Oslo to Bergen
Our first view of Norway ... a small village on the coast as our overnight ferry enters Oslo from Copenhagen.
We pass through the ferry terminal and immediately board a bus for the road out of town.
The terrain is still flat here as we head west from Oslo toward the fjords.
The Maaboedalen Canyon and the Voeringfoss Waterfall, Norway's largest (but 3rd
tallest) with a 600-foot drop into the river canyon.
In the village of Eidfjord, grazing goats are a common sight ... even on the roofs!
Our first view of the fjords, along the shores of Eids Fjord. It's interesting, and
sometimes challenging, to figure out where we are using a map of Norway, Google Earth,
and the itinerary literature provided by Odysseys Unlimited. At this point we are only
about 70 km (44 miles) from Bergen (as a plane flies) on the west coast, but it will
take us two days to get there as we take in the beautiful scenery along the fjords.
We arrive at the Hotel Ullensvang, near the village of Lofthus, on the eastern shore of Soerfjord,
a branch of Hardanger Fjord. Here are Don and Mary, enjoying the long twilight hours of a summer in Norway.
We keep looking for a good pic to put on our annual Christmas card but this one
was rejected due to the blurry background. We'll keep looking ...
Maybe we should have Don and Mary join us on our Christmas card!
The next day we spent in the area along the Soerfjord, stopping for a few pictures in the
small town of Odda. The fog that day challenged a lot of us who were trying to photograph it.
This is one of Norway's many salmon farms. We visited the farm for a couple of hours, making us
all hungry for seafood. We also visited a Steinstoe Fruit Farm, a family-owned business in the
heart of "Norway's fruit orchard", where they explained how farming is done on land with an extreme
slope to it (not so easy!). They served us lunch along with an entertaining presentation.
We returned to the Hotel Ullensvang, a very fine hotel situated in a beautiful setting.
Unfortunately, the low-hanging clouds persisted, preventing the best pictures of this scenic area.
I went through some of the hotel's common areas, taking a few pix to show what it's like inside.
Our last view of Hardanger Fjord before traveling by bus north toward the town of Flam.
Beautiful scenery is what greets us as we traverse the countryside.
Vangskyrkja is a church in the town of Voss. This church was opened
in 1277, which is 215 years before Columbus discovered America (!).
Services are still held there every Sunday at 11 AM.
We stopped by the beautiful Tvindefossen waterfall, which drops about 150m
(nearly 500 ft.), as we traveled nearer to Gudvangen, the next place we
board a ferry for the two-hour voyage to Flam.
Ellen and Cary enjoy the falls on another rain-free day for us.
Don and Mary at the falls - not a bad pic for your Christmas cards!
We leave the ferry terminal at Gudvangen, headed for Flam along the Naeroyfjord,
a branch of the famous Sognefjord, the 125-mile long waterway (and UNESCO World
Heritage Site) that reaches half way across Norway.
Norway has more waterfalls than I've seen anywhere else in the world. It's like the Yosemite Valley
in California only it goes on for hundreds of miles. Note the tour boat at the bottom of the falls.
Another example of someone who wants to "get away from it all". See the white
house in the upper left of the picture? I wonder if they get pizza delivered.
This is a typical scene in the fjords. A small village will be located
between the base of tall, steep mountains and the waterway of the fjord.
The ground is fertile and a self-sufficient community thrives in this environment.
Scenery like this seems to go on forever and I never got tired of it.
We stopped in this village for a minute (to pick somebody up as
I recall), giving us a closer look than we would normally have.
Off we go again. Hi, Mary!
There is no shortage of cruise ships in the fjords.
We arrive in the town of Flam, where we board a Flam Railway train for a 50-minute
scenic tour ride. Considered a masterpiece of engineering along precipitous
mountainsides, the railway took nearly 20 years to build. We passed through 20
tunnels, 18 of which were excavated by hand, and curved around 21 hairpin bends.
On our train ride, we stopped to view the Kjosfossen Waterfall. It was
difficult getting a picture of the falls with no tourists in front of it!
Our next stop is ... Bergen!
Click to view Bergen.
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