29 August 2010

Miscelaneous Mailboxes

In Copenhagen we saw the large mailbox pictured above. We understand they are becoming more widespread in Denmark these days. If we have got it right the idea is that you can pick up your parcels around the clock all days of the year - rather than being restricted to the opening hours of the post office.

Since we don't live in Denmark we haven't tried the system. But we would like to add here that in Sweden there are very few actual post offices. In stead the post service cooperates with some nationwide chains. Thus, one most often has to pick up (and send) mail at either Pressbyrån (kiosk) or ICA Nära (small grocery store).

And speaking of Sweden that is precisely where we found the little mailbox with the squirrel pictured on the right. To be more exact we found it on Lidingö along our new bike-way to and from work.

Lastly we want to mention a special kind of mailbox which we didn't actually see - we only saw the sign pictured below. We can inform those not proficient in French that we are talking about a special mailbox for motorists.

15 August 2010

Mailboxes on parade

The mail is a bit different on Fårö: For one thing there are so few inhabitants that they don't care to bother street names and house numbers on the letters - name, town and zip code is sufficient.

Secondly, one finds in certain spots clusters of mailboxes - not unlike what we have seen earlier, but with the difference that in this case the cluster contains all the mailboxes for the whole town in question.

On top of that we found surprisingly many decorated mailboxes on Fårö. Most of them appeared to be made by the same person: over half of those we saw were signed by 'Yvonnie H.' Many of them looked like they'd been made especially for the owner.

14 August 2010


We actually only spent a few hours in Visby before taking a bus to Fårösund where we could take the 8-minute (free) ferry over to Fårö (Får-ö = sheep-island), a small island with only some 500 year-round human inhabitants.

Fårö - like Gotland - consists mainly of limestone and therefore one finds also here stacks (known is Swedish as raukar) along the coasts of the island.

There are also good options for finding various fossils.

On the northern coast of Fårö there remains a small cluster of fishing cabins - this was once the largest fishing town on Fårö and people came from all over the island to this very spot to get their strömming (Baltic herring).

We were quite lucky weather-wise for the days we were there (even if Gotland are Fårö are supposed to have the best summer-weather in all of Sweden) - we spent the time biking around in the landscape, counting sheep, and bathing in the lightly salty waters of the Baltic sea.

As is customary on Fårö we had lamb roast both of the times we went out for dinner. For lunch there was a more varied selection available - her a big plate of smoked prawns with aioli:

10 August 2010

Sheep on parade

While the cows on parade in Bordeaux took us by surprise, we were expecting a profusion of sheep on Gotland. We were not disappointed...

08 August 2010


On a real summer day in July we got up early and travelled through the city to Stockholm's old airport Bromma in order to get a short flight to Visby on Gotland. Apart from the fact that Bromma is much more in the city than Arlanda (which makes it easier to get there) it also has the other advantages of being a small airport: check-in, security check and boarding doesn't take all that much time. However, we are so used to flying from larger airports that we showed up way too early (in fact we were there so early that we would have been able to get on the flight to Visby before the one we were flying on).

Access to the old town of Visby is through any one of the gates in the well-preserved medieval city wall. Inside one finds of course everything one could expect from an old town: small houses, cobbled streets, squares, restaurants and souvenir shops. What can surprise though, is the rather large number of church ruins found in the old town - many of the church ruins are open for tourists to explore by themselves.