OSLO, NORWAY!, May 2008

We had a day on our own in Oslo before joining our tour and did a lot of enjoyable walking and exploring during our time there.

Above, you will see pictures of wooden homes in the Grunerlokka section of Oslo, which is near the Akers River. These homes were built in the latter half of the 1800’s for the workers at the factories powered by the Akers. Now it is a trendy young urban professional area, and property prices are purportedly among the highest in the country. Nearby are vibrant cafes, restaurants, shops, and parks.

The statues above, starting with the mother holding the baby, are by Gustav Vigeland (1869-1943), Norway’s greatest sculptor, and are located in beautiful Frogner Park. The life-size bronze and granite sculptures express relationships and the cycle of life and are so moving in person. The park is always open, free, has no graffitii and no police. It was nice to see families and field trips enjoying this art. The park has 600 Vigeland figures!

Edvard Munch described his inspiration for "The Scream" in his journal, written in Nice: 22.01.1892: "I was walking along a path with two friends - the sun was setting - suddenly the sky turned blood red - I paused, feeling exhausted, and leaned on the fence - there were blood and tongues of fire above the blue-black fjord and the city - my friends walked on, and I stood there trembling with anxiety - and I sensed an infinite scream passing through nature."


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OSLO TO BERGEN by bus, trains, & ferry!, May 2008: Norway in a Nutshell

Norway & Finland Tour

We traveled via bus, north from Oslo to Geilo, stopping at the 239 year old Hadeland Glass Works to view the artisans blowing glass and making beautiful crystal, and also to view the old stave church of 1192 at Torpo. We spent the night at the ski resort at Geilo and next day began to head west by boarding the first of two trains, this one to Myrdal.

In Myrdal we boarded the second train, and in one hour we went from 2,840 ft. to 6 ft.! This was a stunningly scenic ride and we ran from one side of the train to the other with "oohs" and "ahs." We went through 21 hairpin turns and over 20 tunnels through the mountains, three miles worth, smiling and thrilling the whole way. It is so steep that the train has five separate braking systems.

Arriving in Flam, we boarded our ferry and sailed for two hours on the Aurland and Naeroy fjords, arms of the gorgeous Sogneford. We disembarked in Gudvangen where our bus met us and took us to Bergen. It was a stunning day!

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