imberry
Posts: 18
Joined: Fri Nov 30, 2007 8:44 pm

Norway In A Nutshell

Sun Jul 26, 2009 7:19 pm

I have been reading and enjoying other people's trip reports for quite some time - figured it was about time to add one of my own. A conference in London allowed me a week to explore a new European destination thanks to FR's low fares. Flew HSV-IAD-LHR on United Economy Plus and then caught the National Express coach service to STN - which was a madhouse on a busy Saturday morning.

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First experience on FR - other than waiting in a moderately long queue to have my documents checked, it was a much more pleasant experience than anticipated based on what I have heard about FR's customer service. Paying an extra six pounds for priority boarding is worth its weight in gold since you can claim the bulkhead - plus the flight attendants forced regular boarders to sit past row five which meant I had the entire bulkhead row to myself!

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TRF is a small, pleasant airport about ninety minutes drive from central Oslo. The Torp Ekspressen bus coincides with FR flights and was a good value.

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Other than the dubious distinction of being the most expensive city on the planet, Oslo is a pleasant place with a number of interesting museums and a vibrant night life. Took the train from Oslo to Flam and then an Express Boat the rest of the way to Bergen. Fjord country is incredibly beautiful.


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Bergen is a lovely small city with a rich history, a great fish market, and dramatic hillside views. It apparently rains almost every day but the sun did its best to come out between showers and the fact that it was light past midnight made up for the bouts of clouds and rain.

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Decided to fly back to Oslo to save time. DY offers very reasonably priced flights from BGO to OSL so I opted for the low fare carrier over SK, which charges about twice as much for the same route. BGO is a clean, medium-sized airport with domestic connections all over Norway and a few international services. DY, SK, and WF dominate the scene.

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To bad my six year old was not with me - she loves airplanes too and would have been very amused by this WF jungle gym in the domestic gate area at BGO:

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DY flight was about the same as FR - tightly packed leather seats and smartly dressed flight attendants hawking overpriced food and beverages . Safety demonstration was only given in Norwegian which was a first for me - everywhere else I have been it has been given in local language and then in English. My DY bird at OSL:

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In my opinion OSL is one of the most attractive terminals in the world. Well designed, good apron views, and stylish high-quality Scandinavian materials throughout.

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OSL is connected to the city center by the high-speed Flytoget trains - speeding passengers to Oslo Sentrastasjon in less than 30 minutes.

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Killed a day in Oslo and then caught the Torp Ekspressen back to TRF in time to catch a ride on FR back to STN. FR flight was half empty and again I had the bulkhead to myself. Bought a sandwich and beer on FR and, though a bit overpriced, the food was actually pretty good.

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Spent the next three days in London for my conference and then an early Sunday morning tube trip to LHR where I was met with a miserably long queue and security guard who made me throw away my umbrella for reasons unknown.

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UA 777-200 flight to IAD was pleasant enough - though booked on Economy Plus, at my request I was given the exit row in regular Economy instead and had unlimited legroom for the trip back across the pond. My seat mate was offered an upgrade to J class but decided to remain in the exit row because of the great legroom. Had a bumpy ride from IAD to HSV due to omnipresent summer thunderstorms but the pilot did a good job of maneuvering around them best he could. Arrived home tired from a great trip.
 
LH4116
Posts: 1183
Joined: Tue Aug 28, 2007 4:39 am

RE: Norway In A Nutshell

Sun Jul 26, 2009 7:53 pm

Interesting report!

I really enjoyed the pics of Norway, makes me wanna go back there. The high speed trains looked rather cool, did you take any pics of the inside?

About the title, it really reminded me of my last trip to Bergen, enjoy!  Smile Beautiful Norway On Hideous SAS (pics) (by LH4116 Nov 7 2008 in Trip Reports)

Thanks for sharing!

//Jonas
SAS Plus is Business Class made faux!
 
imberry
Posts: 18
Joined: Fri Nov 30, 2007 8:44 pm

RE: Norway In A Nutshell

Wed Jul 29, 2009 2:05 pm

The high speed train was very cool - seemed faster than other high speed TGV and Thalys trains I have taken in Europe before - but unfortunately I did not get any photos of the inside. Glad you enjoyed the report.
 
KaiGywer
Crew
Posts: 11182
Joined: Sun Oct 26, 2003 9:59 am

RE: Norway In A Nutshell

Mon Aug 03, 2009 10:17 pm

Nice report. "Oslo South" is actually my hometown  Smile

Quoting Imberry (Reply 2):
The high speed train was very cool - seemed faster than other high speed TGV and Thalys trains I have taken in Europe before - but unfortunately I did not get any photos of the inside. Glad you enjoyed the report.

The top speed is 210 km/h if I remember right. It's a very comfortable ride though.

For more info: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/NSB_Class_73

Interior of Flytoget (BM71):
http://upload.wikimedia.org/wikipedia/commons/thumb/f/f7/Flytoget_innvendig.jpg/800px-Flytoget_innvendig.jpg

Interior of the BM73 to Bergen:


“Once you have tasted flight, you will forever walk the earth with your eyes turned skyward, for there you have been, an
 
LH4116
Posts: 1183
Joined: Tue Aug 28, 2007 4:39 am

RE: Norway In A Nutshell

Tue Aug 04, 2009 11:47 pm



Quoting KaiGywer (Reply 3):

Thanks for the pics man! Oh and the NSB Class 73 is actually quite similar to the Swedish X2000, only though the NSB train doesn't tilt. Frankly the service provided onboard the X2000 is by far better than NSB, take a look!
Trip Report: Train to Gothenburg, 1st Class (pics) (by LH4116 Jul 10 2009 in Non Aviation)
SAS Plus is Business Class made faux!

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