Sunday, June 25, 2006

Tying up loose ends after the vacation

Today we took care of our luggage and our flat and I uploaded the complete vacation blog that I did.

My wife Jana has her own blog now at and gives a slightly different angle on our trip - together with her own photos.

Vacation - 24th June: Lofoten, Oslo, München, Nürnberg: Travelling home

We flew back to Germany - leaving Leknes by plane at 9:25am, then Bodo, Oslo and finally München - and then it was time to travel by train to Nürnberg and then take a taxi to Fürth. We arrived at home about 1:30am on the 25th. A long day with long stops in Bodo (2h), Oslo (4h) and Munich (2h). Since the football WM game between Sweden and Germany took place in Munich we returned in a completely packed train to Nuernberg with lots of celebrating but friendly fans of both teams. Finally home again!

Friday, June 23, 2006

Vacation - 23rd June: Lofoten: Final day

It's always amazing how fast the weather changes and clouds form - and change their shape. We had today again sunshine and rain, with a light breeze coming up. The first two photos were taken yesterday evening, the last one today.

A view of Krystad from the other side of the fjord, our house is just visible. Jana did a closer shot with her longer lens. We drove today through Moskensøy and enjoyed the small fishing villages and said good-bye.

In the afternoon I took a couple of shots of a pair of birds - called Tjelp in Norwegian, Austernfischer in German - that lived in our garden and made high "tjelp" noises as soon as anybody came close to them. Some days ago they even attacked and scared some sea gulls away.

Thursday, June 22, 2006

Vacation - 22nd June: Lofoten: Flakstadstien

Wonderful calm water at 9am, the mountains are mirrored in the fjord.

We decided to do the Nesland to Nusfjord track - part of the so called Flakstadstien - and drove to Nesland - but it was so rainy that we returned to our cozy house. At 1pm it stopped and cleared so we left again and drove this time to Nusfjord to do the track the other way (the road to Nusfjord is much better than the one to Nesland).

The track is - according to our travel guide - well marked. But the first one or two kilometers not much of this is seen unless we found this sign.

The track went along the coast going up and down as needed and we followed it for about two hours and then decided to return. Soon the weather got worse - we were walking in t-shirts which is a first time for this vacation! - and it started to drizzle and then it poured.

I took a couple of photos of flowers on the way - thanks to Jana for pointing some of these out to me. There were a lot of orchids (in german called "Knabenkraut") and other tiny flowers - really beautiful.

Tuesday, June 20, 2006

Vacation - 20th June: Lofoten and Vesterålen: Hurtigrute trip

The alarm rang at 6am for our Hurtigrute day. We first drove by car to Svolvær, took the 9:45am bus to Stokmarkness on the Vesterålen and then at 3:15pm the Hurtigrute ship Narvik back to Svolvær.

In Stokmarkness we visited the Hurtigrute museum and the old ship Finnmarken but then had 3 hours to burn - and we did not need to do any real shopping. So, if anybody does this tour - and I consider it one of the highlights of our holiday, so a definitely must ;-) - I advise to take the 12:30pm bus.

The tour went through the narraw Raftsund channel with lots of tiny villages and mountains behind them on both sides of it.

The highlight was the trip into the 2km long Trollfjord where the ship nearly hit the walls entering it - and then got close to the wall as part of a three-point (Y) turn before turning back. The walls at Trollfjord are quite steep, the mountains raise up to 1156m.

The whole day was sunny and the ship deck was filled until Trollfjord but later only a few stayed on dock and looked to the fast passing by landscape, in the above to the Norwegian mainland.

Around 6:30pm we arrived in Svolvær and returned to our holiday home.

The Hurtigrute is really an express route - the ship was too fast too really compose photos properly and you had no chance to stay or move back a few meters. The whole tour was a really fantastic experience!

Monday, June 19, 2006

Vacation - 19th June: Lofoten: Beach Holiday

Beach Holiday! We had some sunshine today and enjoyed some of the nices beaches that Lofoten has: First looking at Flakstad beach taken from the other side of the fjord.

Then beautiful Haukland beach near Utakleiv. The 2km long seems to be quite popular but it was not warm enough today for anybody going to swim.

We took a troll along the beach and noticed a stone that had lots of tiny mussels.

Not the Adria - this is Ramberg beach, our last beach for today. The wind was blowing heavy at some times so that we had a couple of sandstorms on it.

Sunday, June 18, 2006

Vacation - 18th June: Lofoten

Last week we used one way to go to Kvalvika - today we used the other one and succeeded. We walked from our house to Torsfjord and then to Kvalvika over the pass - and the same route back again. The path was quite wet and it drizzled while walking back. The view from the pass to the Atlantic was impressive, you couldn't see where the water ended and the sky started.

The beach was sandy and beautiful with the high mountains raising around it, and even had two picnick areas. We only missed the sunshine. The water really had a turquoise colour.

Saturday, June 17, 2006

Friday, June 16, 2006

Vacation - 16th June: Lofoten

We woke up at 5am, guess it was too quiet outside. Looking out of the windows we noticed a wonderful sunlight over Krystad, took some photos and continued to sleep in the hope that the weather will stay good.

Standing up the weather was still fine - no more storm and rain but still coldish. We drove to Ytresand and walked along the sandy beach.

Nusfjord was our next destination. Nusfjord is a secluded fishing village which was put on the UNESCO world heritage list in 1975. It has some lovely Rorbuer around the harbour as well as lots of stockfish to show off for the tourists.

In the evening we first visited the Lofotr Viking Museum and then Sagaspelet Lofotr 2006. The museum's main exhibit is a beautifully reconstructed chieftain's hall. Inside of the hall and in the whole area are displays of viking age including old species of farm animals and a forge.

At the fjord they have a replica of a Viking ship - and in that open air area - sitting on the ground, the Norwegians arriving in their winter gear - the Sagaspelet (a drama playing in the Viking era including Viking saga) took place.

The Sagaspelet was completely in Norwegian so we had to guess a lot but with the little understanding we had enjoyed the play and acting.

Olaf Tvennumbruni, chief of Borg, torn by the elves.

Olaf and one of the three Nornes.

Tore, chief of Gimsøya, arrives with his household in the Lofotr Viking ship.

The ship gets unloaded.

The three Nornes weaving the loom of fate.

The play had a total of 71 actors, including 40 statists that did a lot of crucial "background activity" while the main play was going on.

Gyda, daughter of Tore and Ranghild, and Åsgaut, son of Olaf and Åshild, welcome each other.

The elves dancing around the young couple after their engagement.

The two chiefs fighting.

The first live has been spilled, the second follows.


At the end the elves disappear completely in the water - the most heroic act of the whole play, water and air were both chilly (around 10 degree Celsius).

The actors and the spectators both enjoyed the play which went on for two hours. I guess there were around 200 people watching - and most of them were somehow related to the actors. If it's warmer, it's definitely worth a visit next year even for tourists that only understand a little Norwegian!

Driving back we stopped at Fredvang Beach and enjoyed it at 10 pm.