The last days. Europe, you have truly been amazing!

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Day Eighty-Two: Made it to Helsinki airport – last selfie before the long 24 hour trip back home. What a truly amazing trip it has been! See you next time, europe!
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Day Eighty-Two: Another photo of us just waiting for time to pass in Helsinki… For some reason it doesnt pass quickly when you really want it to…
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Day Eighty-Two: Trying to kill time in Helsinki with all our bags before our 23:55 flight. We ended up just sitting in a park for a few hours and looking out for gypsies who were constantly eyeing off our bags, and collecting empty cans and bottles around us.
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Day Eighty-Two: Ferry from Tallinn to Helsinki. Last day before the big flight home! We also witnessed what we thought at first was a blind date for some pretty funny elder Estonians or Finnish. (right corner of photo) Turned out the men were just major flirts and were hitting up all of the older ladies on the ferry and inviting them for a dance on the dancefloor… By this point Ivars was also getting very sick of me taking photos…
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Day Eighty-One: Chicken soup – the ultimate sickness cure.
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Day Eighty-One: Tea and cake in Tallinn at a gorgeous cafe called Must Puudel. This was unfortunately the only point of that day that I went outside of the apartment, the rest of the day I was lying in bed with a flu, and an infected eye from who-knows-what… Ivars got to explore the town a bit though while I was resting!
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Day Eighty: Four hour bus trip from Riga to Tallinn…

Last days of the big road trip + last days in Riga

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Day Seventy-Nine: Fancy cocktails and a cheese platter at Hotel Gutenbergs with a gorgeous view of the rooftops of Riga Oldtown. Unfortunately it was pouring outside, but the silhouettes were still gorgeous!
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Day Seventy-Nine: Last beer in ALA for a while… But we will be back soon!
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Day Seventy-Nine: Found some very gourmet latvian chips – chantarelle flavoured!
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Day Seventy-Nine: Went to Roberts Bookstore and exchanged a book for a glass of wine – saving money at its finest!
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Day Seventy-Nine: Last day in Riga – had to get a photo of the gorgeous Opera House while still here.
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Day Seventy-Eight: Back in Riga. Decided to go to Leningrad pub to see some local latvian punk-metal bands play.
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Day Seventy-Seven: Last beer in Berlin at a hipster beer garden on the way back to returning our bikes.
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Day Seventy-Seven: Graffiti of Berlin.
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Day Seventy-Seven: We hired bikes and did a bit of a bike ride up to a dumpling place about 4km from Alexanderplatz – we hadnt had dumplings in nearly 3 months, so it was super satisfying! However, we ordered chinese cabbage expecting to get it with oyster sauce like in Australia, but instead we got white cabbage mixed with sweet chilli sauce – wasn’t too bad though!
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Day Seventy-Six: We arrived in Berlin at our hostel called Sunflower Hostel, which was right around the corner from the East Side Gallery, as well as amongst quite a dodgy, grungy area. We decided to go get some dinner on the local food street around the corner.
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Day Seventy-Six: Ivars trying to be Wagner.
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Day Seventy-Six: Woolworth ended up being a great find – basically like a Kmart of Europe! We bought 1 euro sunglasses, 1 euro cokes, and a 1 euro bottle of spirits. The spirits were pretty dodgy though, and we ended up using it to clean our car windows before returning it to our car rental place…
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Day Seventy-Six: We found a shop called Woolworth, and were so confused… So we decided to go check it out.
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Day Seventy-Six: A delicious fresh redcurrant and lemon ice-cream to cool down on the 30 degrees day.
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Day Seventy-Six: In Bayreuth, at the opera house where Wagner debuted some of his operas.
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Day Seventy-Six: Trip from Munich to Berlin – on the way we stopped at a small town called Bayreuth.
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Day Seventy-Five: We finally made it to Munich – and what better place to spend the warm summer evening than at a biergarten at Englischer Garten.
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Day Seventy-Five: A view from the catatombs that we visited where Mozart’s sister was buried, as well Haydn’s brother.
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Day Seventy-Five: We walked into a gorgeous church, and somebody was playing the organ upstairs – it was such a truly remarkable and epic sound, and a free concert!
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Day Seventy-Five: We came across a massive shop full of decorations of all colours, styles, and themes. Absolutely marvelous! There were so many beautifully painted egg shells- we had to be very careful not to knock them over!
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Day Seventy-Five: At Mozart’s birthplace, and where he spent the first few years of his life.
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Day Seventy-Five: The most well known street of Salzburg – Getreidegasse.
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Day Seventy-Five: On the way to Munich we stopped off in Salzburg, Austria. We both absolutely loved it and ended up spending 4 hours there instead of the 2 hours that we had intended. Here’s some of the beautiful houses that were built into the mountains – so magical!
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Day Seventy-Five: The beautiful drive from Slovenia to Germany, through the absolutely gorgeous Austrian alps.

The Croatian coast + Plitvička Jezera + Lake Bled

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Day Seventy-Four: Another one of Ivars ‘artistic’ photos. Slovenia has been absolutely gorgeous. Next stop – Munich!
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Day Seventy-Four: Rented a canoe for an hour and went around the lake and the beautiful island, as well as soaked up the beautiful alpine sun!
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Day Seventy-Four: Picnic with a beautiful view for lunch.
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Day Seventy-Three: Beers with a view of Lake Bled.
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Day Seventy-Three: We got back to Bled and rode around Lake Bled and saw so many gorgeous views of the church and alps!
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Day Seventy-Three: Made it to the end of the track!
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Day Seventy-Three: Another photo from the beautiful Vintgar Gorge.
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Day Seventy-Three: We rode to the Vintgar Gorge, which was quite a difficult ride up the mountain, however, most definitely worth it – gorgeous views!
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Day Seventy-Three: Morning coffees right next to Lake Bled and planning out our bike route for the day.
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Day Seventy-Two: Warmed up our evening a little with a nice dinner right near the hostel we were staying at in the town of Lesce, about 4km from Bled.
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Day Seventy-Two: Goodbye Croatia, Hello Slovenia – we were welcomed with a massive rainstorm while driving the Slovenian roads up and down the mountains.
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Day Seventy-One: When we came back to the main entrance, there were some local Croatians in their traditional costumes dancing and singing some of their traditional folk songs and dances.
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Day Seventy-One: Just another photo of the beautiful lakes and waterfalls at Plitvičke. So many gorgeous shades of green and blue!
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Day Seventy-One: Some of the beautiful waterfalls of Plitvičke Lakes National Park.
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Day Seventy-One: After nearly two hours of waiting in line for tickets, we finally got in to see the beautiful Plitvičke Jezeri. A bit too many tourists for our liking, but still beautiful nature, and smashed an 8km walking track!
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Day Seventy: Our accommodation for two nights… A B&B owned by a Croatian family that spoke very little English in a tiny town called Krasno Polje. When we arrived, we were given a welcoming shot of their local liqueur. The dinner was also delicious – all homemade, even the fries!
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Day Seventy: Saying our goodbyes to the beautiful Croatian coast with a stunning view of some Croatian islands before heading back into the centre of Croatia for more adventures.
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Day Seventy: Another beautiful Croatian beach in a small town which I don’t remember the name of…
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Day Seventy: Our attempt at an underwater selfie…
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Day Sixty-Nine: More moped adventures.
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Day Sixty-Nine: Stopped at a winery and tried some delicious wine made from local grapes that grow only on Vis island.
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Day Sixty-Nine: More beautiful beaches and blue skies.
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Day Sixty-Nine: The second largest town on Vis island called Korčula– definitely coming back here again, so gorgeous!
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Day Sixty-Nine: We hired a moped for the day and explored nearly all of the island – was so much fun, and so easy to get around!
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Day Sixty-Nine: On the ferry on the way to the island of Vis for a day trip.

Croatia – Part One

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Day Sixty-Eight: And finishing another day with this beautiful view from our apartment.
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Day Sixty-Eight: Trying out local Croatian cuisine – deep fried whitebait.
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Day Sixty-Eight: Gorgeous purple flowers on the beautiful buildings of Split.
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Day Sixty-Eight: On our day trip to the city of Split we visited an old Roman mausoleum and the temple of Jupiter.
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Day Sixty-Seven: After a hard day of relaxing by the beach and drinking cocktails, we had to hike back up to our apartment… A bit dehydrated, and in 30 degrees weather.
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Day Sixty-Seven: Cocktails by the beach in Podstrana – now this is what I call a holiday!
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Day Sixty-Seven: Such a beautiful sight – grapes, olives, peaches, pomegranates, and figs growing in all our neighbours backyards and frontyards! So exotic!
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Day Sixty-Six: Our Airbnb host surprised us with a bottle of homemade cherry liqueur made with cherries from their own garden – so lovely!
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Day Sixty-Six: We arrived at our apartment for the next four nights (in Podstrana, 8km from Split), and experienced this gorgeous sunset from our own balcony.
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Day Sixty-Six: On the way to our next destination we visited a beautiful town called Šibenik – simply cannot get over the beauty of these coastal towns as well as the crystal clear blue water and constant blue skies!
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Day Sixty-Six: Remarkable Roman and Venetian ruins in all of the old town of Zadar, and such a beautiful clear blue sky!
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Day Sixty-Six: Exploring the city of Zadar, and Ivars looking mighty fine with his hectic t-shirt tan…
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Day Sixty-Five: Gorgeous sunset.
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Day Sixty-Five: Time to relax by the beautiful Adriatic Sea!
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Day Sixty-Five: The town at which we spent our first two nights in Croatia – a population of less than 500.
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Day Sixty-Four: Arrived in our accommodation for the next two nights in a small town in Croatia called Rovanjska – this was the absolutely gorgeous view from our room.
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Day Sixty-Four: First sights of the beautiful mountains.
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Day Sixty-Four: Waiting in line for the border crossing from Slovenia to Croatia – such crazy border control, added about an hour on to our trip!
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Day Sixty-Four: Lunch break at a rest stop in between Austria and Croatia.

Prague, Vienna and the inbetween.

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Day Sixty-Three: And what better way to finish off the Vienna experience than with a good Schnitzel Mit Pommes Frittes!
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Day Sixty-Three: Been seeing my surname quite a lot around here and Germany… So, thought this was appropriate.
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Day Sixty-Three: Standing by the greatest concert hall of the world – Wiener Musikverein.
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Day Sixty-Three: Picnic in the park in between famous sculptures of Schubert and Strauss.
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Day Sixty-Three: The Austrian National Library.
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Day Sixty-Three: While walking to the centre of Vienna, we came across a world music shop. Safe to say, we were in there quite a while.
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Day Sixty-Three: Ivars trying to take some artsy photos.
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Day Sixty-Two: We arrived in Vienna! At the weirdest apartment ever. We thought we had booked a whole apartment, but when we arrived we realised it was just a room, with a piano, a bed and car seats for a couch, about 6km from the centre of Vienna, with no WiFi… The joys of travelling…
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Day Sixty-Two: Starting the Europe on a budget lifestyle, because we realised we spent way too much during the first two months…
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Day Sixty-Two: The ceiling of the Sedlec Ossuary – using all parts of the human skeleton to decorate the church.
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Day Sixty-Two: Sedlec Ossuary. Probably one of the most unusual and freakiest chapel’s you’ll ever see. A chapel decorated with around 40,000 human skeletons. I must say, I did feel a bit uneasy walking around it…
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Day Sixty-One: Finishing off the evening at a bar in Prague’s Old Town and last drinks with Daina before we all head off in different directions around Europe for the next few weeks!
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Day Sixty-One: Just another photo of the stunning Town Square. Couldn’t get any more magical!
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Day Sixty-One: On the beautiful Charles Bridge. We walked across it just after sunset, and there was a duo (on accordion and violin) playing Vivaldi’s Four Seasons – such a beautiful atmosphere!
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Day Sixty-One: One simply can’t visit Prague without trying a Trdelnik – a traditional pastry in Czech Republic.
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Day Sixty-One: Came across a marionette shop. That had marionettes of all shapes, sizes, and races…
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Day Sixty-One: The Town Square of Prague. Another beautiful gothic cathedral – seriously looked like it was from a fairytale!
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Day Sixty-One: We found Daina! And enjoyed a lovely coffee before heading off to explore the rest of the city.
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Day Sixty-One: The absolutely gorgeous Prague Castle Cathedral. Never have I loved gothic architecture this much… definitely a new found love now.
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Day Sixty-One: Ivars’ first time on an autobahn in Germany. Fun, fun, fun! Especially in this tiny KIA we have hired out that can only hit a max of 155km/h…

Berlin!

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Day Sixty: Open air cinema in Kreuzberg. We watched a German film called The People Vs. Fritz Bauer with english subtitles.
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Day Sixty: Had to get some Currywurst!
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Day Sixty: The Berlin Reichstag.
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Day Sixty: Brandenburg Gate obligatory selfie.
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Day Sixty: The typical Berlin scene – bikes and graffiti. We walked into the courtyard further up and found a beautiful zine shop.
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Day Fifty-Nine: Finishing off the evening in the local park nearby with some German beers and snacks. There were so many people doing the same thing, created such a nice vibe!
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Day Fifty-Nine: We came across an agricultural co-opt called Holzmarkt just by the Spree River. Beautiful place for a break in between bike-riding.
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Day Fifty-Nine: The famous graffiti art of the kiss between Brezhnev and Honecker.
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Day Fifty-Nine: The East Side Gallery – the remains of the Berlin Wall decorated with graffiti art.
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Day Fifty-Nine: Sunday Flea Markets in Berlin.
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Day Fifty-Eight: More Berlin Nightlife.
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Day Fifty-Eight: Experiencing the Berlin nightlife with Ivars, Seb and one of Seb’s mates at an area called Kreuzberg. Drinking weinspritzer, and every now and then smelling weed from the people sitting next to us – only in Berlin…
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Day Fifty-Eight: Finally getting our Pho fix at a Vietnamese restaurant where Seb works at. Really been missing this for the past two months!
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Day Fifty-Eight: Exploring the city of Berlin by bike.
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Day Fifty-Eight: The remainders of the Berlin Wall. This is how Berlin used to look like when the wall divided West and East Berlin.
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Day Fifty-Eight: Flight to Berlin with Ryanair. Absolutely no leg-room.. Oh the joys of cheap flights.

Last days of the internship, an interview on Latvian radio, and a short trip to Sigulda

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Day Fifty-Seven: After being pretty regular train-catchers in Latvia for the past two months, we were surprised to get on such a modern-looking train for once! It seemed like such a luxury in comparison to the other trains we’d been on!
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Day Fifty-Seven: The beautiful view of the forest and Turaidas Pils from one of the look-outs we walked past. Sigulda is really so stunning!
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Day Fifty-Seven: The happy mushroom-collectors. We ended up colllecting a fair few in the end – enough for a small sauce!
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Day Fifty-Seven: After having a little stroll along the local forest nearby with my cousins, we came across a few gailenes (chantarelles). We couldn’t just pick these ones up and stop looking, we had to collect enough for at least a beautiful fresh mushroom sauce!
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Day Fifty-Seven: One of the best things about Latvia during summer is the amount of fresh berries they have. Such a beautiful bush of redcurrants or ‘jāņogas’ in my family’s backyard in Sigulda.
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Day Fifty-Six: Group photo with Ivars’ family who live in Ogre, who we did the bike ride with.
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Day Fifty-Six: Everybody in Ogre lining up before the city bike ride.
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Day Fifty-Six: Ogres Pilsētas Svētku riteņbrauciens. It was all good, until it started absolutely pouring…
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Day Fifty-Five: Ivars’ last gig in Riga for the summer. Not too many people rocked up, but it was a nice bunch, and probably one of Ivars’ best performances. Brought a tear to my eye, as well as Artūrs Uškāns’.
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Day Fifty-Five: Dinner before Ivars’ last gig in Latvija this summer at Hāgenskalna Komūna – really good food, in a beautiful Latvian style!
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Day Fifty-Five: Interview at Latvijas Radio for the show ’21.gs. latvietis’ with Ansis Bogustovs. Fun experience!
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Day Fifty-Four: Caught up with old family friends Linda and Gerds. Gerds was the lovely person who offered us his apartment to stay at while we were in Riga. We ate dinner at a lovely Italian restaurant called Casa Nostra on Elizabetes iela.
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Day Fifty-Four: Last day of the internship at Draugiem Group. Photo of me and my main co-workers for the past 6 weeks in one of the conference rooms called ‘Tropi’.
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Day Fifty-Three: The planning begins.. Finally we decided it was time to book car rentals and start looking up accommodation for the continuation of our Europe trip.