Norway: Country of trolls and fjords

Norways coast, a fairyland for kids

(Zur deutschen Version.)

Serenade of the Seas
Serenade of the Seas

The Serenade of the Seas, a cruise ship of Royal Caribbean International brings us from Copenhagen to the fjords of Norway. It is the second week in May but the weather here in Denmark seems not to know anything about a warm spring. It is grey and cold but luckily no rain, because going from the airport to the cruise terminal means to change from the Metro to a bus and to another bus again.

This time we travel together with our 4 year old grandson. We are curious how he will like such a big ship. Together we explore the ship. He would like to give the water slide a try but that is way too cold.

The next day, a sea day is great. The sun is shining, no clouds. It´s hard for us to explain, that it is still much too cold for the water slide.

Our first harbor is Stavanger.

Stavanger
Stavanger

In fact a lovely city that we already know from one of our former cruises to Norway. We dare to go from board, yes we dare to, because it´s raining cats and dogs. We should better stay on board…

But as native northern Germans we are used to bad weather and got everything with us to withstand the cold rain. So at least we stay dry at the inside. We would like to visit the canning museum. The ships docking place is ideal. Only some hundred meters to go through the lovingly well-kept old city center. The small wooden houses cuddle close to each other. Some house some nice little handicraft shops, like jewelry, pottery and glass ware. In front of the mostly white washed houses the tulips bloom in lots of colors which add a bit of color to the gray day.

Tulpen im Regen /tulips in the rain in Stavanger
Tulpen im Regen /tulips in the rain in Stavanger
Dosenmuseum  / Canning museum in Stavanger
Dosenmuseum / Canning museum in Stavanger

Than we arrive at the canning museum. An old canning machine greets us in front of the museum. Nobody else greets us. It´s a Monday and the museum is closed, even though two big cruise ships are in the harbor. That´s a pity!

So we stroll a bit longer through the narrow streets. But it´s getting worth with the rain and we decide to go back on board. The weather forecast said there will be 100 % rain probability. They are right…

Shortly before dinner, the ship is leaving the port, the sun comes out and Stavanger says good bye to us with a wonderful rainbow.

Stavanger
Stavanger

The weather forecast for the next day says 85 % rain probability in Bergen, which is one of the rainiest cities in the world. We always had at least one short shower when we´ve been there, so we´ll take along our rain clothes again.

We are very astonished when we open the curtains the next morning and we see some blue patches of sky looking through the clouds.

Bergen
Bergen

So we quickly get up, grab some breakfast and out we go. We know that the weather changes here very quickly so we take along our rain clothes. We see a snow-covered mountain in the distance, but here in the city center of Bergen the cherry trees are blooming. That´s a nice picture!

Floibanen
Floibanen

We walk through the city center to the Floibanen, a little train that brings people 320 meters above sea level to the top of Floy Mountain. The line of waiting people is quite long but we need not to wait too long before we stand in the train and have a wonderful view on Bergen. (You like to watch a little video about the drive uphill? Go this way.)

The view is absolutely great from here! We really enjoy it but our little fellow gets bored and wants to do something else. So we´ll be on our way.

We don´t go far. A big troll thwarts our way. What an interesting fellow but the play ground behind him is much more interesting. A whole group of kids from a kindergarten is already playing there. Nobody seems to be afraid of the troll with the long nose and the balding head.

It´s definitely colder here than in Bergen, the leaves on the trees are still very small. But the moss is already very green and so smooth. One kind of moss looks like algae hanging down from fir trees.

It´s time to go further on, the trolls are waiting. But where are they? The first one I spot very easily among the trees, he is very big indeed.P1100605 We walk on a narrow path through the trees and get to see more and more of these scary creatures. My little grandson gives me his hand. The trolls really don’t look trustworthy. When he notices that they are all made of wood he gets braver and runs ahead, right into a muddy and peaty puddle. We are happy that we made him wear his rain boots this morning…

There are lots of trolls to be found here. P1100610Then we see a sign that says: don´t take pictures of the witches in the wood. Finely we are in fairyland! We can´t stop our little one any longer. He looks for witches and trolls behind any mossy rock and tree.

The next sign we find says: here is the witch’s kitchen.P1100627 Not far away we see a tent between the tress. Is this where the witches live? Suddenly a small hand grabs mine. Somebody seems to be a bit scared again…

The next sign at a tree warns us not to startle the little dinosaurs.

on Floy Mountain / auf dem Floyberg in Bergen
on Floy Mountain / auf dem Floyberg in Bergen

What kind of forest is this? We are in the land of trolls, witches and dinosaurs. The fairyland.

We go further on. Soon we are in front of a mountain lake. In summer it is possible to do some kayaking here. The next sign reads not to kiss the frog. Why is that? Won´t the frog become a nice and handsome prince? Will he be a troll here? We can only speculate, because there is no frog to be seen to give it a try.P1100642

There is a skull made of moss on a tree, now we are totally convinced that this is a bewitched forest!

Totenkopf aus Moos /mossy skull
Totenkopf aus Moos /mossy skull

We head back to the Floibanen. Very fast the train brings us back down to the old part of Bergen, Bryggen.

Bryggen in Bergen
Bryggen in Bergen

The old center is made of old wooden houses, cuddling together and housing a lot of little shops.

Bryggen in Bergen
Bryggen in Bergen

The houses used to be the storehouses of the Hanse. Now you´ll find souvenir shops here, as well as fur shops, handicraft shops and bakeries. We are hungry so we indulge of some of the typical Norwegian specialties like Bollen that are very tasty pastries.

Strengthened like this we explore Bryggen. Suddenly we hear a loud laughter.

Bryggen in Bergen
Bryggen in Bergen

The little one has climbed onto a big wooden fish and I sit again under the elks head in front of a leather shop.

in Bryggen
in Bryggen

I really like the city of Bergen.

And today we can say, it doesn´t rain in Bergen all the time and sometimes 15 % of a sunny weather forecast is enough for a beautiful day here in Norway!

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