Tuesday, July 18, 2017 | Domenico Schiano Moriello / Laurens Corijn | Europe
After ten days in Norway, it was finally time to reach Sweden for our last riding day! Leaving Oslo, we had to use the highway to get out of town and to reach (almost) the border to Sweden. A picture stop at the Fredriksten fortress and then, after entering Sweden, we stopped at a moose farm where we could feed the animals... and then also feed ourselves! After that, we reached the shores of lake Väner, one of the biggest lakes in Europe, where we could enjoy our last break in Vänersborg before hopping on the highway again to reach our final destination. What to say again, thank you Ione & Raimundo, Sueli & Carlos, Soraya & Wander, Rose & Alexandre, see you (hopefully) soon again!
Today everybody decided to leave the bikes in the garage and explore Oslo, the capital of Norway. One out of four norwegians lives here and the city is still growing very fast, despite the fact that it is one of the most expensive places on Earth! Oslo is home to more than 50 museums, art galleries and attractions, more than enough to see in one day!
What to say, another beautiful ride! Our first stop was at the Vrangfoss locks of the Telemark Canal, built in the year 1892, then we headed to Notodden to see the beautiful Heddal Stave Church and then, after a relaxing lunch break in Kongsberg, we took all possible backroads to reach Oslo without having to face too much traffic!
Wow, Norway just keeps amazing us! After some highway out of Stavanger, we hit the small roads, eventually ending up on the fantastic Lyse-road that leads to the Lysefjord view. From there all our guests decided they were up for the 23 hairpins down to Lysebotn, including one inside a tunnel!
Best part is we got to take all 32 km's back to rejoin the main road and head to Domenico's picknick. He was getting worried already that we were running late, but we were just having so much fun.
The roads just stayed great all the way down to Vrådal, where a cold beer and great buffet awaited us.
The longest ride of this tour, around 400 km, beautiful twisty roads and the goal not to come too late to the hotel in Sola... well, we made it! We left Bergen and headed to the Hardanger Fjord that we crossed using the longest suspension bridge in Norway. The Hardanger bridge is a very modern building, it was opened to traffic in 2013, and the amazing thing about it is that it is a tunnel to tunnel bridge, so basically we came out from a long tunnel and we were in the air! After a quick lunch and a picture stop by the Langfossen waterfall, we took the a ferry and then two submarine tunnels (another amazing experience!) took us to Stavanger. A long but very good day!
Today everybody decided to leave the bikes parked and explore Bergen, considered the most beautiful town of Norway. The historic old town, the district of Bryggen, is a UNESCO world cultural heritage. Founded around the year 1000AD, the town developed into an important trading centre and the buildings of Bryggen were gradually taken over by the Hanseatic merchants. The warehouses were filled with goods, particularly stockfish from northern Norway, and cereal from Europe. Nowadays Bergen is the second biggest town in Norway and an important centre for maritime businesses and activities such as aquaculture and marine research. Tourism is also very important, Bergen is the gateway city to the world-famous fjords of Norway and for that reason it has become Norway's largest – and one of Europe's largest – cruise ship ports of call.
Another great riding day taking us from quiet little Fjaerland to bustling Bergen. Over the legendary Aurland road, where snow and ice still lies during summer (a bit cold for our Brazilian friends), to Stalheim and it's very steep road, and the Storefossen estuary road is where our route took us today.
Some threathening clouds in the morning did not affect our mood and we could enjoy another fantastic riding day! A little rain came down only in the afternoon, after the last coffee break, so it did not really matter After leaving our hotel in Geiranger, we headed to the Dalsnibba mountain, one of the highest lookout points over the fjords, and after that we rode on the famous (and unpaved!) Strynefjellet, part of the National Tourist Routes. A very good picnic prepared by Laurens and we were ready for the second half of the day when we also rode by the Lovatnet lake with its incredible colours!
What a great first day! Perfect weather and wonderful sights. Our brazilian friends could not get enough of these Fjordsand we managed to combine 2 routes worth of highlights in one day!
Another great tour through Norway is about to begin, bikes are ready and our friends from Brazil have arrived and are eager to explore this beautiful country, stay tuned!