Austria, Cannes, culture, Czech Republic, food, France, history, Hotels, Italy, Milan, Nice, photography, Prague, SPAIN, Stockholm, Sweden, The French Riviera, travel, Trips & Other Stories, Uncategorized, vegan, Vegetarian, Vienna

Going Places: My 2019

As 2019 is coming to an end and we are moving to a new decade, I decided to write my traditional yearly travel recap and highlight my travels from the year 2019. Unlike my last year’s edition of Going Places, this year I stayed within Europe, but I visited more countries than last year, in total nine of them.

February: Sweden

2019 started very well for me since I moved to one of my most favourite countries – Sweden. I was based in Gothenburg, which now proudly is in my top three cities in the world, but meanwhile, I also discovered almost the whole of Sweden. I visited so many cities I even stopped counting after a while. I went from Stockholm all the way up to North and experienced wintery-snowy weather during May in Boden.
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April: Italy

To run away from the Scandinavian winter and super cold Spring even, I decided to treat myself with a nice Southern-European trip. Visiting Milan in the beginning of April was extra busy due to the Milano Design Week. It was my first time in Italy and I still miss my morning walks at Brera and stopping by at GOD SAVE THE FOOD for my daily dose of croissant and cappuccino, my evenings at Dry Milano. You can see my Milanese trip in a nutshell here.
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April: France

After Milan, I decided to take a weekend trip to the French Riviera. It was also my first time in France, and since one of my most favourite things to do is watching tv series, I was lucky enough to attend the Cannes Series Festival. A true highlight of my trip to Nice was where I stayed. You can see a full article from my French weekend trip here.

I stayed in Nice and discovered the city on foot, took a little swimming in the sea and enjoyed the warm April days. I took a train to Cannes where I spent one whole day to attend the Cannes Series Festival. Since I was super busy with the Series Festival, I didn’t have much time to discover Cannes, but I still managed to sneak out and to see the most iconic places that were close to the beach.
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April: Belgium

As a chocolate geek, I am still surprised why Belgium wasn’t my very first travel destination. But better late than never, I finally visited the European capital this year to try the most delicious chocolate and waffles in Europe. If you trust Google and queue for the most traditional and oldest waffle cafes in Brussels, you might spend the whole day in the queue. So my advice would be to discover Brussels on foot, check out the city’s popular vintage stores, and in the evening, try the Belgian waffles outside the touristic center, skip the queues and enjoy your daily dose of endorphins without waiting for your order forever.
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May: Malta

Being already a bit fed up with the almost never-ending Swedish winter, in May, I decided to treat myself with a one-week getaway to warm and sunny Malta.

Malta was one of the most unexpectedly beautiful countries I have been to this year. If we ignore super uncomfortable transportation and traffic in the streets, Malta is definitely an amazing destination to swim, enjoy the sun, eat delicious food and discover the historical parts of the country.
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July: Czech Republic

You already know from my Instagram that I am an architecture geek, I love taking pictures of beautiful buildings. And speaking of architecture Prague was the highlight of my European trip in 2019.
You can check out my more detailed and eco-friendly guide to Prague here. But let me once again highlight how unexpectedly beautiful and cheap the capital of the Czech Republic was. Also being very well located between Austria and Germany, you have quick access from Prague to Vienna (one of my most favourite cities in Europe), or to Berlin – every hipster’s dream to find. And yep, don’t forget to try the Czech beer or every dessert lover’s favourite Chimney cakes.
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August: Austria

Vienna is one of my most favourite cities in the world, so, while visiting Prague this July, I could not help myself but go on a weekend trip from Pague to Vienna in August.

Vienna was named as the most livable city in the world for several years in a row for a reason. I can talk about thousands of reasons why you should grab a suitcase and go to Austria right now: like Mozart, Viennese coffee, Gustav Klimt, Sigmund Freud and etc. But you will not fully get what I am talking about until you visit the Austrian capital by yourself. You can check out my article about my Viennese trip and find some inspiration about where to stay or go in order to make the best out of Vienna in just two-three days.
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September: Catalonia

Barcelona is one of the most iconic cities in Catalonia, we all agree on that. But this year while stopping by in Barcelona for two days, I decided to discover more local and less touristic cities in Catalonia.
Even though Catalonia and Spain are quite cheap, one weirdly expensive thing there is regional trains. So in order to stay within your budget, I would highly recommend you to use the BlaBlaCar app and go to almost any city for around ten Euros.

From Barcelona, I decided to go to Montserrat, Lleida, and Tarragona. Even though Lleida is not as touristy as the other cities mentioned above, I enjoyed my stay there the most, getting to know the local culture, people were super friendly and welcoming. There were a lot of vintage-hipsterish hang out places where mostly locals or Erasmus students would go.

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December: Poland

I took a quick trip to the capital of Poland from Sweden in the middle of December. Warsaw turned out to be a very beautiful city with loads of veggie-friendly places and vintage stores where you can also find rare Soviet-era souvenirs.
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For 2020, my goal is to go out of Europe and discover at least some parts of Asia. You can follow me on Instagram and be the first one to see what’s up for the next year.

HAPPY NEW YEAR TO ALL OF YOU!

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Denmark, NETFLIX, Norway, SPAIN, Sweden, Trips & Other Stories, TV SERIES, UK, USA

Why 2019 is the Year of Netflix

I have always been a movie-kind-of-girl, so when this TV SHOWS boom started all around the world, I was a bit sceptical, didn’t quite start immediately catching up with the latest trends. But my interest in TV Series started with the iconic BBC drama Peaky Blinders. Then I developed more faith in TV Series as I continued with The Fall, with the outstanding performance of Jamie Dornan and Gillian Anderson.

Netflix kicked off its 2019 with the debut of the first season of Sex Education and gave us even more expectations than ever. Sex Education will really leave you with a lot of laughter, sadness and some new dance skills. Doesn’t matter the age or gender, you’ll definitely relate to this show. Unlike the name, Sex Education is not only about sex, but also self-awareness and making the best out of every day.

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Credits to IMDB

Here are some TV SERIES that you should be checking out this year on NETFLIX:

PEAKY BLINDERS (UK)
Peaky Blinders is hands down the best acted and directed TV series of all time. Also, something that I really love about the series (the first season especially) is how remnants of the war really permeate in every character. There is a lot of TV series that explored the WW1 and its aftermath, but Peaky Blinders weaves these themes so uniquely. Then season 3 happened, where I heard my hometown Tbilisi, Georgia more than I expected and my fangirling went on another level.
But of course, after super intense season 4 featuring Adrien Brody, now the whole world is waiting for Thomas Shelby’s debut in the politics.

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Cillian Murphy as Thomas Shelby in Peaky Blinders, Photographed by Robert Viglasky

BIG LITTLE LIES (USA)
You know sometimes by the end of a really good movie or TV series you wish you could wipe it from your mind just because you to have the pleasure of watching it again for the first time? Big Little Lies is exactly that type of TV show.

I should admit, when I first saw the cast, there were so many extremely famous Hollywood stars, I thought they were trying to “sell” the low-quality show just for the actors, but hands down Big Little Lies was the discovery of the year. As you already know, BLL is based on a book of the same name by Liane Moriarty. Even though she never published a sequel to the book, she wrote a new story that season 2 will be based on.
Also great news: Meryl Streep will appear on series 2 and my all-time favourite Swede Alexander Skarsgård teased that we might also see him back.

AND  who else is super excited just because of the Soundtracks? Yes, my Spotify playlist definitely needs to be updated.

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Alexander Skarsgård and Nicole Kidman in BIG LITTLE LIES, cc: IMDB

THE RAIN (DENMARK)
Scandinavians are leading the TV show game with their amazing Crime series, but The Rain is the first Scandinavian project made about the post-apocalyptic world. Featuring some rising stars like Alba August or Lucas Lynggaard Tønnesenand and some well-known ones like Mikkel Boe Følsgaard, The Rain is already on one of the top waiting lists of Netflix. If you enjoy foreign TV shows, want to practice your Danish skills and like to watch a really well-written post-apocalyptic series, you should definitely check out The Rain.

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Alba August and Lucas Lynggaard Tønnesen in The Rain, cc: IMDB

DARK (GERMANY)
I started Dark just to practice my German language skills and it ended up to be my favourite TV series. First, when I started watching Dark, I didn’t even expect it to develop the way it did. From the first two episodes, I thought it was some crime/detective, but I ended up in sci-fi, time-travelling series with my favourite rising German actor aka Louis Hofmann.
Leaving us with plenty of questions, the final scene was just mind-blowing and a perfect material for season 2. Also, what I loved about the TV series is that it doesn’t only focus on just one main character, but every character is equally important for the script. As the writer Jantje Friese said, season two won’t just be following older versions of the characters: “We’ve done our thinking, and the second season would put more light on other people in the character structures we haven’t been through that much, while not losing some of the ones that you kind of came close to. But also introducing new ones, while maybe killing some other ones.”

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Louis Hofmann in Dark, cc: IMDB

LA CASA DE PAPEL (SPAIN)
Favourite part of the show? Learning how to swear in Spanish!
La Casa de Papel or Money Heist as they call it in English is the TV series about the biggest heist in history. The storyline, if you ask me, about the heist itself is extremely well-thought and well-written. Also a big compliment to the actors. I know, everyone is a fan of Tokyo, but every character is a perfect match for each role.
And we definitely need to know what the genius mind “el Profesor” is going to do with all of that money he got from the historical heist in the Spanish capital.

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La Casa de Papel, cc: IMDB

THE END OF THE F***ING WORLD (UK)
It’s funny and at the same time an emotional guide through the minds of 2 awkward teenagers with psychological traumas. Step by step, while watching the series, you start to develop a lot of sympathy towards the characters. And also (personal opinion alert) I just love ambiguous endings, when you can decide how it could’ve ended. Even though the series is originally based on a comic book by Charles Forsman, and the comics end where the first season ends, the TEOTFW announced that “they’ll be f***ing back”. No one knows when the season 2 will air, though. But we all expect it to be somewhere in 2019.

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Jessica Barden and Alex Lawther in THE END OF THE F***ING WORLD, cc: IMDB

YOU (USA)
Honestly, after YOU I officially decided to buy books online from now on, for a while I was even terrified to enter a book store. But now seriously, the message about all of the Insta-fame, faking our lives in Social Media and how unsafe all of that can be, got me really scared. It is true that Joe is an actual psychopath, but I just love it how he has the explanation for every cruel and mad thing he does, and how he believes in them. He also is a bit of “genius” because the final episode got me completely shocked. (SPOILER ALERT) Beck’s death was much unexpected but so well-planned from Joe’s side. Also, Candace coming back from “Italy” and the suspicious private detective of Peach might be a really good hope for the season 2.

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Penn Badgley and Elizabeth Lail in YOU, cc: IMDB

Alongside those 7 TV series, a lot more highly anticipated ones are coming out this year like GAME OF THRONES, STRANGER THINGS, LINE OF DUTY, MINDHUNTER and etc.

Also, Netflix is focusing on creating more foreign language series. The first ever Norwegian Netflix series Ragnarok will be shot in Norway and Denmark during 2019. Scandinavian fans already have high expectations, because the creator of Borgen, one of the best Danish TV series of all time, will be working on Ragnarok.

Make sure to follow me on Instagram for the latest updates.
E-mail me: hello@thefedorahat.com

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