Stockholm to Copenhagen Package
Day 1 - Stockholm, Sweden Founded in the 13th century, Stockholm is Sweden's strikingly elegant and beautiful capital, spread out over many islands at the meeting point of the Baltic with Lake Mälaren. Stockholm, noted for its outstanding architecture, is one of Scandinavia's most attractive cities. In addition to its many man-made monuments, Stockholm boasts a world of natural beauty. One third of the city's total land area is devoted to parks. Guided by a strong belief in individual freedom, Sweden is governed by a constitution that is the oldest in use in Europe. The country's neutrality has allowed it to avoid wars for more than 150 years. Its cities and industries remained intact during both World Wars. A distinct political philosophy has also added significantly to the nation's success. Many of the country's social achievements can be attributed to the development of the “welfare state” early in the 20th century. This provides its citizens with excellent medical care and substantial retirement benefits. Sweden is recognized as one of the world leaders in matters of health care and life expectancy. Education standards are high, accounting for the country's 100% literacy rate. The Swedes are proud of their country and take great care to preserve its great natural beauty. As the country's major city, Stockholm offers a wealth of monuments and sites, fine museums and a rich culture. There are also hundreds of excellent restaurants as well as a great selection of trendy boutiques and exciting nightclubs. Visitors should start their exploration of Stockholm at Gamla Stan, the Old Town located on an island in the center of the city. This is the city's most attractive part, which has retained its medieval charm. The maze of narrow, cobbled streets is best explored on foot.
Day 2 - Helsinki, Finland Often referred to as the "Pearl of the Baltic," this neat, clean city on Finland's southern coast is known for its impressive architecture, wide boulevards and beautiful harbor. Founded in 1550, Helsinki was appointed as the country's capital in 1812. After a devastating fire, Helsinki was totally rebuilt, mostly in the neo-classical, Empire style. An outstanding example of this impressive architecture can be seen around the grand Senate Square, dominated by the exquisite Tuomio Church (Lutheran Cathedral). The city is full of wonderful museums, displaying everything from art to architectural design. The colorful harbor front has a lively market. The Esplanadi leads north into Mannerheimintie, the city's main thoroughfare named after the military commander and statesman, C.G.E. Mannerheim. The country's presidential republic is a stable government. In its solid economy virtually all the businesses are private establishments. This creates a pleasant lifestyle for the majority of its citizens. The hardy and colorful Lapp people of the most northern regions survive brutal winters and are very protective of their traditional lifestyle. During the summer months, the nights are long and the residents are eager to enjoy every minute of them. Warm, sunny days invite all to soak up the sun after a long and seemingly endless winter. Festivities and celebrations abound; visitors often get swept up in this revelry.
Day 3 - St Petersburg Founded by Peter the Great in 1703, this beautiful city became the designated capital of Imperial Russia from 1712 to 1914 and has remained the country’s cultural capital. The tsar's brainchild was built according to his plans after draining swampland on the Gulf of Finland. His friends were required to construct their palaces along these newly created canals. The result was a gateway to the West and a distinctly European metropolis with baroque and neo-classical mansions. St. Petersburg's new cultural life attracted such great figures as Pushkin, Dostoyevsky, Tchaikovsky and Tolstoy.
Day 4 - St Petersburg Founded by Peter the Great in 1703, this beautiful city became the designated capital of Imperial Russia from 1712 to 1914 and has remained the country’s cultural capital. The tsar's brainchild was built according to his plans after draining swampland on the Gulf of Finland. His friends were required to construct their palaces along these newly created canals. The result was a gateway to the West and a distinctly European metropolis with baroque and neo-classical mansions. St. Petersburg's new cultural life attracted such great figures as Pushkin, Dostoyevsky, Tchaikovsky and Tolstoy.
Day 5 - St Petersburg Founded by Peter the Great in 1703, this beautiful city became the designated capital of Imperial Russia from 1712 to 1914 and has remained the country’s cultural capital. The tsar's brainchild was built according to his plans after draining swampland on the Gulf of Finland. His friends were required to construct their palaces along these newly created canals. The result was a gateway to the West and a distinctly European metropolis with baroque and neo-classical mansions. St. Petersburg's new cultural life attracted such great figures as Pushkin, Dostoyevsky, Tchaikovsky and Tolstoy.
Day 6 - Tallinn Estonia's capital, Tallinn, lies just 53 miles (85 km) from Helsinki across the Gulf of Finland, midway between St. Petersburg and Stockholm. The first recorded stronghold was built here by Estonians in the 10th-century, only to be taken over by the powerful seafaring Danes in 1219. In 1285, Tallinn was incorporated into the successful Hanseatic League, a German mercantile group operating in Northern Europe during medieval times. Because of its strategic location, Tallinn experienced many different occupations over the centuries, which resulted in a cultural mix that lends a unique ambiance to this maritime city. The proud people of Estonia, along with their Latvian and Lithuanian neighbours, endured Soviet rule for over 50 years. Then in 1991, following the great upheaval in the Soviet Union, these three brave countries proudly joined the world of independent nations and finally enjoyed their freedom. Estonia is surrounded by water. The country's 17,000 square miles (27,200 sq. km) include a staggering 800 islands and more than 1,500 lakes. Water sports are quite popular during the summer months and fishing is a national pastime. The Old Town, with its cobbled streets and 13th- and 14th-century buildings, attracts thousands of visitors each year. They come to admire the city's heritage of medieval buildings, the imposing Town Hall that dates back to 1454, the Orthodox Cathedral, Toompea Castle and Oleviste Church – all prominent architectural landmarks. Sip coffee in a waterfront café and reflect on recent and current events.
Day 7 - At Sea
Day 8 - Copenhagen, Denmark Visitors to Copenhagen cannot help being impressed by the magnitude of attractions. As the locale of Hans Christian Andersen's enchanting tale of The Little Mermaid, Copenhagen has become Denmark's fairy-tale city. Its impressive theaters, museums and churches are of interest to many visitors; the best-loved attractions include the world-famous Tivoli Gardens, the Langelinie Harbor with its statue of The Little Mermaid, and the busy shopping promenade known as Strøget. Shopping and dining opportunities are endless.
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