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Archive for 'Norway'

Arctic-Alpine Garden, Tromso, Norway #travel

Any visitor to Norway knows how expensive it is to travel and sightsee in the country. When our cruise ship stopped at Tromso, we discovered the Arctic-Alpine Botanic garden, which was a short walk from the port. Even better, admission was free.

Arctic-Alpine Botanic Garden, Tromso

It was in a gorgeous spot, overlooking the valley of Tromsdalen and the mountain Tromsdalstind in the background.

All the plants come from alpine regions of the northern hemisphere, and the garden is open from May to September. It is run by the Tromso University Museum.

Tulips

I love tulips, and these ones made a stunning display. There were also black tulips.

Himalayan Poppies

These blue Himalayan poppies were in full flower and absolutely beautiful. Such a pretty color. I’d never seen blue poppies before.

Himalayan Poppy

Himalyan Poppies and Me

The day turned fine and hot. This is me posing with the blue poppies.

Flower and Bee

Waffles at Botanic Garden

There is a small cafe in the gardens, and hubby and I purchased a waffle and coffee. In Norway, the waffles are served with jam and cream or Brunost, which is a brown cheese made from goats’ milk. I expected the cheese to be strong but it was quite sweet and soft and went perfectly with the waffle.

If you’re in Tromso, a visit to the Arctic-Alpine Botanic garden is the perfect way to while away an hour or longer. I highly recommend a visit.

North Cape, Norway #travel

The North Cape on the island of Magerøya in Norway is in the Arctic Circle, and it is the farthest land point before the North Pole (Apart from the Svalbard archipelago). During the summer months, the sun doesn’t set and daylight is constant for two and a half months.

North Cape cliffs

On the day we visited, it was cold, even though it was mid-summer. This is the view we saw on our arrival. About half an hour later, the sea and cliffs were shrouded by fog.

North Cape Pre Fog

North Cape

There were hundreds of people and dozens of buses at the cape. I decided to purchase and post a postcard with the special North Cape postmark. Service at the souvenir shop – slower than a snail. I swear I was in the line for half an hour.

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North Cape flowers

We saw a few herds of reindeer gazing on the side of the road. They are not wild, but are released to graze the area during the summer months. The cape area is popular for bird watching and hiking.

North Cape globe

This is the globe right on the point in front of the visitors’ center. Not much of a view with the fog obscuring the sea beyond.

Midnight Sun

Hubby took this photo at midnight, as you can see by his watch. The sun set at midnight and it rose at midnight.

Shelley Midnight Sun

This is me at midnight. While it was fun seeing the midnight sun, I’m not sure I could handle the lack of daylight during the winter months.

How do you think you would cope with only a few hours of daylight per day?

13 Facts About Trolls

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Later this year, hubby and I are doing a cruise of the Baltic region. One of the stops is Oslo, Norway, a place I didn’t know much about. Research and deciding what to see is always part of the fun for me, and I was intrigued to learn about the combination of trolls and Norway.

Thirteen Facts About Trolls

1. If you Google trolls, at first you’ll come up with lots of websites about internet trolls, which are a different beast all together.

2. The trolls I’ve been researching live in the mountainous regions or woodland regions of Norway. They’re known as mountain or woodland trolls.

3. These days they are a shy creature and there is great debate as to their existence.

4. Several places in Norway are named after trolls such as Trollfjorden, Trollveggen, Trollstigen.

5. Trolls are huge and ugly. They’re scary but according to local lore they’re a little stupid, and a clever man or woman can use this to manipulate them.

6. Trolls are one beast that a romantic woman should not attempt to kiss. She will not find a prince but rather a filthy creature with long, entangled hair. The troll is more likely to eat her than attempt to exchange a kiss.

7. It’s very difficult to discern reality from myth and legends, especially since there has been no documented sightings for some many years.

8. Some people say trolls possess shape shifting powers, so perhaps this is why they’re so good at eluding people. Maybe your best friend is a troll in hiding.

9. I understand trolls are mammals and they live to a great age – anywhere in the range between 1000 – 12000 years old.

10. Like vampires, trolls have a bad reaction to sunlight. Younger trolls turn to stone while older trolls explode on exposure to sunlight.

11. Whenever you see electric pylons in Norway, especially in isolated mountainous regions, they’re probably not there for electricity but are electric fences used to keep trolls within their territories.

12. Trolls are mostly seen on moonlit nights.

13. It’s very important not to make an enemy of a troll because they’re good at revenge. The best advice I can give is to keep in good standing with any trolls you might meet or you’ll be very sorry.

Have you visited Norway? Have any tips? Do you have any experience with trolls?