Isn't it bloody cold there, and dark? How on earth did you decide on Norway? This is right next to errr Finland, I mean they have polar bears and all that. Oh, yeah and Northern Lights. Pretty women though, but Jesus Christ you pay a flipping fortune to buy a beer. I tell you, that is not for me. If I go somewhere it has to be hot and all that. But you know, I always wanted to visit Scandinavia.
Normally I show them this photo for starters and then then ask what these Engländer actually do, when they go on holiday. Still going to Spain, France and Italy? Well, I tell you what. Give Norway a go one time. Flights from Heathrow with BA or from Gatwick with Norwegian to Bergen are ridiculously cheap (if you wish to go from London). So, the way out there is easy peasy. Next, you might want to look for a rental car. Expect to pay a little more there ...
I mean, yes. About that beer... well, you are right. Bergen and going out is not cheap. But this (particularly if you come with your family) should maybe not be your entire holiday destination. How about waking up to a view like this?
If you come to Norway, you should try and find an idyllic "hytte" or family house. And you know what, your kids can just go off in the forest, play by the fjord, hike with you or learn how to fish. Boats normally come with every house and the Norwegian hiking system is ridiculously well established. They have an actual name for this "Friluftsliv" where they just hike off, be outside in any weather.
And to be frank, where else (apart from New Zealand maybe) you can do all this in one day in spring?
Or kayak a glacier lake, climb a glacier and swim in the fjord afterwards?
I guess you will not believe me that you actually get sunburnt here. You will also not like then that it actually does not get dark in the summer at all. I might add that it is WARM in Norway in the summer. Maybe not your 40 degrees, that you thoroughly enjoy on a crowded beach with 1000 others next to you...
Especially the fjord region is an absolute MUST see ( in case you don't want to come here to have a massive shopping spree, you're better off in southern France for that) This here is for the families and people that actually want to enjoy a little adventure, see some porpoises in the fjord, spend some time with their family DOING and EXPERIENCING things and maybe just enjoy something different. If that is you, give it a try. I mean, only if you can imagine enjoying doing something like this:
I know, you may think now, well this does not prove that it is not DARK and COLD in winter here. Well, actually in the winter (mainly up in the high north of Norway where it gets totally dark) it can be rather pleasant here.
Considering how much I have enjoyed several English "winters" and autumns where it literally is just rain accompanied by rain and dullness. Sometimes there is rain as well. But, hey.
We have it dark and cold here? Well, if that is the worst that can happen...you know what, I cannot wait for it to be dark and cold then.
Right, I am off to do a day in my home office today. Normally I have to take my electric car to the other fjord side (10 mins drive , 20 mins ferry, 10 mins drive).A hell of a journey! In the summer I am better off with the boat or cycle along the fjord.
While you enjoy your drive on the M25 and the marvellously working British railway system, always on time and remarkably reliable whilst enormously cheap (especially if you travel into London)... Well, I will have a cup of tea and get busy.
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Manuela Duczek (Wednesday, 15 April 2015 18:47)
I so enjoyed reading this!!! I can only agree in all points. Was 4 times in Norway now for a holiday- and you know for sure it's always too less time ;-) Maybe I can ask you a question, as I am thinking of moving my home to Norway one day... Did you already do this, are you an emigrant yourself?? If yes- how did you do it? I know Norway is changing its rules for emigrants to settle there, and for Norway I'm happy they do this...but at the same time my own perspective of moving there gets smaller with every new rule they invent.... I'd like to get to know somebody who did right that step- just to get ideas and new perspectives. I thank you in advance for every answer :)
Har det bra!
Sheila Hibbert (Wednesday, 15 April 2015 22:28)
I've been to Bergen once about 20 years ago. We traveled up the coast from Stavanger to Bergen on a 3day mini cruise. This year we're hoping to stay for 2 weeks across the fiord from Olve , a tiny place with just a handful of houses. I would love to see some photos of the area and some advice on car rental.
Katharina von Oltersdorff-Kalettka (Sunday, 19 April 2015 11:16)
my apologies I have not replied sooner. It is a little hectic here in the last weeks before "the new life". I think that the best way above everything is to secure a job before you head over there. LinkedIn and Finn.no give you great options. Get in touch with employers directly.
If you send me an email: Katharina@panoramaofnorway.com with some more background and your ideas I will do my best to help you. Just expect a slight delay in replying. :)
Katharina von Oltersdorff-Kalettka (Sunday, 19 April 2015 11:25)
also to you. Sorry I have not replied earlier. It has been a little busy the last days with revision and planning the big move.First of all, I am very happy to hear that you come to Norway and you enjoy being here. The boat journeys through the fjords are spectacular. I understand you are staying in Ølve, south of Bergen?
As this page is based around the Balestrand / Sognefjord region (4-5 hrs away) I am sorry I don't have any pictures of the region. However, you should try to do the google street view. This is available in most Norwegian regions.
Regarding the car rental it is often a little cheaper to book a car in the city centre, rather than at the airport. There is a "flybussen" bus that goes every 15mins to the city centre from the airport.
I would suggest to check comparing car rental websites to get the best deals. Car rental is not cheap but you will have free milage and it is certainly the best way to explore the region. I would expect around 400€ / week for a small car (to give you a rough idea).
I hope this helps. If I can be of any further help let me know: Katharina@panoramaofnorway.com :)
Agnieszka (Thursday, 23 April 2015 20:24)
Hi! Firs of all i have to tell you that your blog is really awesome. I really like ur photos and stories. Whats more, im also learning german! So im trying to read in both languages :)
I've been to Norway twice (Oslo and Trolltunga) and i fell in love with this country. Im going there also in july and I hope to live there after my studies.
Best wishes from Poland!