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Norway: Nat. Geo. on Great Coast, New Research!!


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From the November 2013 edition of National Geographic that just arrived at our home today, they have a major story/profile on "Norway's Otherworldly Coast". There are thirteen page of wonderful visuals. Among some of the highlights, it notes: "Journey to the heart of Norway. Follow the water. Taken all in all, south to north, the coast of Norway may be the most complex land edge on the planet. In 2011 Norwegian geographers completed a three-year project to recalculate the length of their coastline. Using new techniques and better maps, they added thousands of islands and islets that had never been included in the total before. In all, Norway’s measured seashore grew by some 11,000 miles. If you hammered Norway’s 63,000 miles of fjords, bays, and island shores into a single line, it would circle the planet two and a half times. All that in a country less than 1,100 miles from south to north. "

 

Here is a another key segment from this story with good insights for this amazing part of the world: "To travel the Norwegian coast is to glimpse an endless discontinuity between land and water, the restless inventiveness of eons of ice. Miles inland, in the heart of Norway’s longest fjord, Sognefjorden, the water deepens to 4,000 feet only a few hundred yards from shore. Farther north, cod-drying racks and tight red boathouses look out over water that is hundreds of feet deep. And yet among the outermost islands in the Lofoten chain—a broken tusk of snow-covered peaks thrusting into the Norwegian Sea—the water shoals away slowly, only a few feet deep, as if these islands rose no higher than the back of a blowing whale. Maps of the Norwegian Sea show a strong current—an extension of the Gulf Stream—bearing northward along the coast. These are relatively warm waters, the kind that make human life bearable as far as 70° north latitude, well above the Arctic Circle, as far north as the northernmost tip of Alaska."

 

Below are a few of my visual samples that enjoyed along this coast in July 2010. More on the full live/blog. Added reactions, insights from those who have been there, planning on this option for the future? Happy to share more, answer any questions.

 

Full story from the NG text at:

http://ngm.nationalgeographic.com/2013/11/coastal-norway/klinkenborg-text

 

THANKS! Enjoy! Terry in Ohio

 

For details and visuals, etc., from our July 1-16, 2010, Norway Coast/Fjords/Arctic Circle cruise experience from Copenhagen on the Silver Cloud, check out this posting. This posting is now at 121,036 views.

http://www.boards.cruisecritic.com/showthread.php?t=1227923

 

 

As we departed Svolvaer in the Lofoten Islands of Norway on a perfect, sunny day, these are two of the green, tree-covered mountains rising up from the sea that we saw with the small out-islands in the foreground.:

 

LofotenSlovDeparting.jpg

 

 

This is one of my many puffin visuals, showing their bright orange feet, plus their cute and unique beaks. We had a private boat from is the harbor in Gjesvaer near the North Cape at the top of Norway.:

 

BirdRockPuffinFeet.jpg

 

 

This is the dramatic overview of Alesund from the Aksla vantage point along the western coast of Norway. This spot allows a nearly 360-degree view of this setting for this island city and the surrounding mountains and islands. It is at a 597’ height overlooking the five islands making up the scenic town. The canal or waterway in the middle of the town is called "Brosundet" (or the Bridge sound). That means Ale sund (sloping sound). Or, reflecting that the sound slopes through town. This is how Alesund got its name.:

 

AlesundHarbor.jpg

 

 

As we drove back in the Lofoten Islands along the western Norway Coast, here is a view, among many great ones that we enjoyed.:

 

LofotenRockBoatsDramatic.jpg

 

 

From the portside control area, here is the view as our ship sailed up this narrow 300’ wide passage in the Trollfjord as a part of the Lofoten Islands. :

 

TrollfjordShipControl.jpg

 

 

After being tendered from Geiranger, we sailed out and passed by two super famous waterfalls. YES, yes, we saw lots and lots of waterfalls on this trip, but these two were among the “best of the best”. First is the “Seven Sisters”. Directly opposite in this narrow fjord, it is called several names, including “The Suitor”. The majesty for these feats of nature is pretty amazing.:

 

FjordWaterfallSevenSisters-1.jpg

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And this is my contribution to the tribute to Norwegian Fjords:

A short video: "Cruising the Magnificent Fjords of Norway" with highlights from my Norwegian Fjords Cruising: (click on picture to watch video)

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Appreciate these nice comments and follow-up interest. This past Sunday on CBS television happened to catch part of the opening to the program, Amazing Race, as their teams were departing from the super scenic Lofoten Island, Arctic Circle, etc., along the western Norway coast. They were heading to Poland. Fun, great views, showing some of the fish-drying racks, dramatic concrete bridges across the waterways, etc. From the below story/website, you can catch more on this show, views in this great part of Norway, etc. They flew from Lisbon to Bodo, Norway. Many had never been where the sun never sets as happens there in the summers. They arrived by ferry in Svolvaer, Norway; then did stringing of ten fish/Cod heads, etc. Lots of visuals shown that bring back nice memories from this part of the Norway coast. These "fake reality" shows are not my personal favorite, but it was good to see, again, some of these locations and scenery.

 

See more and full show in Norway at:

http://www.tvgrapevine.com/index.php/2013-09-11-06-36-02/2013-09-12-09-20-35/2013-09-23-17-58-47/the-amazing-race/4982-the-amazing-race-recap-for-october-20-2013

 

THANKS! Enjoy! Terry in Ohio

 

Celebrity Solstice Visual Highlights? From our June 7-19, 2011, Solstice cruise from Barcelona that had stops in France, Italy, Kotor and Dubrovnik, I have pull together a number of wonderful visuals of the Solstice, its features, food, entertainment, options, etc. We are now at 11,333 views for this shorter version of my larger full review of that cruise and all of the port pictures/details. Check these postings and added info at:

http://boards.cruisecritic.com/showthread.php?t=1803477

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Thank you for wonderful pictures and review!Just great!

 

cansas.piligrim: We haven't started to plan the Baltic cruise yet' date=' but finally we decided this cruise direction. So, thank you all for the recommendations! [/quote']

 

Appreciate your kind comments and noticed on another of your several postings that you are commencing your cruise planning. Keep these good questions rolling along!! Lots of great ideas and people are here on these boards and they are happy to help. Don't be shy!! The only "dumb" question is the one you don't ask. That researching and planning will be very helpful for when you do your actual trip and that experience.

 

THANKS! Enjoy! Terry in Ohio

 

For details and visuals, etc., from our July 1-16, 2010, Norway Coast/Fjords/Arctic Circle cruise experience from Copenhagen on the Silver Cloud, check out this posting. This posting is now at 123,035 views.

http://www.boards.cruisecritic.com/showthread.php?t=1227923

Edited by TLCOhio
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Hi Terry- Just found your fabulous review and photos.

 

Just booked Crystal Symphony July 14-28 Copenhagen-Copenhagen.

 

We are definitely more interested in DIY instead of ship tours.

 

Ports:

 

Hellysylt/Geiranger 8-5 Pm

Alta 10-9

Honningsvag 8-6

Tromso 8-5

leknes/Lofoten 8-1

Alesund 1-8

Bergen 8-5

Kristiansand 9-6

Oslo 7-6

Skagen-8-5

 

We would really enjoy the Flam railroad, but we don't have a stop there.

 

We don't mind renting a car in certain ports to get the most of the experience.

 

Any helpful tips or suggestions would be appreciated.

 

 

Thank you ,

Robyn

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Hi Terry- Just found your fabulous review and photos. Just booked Crystal Symphony July 14-28 Copenhagen-Copenhagen. We are definitely more interested in DIY instead of ship tours. Ports:

Hellysylt/Geiranger 8-5 Pm

Alta 10-9

Honningsvag 8-6

Tromso 8-5

leknes/Lofoten 8-1

Alesund 1-8

Bergen 8-5

Kristiansand 9-6

Oslo 7-6

Skagen-8-5

We would really enjoy the Flam railroad, but we don't have a stop there. We don't mind renting a car in certain ports to get the most of the experience. Any helpful tips or suggestions would be appreciated. Thank you, Robyn

 

Appreciate your nice comments and good follow-up questions. The Symphony is a great ship!! Very good staff, etc. We did the Baltics and Russia, Dover to Stockholm, on this classy craft in late July 2008, including for our first visit to wonderful Copenhagen and doing a day in Oslo. July is perfect time and the best weather period for being there. Congrats!! Good choices.

 

As my live/blog detailed, we did Hellysylt/Geiranger, Honningsvag, Tromso, Leknes/Lofoten, Alesund and Bergen on our cruise. On DIY, we did some of these ports that way. Others, such as Hellysylt/Geiranger, require a ship option in order to do thing, especially the "up country", Roof of Norway tour that we enjoyed so much. Why not more DIY? Some of these ports, such as Hellysylt/Geiranger, are very, very small with limited infrastructure to those on-you-own options as easy to do and accomplish. The tourism season, unlike in the Med, has a fairly short season and labor costs are high. Ship tours are not perfect and/or cheap, but they, in some cases, can be your best, easiest option. Don't expect things to be "cheap" in Norway.

 

Robyn, tell me more on your interests, other Europe travels, biggest likes and desires. Happy to answer any added questions. Below are a few more of my visuals from those areas. Many more on the full blog.

 

With 63,500 people, Tromso is the seventh largest city in Norway and the largest in its northern area. Some call it the “Paris of the North”. It is 186 miles north of the Arctic Circle and is located on an island. The city center of Tromsø contains the highest number of old wooden houses in northern Norway, the oldest house dating from 1789. The Arctic Cathedral, a modern church from 1965, is probably the most famous landmark in Tromsø. Its east wall is composed entirely of stained glass. The Polar Museum is situated in a wharf house from 1837, presents Tromsø's past as a center for Arctic hunting and starting point for many major Arctic expeditions. You are standing on a forest-covered island in a narrow sound, hemmed in by soaring mountains. A cable car travels up to the top of Mt. Storsteinen at 1,260 feet for views of the town, islands, mountains and water. The Polaria Arctic Center has sea life displays, an aquarium of marine life and trained seals. Its main street is Storgata with the town square opening onto the harbor. There is a daily open-air market selling flowers and crafts. Its two best dining places are Arctandria and Compagniet. Emm’a Drommekjokken get super high marks and is across from Tromso’s cathedral. For July 8, average high of 57F° and low of 47F°; record high of 69F° and record low of 42F° on this date. Twenty-four hours of daylight. Latitude: 69.7° N.

 

THANKS! Enjoy! Terry in Ohio

 

For details and visuals, etc., from our July 1-16, 2010, Norway Coast/Fjords/Arctic Circle cruise experience from Copenhagen on the Silver Cloud, check out this posting. This posting is now at 123,372 views.

http://www.boards.cruisecritic.com/showthread.php?t=1227923

 

 

Here is one of our first Lofoten Islands views from a stop early in the trip south as we drove towards "Å".

 

LofotenEarlyValleyViewRedBldg.jpg

 

 

From Aksla, here is some of the charming architecture in Alesund. This includes a canal or waterway in the middle of the town. This is called "Brosundet" ( or the Bridge sound). That means Ale sund (sloping sound). Or reflecting that the sound slopes through town. This is how Alesund got its name.:

 

AlesundHarbor2.jpg

 

 

Taking the cable car up to the top of Mt. Storsteinen at 1,260 feet provides great views of the town, islands, mountains and water. Not exactly easy, handy walking distance from the docking area in the main part of town. With our mid-day weather so sunny, it really helped enjoy this city in such a great setting. At the bottom right of this picture is the Arctic Cathedral that is the most famous in Tromso. This church that seats 700 and was completed in 1965:

 

TromsoOverallCityView.jpg

 

 

Here’s a close look at these historic Bergen Hanseatic merchant warehouse building fronts, people taking pictures, etc. :

 

BergenCloseHistBldgPixs.jpg

 

 

Right near the Hanseatic merchant warehouse area is the Bergen Fish Market with lots of options to buy food to eat on site or just watch, enjoying the “show” as people ask questions and buy the various fresh fish items.:

 

BergenFishMktCloseUp.jpg

 

 

Next to the Videseter Hotel on our way to Geiranger when going “up country”, we saw this spectacular waterfall at this scenic high mountain elevation location. You can see how small is the hotel/dining building at the top to the right of waterfall to give an idea on the massive scale for this natural wonder. When you go beyond just the port stop village, you can better experience “ALL” that is there and around in these scenic parts of Norway.:

 

Fjord2WaterfallTallHotelNear.jpg

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For Robyn, I noticed that you were kind of enough to post on the below-connected live/blog from our Norway coast/fjord reports with your very good questions and interests also. I have responded there and it might be good to post any added needs, interests there as I check that posting more often. Here is some of what I shared there to help on Oslo, Norway history, etc. Hope this of help to you and others. Plus, some of my visuals on Oslo.

 

People will sometimes ask how Oslo compares to Stockholm and Copenhagen. Much of the difference is about the contrast of Oslo's more contemporary great art/design . . . versus . . . the deeper depth of history/design and royal background associated with both Copenhagen and Stockholm. Both of these capitals of Sweden and Denmark have had much longer recent histories of power and wealth, while Oslo is "newer" in many ways.

 

Two centuries of Viking raids/advances/power went to southern and western areas. But that tapered off following the adoption of Christianity in AD 994. At one point, Norway expanded its control to parts of Britain, Ireland, Iceland and Greenland. Per Wikipedia, Norwegian power peaked in 1265, but competition from the Hanseatic League and the spread of the "Black Death" weakened the country. In 1380, Norway was absorbed into a union with Denmark that lasted more than four centuries. In 1814, Norwegians resisted the cession of their country to Sweden and adopted a new constitution. Sweden went to war with Norway but agreed to let Norway keep its constitution in return for accepting the union under a Swedish king. Later Norway demanded independence, which it gained in a referendum in 1905. that brought back a King for this country. Norway remained neutral in World War I. Despite its declaration of neutrality in World War II, Norway was occupied for five years by forces of Germany. In 1949, it abandoned neutrality becoming a founding member of NATO. Discovery of oil in adjacent waters in the late 1960's boosted Norway's economic fortunes. This "weave of history" gives a better perspective for why and how things evolved from the Viking days down to be controlled by its neighbors back to recently gaining big oil wealth in the past couple of decades.

 

Don't be shy!! Keep those good questions and comments rolling along. Happy to share more.

 

THANKS! Enjoy! Terry in Ohio

 

For details and visuals, etc., from our July 1-16, 2010, Norway Coast/Fjords/Arctic Circle cruise experience from Copenhagen on the Silver Cloud, check out this posting. This posting is now at 123,515 views.

http://www.boards.cruisecritic.com/showthread.php?t=1227923

 

 

This picture shows the main, historic fortress next to where many cruise ships dock in Oslo. The fortress construction started around the late 1290’s. The very interesting and moving Norwegian Resistance museum can be visited there. Norwegian Royalty have been buried in the Royal Mausoleum in the castle. A portion of this fortress was replicated at the Norway pavilion at Disney’s Epcot Center.:

 

1A-Oslo-Harbor-OldFortress.jpg

 

 

At the National Museum in Oslo, there is Munch art, including one of his two famed Scream painting that are in this Norway capital. At the separate Munch Museum, just a little distance away from central Oslo, there is the other Scream painting in Oslo. There are many other of his painting at this museum by the famed artist.:

 

1A-Oslo-NatGalMunch.jpg

 

 

Vigeland Park has a wide variety of outdoor sculptures in a super, wonderful setting that is a highlight for Oslo. There is a wide variety of art, water features, spectacular settings, etc. Its admission is free and the views and art are "priceless". It is open 24/7 so hours are not an issue.:

 

1A-Oslo-VigelandPk.jpg

 

 

Here is Oslo’s City Hall exterior and one of its large interior spaces where the Nobel Peace Prize is awarded annually on December 10 each year. This structure houses the city council and city administration, plus art studios and galleries. The construction started in 1931 with the main structure completed in 1936. The German invasion of Norway in 1940 caused construction to stop, and it was not resumed until 1947. This City Hall was official opened in 1950. Its characteristic architecture, artworks and the Nobel Peace Prize ceremony makes it one of Oslo's most famous buildings. The roof of the eastern tower has a 49-bell carillon which plays every hour. This City Hall is situated in central downtown Oslo dramatically overlooking the scenic harbor area.:

 

1A-Oslo-CityHallExt.jpg

 

 

1A-Oslo-CityHallInterior.jpg

 

 

Sailing out from Oslo with the red brick City Hall in the background and the surrounding areas and “hills” showing around this so-called “fjord”.:

 

1A-Oslo-SailingOut.jpg

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