS FROM £1.40/1.80€/$2 (duration: 15 minutes)

Travel around Talinn

  1. BUS and TRAM from £4.8/6€/$6.8 the weekly pass for both

Note: There are also rent-a-cars at the airport yet it is easier and quicker to move around Tallinn by bus, taxi, tram or foot!

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Starting with food, to taste some good Estonian food, you definitely have to try number 1 Trip Advisor restaurant “Rastakevus”. It has a beautiful and cosy environment and the staff is really pleasant. I will just let you know they have the most delicious homemade pumpkin seeds bread with some butter to die for. And guess what…. It’s on the house!

Rastakevus Restaurant

Prices in average: £7/8.8€/$9.9

For a cheaper meal there’s a Greek restaurant called “Pitas” that has the most delicious pitas/kebabs I have ever tasted. And it can be a good meal after a night out because they are open 24 hours! And don’t forget to bring your student card because they have good discount.

Pitas Restaurant

Prices in average: £2.45/3€/$3.5

Now for desert! It doesn’t look like much from the outside (or the inside really) but “Kompressor” has a full menu of delicious and GIANT crepes. It’s a place to indulge in your sweetness for sure. But if you don’t like sweets so much, you can always try the salty ones (bacon, cheese, ham and so on).

Kompressor Restaurant

Prices in average: £3/3.8€/$4.2

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I don’t have much experience to tell you about hotels because all my stay in Tallinn was in a student’s residence. But when my friend’s parents came to visit her they stayed in a really picturesque hotel named “Von Stackelberg”. The stone walls and the wood gives it a beautiful ambience, that’s makes you feel like a northerner.  It’s located near the old town and has some really good reviews.

Von Stackelberg Hotel

Prices from: £49/62€/$69 per night per person

It has also sauna/steam room, day spa, library, café, among other facilities.

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sightseeing

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Almost all of the landmarks and museums to see are in the Old Town, a place you will find very medieval. To see all the old town and museums I recommend 2 days. You can get a map of the city in one of the souvenir’s shops and see how to get to every landmark. To see the entire city you should climb to St. Olaf’s Church and you will have a great view of the all city. Also there are two viewpoints in the Old town where you can get a beautiful view of the Old Town and the Baltic Sea.

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There is also a beautiful park “Kadriorg” with beautiful gardens, a palace an art museum. This one you have to take a tram from the old town to get there.

About 50% of Estonia is covered in forest and it was ranked the cleanest air in the world by World Health Organisation 2011 report.

You will find the people in Tallinn very reserved and not to smiling, this in manly because they got out of the soviet oppression quite recently and also because their history tells that in ancient times they lived very apart from each other because of the big forests.

 

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Tallinn, Estonia – Take a note

Tallinn is situated on the northern coast of Estonia, on the shore of the Gulf of Finland (as seen on map). Tallinn‘s Old Town is listed as a UNESCO World Heritage Site. It is ranked as a global city and has been listed among the top 10 digital cities in the world (these are cities that use digital technologies to improve the quality of urban services, to reduce costs and resource consumption). The city was also a European Capital of Culture for 2011. Approximately 32% of Estonia’s total population lives in Tallinn.

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For many year the city used to be called Reval (this lasted from the 13th century until 1918 and also during the Nazi occupation from 1941 to 1944).

Tallinn is the financial and business capital of Estonia and over half of Estonian GDP is generated in Tallinn. Most profit comes from tourism, information technology and logistics.

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During the winter months, temperatures tend stay below zero and it can go down to -4.3ºC in their coldest month which is February. In the summer the temperature goes from 19 to 21 °C (during daytime) and 9.6 to 12.7 °C during nighttime.

This Friday on the blog Carolina’s journey in Tallinn will be posted and being Carolina an Erasmus student she definitely knows already all the best stops in the city!

“You will find the people in Tallinn very reserved and not to smiling, this in manly because they got out of the soviet oppression quite recently and also because their history tells that in ancient times they lived very apart from each other because of the big forests.”

Carolina

Country: Estonia

Capital: Tallinn

Largest City: Tallinn, 439,286 habitants

Official language: Estonian

Currency: Euro (£1 =1.42 euro)

Population: 439,286 habitants

Total area: 159.2 km2

President: Toomas Hendrik Ilves (2006)