Norway is known as the head of the Scandinavian peninsula which has the shape as a tiger. It is now famous in the world for its thousands of small and large fjords. Norway is considered one of the world’s most beautiful places to discover the great beauty of the natural wonders dating from the ice age. Norway is the 61st largest country in the world by area, but the population of Norway is just over 5 million. Many of the lands here are not severely impacted by human beings, so it still preserves the wild beauty. Let’s discover the beautiful nation through my trip to Norway blog (Norway trip blog) — Explore Norway: The world of fjords.
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After referring the popular “Norway in a Nutshell tour” in Norway, we decided to do a “dust tour” to avoid being “bagged” where the living standard of the people is very high. All costs are quite expensive compared to the UK and France.
Bergen – The peaceful capital
Bergen was known as the capital of Norway during the thirteenth century. It has many beautiful natural landscapes as the picture and featured culture. Bergen is the second largest city (just behind Oslo) which is located on the West Coast. The harbor is frequented by fishing boats and cruise ships. It is also the gateway to Norway’s most famous fjords.
Surrounded by seven mountains, the highest is the Floyen mountain, Bergen is also known as Europe’s largest rainfall city. The old town of Bergen is romantic with steep and small streets which are very quiet. The houses along the slopes are beautiful with the Scandinavian style which is bright and eye catching colors.
In Bergen, there is the Bryggen harbor area, which has been recognized by UNESCO as a World Heritage Site since 1979. There are still colorful and featured houses from the early 12th to the 17th centuries. The huts are built opposite the harbor with the frontage facing the wharf, while the back has its own courtyard.
It is said that at the beginning of time, these houses were built of wood, later expanded and built of stone to preserve the goods. Since Bergen suffered many fires, most of the buildings were severely damaged. Bryggen also suffered the same fate. By 1702, there was only about a quarter of the houses and warehouses after the fire. Most of the houses are now built in the twentieth century by the architect Jens Zetlitz Monrad Kielland. Only a few stone basements dating back to the 15th century are retained.
By 1955, a part of Bryggen was again destroyed. Currently, the land is used to build museums and shopping malls, catering to tourists. The city has many ancient buildings such as Saint Mary’s Church (built in the 12th century), Bergenhus Fortress, Håkonl Building, University of Bergen and conservatory.
Right next to the harbor is the Fisketorget fish market which has daily activity from morning to late night. Born in about 1200, this is one of the most famous outdoor markets in Norway. At first, we were a bit confused because there were two fish markets, one in the house and one outside. Because of the time, we visited both markets. It is also wonderful for you to enjoy the fresh seafood and performances of street musicians if you prefer.
Walking along the fish market, we were invited to sample a variety of dishes, from the smoked salmon to whale meat. We decided to wait for the grilled fish in the cold North Western wind to see what was different about Norwegian grilled fish and grilled fish. The difference is clear because the fish here are marine fish, while the additives are completely different and very new.
To see Bergen from above, many people take the Floibanen tram to Floyen Mountain, which is one of the seven highest mountains in Bergen. It took tens of minutes to reach the summit of Floyen which is 320 meters above sea level. It is interesting to see the panoramic view of the peaceful city of Bergen below. It feels like a fairy kingdom in Andersen’s fairy tales to come out. The most impressive things are the tiny roofs in the golden afternoon sun.
After eye-catching with Bergen panorama, instead of getting down to the foothills with a tram, trekking is the choice of many visitors this weekend. In the romantic forest scene when the sun shines brightly on the ancient old canopy, occasionally show the tiny wild berries on both sides of the path. We are free to breathe the fresh air, we also enjoy the sweet taste of the forest in the north.
After an interesting jungle walk, the group decided to turn into a restaurant on the harbor. Outside the wharf, the seagulls were calling each other. The guests sat seated the roadside restaurants to enjoy the cold beer, watch the sunset gradually hidden behind the sea surface which is sparkling golden light.
Meeting Huldra on the world’s most beautiful railway
Norwegian railways are considered to be one of the nicest in the world, so the travelers are encouraged to experience. It has been in operation for more than a century, but the railways are still good. The ships are well equipped with the most modern equipment, making the guests feel very comfortable. The railroad runs through hills, plains, and rivers which allow the visitors to enjoy a variety of peaceful scenery.
After about three hours on the train, we arrived at Flam. The terrain consists of high cliffs up to a thousand meters, standing like solid stone walls. The foothills of the mountains are narrow bays. It is the result of geological changes since the Ice Age. As the thick ice deposits dissolve and slide at a very rapid rate, the gaps between the slopes are formed and then filled with seawater. It becomes narrow, deep-watered and ingrained inland bays which Norwegian people call a fjord.
From the Flam station, we started our journey on a train about 20 kilometers long in about an hour. The train goes from a height of 59 meters above sea level to the Myrdal station at an altitude of 867 meters. The difference in altitude makes the scene change dramatically. If in Flåm, the trees and scenery of the road have germinated good green. On the contrary, in Myrdal, the snow still covered the sides of the mountain. There is a white color which dazzles our eyes along the roadside. Lurking in the sloping woods are ski resorts and many wooden houses for summer vacations.
At the Kjosfossen station, the train stops about five minutes to allow visitors to go out and take pictures. Within the short five minutes, in the rumbling sound of the waterfall, we found out where the melodious song came from. Then suddenly, in the middle of the waterfall falls, there is a woman in a red shirt, singing, and dancing.
According to the legend of Northern Europe, there is a woman living in the forest named Huldra. She is very beautiful but has an ugly cow tail in the back so no man will dare to approach. She used her beauty and sweet voice to attract the lonely hunters in the forest and get married. We do not know when the train stopped at Kjosfossen, that red Huldra whether seductively attract the visitors or not.
From Myrdal, you can either connect to Bergen or go to Oslo. Shock and air pressure caused some visitors to be slightly stunned as soon as they stepped out of the carriage. However, it takes only a few minutes to breathe fresh air. We took the opportunity to take a few more souvenirs and return to Flam.
At the end of the journey, we chose to rent a 12-seat small boat to visit the Naeroyfjord. It is a small branch of the Sognefjord with its 1,400-meter high cliffs, which have also been recognized by UNESCO as World Heritage sites. Then we returned to Bergen by the cruise to pass through the 204 km long Sognefjord, which is the largest and the deepest in the world. The driver and tour guide will occasionally announce highlights so that visitors know where to shoot. Everyone has five cameras in hand ready as a professional photographer.
This season, the sky of Northern Europe is very blue and clear, while the water which prints the mountain shadow and clouds drift is flat like a mirror. The boat passes through many beautiful towns with colorful houses, surrounded by fresh green mountains. The wonderful scenery makes almost passengers on the ship be quiet to admire as if they fear that a strong breathing can also blur the scene before the eyes.
Some best day tours, trips, activities and transfer services, tickets in, from and to Oslo you can refer to
- Oslo Pass
- Oslo City and Viking Ship Museum Private Walking Tour
- Oslo City Sightseeing Hop-On Hop-Off Bus Pass
- The Viking Planet Digital Museum Ticket in Oslo
- Oslo City Highlights Walking Tour
- Oslo Must-Sees Walking Tour
- Oslo Fjord 2-Hour Sightseeing Cruise
- Oslo Off the Beaten Path Bike Tour
Are you looking for more top things to do in Oslo: Tours, activities, attractions and other things? Let’s check it out here.