As a special birthday treat my lovely husband organised a secret city break that was only revealed to me at the airport as we walked up to the check-in desk. I knew we were going away somewhere and the weather was likely to be cool (allowing me to excitedly pack and dream) but every aspect of the trip was planned and researched in cryptic silence.
For a planner like me, it was exquisite torture.
We had a long weekend planned, leaving early on Friday evening and coming home late on Monday afternoon (just in time for my actual birthday on the Tuesday) so I had pretty well guessed we were somewhere in Europe as anywhere further would have taken too much time out of the weekend.
Our destination was Gothenburg, Sweden – somewhere that we had wanted to visit for an age (in fact it had lost out by a slim margin to a girlie weekend in Budapest earlier in the year) and it didn’t disappoint.
We had a traditionally Scandinavian-design hotel in the very centre of the city (individual duvets on our bed for the win) and made it our base of operations for flitting around the city, hopping on and off the handy tram service. I even managed to sneak in meatballs for breakfast. #rocknroll
I feel like we could have spent more time in Gothenburg in the sunshine, but even referring to my ‘what to do in a strange city when it rains‘ idea list we ran a little out of steam after two days of grey skies.
We picked a few places to see around the city and then just did our usual wandering (including a cheeky nosy at the immense drinking yogurt aisle in a local supermarket) between reviving coffees and cake in local coffee shops (thank goodness for GoogleMaps!)
We checked out the Feskekôrka, (‘fish church‘ in Swedish) an indoor fish and shellfish market…
Stumbled into a free performance of the weirdest “music as art”score…
Stopped for more coffee (hey, it was chilly outside) and fielded several questions about Brexit…
…and managed to fit in a trip out to the commuter islands (to come in a separate post.)
The sun emerged on our last day and the city really came alive with locals off out hiking, tourists gasping over the insanely large cinnamon buns and the glorious sheaths of autumnal leaves shimmering beguilingly as we tried to re-cover as much ground as we could.
It was a lovely city break, all the more for being unexpected.
We were sad to leave at the end of our short break, so celebrated in proper airport/birthday month/any excuse style.
Have you been?