If you think cruise shops are pretty fancy, then you haven't stepped onboard a Scandinavian ferry. Indeed, ferries aren't what they used to bethey're so much better, as musty waiting room-like spaces are being replaced with comfortable lounges, entertainment spaces and even airport-style shopping.
The latter is the highlight of the crossing between Stockholm, Sweden and Turku, Finland onboard the Viking Line ferry M/S Grace. The boat stops in Marihamn, a port town which sits pretty on the Åland Islands between the two Baltic Sea cities. These islands are one of those weird territories travelers love to visit, as they have their own government, flag, stamps and patriotism, but still come under some jurisdiction of another country (Finland, in this case). The draw for the ferries and their duty-free shops is that these boats are exempt from Europe's VAT tax. It's literally a booze cruisebuying it, not so much consuming it.
The M/S Viking Grace is barely one month old, and she's a shiny plaything for sure. YouTuber Robert Watkins recently captured all the bells and whistles of the ship in a really slick time-lapse video shot while crossing the snowy sea to Turku. We're kind of obsessed with the idea of heading to the Åland Islands now. Who's coming along?