At the end of summer, I went on the most beautiful adventure (honeymoon) to Scandinavia. I had visited Copenhagen a few years ago and since then had wanted to go back and explore more of the Nordics. We went to Stockholm, Bergen and Oslo. We flew, took ferry rides and a 7 hour train journey through the countryside. It was amazing and these were my favorite parts:
Stockholm isn't known for it's skyline, it isn't even really that amazing. there was just something about the dusk walk we took to a viewpoint to see this lookout that I loved. I felt like I was in a fairy tale and got some of my favorite pictures from the trip here.
There are thousands of archipelago islands around Stockholm and you could take ferry rides to certain ones from the centre. We decided to go to Vaxholm (a mistake, it was pretty dull. We should of stopped at one of the more deserted islands for a real trek!) but enjoyed the trip so much more than the destination itself. You could see the different islands and houses on each, wild nature and feel the sea breeze.
Bergen was our real outdoors part of the trip. We knew that one of the main things we wanted to do was to trek down the side of Mt Floyen. On the day we did this, it was super wet and horrible but that only added to the adventure! I always think (maybe because I'm British and rain is an inevitable part of my DNA) that as long as you are prepped for the rain, it's not too bad. There were secret paths, waterfalls and amazing views on the 5K hike down the mountain. Such a fulfilling and wondrous experience. I am a woodland creature at heart and Bergen really captivated me.
As Bergen is a small city and pretty rural, i was shocked by all the graffiti. There was so much - and on every corner!
Norwegian, picturesque and autumnal!
Norwegian, picturesque and autumnal!
Bergen - Oslo train
This 7 hour train journey was the real highlight. Mark found out about it somewhere and we figured it'd be a nice way to see more of Norway, rather than flying. It was beautiful. Astounding and mesmerizing. I brought a magazine to read and didn't open it once. We were flitting from side to side of the train to see the different sceneries and made friends with a local elderly gentlemen who told us facts about the different parts we went through. We saw fjords, countless waterfalls, mountains, traditional wooden buildings, forests and even a wild Norwegian fox!
Oslo Botanical Gardens
Oslo was our final stop and really we just went there because of the train. It's a cool city but not the most interesting. A nice way to end our trip though because we were pretty tired by the time we got there and quiet content just mooching about with no real direction and drinking lots of warm drinks. I read about the Botanical Gardens in a tour guide and thought it'd be a nice place to visit - mainly because I was pretty obsessed with the Garfield Conservatory in Chicago. The Oslo gardens did not disappoint, my favorite part were the Victorian glass houses with tropical cacti and palms. Not very Nordic, but certainly hipster cool.
When I visit new countries, I always like to see a cemetery at some point. A little macabre, maybe but I find the way a culture or country celebrate their dead interesting and touching. on or way to Vigelandsparken, we passed thought a cemetery. there were loads of floral arrangements as well as gravestones carved from rock. We also found a part dedicated to the British from WWII which was touching to see. The Sculpture Park itself was cool. I loved the focus on human interactions and relationships. The light that day was perfect with a clear blue sky and strong shadows.
(Of course I journalled the whole adventure and hoarded ephemera like a crazy person so my travel journal post will be coming soon - as soon as it is finished that is!)