|The sun shone in Bergen - evidently this happens on less than 100 days a year! The people came out in their droves. We were amongst it all, savouring the smells, tastes and sights of the fishmarket. Tried moose and reindeer, salmon, shrimps and crab. Viewed whale meat and wolf, seal and fox skins. Caught the Bergen funicular up for the views of this city with water every where - a boaters paradise. Walked back down eating raspberries. Strolled thru the 300yr old leaning wooden 4 story buildings of Bryggen - if one fell over they all would go! We visited Hakons hall erected in 1247 and partly demolished when a German munitions boat blew up in the harbour below it in 2nd WW. Finished off with beers on our deck and dinner at the Hot Wok, a short stroll away. Bergen is great.
Saturday, Ross and Ann flew back to Iceland and we hopped in our rental car and headed south to Stavanger. Drove 250k across islands connected by ferries and tunnels and bridges, our most expensive drive ever - nz200 plus gas at nz3.20 per litre. Did get to drive 260m below sealevel in one tunnel that was 8k long under a fjord. We figured Norway is built on rocks and other than some river valleys with barley growing, the rest you see is silver birch trees clinging to rock hills. Wandered Stavanger, the north sea oil service town of Norg, sucking icecreams watching people watching people...nice atmosphere.
Spent the night at Preikestollen in a room in the attic of an old farmcottage now hostel overlooking a lake. Next morning walked 2 hours to our highlight in Norway - Pulpit Rock. 600m directly above the fjord, this jutting out suicide-friendly and scary place is like a skydive with no parachute! We didnt jump. Amazing views and got the big buzz.
Took another 2 days and another 650ks to arrive back at Oslo. On the way we drove along narrow country roads, thru ski villages, staying at Diccons companies 220yr old mountain farm house and a friends summer house on the Larvik fjord. Visited an all-timber Stave church built in 1250 and paid our respects to Viking burial mounds in the woods and on the rocky beach. Walked the rocks at Worlds End.