Saturday, July 19, 2014

Meet-Me-Halfway Honeymoon: Part 4 - Bergen, Norway

Before we embarked on this trip, I was quite stressed and worried about the first half of our trip where we had to rely on public transportation to move around and I 'brilliantly' planned our budget itinerary which involved overnight traveling for every alternate nights. After making it through the first 5 days of our physically exhausting journey and completing the Pulpit Rock hike, I could finally breathe a sigh of relief coz we were almost done with our public transportation adventure with only one last leg to go before getting our rented car for the 2nd half of the trip. =)

May 18 (Sun): 18 hours in Bergen 

Our daily routine...packing, unpacking, repacking. =P Checked out at 12pm, well-rested and ready to go!

The public bus to the airport doesn't operate on Sundays so the only option we had was to take the Flybussen to Stavanger airport. The 30min journey costs NOK110/pax (RM60) expensive!

I found out later on that we could have taken a bus from Stavanger to Bergen at a cheaper price. Even though the flight was only slightly more expensive than the bus (RM197), the costs of getting to and fro the airports made our option so much more expensive. Oh well, at least we got to fly on Norwegian!! It's the 3rd largest low-cost carrier in Europe but there were only about 10 passengers on our flight. =P

These aerial views from the flight explain why it's difficult and expensive to travel around Norway. There's no way building a highway across all these archipelagos. =P  

The flight was so short (only 30min) that I didn't even have time to connect to the wifi on the plane. First time seeing doggy on plane. Cute doggy+cute combo! =)

Another expensive Flybussen bus ride from Bergen airport to the city. This 20min journey costs another NOK90/pax (RM50). =.=

Our 12-bed budget dormitory at Bergen YMCA. This was the only shared dorm that we stayed during this trip and it's still not cheap. Bergen is a touristy city so everything was expensive. This was the best option for us considering its strategic location right by the fish market and we were only gonna be sleeping there for a night. In fact, the hostel was really clean and our roommates were very considerate (apart from an uncle who snores). 

Best thing about traveling at this time of the year...longer days for sightseeing. =) It was already 7pm by the time we finished dinner, but our day in Bergen was just about to start. =P First stop...the harbour was right across our hostel with a good view of the famous wooden buildings of Bryggen...a UNESCO World Heritage Site.

Panoramic view of Bergen harbour.

The famous fish market (Fisketorget) in Bergen that is totally overrated. =P According to Wikitravel..."Prices here are very high, and a lunch can easily cost you 80 euros per person."

One of the most popular tourist attraction in Bergen is Fløibanen, a funicular which goes up Mt Fløyen...kinda like the Penang Hill and Victoria Peak tram. Since it was such a beautiful day and we still had plenty of time before sunset, we decided to tone our thigh and butt muscles by hiking up the mountain. =P From the city center, the beginning of the hike brought us through some quiet neighborhoods and nice lookouts. 

The majority of the hike brought us through well-marked zig zag trails. The hike wasn't very tough but it involved a constant uphill climb for about an hour (including some photo stops). This trail reminds me of our hiking competition. 

When in Norway, hike as the Norwegians hike. =) We bumped into so many fit and healthy people along the hike, some of them were even running up the hill...totally impressed!! All of them were appropriately dressed in 2XU compression pants while I was wearing jeans and hoodie (that I had to take off coz I was sweating like a piggy) holding a map and if it wasn't obvious enough that we are!! 

Finally made it to the viewpoint after an hour...surprisingly there weren't many people around.

Fantastic view of Bergen!!

We had nothing else better to do than taking plenty of selfies, wefies, and youfies. =P And the best camera award goes to Gopro! Well I'm not a professional but at least we could see the 'eggyolk'. =)

Apart from taking plenty of photos, we spent the rest of the 2 hours people watching while waiting for the sun to set at 10.30pm. The bottom right pic is a perfect depiction of the difference between Asians (geared up with 2 cameras trying to capture the 'best' sunset pic) and Europeans (just sit back, relax and enjoy the sunset)! 

Romantic sunset. =)

Lucky us to see this beautiful sunset. =) Yes I admit, I'm an!!

Thanks to a Floibanen staff for taking and sharing this photo of us on their fb page. =) Translation of the caption..."The view we are never tired of sharing!"

By the time we hiked down, it was already 11pm and the streets were all deserted. Great way to end our super short sightseeing in Bergen thanks to the beautiful weather. 

Next, our road trip around Norway begins!! Stay tuned!!

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