Norway


Norway is one of my favorite European countries. I visited twice - first Oslo and Bergen in the summer, and then Tromso in the winter for the Northern Lights.

My first visit started with a couple of days in the capital city of Oslo. The highlight of the capital has to be the Vigeland Sculpture Park designed by Gustav Vigeland and full of horrifying scultptures of naked people fighting, arguing and generally having a bad time. I loved it because it's so bizarre.

I also enjoyed the Akerbrygge area and the main shopping street Karl Johans Gate, and visited the Viking Ship Museum - very interesting if you want to know more about viking sailig technology.

From Oslo I drove to Bergen on the E16, which has to be one of the most scenic drives I've seen in Europe. Norway presents beautiful scenery and landscapes, so driving around is a pleasure. On your way to Bergen you'll pass through the Laerdal Tunnel - longest road tunnel in the world at 25 km.

Bergen is a scenic coastal town that I enjoyed a lot. Don't miss the cable car ride on Mount Ulriken and the historical Hansa Bryggen district. A cruise to see the fjords is another must-do - you'll get lots of photo opportunities.

Tromso, destination of my second trip, was another charming Norwegian city that I enjoyed immensely. The Northern Lights are stunning and out of this world - the sky comes alive with moving green lights of varying shapes and intensities, complemented by shades of dark red and purple at times; you might as well be on a different planet. This is one of the most intriguing natural phenomena on this planet Earth.

You need to get away from the city to properly experience the lights - I used tours provided by Tromso Friluftsenter which I highly recommend - convenient, effective and very friendly.

Tromso is not all about the Northern Lights, though: the Polaria Arctic Centre, the Polar Museum, the Planetarium at the Science Center, Sami Week festival in February and the Arctic Cathedral are must-not-miss attractions. In February the city is bathed in a warm twilight/sunset light all day long, which makes for some spectacular daytime pictures as well. Watch out for the cold, though - Tromso is way past the Arctic Circle.

Read more about seeing and photographing the northern lights on my dedicated site on this topic, seethenothernlights.info.

Additional info:
- country entry on Wikipedia
- country profile on Wikivoyage

Back to albums list.

Norway

Wait for all thumbnails to load, then click on any thumbnail for the slideshow: