On Sunday, the ship sailed up the fjord that brings one to Oslo harbor. I expected Norway to look a lot like Denmark but I was mistaken. Like Denmark, it was clean and the people were incredibly friendly; English seemed to be spoken everywhere. Unlike Denmark, it was much more hilly with loads of trees, including pine forests with thick green undergrowth. The sail up the fjord featured the most lovely views under an amazing blue sky.
Lots of the homes and churches we saw were painted a crisp white with red tile roofs, much like this building in the harbor. We couldn’t decide if this one was a school or a church but it was awfully charming.
Just across from the ship’s dock was a medieval fort built in 1100 that eventually became a castle with extensive grounds.
Downtown, the buildings were lovely, in a variety of soft colors, though it was a Sunday and most were closed.
We had a tour which took us through the city to a number of sights. At the Viking ship museum, we saw preserved sailing vessels.
We drove up the mountain to see a ski jump. My picture didn’t turn out, but let’s just say that it was steep and shiny and quite impressive. Having watched plenty of Olympics, I know that the Norwegians love their skiing sports and given the tour guide’s descriptions of the Norwegian winters, I guess that’s a good thing.
Having spent 5 months in the snow and even longer with winter sunlight that lasts less than 7 hours a day, the Norwegians clearly enjoy the 18 hours of sunshine the summer brings. There were loads of people soaking up the sun in the Vigeland Sculpture Garden that we visited.
All in all, Oslo was a charming city in a beautiful nation.