Christmas feels is here! I’m so happy to have finally visited the Christmas Market in Bergen. It’s very beautiful because of the lights, decors and the people who are having a good time at the market with their love ones. This Christmas market is not that big compared to other Christmas markets in other parts of Europe (or the world) but you can find good stuff and good food here. There are also tivoli rides for the young ones and for the young at hearts.
And because I got busy with food, I only took few shots.
Rena is a small town in Hedmark region. Seven and a half hours car drive from Bergen and is located in the eastern part of Norway. Bf and I visited a relative who owns a camping place at Åsta just 15 minutes away from Rena center. We went here on the third week of July this year. We were invited so we didn’t have to pay for our stay. How cool is that? 🙂
Kvile means “relax” in Norwegian. I can say that my bf and I had a very comfortable and relaxed week during our stay here.
The cabin that we got is around 25 square meters big. It has a double deck bed, a dining table, chairs, heater, small fridge and a small kitchen counter with cabinets. So in short the cabin has everything that we need. However, there is no water supply and toilet inside the cabin. We had to go to the common washing area which is located just a few steps from the cabin.
What I love about this place is that there are a number of activities to choose from such as fishing, hiking, swimming, kayaking and grilling. Also, Rena is just 2 hours away to Sweden and circa an hour away to Oslo by car.
The camping area is also near a huge field. Just perfect for morning walks with the dog.
Just 5 minutes walk from the camp is the longest river in Norway, which is Glomma. According to my bf’s cousin, the river is rich in fish and therefore people come here to fish. But there are rules to follow and people who wants to fish here must get a permit first, since this is a freshwater river.
You can find a handful of information about fishing by the river and somewhere near the railways.
More pictures of the river shot from different places.
The place is also near the railway where the Åsta train accident happened in 2002. Here stands a monument stone with the names of the victims engraved. The accident is one of the biggest in the history of the transport industry.
Speaking of railways, have you heard about making a wish while standing on the railway? I had a classmate before in high school who told me that her wishes came true when she wished for something while standing on the railway. I admit that I had to make one when I took a picture of it.
Anyways, as I’ve mentioned earlier in this post, we were just 15 minutes away from Rena town center. Here can we find the schools, shops, restaurants and a wooden church.
Moving on, the weather during our visit here varied a lot. One day it was raining hard and just after a couple of hours the sun comes out. I can say that the weather in this part of Norway is way better compared to Bergen.
I can say that the 7.5 hours car trip to Rena is worth it. There are lots of beautiful places to see and this is one of the trips that I recommend if you want to see the difference between the western part and eastern part of Norway because you can see how the landscape change as you travel from the west to the east.
I’m ending this post with the link of Kvile Camping, for those who are interested in renting a cabin/s and caravan/tent place: http://www.kvilecamping.no/
Earlier today, I read on the news that a lot of people received a DVD in their mailbox. No one knows who the sender is. The content of the DVD is a four hour homemade film (which was copied and stitched together from different films) about the Holocaust. The title according to NRK is “Illuminating the Holocaust”. It is actually trying to convince people that Holocaust did not happen at all. Which I find scary, not because I think that someone would believe this propaganda material but because there are people out there who would ruin everything, including nullify a part of the history just to get what they want. Hence, contributing to the world’s rising turmoil.
Sometimes the thought of travelling abroad to see new places makes us forget to appreciate our own country/home. I’m not saying that we should for example stop dreaming of seeing the Eiffel Tower or the Coloseum of Rome. My point is that there are also beautiful and unexplored places in your own country. Not only that you get to learn about the history of the nearby places but you also get to support the local tourism in the country. And besides local travelling can be less expensive too. You can also squeeze in a short trip to the next town or city in your busy week.
About a month ago, I took a 3 hour cruise to Mostraumen. The catamaran leaves at 10 a.m. and is back in Bergen at 1 p.m. I took the trip because I really wanted to travel somewhere I’ve never been to and at the same time near my place. My bf was out of town for work and I was left with our dog and the fishes, hence the short trip.
The trip is very relaxing. I chose to sit on the upper deck on the way to Mostraumen for a better view. I usually get anxious during boat rides but because of the beauty of the fjords, I didn’t get nervous at all!
The cost of this fjord trip is 550 NOK or 59 Euros. Snacks and refreshments are not included but there is a small kiosk on board if ever you get thirsty/hungry.
For more information about Bergen-Mostraumen cruise please check out this link.
This is the number one question that I get from people that I meet for the first time. When I first came to Norway, I did not mind people asking me questions. I understand that some people are just curious types. I do not talk too much to people that I just met. In short, I am a shy type person but I can be really talkative, depends on my mood and the topic. However, I did get tired of this questioning every time that I meet new people here. Why do they ask? Do I look like and alien? Is there something wrong with my Norwegian?
Aside from this question, I do get a lot of how long have I been living here in Norway. In the beginning I felt like I was being interrogated. So, as much as possible I tried avoiding eye contact with people by the bus stop, cafes and restaurants. However, there were times that it was impossible for me to avoid any conversations with strangers. Like for instance when I was waiting for the bus, a man came to me and asked for the time. When I answered him, he asked me where I came from and if I am living here in Norway for a long time now. I think he just used the time as an excuse to talk to me. I told him that I am from the Philippines and been living here for more than a decade now. Then he told me that I do not look like from the Philippines. He thought that I am from Japan or China because of the color of my skin (which is unfortunately pale or yellowish). He also thought that I am adopted because according to him I speak Norwegian fluently. I started to get uneasy and irritated because he started telling me about how lucky I am to be able to live and get an education in Norway and be able to escape poverty and terror in the Philippines. It made me want to run away from him. But I did not. In fact, I sat beside him on the bus just to educate him about the Philippines. Haha! Oh yes, I am Philippines’ newest ambassadress!
Eventually, I started to realize that when Norwegians ask me where I came from, it is because a lot of them are not used to seeing foreigners or other races in the area. Though they travel a lot, *”they can feel like a child in an unknown woods, away from their parents and grandparents. And sometimes they get a feeling that a Filipina like me or other foreigners will try to fool and rob them” (*An excerpt from Odd Børrentzen’s book: Hvordan forstå og bruke en Nordmann.). They do not mean to be rude. They only need answers and some of them only want to talk.
It is already mid October and the weather is surprisingly lovely in most parts of the country for almost two weeks now. I am not complaining though. The weather is just perfect for hikes, road/boat trips, picnics and you name it but do not let the sunshine and the blue skies fool you because it is absolutely cold.
A week ago we visited my partner’s family and while the bf was busy with his father’s garage I took our dog and the dog of his sister out for a walk. My plan was to go to Vardetangen but had to change course because I suddenly got a problem with one of the dogs. So I followed the sign to Fonnes kai(quay) instead and tada, a beautiful scenery welcomed us.
Times like this should be spent wisely, especially here in Norway because you never know what the next days gonna be when it comes to weather. For some reasons it is not easy to predict the weather anymore.