Sometimes the best travel plans are the simplest travel plans. Since we live in Denmark, it doesn’t get much simpler than travelling next door to Sweden for a countryside retreat, which is what we did for the first leg of our 2017 summer vacation.

The house we rented in Sweden was in a little town called Vittsjö, about an hour’s drive from Helsingborg. It was an idyllic country home with a pond on the property, which was surrounded by farmland. The house had no TV, internet connection or cell phone service so it was the perfect place to go to truly unplug and relax. We spent our days catching toads, making popcorn on an open fire, canoeing in the pond, and playing games.

We also visited the nearby Smålandet Moose Safari, which is a recommended visit if you are ever in the area. They have an impressive population of moose and bison, which are remarkable animals and if you have never seen any up close, definitely worth taking a look.

The second of leg of our vacation consisted of a couple days back at our house, while the third leg was a trip to Legoland, on the Danish peninsula known as Jutland. On the way to Legoland we stopped at the Trelleborg ring fortress for an annual Viking festival held every summer. We enjoyed the festival very much, and the girls were particularly transfixed by a storyteller who told tales from old Nordic mythology.

It was pleasing to see the girls so engrossed by traditional storytelling, offering a reminder that no matter how accustomed we become to the marvels of technology with our iPads and videos literally at our fingertips, some simple props and a good story still have the ability to hold a child’s attention.

The first day of our visit to Legoland was a wet one – with sporadic downpours throughout the day. We made the most of it though, doing some things that we probably wouldn’t have had the sun been out – for example, seeing a 3-D Lego cartoon at the movie theater and visiting the haunted house – and I must admit the short wait times to get on rides was a nice perk.

The following day was sunnier and warmer and we got to enjoy more of the rides that we couldn’t on the first day due to the rain. Naturally, the waiting times were longer than the previous day but not as bad as you might expect. The lines move pretty fast.

According to our daughters, the best rides were the merry-go-round, the Ferris wheel and the safari ride. They also enjoyed the gold mining activity, and Lea was especially proud of the gold medallion she won.

And of course, they loved the cotton candy, or candy floss as they call it in Denmark.

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