Mother Nature has boundless beauty. Tropical Malaysia has her magnificent verdant jungles while Norway has her majestic fjords. But what is a fjord?
Described as a “long, narrow, deep inlet of the sea between high cliffs”, a fjord is formed after a glacier retreats.
After arriving in Bergen, the second largest city in Norway, we began our journey of the fjords. We headed along the fjords to Troldhaugen, the former home of composer and pianist Edvard Grieg and his wife Nina. We visited the fish market, which may seem like an odd choice to go for some people but it was wonderful. The market not only sells seafood, fruit and vegetables but has ala carte restaurants and takeaway food for hungry customers. We walked around the city to check out the shops and strolled through some historical lanes.
Later, we took a ride on the funicular called Floibanen to view the stunning cityscape from an elevation of 320m.
The next day, we visited the war museum which had exhibitions on the Televag tragedy, chronicling the bravery of man and how the ravages of World War II affected the fishing village.
We also walked to a village where we met the granddaughter of one of the survivors of the tragedy. It was interesting to see boats berthed beside each house at the village.
On day three, we boarded the Flam Railway in Voss, a ski resort with flowing waterfalls, frozen lakes, snowy mountains and quaint villages. There was a photo stop at a viewing point with a lady in red singing a tune. In Norwegian folklore, this woman is known as Huldra, an incredibly beautiful and seductive person.
We then visited the Unesco-listed Naeroyfjord, which is a branch of the large Sognefjord. Cruising along the narrow fjord, we anticipated a photographer’s paradise. However, this was not to be as scattered rain hampered our views. Luckily, the rain stopped soon enough and we managed to see waterfalls, snow-capped mountains and greenery encapsulating the fjords.
The Hotel Sognefjord in Leikanger where we stayed for the night is worth a mention here. The hotel is right by the fjord with a charming small lighthouse. The hotel’s logo of a turtle has a significant meaning: The first owner, Agnar Eggum, was saved by a turtle during his seafaring days! Today, the hotel remains a family-run hotel.
Our next destination, the Unesco-listed Geiranger fjord, was amazing. We could see waterfalls, mountains with melting snow, vast camping grounds, a river and many more. An added bonus was that everyone had a room with a balcony directly overlooking the majestic Geiranger fjords.
An off-road journey to Trollstigen the next morning had us marvelling at nature’s wonders from walkways. We had a very good view of the fjords at Flydalsjuvet and the ravine at Gudbransjuvet.
Finally, frolicking in the snow and seeing more awe-inspiring landscapes during the return trip to Geiranger invoked a sense of euphoria in me.
This was my first and longest fjord journey, but it will not be my last. Life is not perfect but this journey rewarded me with many perfect moments.