When René and I first thought about going to Norway, one thing sold us almost immediately: the chance to see a midnight sun over the fjords. So for the last leg of this trip, we traveled north, where Norway’s coast becomes a series of glacier carved mountains jutting out of the crystal blue sea. We had already experienced late sunsets and early sunrises, but if you go north of the Arctic Circle, the summer sun never sets.
Our first stop in Northern Norway was Trondheim. Trondheim was the original capital of Norway, and still houses the royal family and their Crown Jewels. René and I spent a couple of days there, enjoying the scenery and the history. We started off in the oldest section, where a huge medieval cathedral stands. Next to it is the Archbishop’s palace. Both form a huge, stunning medieval complex (that has since been renovated extensively) and was probably the most incredible church we saw on this trip.
The next day, we explored the nearby recreational areas. Norwegians seem to love the outdoors, and they have huge parks and wilderness areas right next to their cities. René and I hiked up a fjord on the side of the city, for astounding views of the city and of the bay.
Our last day, we hiked to a mountain lake outside of the city, which again, was a beautiful natural formation tucked away from the noise and bustle of a city. Then, we packed up and spent the rest of our day downtown, running around the city, enjoying the views, and even stopping at the Norwegian rock museum (see below for René starting a gramophone)!
That night, we took a 10 hour overnight train all the way to Bodø. Bodø is north of the Arctic Circle, so in June, the sun doesn’t set (the flip side is that in the winter, there is about a month without sunlight). As we went further north, the sun came out early in the morning, waking us up but revealing the incredible Norwegian coastline!
We spent one day in Bodø, running around the city and enjoying the incredible vistas. Bodø is surrounded by mountains and fjords, so anywhere in the city you can see impressive rock formations jutting out of the sea. Our host took us to an awesome viewpoint on top of a hill outside the city, where we could gaze at the awe-striking geography. That night, René and I stayed up until 1 am, watching the sun set without fully setting and rise again around midnight. Absolutely astounding.
Now, we are on our way back home! A 17 hour train ride back will take us to Oslo, where we depart the next day back home. This has been an incredible trip. René and I can’t believe all the things we’ve done, the places we’ve seen, and the kindness of the people we’ve met. 5 countries, 7 cities, 3 boats, 3 trains, 4 planes, 8 beds, 4 currencies, and countless memories jam packed into 3 weeks.
Until next time Scandinavia! Farewell!