How to Avoid Jet Lag

How to Avoid Jet Lag

Jet lag can seriously put a damper on the start of a trip. I remember accidentally sleeping until noon in Barcelona and falling asleep during a church tour in Ireland. Luckily there are ways to avoid jet lag or lessen its effects. Today I’m sharing how I avoid jet lag so I can enjoy my trip!

Drink Water

Up your water intake the day before a big flight and then make sure to stay hydrated during the flight. Flying can really dehydrate you and make your symptoms worse!

Plan Your Arrival Time

While sometimes this is not possible, I try to look at my arrival time. Sometimes taking a flight were you are changing time zones and arriving at night won’t be helpful to your sleep, but sometimes it is. This just depends if you are loosing or gaining time.

Rest on the Plane

This is one that depends on your arrival. On my flight back from Europe I arrive home at 11pm. It’s probably best that I try to stay awake as much as possible so that I can sleep when I get home. While during that 10 hour flight it won’t hurt if I take a nap.

Avoid Caffeine

This will help you fall asleep easier when you need to in your new time zone.

Get Some Exercise

Before, during, and after the flight. Keep your blood flowing! I’m not saying run up and down the plane walkways, but maybe do some stretches to make sure you keep your blood flowing.

Nap it Out

It’s okay if you arrive during the day and you’re exhausted. Listen to your body and know when to rest. Make sure your nap is not too long so that you will still be able to sleep at night.

 

Sometimes even with the most savvy fliers, you can’t avoid jet lag. But luckily with these tips you can keep on moving and enjoy your trip!

 

How to you avoid jet lag?

 

 

 

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My Year as an Au Pair

My Year as an Au Pair

Holy moly these 9 months have flown by! Right now I’m either at the airport or on my flight from Stockholm to Chicago. If this is your first time on Boarding for Chynna, I’ve been an au pair in Finland for the past 9 months. If you want to know more information about being an au pair below are some blog posts I have written!

My year as an au pair has definitely been an interesting one. As a 25-year-old it’s not something you hear of people doing after college. I will say that taking a year of was really nice so that I could travel before having to get into the game of life. But I don’t think I will ever not stop traveling! I’ve had a fun year and I’m excited to share what I did today!

August and September

Tallinn

I arrived in Finland at the beginning of August and the weather was great! I visited the capital, Helsinki, for the first time and met some other au pairs in the same city. At the beginning of September I went to Tallinn, Estonia by boat with some of the au pairs. Tallinn is a beautiful place I would have never thought of going to, but so glad I did. You can read about my trip HERE.

October and November

My Year as an Au Pair

October was a big month! I turned 25 and went on my first solo trip to Prague! My grandpa is from Prague so I have been wanting to go for a long time and was blown away by the beauty of the city. If you would like to read about my trip to Prague, click HERE.

Why I Became an Au Pair After College

In November I took my next solo trip to Copenhagen! I loved this city! Even though it was chilly at this time of the year, it was amazing! You can read about my trip HERE.

December and January

One au pair I met was from France and when she found out I wasn’t going home for Christmas she invited my to her families house to join them! Seriously the nicest thing and I’m forever grateful for it! We spent a day in Paris before heading to her family’s town and then two other days exploring Metz and Nancy. You can read my posts about France, HERE and HERE.

Traveling to Amsterdam During Winter

After Christmas I made my way up to Brussels and then to Amsterdam. I will say that Brussels didn’t really blow me away, but Amsterdam did! Amsterdam is gorgeous and the canals are a dream to just look at all day. You can read my post for Brussels HERE and Amsterdam HERE.

In January I took a weekend trip to Stockholm with another au pair and her friend. Stockholm is a beautiful city, but pretty cold during the winter! You can read about my weekend HERE. 

February and March

Why I Became an Au Pair After College

I’m not going to lie, February was rough. It’s cold and dark and it feels like winter will never end. On a positive note though, I did get to go skiing with my host family for the first time!

Why I Became an Au Pair After College

I also went to a public sauna and jumped into a frozen lake! Very very Finnish thing to do in the winter.

In March I finally saw a friend from back home! After not seeing any of my friends since August I was so happy. I’m so glad I was able to meet up with them in Barcelona! You can read about my trip to Barcelona HERE. 

April and May

5 Things You Should Do in Lisbon

April was a great month! I had another friend come to visit and we took a trip to Lisbon Portugal! I fell in love with this city. There is so much to see and do. You can read my Lisbon posts HERE, HERE, and HERE.

How to Spend a Weekend in Northern Austria

And here we are in May! At the beginning of the Month I traveled to Germany and Austria to visit an au pair I met in Finland. You can read about my weekend HERE and HERE.

My Thoughts on Being an Au Pair

People ask if I would do it over again and it’s such a hard question. If I didn’t come I would have never met the people I did or do the things I did. And really I’m not sure I would want to give that up. But also I overall didn’t enjoy being an au pair. I love working with kids and even have a degree based on working with them, but this is completely different. I am not in control of anything and had to base my life on what 5 other people were doing. So really I have not felt in control of my own life these past 9 months which has been hard for me. It was an experience though and was able to do so much, so for that I am thankful.

I want to thank everyone who has kept up with my journey these past 9 months and can’t wait to share what I will be doing during this next chapter in life!

 

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How to Spend a Weekend in Northern Austria

How to Spend a Weekend in Northern Austria

At the beginning of this month I spent a weekend visiting a friend, that was an au pair here in Finland, in Austria. I flew into Munich since it was cheaper and just as close as other cities. If you want to see how I spent my night in Munich, click HERE.

Austria is seriously stunning. They have rolling hills and mountains everywhere you look. I’m so glad I fit this trip in before I left! Today I’m sharing how I spent my weekend in Northern Austria!

Spend a Day in Linz

How to Spend a Weekend in Northern Austria

Linz is located between Salzburg and Vienna, but not one you should miss! This city is filled with lots of museums and great architecture to look at. Linz sits on the Danube river and on a nice sunny day people are all sitting outside along it enjoying the weather.

Things to do in Linz:

  • Ars Electronica Center
  • New Cathedral
  • Lentos Art Museum
  • Old Cathedral

Go Hiking in Gmunden

How to Spend a Weekend in Northern Austria

This town sits on the lake Traunsee and is picturesque with the mountain views. Take a cable car (or hike) up the mountain and check out the views! On the top there is a playground area for children, a restaurant, a roller-coaster like ride which is so much fun, and areas for hiking. It started to rain while we were there so we didn’t get to explore as much, but I would definitely recommend checking it out. Especially the ride, so cool to do!

Burg Altperstein

How to Spend a Weekend in Northern Austria

This castle is literally built on the side of a hill! Make sure to check the hours they are open before going. It was closed when we went, but it was still cool to see from the outside!

Go to a Spring Party

How to Spend a Weekend in Northern Austria

One of the most fun things I have done since I have been in Europe! This is one thing I would have not experience without a local with me. Spring parties are really common and different groups put on these parties and sell their homemade apple wine. There is live music and food also, so all of my favorite things! If you get the chance to go to one, definitely check it out!

 

Out of all of the places I have been, Austria really surprised me! (I know I keep saying that, but really each place does). It is a beautiful country and I cannot wait to go back and visit again.

 

Have you been to Austria?

 

 

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How to Spend a Day in Munich

How to Spend a Day in Munich

At the beginning of this month I had the opportunity to Visit a friend in Austria. She mentioned that flights would probably be cheaper if I flew into Munich, which was only a 3 hour drive from where she lives. When I saw that they were cheaper I asked if there was a chance we could spend some time in the city since I had never been. She of course agreed and so I was able to spend a day in Munich (really a night)!

Today I’m sharing things you can do during a day in Munich if you don’t have that much time there or things are closed when you arrive!

Marienplatz

This is the city-center square! Here you will find St. Peter’s church, two town halls, and a tow museum. I think it’s good to see at least the city-center in any city I visit.

Hofbräuhaus am Platzl

A must visit! This is a three-story beer hall that dates back to the 16th century. The restaurant was so much fun and had a great vibe. They have live music, great food, and huge beers! I always heard people posting about beers as big as your head, and they were right!

How to Spend a Day in Munich

St Peter’s Church

Located in the city-center, this is the oldest church in Munich!

Frauenkirche

This church is seen as the symbol of the Bavarian capital city. The church was also bombed in 1945 and is known for its devil’s footprint. It is beautiful, so even if you don’t get to go inside the outside is worth seeing.

 

Munich has soooo much to do and see, including a castle that you’ve probably seen posted a million times, but if you are short on time then these are things you can do during that time! I know I will be going back to Munich again to really get to see the city better. And of course see the castle 😉

 

What is the shortest amount of time you’ve been in a city to visit?

 

 

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Day Trips to Take from Lisbon

Day Trips to Take from Lisbon

Not only is Lisbon a great city, but yo can also take day trips to two other cities nearby that are only 30-40 minutes away! On my trip we went to Sintra and Cascais, both completely different. Sintra is the location of the Pena Palace, Moorish Castle, and many other things. Cascais is a beach town with colorful streets and good gelato. Today I’m sharing how to get to each and what to do in each city!

Sintra

If you take any day trips, make it Sintra! Not only is it a cute town, but it is also the location of the Pena Palace (pictured above) and the Moorish Castle (below). Both a seriously beautiful! Most people suggest getting tickets before, I didn’t and went in a back entrance easily. I also did not go in the palace, but just got the ticket for the outside and the gardens.

Day Trips to Take from Lisbon

Make sure to have on good walking shoes when you visit the Moorish Castle! It is really a hike! This castle is said to be built in 1160 or before. Not only is this really great to see, but also has amazing views!

How to Get There

From Rossio station you can take a train straight to Sintra! The train runs fairly often and only costs 5 euros for round-trip. We spent the whole day there so plan accordingly.

Cascais

Day Trips to Take From Lisbon

Cascais is a cute beach town only 40 minutes from Lisbon. Really the whole train ride to this town is beach towns so you can pick any! We spent our day here laying by the beach, drinking wine, and eating fresh seafood. Portugal is known for their seafood, so you know it will be good since it’s coming straight from the ocean you’ve been laying by all day. If you have time I would definitely make a trip to this cute town.

How to Get There

You have to get on the train at Cais do Sodré. I thought you could get on at Rossio and you can’t. So learn from my mistake 😉 If you are like me and stayed by Rossio station, get on the metro and go to Cars do Sodré and then get on the train.

 

Both of these day trips were so easy and so different! I’m glad I did both of them and got to experience Portugal more.

What cities do you love in Portugal?

 

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5 Things You Should Do in Lisbon

5 Things You Should Do in Lisbon

I really had no expectations going to Lisbon. There have been a lot of positive reviews of the city in the travel groups I am apart of so I thought it would be fun to visit. I am so glad I did! This city blew me away with culture and beauty. From cobble stoned alleys to tiled walls, you will fall in love with this city!

Just to warn you, there are a lot of pickpockets in the city. Within 5 minutes of being there we saw two men try to take something out of a woman’s purse. Luckily people around started yelling at them. They are obviously not very sneaky and not violent, just be aware. I saw a lot acting like tourists to try to trick people so just be aware of your things.

Like I said before, I didn’t really have any expectations so I didn’t really plan anything to do. That being said I’m listing things I did do and things I know to do next time I visit! There is also so much more to do in Lisbon than listed here!

Check Out Rossio Square

5 Things You Should Do in Lisbon

I love European squares! There is so much energy and life. I love relaxing and people watching.

Get a View of Lisbon

5 Things You Should Do in Lisbon

There are lookouts all over the city! There are also usually restaurants near them with a great view from the patio. Grab some sangria or a glass of wine and enjoy the view.

Visit Praça do Comércio

5 Things You Should Do in Lisbon

This is another square in Lisbon with shops and restaurants. It also leads to the ocean with a small beach area. Another great place to hangout and people watch or grab some sangria.

Go Tile Hunting Around the City

5 Things You Should Do in Lisbon

Tile covered buildings are all around the city! They add so much character and are fun to get pictures in front of!

Check Out Different Neighborhoods

Lisbon has different neighborhoods and each can give a different vibe. Alfama is considered “old town” and has great lookout views and also a great place to get on tram 28. The Barrio Alto neighborhood is good for nightlife and to listen to traditional Fado. The streets of Barrio Alto are filled during the night with people hanging out and drinking. A really fun atmosphere!

5 Things You Should Do in Lisbon

Lisbon is a beautiful city that I can’t wait to visit again!

Have you been to Lisbon?

 

 

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How to Spend a 12 Hour Layover in Amsterdam

How to Spend a 12 Hour Layover in Amsterdam

A few months ago when I was searching for flights to Portugal from Helsinki, I noticed that for one the prices were pretty high and that the lowest ones had long layovers. The cheapest price I saw, for around $200 roundtrip, had a 12 hour layover in Amsterdam. I have been to Amsterdam once and loved it, so to have the chance to go again was something that interested me! I quickly asked my friend if this would be okay for her and she said yes since she has never been before.

Amsterdam is an amazing city and if you have a chance to stay for longer, do, but if not then it’s still a great place to have a layover. Here is how we spent out 12 hour layover in Amsterdam!

Where to Stay

How to Spend a 12 hour Layover in Amsterdam

MEININGER Hotel Amsterdam City West

This hostel is a little outside of the city, but Amsterdam is so well connected that it’s a great location. And cheaper. This hostel is also right next to a train stop that goes to and from the airport and downtown. You can get to both within 15 minutes.

What to Do

How to Spend a 12 Hour Layover in Amsterdam

Depending on when you get in Amsterdam, this will affect what you can do. We got to our hostel around 8pm so by that time a lot of the museums were closed. I do know the Anne Frank House is open later and you need to reserve tickets in advance. Here is what we did during our night in Amsterdam:

  • Walk the canal district
  • See the Anne Frank statue
  • Eat pancakes, french fries, and stroopwaffles
  • Check out the nightlife/coffee shops

If you are going to be in Amsterdam for longer or during the day, check out my post HERE on things to do in Amsterdam.

Spending a 12 hour layover in Amsterdam was fun and better than in an airport!

 

What city have you spent a longer layover in?

 

 

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Food You Have to Try in Barcelona

Food You Have to Try in Barcelona

Spain is one of my food heavens! My number one is still France, but Spain is right behind it. Sitting at an outdoor table with friends, beer, and tapas is my ideal day. While on my weekend trip in Barcelona we even tried to do a tapas crawl (we didn’t make it very far). But I did get to try some yummy food. If you are planning a trip soon, I’m sharing food you have to try in Barcelona!

Patatas Bravas (Spicy Potatoes)

Four Things You Should Do in Barcelona

This was a group favorite. The sauce is almost like a chipotle mayo. Overall super delicious and a must try.

Paella

Food You Have to Try in Barcelona

Picture found here

I don’t think it’s a trip to Spain without trying some paella! Since you are right on the Mediterranean Sea you can get some with fresh seafood! If you are not a seafood fan you can also have meat or vegetarian version.

Bombas

Food You Have to Try in Barcelona

picture found here

These are mini potato croquettes with two different sauces.  You can usually order them by whatever amount you would like!

Pa amb Tomàquet

Food You Have to Try in Barcelona

Picture found here

The only reason I actually tried this is because it was brought to our table on accident. No one ordered it, but we ate it anyways! We were all glad it came to our table.

 

Spain is a great place to relax either alone or with family/friends! The relaxed feel, architecture, food will make you fall in love instantly. If you have never been abroad or looking for a place for you next trip I would definitely recommend Spain as your destination. I have only been to Barcelona, but I have only heard good things from others who have traveled to different cities.

 

This is just a short list of the good food available in Barcelona. I could go on for days!

What is your favorite food to eat in Barcelona?

 

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Four Things You Should Do in Barcelona

Four Things You Should Do in Barcelona

Barcelona was the first city I ever visited in Europe! I will say since it was the first one, I didn’t really know how to travel yet. So I didn’t get to see the city as much as I should have. Once you go to Barcelona, you will fall in love! This city is laid back and also so much fun. If you are heading here soon here are some things you should do during your trip!

Park Güell

Four Things You Should Do in Barcelona

A must do in Barcelona! You can see the iconic house that looks like it is from candy land and a great view of the city! Make sure to book your tickets before you go. This will ensure you can get in! You can get your tickets HERE.

 

Sagrada Familia

Four Things You Should Do in Barcelona

This church is breathtaking! We stepped out from the metro and it was right there. This is another one where you need to book your tickets in advance to go in. We didn’t and were not able to go inside. I think this is a sign I will need to come back one day 😉 You can order your tickets HERE.

 

Hang out by the beach

Four Things You Should Do in Barcelona

Since it was March it wasn’t the warmest weather, but it was still nice to sit on the outdoor couches of restaurants and enjoy the view. The first time I was in Barcelona it was July so we grabbed a bottle of sangria and hung out at the beach all day.

 

Eat all the tapas

Four Things You Should Do in Barcelona

Spain is known for tapas so this is a must do anywhere you go in Spain. I’m pretty sure my next post is going to be dedicated to tapas 😉 You can also enjoy their cheap beer and wine while you eat!

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Skiing in Finland

Skiing in Finland

Finland has over 100 ski resorts and no mountains! You might wonder how you  can go skiing without any mountains? Well Finland does have many hills that are covered in snow! Winter can begin in November in some places, so you can enjoy skiing for a large part of the year. Whether you are a new or experienced skier, you will enjoy your time skiing in Finland! Here are 4 ski resorts to check out while in Finland.

Levi 

Skiing in Finland

One of Finland’s most popular and best rated ski resorts! There are 45 slopes and many different activities. You can even stay in a glass igloo here!

 

Iso-Syöte

Skiing in Finland

Another favorite by visitors! There are 17 slopes and 10 lifts perfect for any skill level.

 

Vuokatti

Skiing in Finland

This is the ski resort that I went to with my host family this past weekend. Since this was my first time I don’t have anything to compare it to, but I felt like as a new skier I did not feel intimidated at all!

 

PYHÄ

Skiing in Finland

The “Authentic Lappish Holiday Resort” has 14 slopes and 8 lifts. Also voted :Ski Resort of the Year 2017 Finland” You can even have a chance to see the Northern Lights during your stay!

Skiing in Finland

Whether you are an advance skier or just a beginner, a ski trip in Finland is one that you will remember!

Have you ever been skiing?

 

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