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Trip Report Norway: Hiking trip with Backroads; photos

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Hello

I wasn't going to post this yet because I haven't reviewed but a fraction of my photos so far. With yesterday's tragedy I thought I'd post them now anyway. Such a beautiful and peaceful country.

I felt very safe the whole time I was there - country, city. In fact in one hotel where we were to set off from a hike I took my Garmin watch off in the restroom of the hotel (near lobby) in order to reapply sunscreen. I forgot to put the watch back on. It was still there when I got back.

Brief summary: Norway has been on my visit list for some time, primarily to see the Fjords. I knew very little about Norway before this trip and my one-week visit has whetted my appetite for more.

Doing a hiking tour with Backroads is a great way to see the countryside. Hiking is a must-do, here, and it's good to have a company who knows the ropes and who will take care of you. Someone to lug your luggage, know where the good hikes are, and bonus: a group of like-minded people for camaraderie on the hikes. Their hotel picks were fantastic (more on them later) and we lucked out with the weather. Eight nights in Norway and only one day of rain (a little bit on a few other days but at night which didn't affect us).

Itinerary:
Flight into Bergen, one full day/night on my own.
Next morning I met the group in Voss.
Five nights with Backroads. We stayed at the Hotel Stalheim one night; two nights at the Walaker Hotel in Solvorn; one night at the Hotel Mundal in Mundal (also called Fjaerland); one night at the Hotel Viknes in Balestrand. Each hotel was chosen for both comfort and for the history. More on them later.
Last two nights on my own in Oslo at the Grand Hotel Rica. I flew to Oslo from Bergen.

We didn't merely hike on this trip, we also did a good morning of glacier climbing (Nigardsbreen - breen means glacier) and had a number of Fjord boat rides. In all, I saw three new UNESCO World Heritage sites on this trip, too.

I'll fill in more details about the trip later as well as continue to update the photos on flickr. If you click the link below you will get a smattering of photos but by the time I'm done I imagine I'll have three times as many included.

Enjoy the photos - it really is a beautiful country. So sad, so very sad for the people of Norway today.

http://www.flickr.com/photos/skywalkerbeth/sets/72157627141775324/show/

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