Sunday, September 21, 2014

Meet-Me-Halfway Honeymoon: Part 7 - Driving in Norway

Norway's National Tourist Routes are perfect depictions of the quote "It's not the destination, but the journey that matters most". Of course, there's also the train ride between Oslo and Bergen with the Bergen Railway that's known as the most exciting and beautiful train ride in the world. But since we were driving, we decided to make full use of our rented car and planned our routes to cover 3 of these tourist routes - Aurlandsfjellet, Sognefjellet, and part of Geiranger-Trollstigen. A lot of these routes are only opened in the summer (they're covered in snow for most of the year) and we were really lucky that these routes were opened for traffic just one week before we arrived. =)

"There are still roads that are not merely designed to get you to your destination as quickly as possible. National Tourist Routes in Norway are beautiful drives with that little bit extra. The routes are carefully selected by the Norwegian Public Roads Administration, and each of the 18 routes has its own history and character. Our job is to make sure the routes are adapted to travellers' needs. We do so by building spectacular viewpoints with service buildings, car parks, furniture, paths and art."

May 21 (Wed): Sognefjellet & Geiranger National Tourist Routes

After a chillaxing morning, we bid goodbye to Jostedal and continued our drive up north to our next destination - Geiranger. After an eventful glacier hike the day before, the only plan we had for the day was to drive for a couple of hours. According to google maps, our 237km journey (Route 55 -> 15 -> 63) should take approximately 3.5 hours but we ended up spending 2 more hours on photo stops. =P

5.5 hours on the road sounds boring but it definitely wasn't boring at all, even though the speed limit of 60 kms/hr on an empty highway was pretty annoying. =P The first part of the drive brought us through some fjords, valleys and waterfalls, the 'same old' scenery that we've been seeing for the past few days. =)

After driving for an hour, the landscape changed dramatically from green to white as we drove through Northern Europe's highest mountain pass...WOWW!! I was so excited when I saw these mountain plateaus covered in snow, pardon me for my sam-pat-ness!!! Gopro, camera, ipad, phone...everything was on my lap coz I had to capture all these beauty with each of the!! 

Can you imagine these roads were still covered in snow just one week before we arrived?? It's really impressive how they cleared the snow off the roads with banks of snow up to ten meters in height!!

The 'snow wall' was so cool we had to pull over the car randomly on the road for photos. The road was quite narrow but fortunately we were there before the high season so there were hardly any cars on the road!!

Oh yeah!!!

I'd be so dead if that snow wall suddenly collapse. =P

First time on a highway that's absolutely silent and tranquil. No people, no car.

Just the two of us, the mountains, and the snow. Felt like we were in our own world!

The gloomy weather made the surrounding more mysterious...imagine being stranded!!

Entering Geiranger-Trollstigen route...the blue layer of water above the ice looks cool!

I took so many photos along the way coz it was so so so B-E-A-U-T-I-F-U-L!!!

I was holding my Gopro stick outside of the window for almost half of the journey. =P Finally edited my first Gopro video, here's a glimpse of our 4-hour journey in 3 minutes. =) Thanks hubby for bringing us to our destination safely through these windy roads. <3

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