It was an early start this morning for our train to Tampere. We left Helsinki around 9am, and reached Tampere for 11am. We did have a slight panic today as it turns out that on some trains in Finland, some parts of the train go off in different directions to the others. When we reached around the halfway point, we sat oblivious in our carriage until a lovely gentleman informed us that we needed to get into a different carriage and helped us hurriedly carry our belongings off the train. If he hadn’t presumed we were travellers who knew no better, who knows where we would have ended up.
Having reached Tampere, we set out to find out hostel, realising we forgot to write down the directions beforehand. Most places in the city centres have wifi which is handy, but it’s always best to know where you’re going after the train so that you can get there quickly and dump your rucksack. Today also included my first fall on the ice. Fortunately my rucksack softened the blow, but I looked like a little turtle stuck on my back and the fall also cracked my phone screen. Bugger! But we soon found our hostel, Dream Hostel, and I’d really recommend their services around the world as it was a great place to stay.
After a quick – free – coffee, we headed into the centre. We must have walked in every direction possible and saw the whole town, but unfortunately we didn’t find it that interesting for one of Finland’s biggest cities; maybe it would be better to visit in summer, but I felt it was quite industrial.
There was a lovely little indoor market where we had fruity tea and a pastry.
But other than that it was just a lot of big shopping centres and a couple of pretty churches dotted in between.
By the end of the evening, having been unsuccessful in finding the Moomin museum, we found a beautiful lake in the north of the town. The lake span for miles and was completely frozen over. After a few minutes of looking at the endless ice, however, we soon realised there were people skiing on it! Yep, skiing. If it was safe enough for that, we thought we’d have a little walk out, but we couldn’t go out as far as the locals as you just don’t know when ice will crack and it wasn’t worth the risk.
After hours of walking, we headed back to the hostel, had some food and a shower, and had an early nights sleep.