140609 Balestrand – Geiranger

 The Plan

This morning we travel alongside mountains that are home to Jostedalsbreen, the largest icefield in continental Europe covering 487 square kilometres. SCENIC ENRICH:  We will visit one of the most photographed and impressive arms of the icefield, Briksdalsbreen, where we will have a truly Norwegeian experience and be taken by ‘trollycar’ up the glacier for a spectacular view of the glacier and magnificent waterfall.  We will continue via Stryn to Dalsnibba for unforgettable views of Geiranger Fjord (weather permitting) before arriving at our hotel. FB,D Two Night Special Stay: Geiranger

Some Information

There are many years of oil ‘stored’ on the shelf of the North Sea with many more years of gas supplies available.  In 1959, the discovery of gas by Netherlands changed thinking towards oil finds in the North Sea. And so exploration in Norwegian territory, commenced with permission only given by the crown. The first ‘find’ was made in 1967 and the second in 1969.  The biggest find is 3192 meters below the sea bed. Pipelines were built direct to the UK and Germany. The output varies each year but roughly the output is 100-500 billion litres for each of the last 4 years.  The oil fields provide 3% of the national employment but provides 25% of the nations GDP.  There are 33 billion krone held in reserves and the country does not have a national debt.

How the Day Turned Out

We set out early and leave the lovely little village of Balestrand where whenever we woke during the night, you could take a photo and think it was around 7:00am in Australia during the winter. I said in my post yesterday, that I would be up at 2:00am to wander around taking photos. Well, that never happened.

After a short ferry ride with the bus aboard, our journey takes us through many tunnels. Each tunnel exit presents us with a dramatic scene, which we all clamour to take photos of. The reflections are spot on and at times unbelievable.

As we are travelling, I feel a menieres attack coming on. By the time we arrived at the Briksdalsbreen Glacier, I am in a full spin and can’t take the ride to view the glacier. Never mind, I managed to take a rest for an hour. However, today is a bad day for Lyn though, as her camera has decided not to work. It’s like a ‘death in the family’, as she enjoys using the camera to capture the brilliant scenes that we are enjoying.

Lunch is taken at Briksdalsbreen before a different episode of this tour commences. We climb up and around many switchbacks to new countryside. We are above the tree-line and all there is, is unmelted snow from the winter season. A lake that is over 800 meters deep still has a thick layer of ice on it. Our driver, Nick from Sweden, is doing a fantastic job as we wind up the switchbacks to a location we have probably all seen on postcards or movies. Before us is the majestic Geiranger Fjord. There are two cruise ships, the ‘Aurora’ and ‘Ocean Princess’, moored near the shore with tender boats ferrying passengers back to the ship for their onward journey this evening.

Our room is allocated to us on the 4th floor with a “view to kill for”. The situation and view reminds us of Lake Louise and Milford Sound all wrapped up together.

Our evening meal is buffet with probably 5 coach loads of passengers arriving for the meat at the same time – meal-time bedlam. But the desserts are very special.

Tomorrow, we explore more of this majestic fjordland of Norway.

Seniors Moments – Door Matters

The other day, I came back to the room to brush my teeth and the door wouldn’t click open.  Suddenly, it opened. The lady wondered about my sanity, and I did too.  My room was two doors down the passage.

As we were coming back to the room from breakfast yesterday, I noticed this elderly lady having trouble getting into her room.  I thought it best to go help her.  Before trying to turn the key myself, I checked the number of the key tag.  It was 770 and she was trying to get into 670. “Bl…. hopeless me”, she said. I offered to help guide her to the lift.  She says, “Just don’t tell anyone, will you.” I hope she doesn’t mind that it is I who writes the daily post and I needed some more raw material.

Author: @colinspain

The Official Blogger for Grey Nomads Travel and Cruise Group Tours

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