Wanderlust by Jona

Travel. Wanderlust. Blog. Photographer. Amanda Jona. Explore. Adventure. World. Traveller

Vigeland Sculpture Park

 
One of Oslo's most beloved tourist attraction is Vigeland Sculpture Park.
 
 
The Sculpture Park, located in Frogner Park consists more than 200 sculptures made by the same artist - Gustav Vigeland (1869–1943). The sculptures portray naked humans in a variety of poses and situations - some more unnatural than others and all of them tells a different story. Let's just say that you can spend quite some time here without getting bored since there is a lot to look at!
 
If the weather is good, bring a picnic and enjoy the big open space of Frogner Park.
 
Read more about my trip to Oslo
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
Quick facts about Vigeland Sculpture Park
 
Name: Vigelandsanlegget
Built: Started 1924
Entrance fee: None
Location: Frogner Park, Oslo
 
Who should visit?
I honestly think that everyone can find something that interests them with the variety of weird poses - you don't have to be particularly interested in art to enjoy this.
 
My rating: 
★★★★/★★★★★
 
 
 
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Travel Throwback Thursday: Rhodes 1996

 
I had to dig deep into the family photo albums to find photos to this week's Travel Throwback Thursday!
 
I was only one month old when I was on an airplane for the first time and traveled to relatives in northern Sweden, but my first time abroad was in October 1996 when I went to the Greek island Rhodes. As you can imagine, I have zero memories of this trip, but I often get reminded of it since I was eleven months old at the time and took my first steps there. I always talk about how rewarding it is to travel and experience new places, so it's sort of poetical that I actually learned to walk in another country, haha.
 
I've been back to Greece once since 1996 (Kos, 2002) and I'm actually going to the Greek Island Crete this summer so I will finally experience Greece with a somehow adult consciousness! I'm really looking forward to hanging out on some beautiful beaches and eat halloumi and tzatziki until I explode ;)
 
 
Me playing at the poolside at the hotel
 
Left: an Unknown street on Rhodes, but look how cute I am in my little hat! Haha ;)
Right: Me and my mother in front of what I after some time on Google believe is Palace of the Grand Master of the Knights of Rhodes
(which by the way must be the longest name of a castle ever!)
 
 Obviously knew already then how awesome it is to sleep in a lounger

10 Reasons Why I'm Happy I Was Born in Sweden

 
Happy National Day of Sweden! 🇸🇪 
 
We Swedes are extremely bad at celebrating our national day, most of us do not even know why we have one. It might not be so odd since June 6 only been Swedens national day since 1983, and a public holiday since 2005 which might explain why we still haven't got the hang of it. I think we have to look at our neighbors Norway to see how a proper national day should be celebrated ;)
 
I would still like to take this opportunity and write a post about my wonderful home country since I think it deserves some extra love and celebration today. I know that I complain a lot about Sweden during the winter months and make fun of how stiff we are to strangers, but I would never wish that I've been born somewhere else.
Here are 10 reasons why I'm happy I was born in Sweden:
 
 
1. You can travel to 176 countries without a visa with a Swedish passport
Only people from Germany can travel to more countries than us (177, to be exact).
 
2. Education in Sweden is completely free
We also get free food when we're there and a grant every month.
 
3. Same-sex marriage is legal in Sweden
And same-sex couples are also allowed to adopt.
 
4. Swedes are bilingual since we learn both Swedish and English in school from a young age
We also put subtitles on English movies and TV-shows instead of dub them like many other European countries do.
 
5. Sweden has a day in October where we celebrate the cinnamon roll
Enough said.
 
 
 
6. Sweden has a feminist government and takes gender equality seriously
According to the European Institute for Gender Equality, Sweden has the best gender equality in Europe. 
 
7. Everyone is allowed to have 5 weeks of vacation each year
Of these, you are entitled to a four-week continuous vacation during June-August.
 
8. Sweden has "Allemansrätten" which is the right of public access to nature
This means that everyone has the right to camp and roam freely in nature as well as pick wild berries, flowers etc.
 
9. 99% of Swedens waste gets recycled
We take climate change seriously and every household recycles their own waste.
 
10. Sweden has a good reputation abroad
Just being a Swede have solved a lot of problems while I've been traveling.
 
 
"Sweden has it all: high-quality exports, a tolerant society, low crime, beautiful cities to visit, a high standard of living, a mild climate, and a strong sense of business. Sweden received the highest marks among all countries for perception of an effective government and ranked second among respondents for appealing environment and its advanced economy. It is seen by many as safe and welcoming." - Business Sweden
 
 

How to Photograph at the Beach

 
The beach-bag is packed and you stand there with the camera in your hand thinking whether you should pack it or not.
 
We have all been there. It is scary bringing something valuable to the beach, there are sand, water and the potential danger of someone stealing your camera while you're in the water. A lot of things can go wrong, and therefore I put together a small list of things I usually think about when taking the camera to the beach. The camera is made to be used, so don't be afraid to use it!
 
 
 
Buy an UV-filter
An UV-filter is a transparent filter that attaches to the front of the lens, which serves as a protection against both dirt and scratches. They usually cost around 10-50 euros depending on quality and size, but I promise that it is a lot cheaper to replace a scratchy UV-filter than a scratchy lens.
 
Keep in mind how you keep the camera at the beach
I pretty much always have my camera in my waterproof camera bag that looks like a regular handbag. I have absolutely no facts about this, but at least in my mind, the risk of theft increases if you use a classic camera bag since it becomes quite obvious what's inside. A waterproof bag is also a golden investment since you never have to worry about the camera getting wet as long as it's in the bag.
 
 
 
Stick to one lens
The absolute dumbest thing you can do at the beach is to change the lens. The risk of getting sand in both the camera house and the lens is huge, so I usually decide on one lens before I go to the beach, and then stick with that lens.
 
Clean the camera immediately when you get home
Do not leave the camera in the bag until the next time you use it, it is worth the time cleaning it immediately so no dirt gets stuck somewhere. I have bought a cleaning kit with everything I need and I recommend you do the same.
 
 
 
Get an insurance
Let's face it, there are a lot of things you can do to prevent bad things to happen, but unfortunately, you can never prepare for everything. Better safe than sorry, so make sure you get an insurance that covers everything if something happens to the camera so you don't have to stand there without one. 
 
 
 
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Travel Throwback Thursday: Rome 2016

 
In today's Travel Throwback Thursday, we're looking back on when I visited Rome in 2016.
 
I actually get reminded of this trip every day since me and my boyfriend got painted by a street artist in one of the piazzas and that painting is the first thing you see when you enter our apartment. We were there in February together with my family and enjoyed the warm weather and beautiful city. I keep on mentioning it all the time, but I just love to look at stunning buildings, and Rome was filled with them! We visited some of the main tourist attractions like Forum Romanum, Colosseum, Castel Sant'Angelo, Fontana di Trevi, the Spanish Stairs and more piazzas then I could have counted. We also spent one day in the worlds smallest country Vatican City which is located in Rome, but that deserves a completely different travel throwback! 
 
I think we were there for five days and I ate pizza and pasta every day, haha! Nothing beats Italian food ;)
 
 
 Castel Sant'Angelo
 
 

Damstredet & Telthusbakken - Oslo, Norway

 
One of the things that were on my Bucket List for Oslo was Damstredet & Telthusbakken
 
They are two streets north of the central parts of Oslo in an area called Gamle Aker. The special thing about these streets is there charming and picturesque wooden houses from the 1700s and the 1800s which are still well reserved. The streets are often mentioned together since they are located pretty close to each other, you can walk between them on a small trail called Kjærlighetsstien ("The Love Trail") through the allotment garden area Egebergløkka - something I would recommend doing.
 
Read more about my trip to Oslo
Travel Diary Day 1 - Travel Diary Day 2 - Travel Diary Day 3
 
Damstredet 
We visited Damstredet first which is only a 160 meters long street but we stayed there for quite some time because I wanted to photograph every inch of it, haha. The street is cobbled and runs between Akersveien and Fredensborgveien.
 
 
 
Telthusbakken 
Most of Telthusbakken was closed due to construction while we were there which was sort of a disappointment since I've seen so many beautiful photos of this street with the medieval church Gamle Aker Kirke in the background. The street is usually 260 meters long and at the end of the street, one of the houses have unfortunately burnt down a couple of years ago.
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
Quick facts about Damstredet & Telthusbakken
 
Name: Damstredet & Telthusbakken
Built: During the 17th and 18th century
Entrance fee: None. There are people still living in the houses so show some respect!
Location: Damstredet & Telthusbakken, Oslo
 
Who should visit?
People with an interest in architecture and history. Other people might not find it as fascinating.
 
My rating: 
★★/★★★★★
 
 

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Momondo Open World Awards 2018

 
Last week I was invited to Momodo Open World Awards, a gala for travel-influencers.

I was there because of all you wonderful people that comments on my blog posts and likes my photos on Instagram, it was because of you I was one of the ten finalists in the category "Photography". So I would just like to start off by saying a big THANK YOU to all of you who voted for me! You voted me into the final where a jury decided the winner, and I did not win my category but I honestly didn't mind at all. Who cares if the jury choose another influencer as the winner - I already feel like a winner with all of the support I've gotten from you guys over the last couple of weeks. THANK YOU! ❤
 
Open World Award was founded by the hotel and travel search site Momondo to celebrate influencers who inspire to discover more and break down cultural barriers that separate people. I brought my boyfriend as my plus one and the event was held in a beautifully decorated place called Skyddsrummet in Stockholm where we started off with mingle and drinks followed by a dinner buffé. 
 
 
 
After that, it was time for the Award Show. There were four different categories with two winners in each, one where the jury had looked at the whole channel as a collected work and one where they had just looked at a single post. The jury consisted of travel profiles in different areas, like the producer Harald Broström, the travel journalist Johanna Jackson, the Influencer duo Swedish Nomad and Alien Chris, and Isabella Knudsen who have been working with both Red Cross and Amnesty International.
 
After some technical malfunction, all of the eight awards had been handed out. As I mentioned earlier I walked away without one but still felt like a winner since I think the great honour was getting voted to the final by you guys ❤ There was an afterparty after the award show but we were not in the mood for partying and left quite early. I just wanted to get home and take of the devil made things called "high heels", haha. I do not even know why I bother with them, I'm more of a sneakers or hiking boots kind of girl ;)
 

Check out the winners in the four different categories:

BLOG
Single Post: Lydias Planet
Collected Work: Discovering the planet

PHOTOGRAPHY
Single Post: Ola Cedell
Collected Work: Everyday Explorers

VIDEO
Single Post: Where is Alice
Collected Work: LifeInMotion

OPEN WORLD
Single Post: pwgfreestyle
Collected Work: Finally Lost 

Travel Throwback Thursday: Tallinn 2012

 
It's already Thursday again and today we look back on my one day visit in Tallinn 2012.
 
I went to Tallinn on a cruise together with my mother, brother, and grandmother so we only had a couple of hours in the Estonian capital. We spent most of the time just walking around looking at cute houses (my favorite activity when I visit a new city, haha!). Unfortunately I wasn't as good at documenting my travels back then as I am now, but I remember that we visited a little shop where you could buy things that were used in World War II (which I now even question, is that even legal to do or should those things be at a museum? Haha!) and a church tower with an amazing view over Tallinn - which I would guess was St. Olav's Church after spending some time on Google Maps ;) Here is what my trip to Tallinn in 2012 looked like:
 
 
 

Travel Diary: Oslo day 3

 
Our third day in Oslo was also our last.
 
Since we had such troubles finding a good breakfast restaurant the two days prior, we decided to just go downstairs to the local grocery store and buy some bread and yoghurt to eat in our apartment. After breakfast, we packed our bags and left the key to head out and enjoy our last couple of hours in Oslo.
 
 
 
I wanted to start the day with visiting the Opera House again since I had taken a reflection shot of myself that didn't turn out the way I wanted it to since there were too many tourists and construction work in the background (see the photo in this post) and wanted to take a new one. It appeared to be even harder this time since the sun came from a different angle so I had to give up my cool photo idea and take some other photos instead, haha.
 
 
 
We spent quite some time at the Opera House and sat down and watched the water for a while. There is an interesting sculpture in the water next to the Opera House called "Hun Ligger" (Translated to "She Lies") with is made of glass and changes all the time depending on the sun.
 
 
 
We had lunch at a pizza buffé next to the Central Station before getting on the train that was taking us back to Stockholm. Unfortunately this train, just like the one to Oslo, was also delayed and we think the air condition was broken in our carriage since felt like a sauna compared to the other carriages. Lovely, haha.
 
Well, we did get money back as a compensation for the delayed trains, I made it home in time to watch the final of Eurovision Song Contest and I can pat myself on the shoulder since I made a more environmentally friendly choice by taking the train instead of flying so I think it all worked out in the end.
 
Always stay positive!
 
 
 
Read more about my trip to Oslo

Travel Diary: Oslo day 2

 
I'm back home again but I still have two more days in Oslo to write about!
 
On our second day in the Norwegian capital, we started the day with localising a breakfast restaurant I had seen on Instagram, which turned out to be a huge disappointment. Let's make "Don't' judge a place by it's Instagram photos" the new "Don't judge a book by its cover", haha. Instead, we ended up at a small café in a shopping mall where we also spent some time after breakfast due to heavy rain.
 
 
 
When the rain had cleared a bit we headed up to Damstredet, a cobbled street with wooden houses from the first half of the 19th century which I obviously adored!
 
 
 
A trip to Damstredet isn't complete without also visiting the street Telthusbakken which is just around the corner and also has a lot of super cute houses. We walked between the two streets on a small trail called Kjærlighetsstien which can be translated into "The Love Trail".
 
 
 
After that, we walked over the bridge Åmotbrua over the river Akerselva to get to the area Grünerløkka.
 
 
 
We walked back to the central parts of the city and had a burger for lunch before entering Radisson Blu Plaza Hotel. We took the elevator to the top floor and had an amazing view over the city and talked about having dinner at their restaurant later, but walked away pretty fast when we saw the prices on the menu, haha! Oslo is known to be an expensive city, and I have to say that people do not exaggerate when they talk about it. Oslo IS expensive.
 
 
 
The view from the terrace at our apartment wasn't that bad either so we spent some time there to rest our feet after a long day of walking. The sun also came out after a cloudy morning so we had a really good time there!
 
 
 
Since we had ruled out dinner at Radisson we looked at the map to find a good dinner restaurant close by and found the area Sørenga just across a bridge from where we were staying.
 
 
 
We had been a bit disappointed at almost every meal in Oslo, but we got happy when we saw everything Sørenga had to offer! This is totally the place to go if you're looking for a restaurant in Oslo! We ended up at the Italian restaurant Cargo and sat there all evening, enjoying the sun and the view over the water - there were even people taking a dip in the water! Such a lovely evening!
 
 
 

Travel Diary: Oslo Day 1

 
I've spent the last couple of days exploring my neighboring capital, Oslo.
 
I've only been to Norway once before but never in Oslo so it was a brand new city for me to explore! I went to Oslo on the 9th of may with my boyfriend and my parents and we rented an apartment in the central parts of the city and decided to be climate-friendly and take the train there - which turned out to be a horrible decision. Our train was super-delayed and we did not manage to get in touch with our contact person at the apartment who was supposed to give us the keys so we arrived in Oslo in the middle of the night with nowhere to sleep. I would not recommend anyone doing that since it was a bit stressful, haha! Efter a while we somehow ended up finding another apartment hotel with an apartment available for us so everything went well in the end.
 
The next morning we realized that pretty much everything was closed due to a public holiday, but after some research, we found the restaurant Egon where we had a huge breakfast at their buffet. Loved the interior there!
 
 
 
After the breakfast buffet, we headed down Karl Johans Gate which is the main street in Oslo running all the way from the Central Station to the Royal Palace.
 
 
 
Our visit to the Royal Palace was brief and we left it quite quick and walked through an area filled with a lot of beautiful embassy building to the sculpture park Vigeland Park. It's the world's largest sculpture park made by a single artist and there are more than 200 sculptures located in the park! 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
By this point our feet were pretty much killing us, so we headed for Aker Brygge to get some lunch and passed a lot of beautiful buildings on the way #thearchitectlover
 
 
 
At Aker Brygge we sat down at a restaurant called Lekter'n which was located at a pier by the water. Such a perfect spot to eat some sweet potato fries and rest our feet, haha! Bonus points to the restaurant since it also offered sunscreen to all of their guests which my Swedish winter skin totally needed. 
 
 
 
Filled with energy from the lunch we walked over to Akershus Festning, a 700-year-old fortress. If you have followed my travels for a while you know that I'm a huge fan of ruins and old buildings so I just adored this place and will write another post about it since I have a lot of more pictures to share!
 
 
 
The last spot on the "bucket list" for the day was Oslo Opera House. It was built in 2008 and is located in a part of a town I would like to refer to as "under construction" since they where building ultra-modern houses everywhere in the area. I must say that I like the look of the Opera House, but all of the building cranes everywhere totally ruined the feeling! It will probably be a really cool "futuristic" area in a couple of years when everything is done.
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
After all this, we headed back to our apartment and ate dinner at a Turkish restaurant just around the corner. We sat outside and ate when it out of nowhere started to rain like crazy and everyone had to run inside, carrying all of our belongings and plates at the same time which must have looked really funny, haha! After dinner, we headed home to the apartment and had Eurovision-night since it was the second semi-final that evening.
 

Kalmar Castle - Kalmar, Sweden

 
The most famous thing about Kalmar must be Kalmar Castle.
 
The history of this legendary castle goes back 800 years and it has played an important part in the Swedish history. It has been everything from a fortress defending Sweden from Denmark, to a royal palace that the family Vasa rebuilt into a Renaissance palace after European fashion. Today, the castle is open for visitors all year long and is the best preserved Nordic Renaissance castle. 
 
 
 
Inside the castle, you can explore everything from astonishing dining rooms to cold and creepy dungeons. There all also a lot of interactive things to do if you bring kids here. I would recommend starting on the first floor which is more of a museum with information about the castle and end your tour on the second floor where they have recreated all the rooms to how they looked back in the 16th century, but that's up to you! We did the opposite and it was a bit disappointing going from all these great renaissance rooms to small rooms with information text everywhere ;)
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
Quick facts about Kalmar Castle
 
Name: Kalmar Slott
Built: During the 12th century
Visitors: 92 000 annually
Entrance fee: Differs a lot between ages and time of the year, but we paid 430 SEK for two grownups and three under the age of 26 years during the off-season at the beginning of April
Location: Kungsgatan 1, Kalmar
Opening hours: Open daily 10 am–4 pm. Longer opening hours during summer
Guided Tours: Possible in both Swedish and English
 
My rating: 
★/★★★★★
 
 
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5 Netflix Documentaries That Will Make You an Environmentalist

 
I'm the kind of person that rather watches a documentary than a movie.
 
I love to learn new things and one of my favourite subjects in documentaries is obviously travel-related. I just love to watch breathtaking views from different corners of the world, inspiring stories about humans on incredible adventures, epic things that have happened throughout history, and the subject this post is about: How our lifestyle destroys this magnificent planet. Climate change is one of the most important subjects that need to be discussed right now. We currently have climate refugees that need to flee their homes because of the environment, animals who die because they eat too much plastic and an ocean that only gets warmer every day, killing the ecosystems inside it. We need to make a change.
 
All of the five documentaries mentioned below have moved me in one way or another, and honestly, if you do not get emotional while watching a whale dying because its stomach is filled with too much plastic, there something wrong with you. It's not fun to see that sort of things, but I think it's important. I have at least started to think more and more about how I can be a more environmental friendly human just by seeing these documentaries, and that's why I want to share them with you. All of them show different consequences of our lifestyle - but they also show that there's hope for this planet! 
 
From knowing comes caring, and from caring comes change!
 
 
 
Chasing Coral
Released: 2017
Lenght: 1h 29m
Language: English
Netflix Summary: In a realm of unearthly beauty, destruction hits close to home. A startling portrait of climate change under water.
 
Watch Chasing Coral here.
 
 
 
Before the Flood 
Released: 2016
Lenght: 1h 36m
Language: English
Netflix Summary: Leonardo DiCaprio crisscrosses the globe to investigate the consequences of man-made global warming and the measures being taken to reverse it. 
 
 
 
A Plastic Ocean 
Released: 2016
Lenght: 1h 40m
Language: English
Netflix Summary: When he discovers the world's oceans brimming with plastic waste, a documentary filmmaker investigates the pollution's environmental impacts. 
 
 
 
Chasing Ice
 
Released: 2012
Lenght: 1h 15m
Language: English
Netflix Summary: See glaciers shrink before your eyes via time-lapse photography. Nobody comes out of this one in climate-change denial.
 
 
 
 
Mission Blue 
Released: 2014
Lenght: 1h 34m
Language: English
Netflix Summary: Our world is 70% sea, but our waters are in deep trouble. Meet the woman who lives to save Earth's dying oceans.
 

Travel Throwback Thursday: Dubai 2012

Post contains affiliate links
 
 
It's Thursday, and today we're looking back at my brief visit to Dubai back in 2012!
 
I went on a cruise during school holiday with my family where we visited Fujairah (United Arab Emirates), Muscat (Oman), Abu Dhabi (United Arab Emirates) and our last stop on the trip was Dubai in the United Arab Emirates. We only had one and a half day in the luxurious city and we maxed them out with spending one afternoon and evening in Downtown Dubai, where the highest building in the world, Burj Khalifa, and the huge shopping centre Dubai Mall is located, and one full day out on Atlantis The Palm in the amazing waterpark Aquaventure Waterpark.
 
I would love to go back to Dubai one day and explore more of the magnificent city! There is just something special with all of the high skyscrapers and the turquoise water by the long beaches. Talk about contrasts! On my current Dubai Bucket List is staying one night at the Atlantis The Palm*, visiting Dubai Miracle Garden and going up to the top of Burj Khalifa. I would also like to go back to Aquaventure Waterpark because it was such a fun (and beautiful!) waterpark, loved all of the slides!
 
 
An aquarium located inside Dubai Mall
 
 
 
 
 Burj Khalifa by night
 
 
 
Atlantis The Palm*, a five-star hotel
 
 
 One of the slides in Aquaventure Waterpark - inside an aquarium
 
 
 Just hanging at Aquaventure Waterpark 
(by the way just remembered that I got an awful sunburn that day after spending to much time in these lazy rivers, haha!)
 
 
 
 
 Burj Khalifa from a distance
 
 
 
 
Dubai cityscape
 
*Affiliate links

How to Photograph While Traveling

 
I have always loved to photograph while traveling. 
 
Both because it's so inspiring to photograph at a new destination, but mostly because photographs hold so many memories that I want to keep forever. In this post, I've gathered some of my best tips on what you should think of when photographing while traveling so you can get some lovely memories captured on your next holiday. Enjoy! 
 
●           ●           ●          ●           ●           ●           ●           ●           ●  
 
 
📷 WHAT CAMERA EQUIPMENT SHOULD YOU BRING? 
I'm the type of traveler that easily leaves an extra pair of shoes at home to bring an extra lens or a tripod, but I realize that not everyone is like me. A sign that you packed the wrong equipment is that you leave the camera in the hotel room because it is too heavy and uncomfortable to wear and carry, so I would say that the golden rule is to bring as much as you are willing to carry.
 
Another way to decide what equipment to bring is to think about what you're going to photograph on your trip. If you're going on a safari in Africa you probably want to have a telezoom with you so you can photograph the animals, and if you're going to a city with narrow streets you probably want to have a wide angle lens so you can capture all of the buildings.
 
 
Helsinki, Finland 2018
 
📷 WHAT SHOULD YOU NOT MISS TO PHOTOGRAPH?
 
The sights
There are thousands and thousands of pictures of the Eiffel Tower, Big Ben and the Statue of Liberty, and frankly, how fun is it to take pictures like everyone else? Therefore, back a couple of steps and look around you to see if you find something that can make a more interesting composition. Are there any trees you can shoot through? Any street performer who appears? Any cloud in the sky that can help out? Try to take an exciting photo of the sight that no one else has taken.
 
One sunrise, one sunset
This is something I want to be so much better on, so I'm writing this as some kind of reminder to myself. There are two occasions every day when the light is just magical and that is just after sunrise and just before sunset and that is the time when you can take dreamy photographs. So take this opportunity and try to photograph at least one sunrise and one sunset during your trip.
 
Overviews & close-ups
I think like this: An overview photograph describe what something looks like, and a close-up photograph describes what something feels like. If that made no sense, let me explain it like this: You can take an overview photograph of a narrow shopping street, and a close-up photograph of the items sold there. If you get both these types of photographs, you will bring a whole new level of narrative to your holiday photographs.
 
Your travel company
Make sure to take some photographs of your travel company in action where you can see the surroundings. A close up of someone with sunglasses could have been taken anywhere so think of it as portraits, but take a few steps back to get more of the environment into the photograph. 
 
A reminder to myself again is to always take a group picture with the ones you travel with, as it both helps to remember who was actually on the trip, but it's also a fun thing to have!
 
Yourself
When you love to photograph, it's easy to get stuck behind the camera to capture all the cool things you're up to and come back home without a single picture of yourself from the trip. Been there done that. Be sure to let your travel company or someone passing by shoot a picture of you, or use your camera's self-timer. You will never regret taking a picture of yourself at an interesting destination, I promise!
 
 
Sunshine Coast, Australia 2016 
 
📷 DO NOT FORGET THIS AT HOME
 
Additional memory card
I have a tendency to fill up my memory cards quite fast when I travel and it's so annoying to miss a photo opportunity because your memory card is full so you have to sit down and delete some photographs. It's so much faster and smoother to have another memory card with you that you can swap too!
 
Camera charger/battery
Be sure to always bring your camera charger (and adapter if needed!) in your luggage, and feel free to bring an extra battery if you're going to be away from a socket for a longer time.
 
Transmission cable to the computer
I think it's nice that every night on the go, transfer all photographs taken during the day to the computer. Partly to empty the memory card, but also because it feels safer to leave all holidays photographs on a computer in a safe at the hotel room, then outdoors on the destination. A camera is easy to replace in case of an accident, images, however, are irreplaceable.
 
UV-filter
If you don't own a UV-filter, GO AND BUY ONE. An UV-filter is a transparent filter that attaches to the front of the lens, which serves as a protection against both dirt and scratches. They usually cost around 10-50 euros depending on quality and size, but I promise that it is a lot cheaper to replace a scratchy UV-filter than a scratchy lens.
 
 
Sandhamn, Sweden 2018
 
📷LET'S BE PRACTICAL 
 
Keep the camera in a handy bag
A combined handbag where you can keep your wallet and city map together with the camera is the best so you don´t have to carry around two different bags at your destination.
 
Find out what your insurance cover
Let's face it, there are a lot of things you can do to prevent bad things to happen, but unfortunately, you can never prepare for everything. Better safe than sorry, so make sure you have an insurance that coverers everything if something happens to the camera so you don't have to stand there without one. The camera is made to be used, so don't be afraid to use it!
 
Always travel with the camera in the hand luggage
My hand luggage is always on the verge of overweight when I fly because I want to have all camera equipment with me all the time. I have experienced checked in luggage which has disappeared or been broken on arrival, so it feels a lot safer to have the camera in the hand luggage where I always can keep an eye on it.
 
Keep your pictures in a safe space when you get home
There are just so many memories in photographs, and who wants their beautiful holiday memories to disappear? No one. So make sure to back up and store your photographs in a way that will keep them intact even if the computer crashes or the house burns down.
 
 
 
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Mahalo - Stockholm, Sweden

 
One of my favorite restaurants/cafes in my hometown Stockholm is Mahalo.
 
The place is beautiful, the staff super friendly and everything I've tried on the menu is delicious - and none of the things I mentioned is even the best part! The best thing about Mahalo is that everything is vegan! I try to eat as much vegan as possible because of both environmental and ethical reasons and it's just so easy to make a good and sustainable food choice at this place. Its full name is Hälsocaféet Mahalo, which is translated to "Health café Mahalo".
 
It's quite a small restaurant and it's really popular so it's often crowded around lunch, but if you come here early or late, it's a fantastic place to bring your computer and get some work done in a lovely environment. I saw a post on Instagram that they recently opened up their terrace in the back for the summer so I'm guessing that I'm going back there pretty soon!
 
 
 
Quick facts about Mahalo
  
Name: Hälsocaféet Mahalo
Menu: Smoothie bowls, wraps, burgers, falafel, pancakes, smoothies, milkshakes etc. Everything vegan!
Location: Hornsgatan 61, 118 49 Stockholm
Opening hours: Monday - Friday 9 am - 7 pm, Weekends 10 am - 6 pm
Other: Dogs are allowed!
 
My rating: 
★★★★★/★★★★★
 
 
 
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Travel Throwback Thursday: Sunshine Coast 2016

 
It's Thursday and time for another Travel Throwback!

Today, we're looking back at when I lived in Sunshine Coast in Australia back in 2016 and let's just say that I've started to cry a couple of times while I was writing this post because I miss it so much. Such a wonderful place! Me and my boyfriend studied at the University of the Sunshine Coast for one semester and tried to make the most of our time as possible. I studied everything from educational psychology to marine vertebrates, joined the school's Quidditch association, hanged out with kangaroos, tried to learn how to surf, befriended some of the most awesome people in the world and tried to hang out at the beach as much as possible.
 
We also made a few trips to other cities in Australia but more about that later on, here's how the time in our "hometown" Sunshine Coast looked like:
 
 
First day at University of the Sunshine Coast
 
Buddina Beach, my favorite one in Sunshine Coast
 
 Halloween squad
 
 
 
 
 
First time surfing, but certainly not the last!
 
 
 
 
 
One of the many thunderstorms I witnessed from our bedroom
 
 Sunset at Maroochydore
 
 Kangaroos 
 
 
 Price ceremony with the quidditch squad after winning the school championship
 
Sunrise from the top of Mount Coolum
 
 Birthday girl!
 
 My kangaroo necklace which I still wear every day

How to be a More Climate Friendly Traveller

 
Happy Earth Day!
 
Earth Day was founded in 1970 and the idea behind it was to emerge the public concusses about air and water pollution and force environmental protection onto the political agenda. We, humans, are living far over earth's capacity, but there is hope! The environmental debate is bigger than ever and most people are starting to make sustainable choices. No one can do everything, but everybody can do something to save this wonderful planet we live on.
 
I think travelling is a great way to open up your eyes to the environmental problems in this world. Once you have gotten to see the world, you know how important it is to save it and therefore I've gathered some of my best tips on how to be a more climate-friendly traveller.
 
Look at Other Alternatives Than Flying
Flying is such an easy way to get around and see the world, but it's, unfortunately, the worst type of transportation for the environment. Airplanes contribute to insanely high numbers of CO2 and we can all just hope that science will give us more environmental friendly flights in the future, but until then it's good to look at other alternatives. If you don't think it's manageable I would like you to take a look at @earthwanderes who are currently travelling from Sweden to Iran without flying or @velovelo.se who are travelling the world by bike. It's a bit inconvenient but just think of all the magical places you might see that you would just have flown over with an airplane.
 
Bring Your Own Water Bottle
Reduce your plastic waste by bringing your own water bottle that you can refill instead of buying new ones in the store. This works even in countries where tap water isn't good to drink if you invest in some sort of water filtration/purifier. There are also pills you can buy to make the water drinkable or the oldest trick in the book - boil it before you drink it.
 
 
 
Eat Vegan
Did you know that for every kilo beef that is sold, 7 kg provender and 16 000 L water is used? I try to eat as much vegan food as possible for both environmental, ethical and health reasons and today it's not even that hard to do with a lot of good alternatives in both stores and restaurants! You do not have to go full-on vegan, even if you just exchange one or two meals a week from beef to vegan it's helping the environment a lot.
 
Use Public Transportation
The locals can survive on public transportation and so can you! I know that it's comfortable to go with a taxi or an uber when you have to get somewhere, but it's often even cheaper to go with the public transportation - and it gives you a whole new experience of the place you visit when you get to be around locals in their everyday life. It's also so much better for the climate, a win-win-win situation.
 
Join a Clean Up
Animals in nature are dying of starvation because their stomachs are filled with plastic and it's up to every one of us to keep nature waste free. Join an organized clean up, start one on your own or combine picking up trash in your everyday activities. Did you know that there's a Swedish expression for picking up trash while jogging, called "plogging"?
 
Say No To One Time Use Plastic Items
Spoons to your ice cream and straws to your soda, do you really need them? Probably not. Try to always carry around a spork and all spontaneous ice creams by the water and street food lunches can be free from plastic.
 
Avoid Taking Plastic Bags at Stores
We use 5 trillion plastic bags on earth a year and less than 1% of them gets recycled (!!!!). Just imagine how much we could minimize plastic waste in the world if everybody started to bring a backpack or a tote bag when they go shopping instead of taking these useless plastic bags.
 
 
 
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The Big Guide to Hike Galdhøpiggen

 
Are you looking forward to hiking northern Europe's highest mountain, Galdhøpiggen?
Awesome, that means you have reached the right place! I hiked the mountain in June 2017 together with my boyfriend, my boyfriend's brother, my boyfriend's brothers girlfriend and their dog and it was just such an amazing experience that I think everyone that has the opportunity should try - and therefore I've done a guide on how to hike Galdhøpiggen! Do you think there is something I've missed and are wondering about, just ask me in the comments below!
 
Height: 2469 meters above mean sea level (MAMSL)
Lenght: 6 kilometers, which might sound like nothing, but it's straight uphill and in snow
Time: It took us 5 hours up, and 3 hours down
When: The guides I've read says July-September but we hiked in June and that went well, just look at local weather reports before doing the hike
Where: Loms, Norway
 
 
 
Where to start?
The most common place to start the hike is from Spiterstulen (1104 MAMSL) and Juvasshytta (1841 MAMSL). We started from Spiterstulen which is classified as the easy way up since it's "just a hike", if you start at Juvashytta you'll have to cross a glacier and need to bring both ropes and a guide. At Spiterstulen you can just go, no guides or permits are currently needed.
 
 
 
Who can hike Galdhøpiggen?
I really want to exclaim "ALL!" to this since I live by the theory that you can do anything with the right motivation. However, I would like to say that you should be in good shape and it is good to have some knowledge of walking in snow - or go with someone who does. I am certainly not in good shape and got up to the top on will power, but I'm not sure if I would recommend someone else to do it, haha!
 
Whatever you do, don't be one of those who "give up" and call the mountain rescuers - they have far more important things to do than to "save" people who are tired or badly dressed. This is a big problem right now in the mountains, so please think one more time if you are really capable of doing this before you start.
 
 
 
What to wear?
"Clothes after weather" is a classic expression, but so true. The golden rule to hiking is to wear layers so you easily can put on/remove a layer of clothing if needed. Closest to the skin, I wore underclothing made out of wool. Over that, I wore waterproof hiking trousers and a wind and water-repellent softshell jacket (if it would ha rained or snowed, I would have worn a water-proof jacket instead) and on the way down I also wore a fleece jacket since it was more exhausting (=warmer) to go up than down ;)
 
On the feet, I wore two pairs of hiking socks, one thinner pair, and one thicker pair so they could rub against each other instead of rubbing against the skin to avoid blisters. I also wore a pair of hiking boots with Gore-Tex, regular sneakers are not recommended since you will walk in the snow - even in the middle of summer.
 
 
 
What to bring?
Camera, obviously! However, I can guarantee that you do not want to carry the entire camera equipment (you will hate yourself if you do, because it get's heavy!) so choose a camera body and a lens that you usually use (I brought my Canon EOS 5D Mark III + Canon EF 16-35mm f/4L IS USM) and then stick to that equipment.
 
In my backpack, I brought, except for the camera, some food, extra (dry!) clothes, blister patch, a water bottle and fully charged mobile phone. Now afterward, I would also recommend bringing Norwegian money (since there is a little shop at the top) and something to slide down on, perhaps a bum slider, since it makes the way down so much more FUN!
 
 
 
What to eat?
Before starting the hike, make sure to eat a big and steady breakfast. Do not even think about hiking a mountain with just a bowl of yogurt in your stomach! On the way up you probably will take short breaks so it's good to bring some nuts, fruits or power bars to refill the energy. I ate two sandwiches, three power bars, one banana and drank a lot of water on the way up, and ate nothing on the way down.
 
At the top of the mountain, there's a small cabin with a shop where you can buy sausages and souvenirs so don't forget to bring Norwegian money. I ate one sausage and drank a jar of coke at the top, and when we got down again we stopped for a pizza on the way home.
 
 
 
How is the terrain? 
Think of a snowy hill with some patches of grass and stones. The whole hike is quite even, but sometimes I needed to use both my hands to get up. The snow was quite compact, it usually was possible to walk without a problem, but sometimes you could take a step and sink down so you have snow to the waist. Be careful where you step!
 
 
 
Anything else?
Sherpas from Mount Everest have been to Galdhøpiggen and laid out a trail so you can walk safely on the mountain, FOLLOW THIS TRAIL! It is marked with red markings all the way from the start to the top, and if you go there it's no risk you will fall off a cliff somewhere.
 
Also, make sure to hike the mountain with someone, and/or have someone at the ground that knows when you started walking - and can notify you as missing if you're not down again after a reasonable amount of time. Keep in mind that the weather in the mountains changes quickly and even though it was sunshine when you left, it could be a snowstorm a couple of minutes later.
 
 
 
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The Breakfast Club - Amsterdam, Netherlands

 
We ate our first breakfast in Amsterdam at a restaurant called The Breakfast Club.
 
We found this place by coincidence and I'm so happy that we did! We had just arrived in Amsterdam and wanted to find a nice breakfast place when it out of nowhere started to hail! We stood in the middle of the street with our phones in our hands, trying to find anything nearby when a dutch woman appeared and asked if we needed help. How nice? With bad English, she tried to explain the directions to "a good breakfast place she had forgotten the name of" and we ended up at The Breakfast Club. I have no idea if this was the place she had in mind, but the interior was cute and the menu sounded delicious so we went in.
 
There are four different The Breakfast Clubs in Amsterdam and we ate at the one at Haarlemmerplein. Breakfast is my favourite meal of the day, and at this place, they serve it from morning to evening. A really good place to go to if you want some pancakes, sandwiches, cereals or eggs in other words!
 
 
Read more from Amsterdam
Travel Diary Day 1 - Travel Diary Day 2 - Travel Diary Day 3 - Hotel2Stay - Corner Bakery - Coffee & Coconuts
 
 
 
Quick facts about The Breakfast Club
 
Name: The Breakfast Club Haarlemmerplein
Menu: Breakfast dishes inspired from London, Mexico City and New York
Location: Haarlemmerplein 31, Amsterdam
Opening hours: Open daily 8 am to 6 pm
 
My rating: 
★★★★/★★★★★
 
 
 
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Travel Throwback Thursday: Stryn, Geiranger & Lom 2017

 
How is it even possible that I've, as a Swede, traveled to places like Haiti and Australia before I visited my neighboring country Norway?
 
I know I have a lot of Swedish followers and for you, I would just want to say: GO TO NORWAY! I was there for the first time last summer when I went there with my boyfriend and his brother + his girlfriend + their dog. We went there by car and rented a cabin at Øyberg Sæter og Camping and spent our days hiking, visiting glaciers and climbing northern Europes highest mountain. Such magical landscapes!
 
I've actually booked a trip to the Norwegian capital Oslo in a couple of weeks, but I would love to visit even more places like Trolltunga and Lofoten. It shouldn't be so hard to do since it's so easy to get to Norway from Sweden, but until then, here is my Travel Throwback Thursday at Norway 2017:
 
 
Lom Stave Church
 
On the way down to Geiranger
 
 Climbing northern Europe's highest mountain, Galdhøpiggen
 
 
 
 
 
 Casually posing in front of a waterfall in Briksdalsbreen
 
 
 
 
 
 We spent a lot of time in the car, driving past beautiful landscapes...
 
...and stopped every few minutes to get out and take some photos
 
 Casually posing in front of a glacier in Briksdalsbreen
 
 We got chased by some sheep in Stryn
 
 Climbing northern Europe's highest mountain, Galdhøpiggen
 
The glacier in Briksdalsbreen again
 
 The whole gang on top of Galdhøpiggen

Blog of the Week + Nominated to Open World Awards

 
Today I got two amazing news about Wanderlust by Jona!
 
First of all, my blog has gotten the title "Blog of the Week"!
It's my blog portal Blogg.se that has chosen my blog as their Blog of the Week which is just such an honour! I was actually doubting on staying on Blogg.se when I decided to start writing in English instead of Swedish since its a Swedish blog portal, but I'm so happy that I've stayed since I just love the community of this portal! Thank you very much, Blogg.se!
 
As a part of becoming Blog of the Week, Blogg.se did an interview with me (in Swedish) that you can read by pressing here.
 
Second of all, I've been nominated to Momondo Open World Awards in two categories!
Momondo Open Awards is a competition for influencers that inspire others with their passion and curiosity for travel. My blog (wanderlustbyjona.com) has been nominated in the category "Blog" and my Instagram (@wanderlustbyjona) has been nominated in the category "Photography". It would mean so much to me if you take a minute of your life to vote for me! 
 
Press here to vote for me in the category "Blog".
Press here to vote for me in the category "Photography".
 
THANK YOU! 
 

Travel Diary: Kalmar day 3

 
On our third and last day during our Easter weekend road trip, we visited Kalmar Castle.
 
It opened at 10 am and since we lived pretty much next to it, we slept in and had a long breakfast at the hotel before heading over. The castle has two floors containing everything from a church to grand dining rooms to dungeons. The castle is almost a thousand years old (!!!) and it has happened a lot there throughout the history so it was just so fascinating walking around looking at everything.
 
 
 
I also found a throne completely in my taste! Can totally see myself as a queen ;)
 
 
 
After exploring the caste for almost two hours we talked about heading out to see some more places in Kalmar before heading home, but just as the day before at Öland - it was cold! So instead we decided to jump into the car, wave goodbye to our hotel and start the five-hour drive home.
 
 
 
Nothing exciting happened during our drive back home (except that we wanted to find a nice and cozy restaurant in Oskarshamn to eat lunch at, but the only place that was open was McDonald's, haha!) and I honestly think I was asleep for most of the time. Just as I mentioned in my earlier post, the weather was a major set back, but otherwise, this was such a good trip!
 
Read more about my trip to Kalmar & Öland

Travel Diary: Kalmar/Öland day 2

 
I'm home again after my weekend away during Easter, and honestly, I have to say that the trip was a big epic fail.
 
Okay, so the trip itself wasn't actually bad. In reality - it was really good. Me and my family got to spend some quality time together and explore a lot of new places so I'm actually really happy about the weekend. The only problem though was that our purpose with this trip was to get away from Stockholm for a while since it has had the longest, coldest and darkest winter in ages. Our plan was to drive to a more southern part of Sweden where the spring had arrived sooner and ended up in Kalmar - which I honestly think was the greyest place in Sweden during easter, haha! It was more snow there than at home and we didn't see the sun even ones. Oh well. 
 
We started our second day of the trip with breakfast at our hotel before heading out to some shops to buy some warmer clothes. After getting prepared for the cold, we drove over the bridge that connects Kalmar at the mainland to the island Öland. Öland is known to be a beautiful summer destination, and as you might already have figured out - it was everything but summer there during our visit so we spent most of the time in the car driving around, looking at the bare, snowy landscape and beautiful windmills.
 
 
 
We had some destinations in mind before getting to Öland and the first stop was Öland alum factory ruin. It's an old factory building that was abandoned about hundred years ago, and since I'm a big fan of ruins this was obviously one of the places on my bucket list. Unfortunately, I was wearing shoes that were not good for walking in snow (you know, I was prepared for spring and all that) and ended up slipping when I tried to climb an elevation. Miraculously I managed to fling my camera over my back, but fell face first and left the ruin with a big bruise on my left knee as a "lovely" memory of the place, haha.
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
Our second destination was the most southern part of Öland, a nature reserve called Ottenby. Ottenby is known for its diverse range of bird species, meaning it was a lot of bird-watchers there. I've gone bird watching ones when I was studying marine vertebrates in Australia and it was a mandatory part of the course. I didn't like it back then and I didn't like it now (mostly because I'm extremely bad at it) but got super excited when I managed (with a little help, because as I said, I suck) to see some seals with a telescope! I have never seen seals out in the open before! I tried to photograph them, but honestly, even with my telezoom the seals pretty much looked like small rocks in my photos, haha ;)
 
One other reason people go to Ottenby is the lighthouse called Långe Jan (translation: Long Jan). It is possible to get up in it but they only let in a couple of people every hour. We missed the first slot with just a couple of minutes when we arrived and missed the second one because we had lunch and we weren't really in the mood to wait for a third slot. If it was warmer, I had totally waited since I love to see places from a higher angle, but it was such cold winds coming from the ocean that made us all just want to go inside the car again and turn the heat up - and so we did.
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
We had driven down Ölands west side on our way to Ottenby, and on the way back we drove on the east side of the island so we had the opportunity to see some more places.
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
We ended our time on Öland with visiting Borgholm Castle which was closed for the day, but I honestly didn't mind. Once again I have to blame the weather for my lack of enthusiasm, but at this point, my feet where wet and my body was chilled to the bone so it was enough for me just to walk around the big building. They played some "medieval music" in the speakers around the castle which really set a dramatic mood. I have to go back there sometime during summer because I think I would really love Borgholm Castle then!
 
 
 
We drove over the bridge back to the mainland again and I think we all enjoyed taking a hot shower at our hotel before we headed out to get some dinner. We were in the mood for Italian and ended up at a restaurant called Ernesto Ristorante where we ate some delicious pizza.
 
 
 
We walked passed Kalmar Caste on the way home (we literally lived like two blocks away from it) and I used a trash bin as a tripod to get some long exposure photos of the castle when it was dark. Sometimes you have to be creative! After that, we spent the evening playing cards at our hotel room.
 
 
 
Read more about my trip to Kalmar & Öland
Travel Diary Day 1
 

Travel Diary: Kalmar Day 1

 
I have spent this Friday on the road together with my family.
 
We all had a couple of days off during Easter and wanted to travel somewhere together, but pretty much every flight, train and boat ticket was ridiculously expensive, and even though we all love to travel we refuse to pay overprices to get somewhere. We waited on a good "last minute"-deal but realized it was impossible to do with five people (me, my boyfriend, my brother and my parents) in the travelling group and decided to go on a road trip in Sweden instead.
 
We started to talk about possible destinations when we realized that none of us has been to an island called Öland since I was about two years old, which I obviously have no memories of. All said and done we booked a hotel in Kalmar (the city where you have to go to get to the island) packed our bags and headed out on the roads. Like every good road trip, we took a couple of stops on the way at places like Valdemarsvik, Västervik, and Gunnebo. The two photos below are taken in Valdemarsvik, which I, by the way, learned the hard way is a town that is pretty much closed down during public holidays. Let's just said that the search for a toilet after two hours on the road got interesting ;)
 
 
 
After a couple of hours on the road, we finally reached the city Kalmar where we had booked our hotel. The hotel is called Slottshotellet (translation: Castle Hotel) and is decorated in a very old-fashioned style I just adore. I have to remind myself to take some interior photographs before we leave!
 
 
 
We left our bags and the car at our hotel and headed out to explore Kalmar and get some dinner. I ended up with a memory card full of cute houses and a stomach full of spinach with cheese sauce wrapped in filo pastry from the restaurant Table 20. Eat there if you ever visit Kalmar, so so SO delicious!
 
We also stumbled upon a bench that's apparently the longest bench in Sweden. I'm not sure what else I can write about that since they didn't even write how long it was so I think we'll just leave it at that ;)
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
Before heading back to our hotel where we spent the evening playing cards, we also took a visit to Kalmar Castle which was built in 1100 and used to be an important part of Swedens defense back in the days. Unfortunately, the castle was closed for the day so we only got to see it from the outside, but we plan to go back there before we drive back home to see the inside as well since a lot of historical events has taken place there.
 
 
 
Our main goal with this trip is the island Öland which we will head out to tomorrow, but I'm already so satisfied with this trip since I've already been to so many places I've never been to before. I'm so happy that we actually ended up traveling somewhere this easter even if it's "only" a car ride away. Who said you had to go far to experience new things?

Charles Bridge - Prague, Czech Republic

 
One thing you can't miss when you're in Prague is Charles Bridge.
 
I mean literally, you CAN'T miss it since it's such a central part of the city connecting Staré Město and Malá Strana over the river Vltava. The bridge was built in 1357 (moment to process that please!) and is still used every day. Everyone that knows me know that I'm a huge sucker for old architecture, and I just adored this bridge.
 
 
 
We crossed Charles Bridge every day during our five days stay in Prague, and I think it's one of the most visited places (and the most famous tourist attraction) in Prague, meaning a lot of people in motion all of the time. I don't like when historical places get touristy and crowded and decided to head out to the bridge at 6 am one morning with my dad and we experienced the bridge a lot more majestic than during the day. If it's unclear, the two pictures above are captured at 6 am, and the pictures below are captured sometime during the day. Just a smaaaaall difference in the number of people ;)
 
 
 
Quick facts about Charles Bridge
 
Name: Karlův most
Built: 1357 (opened 1402)
Entrance fee: No entrance fee
Location: Karlův most, Prague
 
My rating: 
★★★/★★★★★
 
 
 
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Coffee & Coconuts - Amsterdam, Netherlands

 
One of the coolest restaurants we visited in Amsterdam most have been Coffee & Coconuts.
 
We went there for breakfast during our second day in the city, and I have to say that I'm impressed! The restaurant is three stories high and it's built in an old cinema where they have kept a lot of the original architecture from the 1920's which I (the architecture nerd) of course, loved. I had a smoothie bowl and a croissant and my boyfriend had some french toast and we were both satisfied with our choices.
 
Everything from the interior to the menu is tropical themed and I just loved every second of it. If I where a local in Amsterdam, I would probably hang here a lot, working on my computer with a smoothie in my hand. It just felt like such an inspiring atmosphere where you could sit for hours and hours!
 
Read more about my trip to Amsterdam
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
Quick facts about Coffee & Coconuts
 
Name: CT Coffee & Coconuts
Menu: Breakfast, lunch, dinner - and everything in between.
Location: Ceintuurbaan 282-284, Amsterdam
Opening hours: Open daily 8 am to 11 pm
 
My rating: 
★★★★★/★★★★★
 
 
 
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Travel Throwback Thursday: Prague 2017

 
In the autumn of 2017, I travelled to Prague with my family.
 
We stayed in the Czech Republic capital for five days and explored as much as possible during our visit. Prague stayed intact during the world wars which means that there are a lot of old and beautiful buildings which I just adored - Prague is such a pretty city! We visited the Astronomical Clock, Charles Bridge, Old Town Square, Saint Nicholas, Prague Castle, the Powder Tower, Wenceslas Square, the Dancing House and Petrin Tower.
 
In other words, we walked a LOT. We also did a Harry Potter themed escape room and ate a lot of trdlnik. I really liked Prague, both because of the historical sites and the cheap food, haha. I have so many pictures from Prague so I'll probably write a couple of more posts about the city. If you want to know anything specific - write it in the comments below!
 
 
 View over Prague from Prague Castle
 
 
 
 
  Trdlnik, a must in Prague!
 
 
 
 
Charles Bridge
 
 
The Dancing Houses and the Astronomical Clock
 
 
Yes, I had two trdlnik! They are a really good snack!
 
 
Looking over the river Vltava at Prague Castle
 
 
 A cute street below Prague Castle

Fotomässan & Explore 2018

 
Yesterday I took the morning off work to go and nerd in my two favourite things: photography and exploring the world.
 
Fotomässan (= photography fair) and Explore Outdoors are two big fairs in Sweden, and this year they decided to have both of them combined in Stockholm and I think no one was happier than me when I heard the news. Especially since I won one ticket to the fair at Stockholm Photo Marathon last year which meant that I didn't even have to pay the entrance fee, haha! Entrance is usually 190 SEK.
 
I spent four hours roaming around the stalls, trying out camera equipment, listening to lectures from both photographers and adventures and signing up for pretty much every competition available. So can we all have our fingers crossed that I win a trip to hike the Inca Trail or climbing to base camp at Mount Everest? ;) I also got a t-shirt as an early bird gift for signing up to Stockholm Photo Marathon 2018 and brought home a bunch of magazines to scroll in and dream about beautiful destinations I would like to visit.
 
If you are in Stockholm this weekend - go and visit Fotomässan and Explore!
 
 

How to Get 10k Instagram Followers in 3 Months

 
This Monday, I woke up with the news that my Instagram account has reached 10 000 followers. How crazy is that?
 
I have had Instagram for a couple of years but mostly used it to follow my friends and share some photos taken with my phone on the go. I wrote in Swedish and had around 250 followers when I in September 2017 thought that I should use my Instagram more as a portfolio for my company as a photographer and deleted all old phone photos and started to post photographs taken with my camera and write in English. Since I work with photographing everything from interior to weddings (and still wanted to share some photos from my travels) it all just became a blissful mix of everything. I gained around 1000 followers when I'm in January 2018 decided to make a big change - again.
 
I started this blog and ones again decided to rebrand my Instagram and this time only focus on travelling and Wanderlust by Jona was born. Since you unlock a couple of "secret" settings when you reach 10 000 followers on Instagram it's been sort of a goal for me to get there, but I could never imagine it going so fast! So there you have my background story of how I reached 10 000 followers on Instagram. The title to this post is not one hundred percent true, but I thought it sounded better than "how to rebrand your Instagram a couple of times before you gain around 9000 followers in two months and one week", haha. As a big thank you to all of you who have supported me, I would like to share some tips that I have found useful on my way to 10k.
 
 
 
Be active
Follow accounts you find interesting, like pictures you like and comment what you think. You can have the most amazing Instagram account ever, but no one is going to follow it unless they can find it. So spread some love around and it will come back to you, I promise!
 
Use hashtags
No, #love and #girl won't probably give you any more followers but do some investigations and logical thinking about what hashtags you can use. When I went to Amsterdam I searched for #amsterdambrunch to find good brunch places and #amsterdamview to find good lookout spots. There are also a lot of accounts on Instagram that just share other peoples content if you use their hashtag, which can be an amazing opportunity to be seen by their followers. Two I often use is #gohypetravel and #travelbabygirl.
 
Tag accounts in your photos
Tagging is not only just for showing who is in your photo. As I mentioned above, there are a lot of accounts that share other peoples content and I often tag them in my photos. Tags are a great way to be seen by the account you tag since your photo basically ends up in their profile. I also tag accounts like @visitsweden if my photo is taken in Sweden or @fjallraven if I wear a piece of clothing from the brand Fjällräven in my photo.
 
 
 
Don't be too universal
There millions of accounts on Instagram and you have to find that thing that makes YOU special. Being universal works for a few people, but most people simply press the "unfollow" bottom when the content gets too confusing and you can't know what the account is about. Are you a horse girl? Focus on that. Do you like working out? Make your account about healthy food and weightlifting. Do you like fashion? Have your account filled with awesome outfits! Don't confuse your followers, stay clear in what type of account you have.
 
Plan your feed
I'm using an app called UNUM where you simply can plan how your feed will look. I try not to post two pictures that look alike to close to each other and try to follow the same colour scheme. How you plan your feed is up to you but I promise you it helps if you can see how it will look before you post your latest photo.
 
Write in English
My native language is Swedish and I have to say that I'm at least ten times more comfortable writing in Swedish than in English, but I have still chosen to have my social media accounts in English. Why? Because of simple statistics. There are about ten million people speaking Swedish, while there are one billion people speaking English in the world - so it's so much easier to reach out in a language that most people understand.
 
 
 
Use Insta Stories
We have all heard about the algorithm om Instagram that only makes around 10% of your followers see your latest post in their feed. It's a lot of mathematics behind it and I'm not getting into that right now, but the thing you need to know that all of your followers won't even see your photo so I'm always posting in my Insta Story when a new post is up - both on Instagram and on the blog.
 
Post when your followers are active
If you have a business profile on Instagram you can see statistics over what time your followers are most active - and most likely to like your post. I always try to post around 3pm-6pm since that's the time most of my followers are active.

Do it because you want to
The moment you feel that you HAVE to post a picture on Instagram is the moment you lose the joy in it. Social Media should be fun and it is always so clear when someone posts something just to post it, and not put any effort into it. Have fun while doing it and your halfway there.
 
My Instagram is @wanderlustbyjona, what is yours?
 
 
 
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