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Статьи
Scandinavia - an incredible dream trip - Страница 3
Статьи и Обзоры
30.08.2012 13:25
Индекс материала
Scandinavia - an incredible dream trip
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Finland

Finland is known as a country of a thousand lakes. It is, therefore traveling through the countryside was really impressive: the countryside is a thick forest interrupted by numerous beautiful lakes, large and small, but invariably beautiful. Rural Finland is in great contrast with urban Finland. It came as a surprise to me to see the urban cosmopolitan lifestyle of Helsinki. The major sights of Helsinki for me included the Senate Square with the symbol of Helsinki – the Lutheran Cathedral seemingly soaring above the ground, the Orthodox Uspenski Cathedral, and with the Parliament building, the railway station building with its awkward and undistinguished architecture, the Sibelius Monument consisting of hundreds of hollow steel tubes resembling organ pipes, and the Temppeliaukio Church, also known as the “church in the rock” as it was blasted out of solid rock. The pleasant and very familiar, just very Russian-like, was my stroll along the Northern and Southern Esplanade – this is a refreshing green passage right in the middle of the city which connects the center with the sea market and the sea.

Sweden

Sweden is the largest Nordic country, hence it offers its visitors a great diversity of climate, landscapes, cityscapes and street designs. Stockholm is situated on 14 islands. Thus, the city is composed of natural water pools surrounded with green spaces right amidst the megalopolis. Swedish architecture is a true sample of the Scandinavian tradition in architecture, only it is, probably, the most pronounced in Sweden. Terracotta-coloured buildings shimmer between blue water and still bluer skies. Brass and steel are everywhere not only as construction materials, but as decorations, as well as high metal towers bursting high into the sky. All these attributes of anthropogenic influence and technological advances of a modern cosmopolitan city are in conjunction with its history and with its nature: a huge expanse of fascinating Lake Mälaren is crisscrossed with many bridges, both old and modern. And all these contrasting details (nature and civilization, history and modernity, small winding streets in Gamla Stan (the old town) and the grandiose City Hall or the Royal Palace) are somehow so intricately organized that I could not stop wondering if Swedes are also such a harmonious people that they find consensus by default, without drawing much attention to this. This question appeared to be more difficult to answer that I could have imagined. But on closer look I noticed that Swedes are rather inert and sluggish. And here comes a surprise: they are really active fighters for nature preservation. So, it is not that they do not care, they just take much as it is. It is, probably, not lassitude or inertness, it is tolerance that is the most prominent feature of them.

Denmark

Denmark is a very friendly country where there is always something wonderful around the next corner – something to see, something to feel, something to hear, something to smell, something to eat and something to live through. It seems as if the whole country were plunged into a wonderful fairy tale, so everything is unbelievably unreal there: very beautiful females, lots of Princes Charming among males, very sophisticated architecture that is fairy-tale-like. Copenhagen for me was the most captivating city of all the Nordic cities that I visited. It is a city of canals, cobbled squares and innumerable bicycles (Danes are renowned for their love of cycling). It is the city of a buoyant economy and continued prosperity, which is seen in the city’s exterior details. And the citizens exhibit a burgeoning confidence in the charms of their home city. There you will hardly have to confront any of the high-stress bustle common to most capitals. There I met a cosy atmosphere fostering appreciation of a uniquely Danish sense of conviviality. The brightest and most memorable spots of my trip were a walk past the colourful harbour district of Nyhavn to Amalienborg Palace, a visit to the Gefion Fountain and, of course, the Little Mermaid, inspired by H.C. Andersen.

What was the most captivating about my trip to the Nordic countries? The fact that this trip was overly captivating!

© V.Shashkova - 2012

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