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South of Norway

Visiting south of Norway

To have a short break in June, we went to Norway for a few days. After landing at Oslo airport, we picked up our pre-booked car from airport car rental office and started our trip. We were lucky that instead of smaller car we were upgraded for free and got an excellent Volvo V40 – very nice welcome to Norway!

mountainsWe were thinking about visiting south of Norway a long time and finally did it. And, here is the first tip – be prepared to pay for toll road immediately after leaving the airport if you go to Oslo (there are other toll roads as well).

You can pass control points without paying (what we actually did without a previous intention), however surveillance cameras are in operation and you will be detected and charged anyway.

The second tip – if you see parking place for a charge somewhere in the middle of nowhere – make your best effort to find a place to pay for it to avoid penalty charges (still wondering how they managed recognising that our car was in one of these places). So, visiting south of Norway is not cheap, however you may get charged even more if you are not careful enough.

Capital of Norway Oslo  is the largest city of Norway. Its metropolitan area has a population of more than 1.4 million people. In addition to this, Oslo is the third largest city of Scandinavia and the most expensive city in the world (according to data of last decades).

Stave church in Heddal

stave church heddalWe didn’t have plans for Oslo and just went through it to reach our destination – south-western coast of Norway. After few hours driving first stop we made to look at some old stave church in Heddal. A stave church is a medieval wooden church with a post and beam construction related to timber framing.

The wall frames filled with vertical planks. All of the surviving stave churches, except one, are in Norway (the remaining one is in Sweden). Church itself was an interesting, impressive wooden building and it really was worth to see it. I still remember the smell of all surrounding area – it was very heavy smell of tar all around.

Camping in Norway

sheepCamping rather than staying in hotel saves a lot of money in such an expensive country as Norway. Almost everywhere in Norway is allowed wild camping (you should not even ask permission from a land owner if you stay on uncultivated land for a couple of nights), although we were traveling with a child and for that reason were not considering that option.

We decided to stay near fjord. To find a campsite anywhere in Norway, you can use multilingual camping portal. (there are some 13 languages available to choose from).

You may search by the region, camping chain, city, attraction etc. At the time we were in Norway it was not that easy (we did not even have booking in advance, relaying on fortune), however finding campsites nowadays is much more easy.

If you are travelling in July, the weather is good enough to stay in your own tent. There are comfortable bungalows available as well, though they are not cheap at all. But you know – there is nothing cheap in Norway, especially food. However, emotions you get from visiting Norway and enjoying nature there are even more impressive than you can imagine before.