Should I spend my vacation at home? If so, what would I do? Eat potatoes and sign every time I look at the grey depressing landscape through the window? Day after day… Or should I waste all the money I have left on a trip? A little getaway that my soul, mind and body are desperately craving for? Although, I most likely will have to eat potatoes there as well. But it’s not a big deal. I think. In any case it’s better to eat potatoes with the ocean view than at home in front of the TV. Yes, as long as there are three holiday essentials – sun, palms and the sea – I don’t really care. I should definitely go. I must go. I need to go!
I won’t be surprised if you are a bit confused right now and wondering what on earth am I talking about. You might even think that I either don’t know how to express my thoughts in English anymore or I simply gone mad. So, let me assure you, I’m not crazy. Or at least I’m not completely crazy. And I haven’t lost my writing abilities. Yet. But in order for you to understand what I meant, I should start from the beginning.
I was excitingly waiting for my winter holiday. I was planning to go to Indonesia, and my thoughts were already there. I was drawing beautiful jungle pictures in my mind, imagining myself lying lazily on a hammock between two palms, drinking exotic cocktail from a coconut and watching one of the most beautiful sunsets. Unfortunately, my dreams were brutally crushed when I ended up in a hospital and unexpected medical bills drained most of my savings. Money which I was collecting for months were basically gone.
There were only few days left till my winter holiday and I still had no idea whether we are going somewhere or not. I felt broken, I felt empty, both mentally and physically. And after everything I’ve been through I needed a vacation. I had to take some time off from the reality, I had to recharge my batteries. Only problem I had was money. Lack of it, to be precise. That’s how I ended up going through the webpages like booking.com, Ebookers, supersaver, momondo and others.
Hours later I came to realization that all the suggested trips are above our budget. For a moment I even thought it would be cheaper to order plane tickets and accommodation separately. Cheapest flights I’ve found were Norwegian airlines. But as soon as I got to the payment page the price suddenly rose. Significantly. As it turned out Norwegian airline’s website was showing prices without a tax, and only when you pressed “reserve” button, it showed you also the tax sum. Separately, in a small font.
I was getting desperate and anxious. My hope was slowly starting to fade. But before giving up I decided to make one more attempt and googled last minute deals (main webpages in Finland are Rantapallo and Aurinkomatkat). And my patience was finally rewarded! I found a perfect package for us. One week in Tenerife, apartment hotel in Los Gigantes, straight Finnair flights from Helsinki (carry-on and luggage with maximum weight of 23kg). Total price for two people was only 460 euros! It was the cheapest trip I have ever purchased. Thank you Aurinkomatkat for making it happen!
Of course, I understood that it’s not the last expenses we gonna have. We still had to figure out how to get to the airport, since public transport wasn’t working so early in the morning (our plane was leaving 5.50am). Taxi might seem the obvious choice but not for us and not in Finland. Taxi is very expensive here, and it costs around 65 euros to get to the airport. But we came up with a solution. We decided to go to airport by our own car and leave it in the special parking space – Flypark. It’s located a couple kilometers away from the Helsinki airport. So, how it works? Flypark stuff shows you where to leave your car, then their mini-bus takes you to the airport. Same way back. Easy, convenient and affordable; it costed 42 euros for the whole week.
After reading other traveler’s reviews it was obvious that the easiest way to travel in Tenerife is by car. I started googling Tenerife car rentals in the hope of finding some cheap option. I came across one company that offered very good deals, but they asked a 1.100 euros deposit! 1.100 euros! That is crazy! Luckily I found a much better offer on AutoReisen webpage. Rental price for a week was only 100 euros (including the insurance), and no deposit needed. Perfect!
Last but not least, I’ve checked things that we could do on the island during our stay. On a budget. I came up with a few:
- Playa Jardin, beach in Puerto de la Cruz known for its black sand
- Monkey Park
- Whale and dolphin watching
- Costa Adeje
- Masca village
- Teide National Park & Mirador la Tarta
- City San Cristobal de la Laguna
What did we do? Where we managed to go? How much did it cost? Where we stayed? What we ate, aside from potatoes? Answers on these questions and more you will find in the upcoming posts, so stay tuned.
Hope you enjoyed it!