Culture and Nature in Norway
And here we go for the third photo post: the way back from the north. We're still north of the Arctic Circle in the Vesterålen achipelago where I found this charming little church.
Stone church in Trondenes (Vesterålen)
This is the oldest stone church north of the Arctic Circle. There's a bit of a discussion about the exact date the church was built, about 1250, or 1440. It definitely replaced an older timber church from the 11th century. There are also remains of fortifications from that date that once protected the timber church from attacks from the sea side. Entrance to the mist-veiled Trollfjord (Lofoten archipelago)
In summer the ship enters the Trollfjord, one of the most narrow passages on the way, but the amount of snow on the mountains makes for a significant danger of avalanches this time of the year, and since the ship has to get close to those steep slopes, that's not unproblematic. But I could get a glimpse because I went on a sea eagle safari in a smaller boat. Yes, I did see eagles but the skuas were more willing to fly model in front of my camera.Sunset in the Brønnøysund
With this one were's south of the Arctic Circle and here spring slowly makes it way north. There was less snow and even a few specks of genuine green among all the brown and yellow, but it took until I arrived back in Germany to fully meet spring. It really had worked hard on that green thing during the time I was away. Nidaros Cathedral in Trondheim
The cathedral of Nidaros, as Trondheim was called in the Middle Ages, took a long time in building, from 1070 to 1327. Thus it's a mix of Romanesque and - preeminently - Gothic elements. The cathedral suffered severe damage by fire several times, so the building had to be restored in part; a task that was finished in 2001. The most striking feature is the westwork with its rich decoration of large stone sculptures.Historical farmhouses, Trondelag Folkemuseum
The Trondelag Open Air Museum is situated around the ruins of the oldest stone castle in Norway, Sverre's castle near Trondheim. It houses a collection of different buildings that were - and in some cases still are - typical for the area. The age of the buildings varies from an old church of 1170 to 19th century town houses. Most of the buildings are farm houses, stables and sheds though, and they make for a lovely scenery among the trees and rocks. Spring is coming to Norway
I took this photo from out of the train window on the way from Trondheim to Oslo. The ice on the rivers and lakes in the inland is the last trace of winter to give way, but the snow had been melting those last days even in a skiing district like Lillehammer. The Norwegians need to travel further north for their customary Easter fun.Gokstad ship, Viking Ship Museum Oslo
I promised Viking ships and I got some for you. I've actually visited two Viking ship museums, the ones in Roskilde and in Oslo. The museum in Oslo houses the ships found in Oseberg, Gokstad and Tune, and additional grave finds from Borre. All three ships had been buried in mounds, together with other beautifully crafted items; most remarkable among them are the cart and the sleighs from the Oseberg find. The museum's eldest part was opened as early as 1926 while the museum in its present 4-winged layout dates to 1957. The opera house in Oslo
The opera house in Oslo opened in 2008. It won several architecture awards for its unusual ice shoal design, and you can walk onto the roof. Most of the material used is white Italian marble, while the stage tower is clad in white aluminium in a pattern that resembles old weavings. The large windows allow for a lot of light to stream in. In contrast to the white and glass of the exterior, the interior surfaces are covered in oak.
I managed to get a ticket for 'Rigoletto'; a fitting celebration of my last night in Norway.