A Travellerspoint blog

Stockholm

on Midsummer holiday

semi-overcast 22 °C

In Ostersund we'd had a call from a hotel in Scotland that had offered us work, so as we'd accepted the jobs we needed to grab some clothes in a hurry. No problem we though, we'll be in Stockholm tomorrow, shouldn't be a problem to get a pair of black dress pants and shoes...

Well we hadn't counted on it being 'Midsummer' and a public holiday... At first we wondered if our watch was wrong and we were in another time zone, was it actually 9am and the shops wern't open 'cause as the signs on the doors said, they didn't open till 10... no, we saw a big clock on a building and it was actally 10 and nothing was open...

Finding a big H&M store (every street corner in Stockholm seemed to have one of these stores) and deciding that we should get something wherever we could get it we managed to get a pair of black pants for Tim... OK now for shoes and some for Jo... Down the street we found as mall that was open, it just happened that the shops in the mall were all fashion boutiques and fairly expensive... oh well, after half an hour we both had black pants and Tim had a pair of shoes, at least we were pretty much sorted... heading back to the train station we paid for another locker to store all the various other clothing items, running shoes etc that we'd aquired on the walk around town :)

Around 6pm we caught the train that took us to the airport that Ryanair dubiously call 'Stockholm' airport... hmmm 100km away from the outskirts of a city and still naming it that cities airport seems a little far fetched... oh well...

At 10pm we took off from Skavsta airport headed for Glasgow and a job working in a hotel. We figuered we couldn't have made better use of our Eurail ticket, they were both so tattered you could barely read them, and Tim' was convienently in two pieces :)

Posted by timnz 10:48 Archived in Sweden Tagged backpacking Comments (0)

Ostersund

rain 20 °C

After catching the train from Trondheim in the morning we crossed into Sweden at Storlien, the middle of nowhere. Around lunch time we arrived at our destination, Ostersund, also in the middle of nowhere, but this time a small city and no longer Norwegian prices!

On the train we'd thought we should check and make a reservation for the train down to Stockholm the next day, we hadn't been able to do it back down in Munich. So after dropping our packs and working out which train we wanted we went in and managed to get the last 2 tickets available on the train :) talk about lucky :)

Deciding that our bbq the night before had been really good, and so would another one, we dropped into a supermarket and stocked up with a bbq and some meat... 'some meat' 'cause we don't actually have a clue what it was :)

Sitting beside the lake we fired up out barbie and cooked away enjoying a nice slow lunch waiting for the hostel to open at 4pm.
After check in we had a snooze for a few hours then went out to enjoy the seemingly endless daylight, wandering around the town and having dinner.

Having another good sleep in we went to visit the Jamtli museum, Jamtli is something like the name of the area in either Swedish or Sami... couldn't quite work out which sorry :)

The museum was really good, probably the best that we've been to so far. The whole thing was set out like a story, showing the life of the Sami and how the season etc affect what they are doing and where they are. After realising that we'd spent the best part of 3 hours and still needed lunch and to walk to the train station, we whipped up stairs and ate an awesome buffet lunch in the museum cafe :) man the Swedish prices are way better than the Norwegian ones :)

Grabbing our packs from the hostel, and quickly drawing our umbrellas we made a run for the train station on the other side of town...

Posted by timnz 10:36 Archived in Sweden Tagged backpacking Comments (0)

Bergen

and then onwards to Trondheim

sunny 24 °C

After a leisurely start to the morning, we packed our bags and dropped them in the luggage store at the hostel and then set out to explore the city of Bergen.

After a visit to the 'Fish Market', whale burgers anyone? we decided to visit the aquarium... this is billed as a must see attraction in Bergen. The walk took us about 20 minutes, and when we arrived we found out that the entry fee was going to be $70 NZD, so we turned around and walked back to town :) Looping back past the fish market we decided to visit the old buildings of the Hanseatic traders that once pretty much ran Bergens export trade of 'stock fish' (dried fish). These looked really cool, all really colourful and they seemed to be propping each other up. Some are leaning one way, with the building connected beside it leaning the other... pretty cool. There was a museum just beside the old building which showed the history of the traders, and the history of Bergen itself, the price wasn't nearly as bad as the aquarium so we checked that out...

After a bit more wandering around, and a very brief visit to the Fisheries Museum (which had a strong aroma of a school science lab) we headed back into downtown Bergen to grab some dinner and head to the station to catch our night train...

Our train left Bergen at 11pm and we had a sleeper carriage, we managed to get on board around 10:30 and were almost asleep when we started moving. Arriving back at Oslo's central station we caught the connecting train about an hour later which dropped us in Trondheim around 3pm.

A little bit train weary, we found a city map of Trondheim and started the walk to our room for the night, it turned into about a 45 min journey and we were pretty happy when we finally saw the sign and checked in. Heading back down to town the short way (always easier to see in hindsight) we found a supermarket and grabbed some sausies and kebabs and another disposable bbq for dinner.

We went and sat on the grass up above the hostel, at a large park around Trondheim's 'castle', by the time we'd started cooking there were probably around 10 groups of people all around our area doing exactly the same thing, these little bbq's a pretty popular! After dinner we headed back to the hostel for a shower and an early night 'cause we had a train to catch at 8 in the morning...

Posted by timnz 10:19 Archived in Norway Tagged backpacking Comments (0)

Flam to Bergen

overcast 22 °C

Well, this is a little bit delayed but just to finish off what we got up to for our trip we may as well fill it in...

Got up reasonably early planning on getting to Bergen in the afternoon... after heading over to the station/information office and realising that it was Sunday we decided to check on what time buses and trains would be leaving. After finding out that we'd missed the last morning bus by about 1minute (and we'd have to wait till 3pm for the next one) we bought a couple of tickets for the train and sat around waiting for the hour to pass. After heading back up the line we'd come down the previous day we hopped off one train and onto the train heading into Bergen, and after a couple of hours we were standing in Bergen's train station deciphering instructions on how to get to the hostel.

As it was lunch time, and we were by now getting accustomed to the ridicuously high Norwegian prices we headed out on a mission to find a supermarket, a couple of hours later we were back at the hostel with food to cook for dinner, having walked along almost every street in downtown Bergen... or so it seemed :)

Posted by timnz 10:10 Archived in Norway Tagged backpacking Comments (0)

Oslo to Flam

sunny 22 °C
View Europe on timnz's travel map.

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We left Oslo and were pretty soon into the country side, its very green and looks really beautiful. There are lakes and ponds all over the place, and the rivers are very similar to those in New Zealand. Its the first clear water we've seen in rivers since New Zealand actually :)

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The train climbs slowly and by the time we were nearing Myrdal, the station to catch the Flamsbana train from, the view outside was awesome. There aren't really any mountains but we were at 1000m and there was snow all over the place. Would be an awesome area to snowmobile around. There are little villages or collections of house all over the place, what they actually do up here was beyond us, and we figured they must be like holiday homes...

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We had about a minute after arriving at Myrdal to buy a ticket and get aboard the waiting train, and made it :) The journey down to Flam is a descent of around 900m and was really cool, half the time we were in tunnels and looking out over precipices. 45minutes later we were in Flam.

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After once again scouring the supermarket for the cheapest items we left with a tin of spaghetti for lunch and a disposable barbaque and salmon fillets for dinner :) hey, just because its cheap doesn't mean it can't be good :)

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Deciding on splashing out we rented a double sea kayak for the afternoon, well more like the evening as we set off at 5pm. After getting to grips with the synchronised paddling thing (well just about :) ) we climbed out down the side of the fjord to go for a walk and visit a waterfall.

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Hopping back in we continued up the fjord to another waterfall that crashes into the water. After manouvering through a cruise ship and a ferries wake we pulled ashore on a sandy beach for dinner.

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Firing up the BBQ we sat watching the fjord and drank a lukewarm beer waiting for the salmon to cook :) After eating one of the best meals that we've had so far we quickly packed up and paddled furiously back toward Flam. We arrived about 1 minute before 9, and as we were supposed to be back by 9 we at least got our moneys worth, not a minute wasted :)

Heading back to the campground and after sitting outside admiring the view we headed to bed about 11pm in full daylight.

Posted by timnz 17.06.2007 12:22 Archived in Norway Tagged backpacking Comments (0)

Oslo

sunny 22 °C
View Europe on timnz's travel map.

We broke out into the Norwegian sunshine after leaving Bremen in pouring rain. We knew that we had to catch a bus into Oslo itself from the airport, but only found out as we boarded the bus that it was a 2 hour ride... Oh well may as well have a sleep then.

Luckily our navigation radar is by now in top form and we found the hostel without any bother, and without having to pay for the bus that was suggested :) By that point we were starving and after getting to the room we dropped our bags and headed straight back out to grab something to eat. We dropped by a supermarket we'd seen on the way to the hostel, and were introduced to Norwegian prices. A bottle of orange juice was about 6NZD, throughout the rest of Europe we'd payed about 2... a loaf of bread was about the same price! Finding probably the cheapest products in the supermarket for our lunch the next day we grabbed them then headed over to Maccas for dinner.

Throughout Europe so far we have found that fast food is really cheap, about half the NZD price we are used to. However in Norway it seems to be about twice the NZD price, and seems to be the case for everything. Some things are even more expensive, think 4 times the NZD price... ie a can of Coke here costs us about 4NZD...

After a good nights sleep we got up early to be at the station for our 8am train

Posted by timnz 17.06.2007 12:11 Archived in Norway Tagged backpacking Comments (0)

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