Sweden is the new Scotland

For our vacation this year my girlfriend and I wanted to visit Scotland for two weeks. We were already thinking about a trekking trip – although not the usual Westhighland Way stuff – attending the Edinburgh Military Tattoo (a big pipers and drums festival) and of course visiting at least one whisky distillery. But I gotta say this came out quite different.

Everybody has some kind of a list in his head with countries and places that he or she wants to visit once in a lifetime. Well, at least this is what I think everybody should have. For me this would be Norway, Patagonia, Canada (again), Nepal, K2 Basecamp in Pakistan and Scotland – you might have guessed this because of my liablility to whisky – in no particular order. Of course there are many other different countries I’d like to visit but these could be considered as my “places to visit before I die”. So my good old room mate and dear friend Volker and I have been talking about going to Norway for ages, well at least it feels like that. Nevertheless the trip to the Fagaras in Romania showed us that it can be pretty nice to think out of the box and consider something different if the dream is not possible, due to a lack of money, getting no vacation from your job for the time you are planning your trip and so on.

This year it was a bit different but also kind of the same. My girlfriend has only a scarce time frame for a two weeks trip this year due to her obligations in her job and her bachelor thesis. And still being student and only working on a minimum wage basis she can’t afford every trip. Well and I can’t afford it to pay everything for both of us and of course I also have some fixed appointments in my job so that I’m not totally free to choose when to go. Although it is pretty good with taking some time off for vacation in my current company. So sadly Scotland, being a perfect match for both of our interests in a journey, was of the hook this year. We nearly reached a point where we had to say “no real vacation for 2014, at least the money is saved for the future”.

But we didn’t want this to get away so easily – being always a bit to concerned about everything and with too many negative thoughts it was mainly not me pushing us, it was her – and gave it a last shot. One evening everyone was sitting at his laptop looking for possible destinations.

Our criteria:

  • Not Germany, can be nice too but we wanted something more far away with a different culture, a different language…all these things you want for vacation
  • affordable for both of us, which means camping for the most of the time and only  having to spend 1 or 2 nights in a hostel/hotel
  • Not a ‘hardcore’ trekking adventure, but a nice and easy way for beginners
  • Possible in our time frame (last week of August till second week of September)

Scotland - Sweden
Somehow the Bohusleden in Sweden came up and everything seemed matched so well. Of course the whole distance of 360km would not be possible in only two weeks for us, but with so many points to leave the way and get back to Gothenburg airport this was of no real concern. We where very happy finally having found a tour for this year. It was a trekking trip where we’d be on our own, carry all stuff (gear and food) ourselves and simply enjoy mother nature. The way itself didn’t seem to be that hard for someone who hasn’t done any larger trekking trips before, having not so many huge differences in altitude and no rocky areas that need to be climbed. But still it is not overrun and you are on your own there. According to several travel reports I’ve read not even the locals know about the Bohusleden. I guess they just don’t know the way by this name or don’t know that it is a long-distance hiking trail.

Of course you could now argue why I wasn’t thinking about Sweden before. Being interested mostly into the landscape itself it shouldn’t make such a big difference to one of my favorites, Norway. Well you’re right but this is one a all these little things going arround in ones head that you can’t really explain. When I think of Scandinavia I always think about Norway first. Maybe because of some of the music I’m listening to, I really don’t know.

A few days after we were sure that we’re really going to do this, we booked our flights over the Flug.de Portal for ~ 370 €. Just 180 € p.P. is okay I think. We’ve seen cheaper flights but we always wanted to catch a direct flight and not having to make intermediate stops at different airports to make a 5h journey out of a 1 1/2h flight. This also means that we’ll have to leave Dortmund very early on August 22 at around 4 a.m. but this was the only chance getting to our destination nonstop during daytime.

So this is it. Instead of going to one of the countries of my (our) dreams we managed to find a very good alternative and I think we won’t be disappointed. But don’t be afraid Scotland, you’re still one of our favorites and we’re definitely coming back to visit you too. Maybe next year already.


Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.