The thought just lurked into my head. It was a sunny summer morning and I was sitting on the rocks next to the shimmering sea in my home city Helsinki in Finland. I was doing absolutely nothing so it was perfect timing for any mad idea to pop up but this one just wouldn’t leave.
The thought is what this blog is about: I want to visit 51 European countries and enjoy a vegan burger in every one of them. During this journey I hope to tell about inspirational projects in Europe that show compassion and caring for animals. It was so crazy I didn’t want to say it out loud to anyone. But the more I thought about it the more it made sense to me. I love awesome vegan food, traveling, getting to know people who make this world a better place and making crazy quests come true.
It still took time to first convince the most important person to make this really happen, myself. But the thought that had taken over me was persistence and made me smile, when I was in the office staring at the gloomy screen.
And here I am. People often ask me is it hard to travel as a vegan. To me living animal friendly life is not giving anything up, it is gaining. Meeting inspiring people, eating delicious food and living a life with compassion. It is also a concrete choice I can do everyday for my fellow earthlings, the environment and for myself, while traveling and at home.
It might not be very hard to guess: I travel for food. That usually takes me also to areas and experiences I wouldn’t probably have otherwise. I have had some amazing veggieburgers in a small and cozy cafe in Ulaanbaatar. I have enjoyed an hour long conversation about Finnish architecture with a vietnamese waiter in the side alley restaurant of Hanoi. In Tokyo I have wandered around one block for half an hour trying to find a burger place and finally realized the tiny restaurant was actually only couple of meters away from the point where we started. Luckily the food was definitely worth the search.
Life also sometimes throws great opportunities in your path that you just have to say yes to. In spring 2019 I had the chance to start running a vegan convenience store in my hometown Helsinki. Now I am the proud owner of Vegekauppa Helsinki and continue to share my passion for great vegan food there. The burger travels will continue but because of the new situation they have been on a bit of a break. Burgers of Europe, see you again as soon as possible!