REPORT SCANDINAVIA : photographic project in May-June 2017
DAY 1 : 29/5/2017
A flight scheduled to leave Brussels Airport (BRU) at 10.00 meant that I had to leave around 05.30 in order to avoid getting stuck in traffic so by 07.00 I was waiting to at the check-in counter and by at 09.45 I boarded the Boeing 737-700 of SAS (SE-RJR) for a 2-hour flight to Stockholm (ARN) (Sweden). Upon arrival I went to Hertz to pick up a Volvo V60 automatic full option including GPS.
When I arrived at the hotel I went out with the client to visit the Vasa-museum with the surrounding area and the City Hall near the river. When I arrived back at the hotel I parked the car and went for dinner nearby. After some last shots in front of the hotel it was time to go to bed.
DAY 2 : 30/5/2017
Today I left around 10.00 to go to the Drottningholm Palace first. After this I had to drive about 6 hours to get to the beach at the Sandhammarend fyr (lighthouse). When I finally arrived at the hotel in Malmö it was time to get some sleep.
DAY 3 : 31/5/2017
This day was going to be a lot of walking in Malmö, first I went to the Malmöhus castle and then further on foot to the Big Square and the Sankt Petri church before walking to the Little Square and have a small lunch there. When I arrived back at the car I went for a quick stop near the entrance of the port and then another stop just south of the Øresund bridge for a good view on the bridge and the sea. By now I noticed a change in the weather so in order to avoid bad weather I drove over the bridge to get to Copenhagen (Denmark) and once there decided to visit some outer parts of Copenhagen with the Kastellet (Citadel) and off course the number one attraction, the Little Mermaid where flocks of tourists are crowded around the small statue in the water so nobody can manage to get any decent photo of the damn thing, furthermore there are some people selling small souvenir statues way too expensive and others dressing up like Vikings to entertain the mostly Asian tourists for another way too expensive tourist photo and in the end nobody knows anything about the real story why the little statue is even there and what the connection with the Vikings actually is. I went all the way to the Ekvipagemestervej to park the car and have dinner at the Kontiki restaurant, there are also some nice views on the nearby museum ships HDMS Peder Skram, HDMS Sælen, HDMS Sehested & the old mast crane of Nyholm. When I finally arrived at the hotel I decided to settle in and after a few hours at the bar I went back to the room to get some sleep.
DAY 4 : 1/6/2017
Copenhagen is a city that is best explored on foot so I parked the car near the Glyptoteket and passed by the Tivoli park and the City Hall trough the city centre to the Rundetarn, after a small lunch nearby I continued to the Rosenborg castle and then through the park to the Frederiks church and the Amalienborg palace before heading back to the car. Next stop was the Langeliniekaj to have a good view on the Celebrity Eclipse that was visiting Copenhagen and have a small ice cream. By 16.30 I watched the DFDS ferry Crown Seaways leaving Copenhagen for Oslo. Once back at the hotel I went for dinner in the next door shopping mall and that was all for today.
DAY 5 : 2/6/2017
Today I started with a long drive via 2 bridges that connect the Danish islands with each other to Skagen. From the lighthouse of Skagen you have a great view over the most northern tip of Denmark where 2 seas come together. The lighthouse was built in 1858 and is 48 m high, visitors can climb all the way to the top and the museum on the ground floor gives a good explanation about the migrating birds that can be seen in the area around Skagen. Once I had taken lunch in the local restaurant in the dunes I continued my way to Frederikshavn where I visited the town and a local park before heading to the Stena line check-in and waiting for the Stena Jutlandica to arrive. By 19.30 I was on board and ready to have dinner in the buffet restaurant before relaxing in the bar until arrival in Göteborg (Sweden). By midnight I was in Göteborg and on my way to my hotel for a good night sleep.
DAY 6 : 3/6/2017
There would not be much driving involved today so I went to Göteborg centre and parked the car next to the Skanskaskrapan building in Lilla Bommen to explore the city on foot. After 4 hours of cityscaping and lunch I arrived back at the car and went to the Skansen Kronan fort and the Masthugg church, both are located on hilltops in the centre of Göteborg. I went back to the hotel where I had a nice meal and some relaxing time to download photos and do some administration before going back to the room.
DAY 7 : 4/6/2017
After another very good breakfast at the hotel this morning I left the hotel for a 3-hour drive to Oslo (Norway). First stop on the schedule was the Norwegian Folk museum, an open-air museum that has a fantastic collection of reconstructed buildings from all over Norway of different times throughout history. Next was the Viking museum where no less than 3 original Viking ships can be admired in the small museum, there is also a nice collection of other small items and the history of the Vikings and the area.
Because the weather was a bit too wet for my taste I went to the hotel to relax before having dinner in the hotel restaurant. By 19.00 I went to the centre of Oslo for a quick pass around the Opera house, the Norwegian Armed Forces museum and the Akershus castle. The Stena Saga and the Albatros were both docked and by 20.00 both ships had left Oslo, giving me the perfect line of sight for some great shots, only the weather was not working with me so by 21.00 I was back at the hotel for an evening in the bar before bedtime.
DAY 8 : 5/6/2017
This morning after breakfast in the hotel I started another long drive of about 5 hours to the Galdhopiggen mountain (the tallest peak in Norway at 2469m), where I went all the way to the glacier, once above a certain height the landscape is dominated by rocks and snow with the occasional pond or lake, at the start of the ski lift there are some spectacular views on the glacier with the small lake. Upon driving down, I used my GoPro to make sure I captured the entire landscape. Once back in the valley I went to my local hotel (Elveseter hotel) in the mountains for a rest after the long and sometimes difficult drive.
Dinner was served at 19.00 and after this very tasty dinner I went out for some evening shots around and in the hotel before relaxing in the lounge with a good cup of tea, until bedtime.
DAY 9 : 6/6/2017
This morning started with breakfast in the hotel and then a short drive to the nearby town of Lom, here you can find an original stave church completely built out of wood. The following drive took me all the way to the Dalsnibba viewpoint, from here you can see all the way to Geiranger. From here it was only a short drive to the hotel where I rested for a little while before going down to the village on foot to find some lunch. The cruise ships Aurora, Mein Schiff 6 & AidaVita were in Geiranger & after a few minutes the Nordnorge of Hurtigruten also made a brief stop. Once I arrived back at the hotel it was the perfect time to take the car up to the Ornesvingen viewpoint because the sun was in a different direction. After taking some spectacular shots at this viewpoint I went back to the hotel to relax in the lobby until dinnertime. Dinner buffet in this hotel is very good and multiple choices are available, after dinner I went back to the lobby for some relaxing time until I went to bed.
DAY 10 : 7/6/2017
This morning I woke up a bit later than usual and in order to start the day calmly I had breakfast at around 09.30. Then a visit to the Norwegian Fjordcenter just across the street from the hotel, next on the list was a kayak trip. Once in the water I did a quick tour out of the little marina but quickly noticed that I had underestimated the wind so I had to return to home base for safety reasons.
After a little freshing up in the hotel I went back to the town for lunch and a walk around the piers, on the way up again I stopped at the small church where the view is fantastic and the interior of the church is still original.
I went back to the centre of the town to stroll around the pier for a while because it would be the last day in this area, today the AidaSol & Rotterdam were visiting Geiranger and the Trollfjord briefly stopped here as well. I spent some time relaxing in the hotel before and after dinner until bedtime.
DAY 11 : 8/6/2017
This morning after breakfast I left the hotel at Geiranger for a drive to the viewpoint at Ornesvingen so I could take some shots of the Koningsdam in Geiranger. The following was a very long drive trough the mountains with some stops along the way. Finally around 18.00 I arrived at my local Airbnb near Trondheim airport in a small town called Stjordal, after resting a bit I went out on foot to have dinner and then back to the Airbnb for a long relaxing evening and night.
DAY 12 : 9/6/2017
Today Trondheim was on the schedule, so after taking breakfast in Stjordal I went to park the car near Trondheim central station and then explored the city on foot. The Nidaros church with some museums, the old town with Old Town Bridge and the Kristiansten fort are all great places to visit. After a small lunch in the old town I went back to the car and took a small stop at the Submarine pens called Dora and the Megaphone near the port. The rest of the day I relaxed in the Airbnb before going for dinner in the small town. After dinner it was time to prepare my bags and go to sleep as tomorrow would be a long drive.
DAY 13 : 10/6/2017
This morning started way too early for me but by 05.30 I was on my way to Trondheim airport to drop off my client and minutes later I had started my long drive to Göteborg. The roads in this part of Norway are slow, full of curves and mostly only 1 lane in each direction so after a stop for lunch, a fuelstop and a long stop for about 2 hours of sleep I decided to make one last visit to a little lighthouse a bit south of Göteborg in Bua, the landscape here combined with a surprisingly contrastful sky made sure I could get some great shots here. Finally by 19.30 I had fuelled up the car and delivered it back to the rental company at Göteborg Landvetter airport. Inside the terminal I tried to find a good restaurant, unfortunately my flight would be in the morning so I couldn’t get to the upper level restaurants yet, so I had to settle with a burger menu instead. Luckily I found a spot in the coffeebar to sit and have a hot chocolate after dinner so I stayed there until I could check-in early in the morning.
DAY 14 : 11/6/2017
By 04.00 this morning I had at least been able to sleep a bit during the night so I woke up and went straight to the check-in machines, off course there was an error so I had to check-in the usual way. Finally checked in and passed security, by 04.45 I was relaxing with a small breakfast and waiting for boarding time. Göteborg airport seems pretty small although this is about the second largest city of Sweden, there are works going on but overall the service is pretty good, friendly staff and several services available for F&B and shopping.
My flight from Göteborg to Copenhagen was a short one operated by SAS (CRJ900 > OY-KFD). Copenhagen was only a short stop as I had about 1 hour to get to my next flight, this time operated by a spanish CRJ900 (EC-JZV) but still flying for SAS from Copenhagen to Brussels. Back on home ground I returned back home right after collecting my bag at Brussels Airport.