Tuesday, 30 September 2008

A Norweigan Adventure

Earlier this month, Traveller and her hubbie had the delightful opportunity to visit the Norweigan capital - Oslo- for a whirlwind weekend getaway. Now many of you may not have even considered Oslo as a city worth a visit during a European holiday but - T assures you - it is fabulous!

Now firstly, T must explain the nature of a 'whirlwind' weekend getaway. T and hub awoke at the unseemly hour of 3am, to make it into to Oslo by around 10am on a Saturday morning. They then flew home late the following evening! This may all seem a bit much but it was well worth it!

The first thing that T and hubbie noticed about Oslo was that it was a beautiful city. The most beautiful part about it was that it is set at the very end of the Norweigan Fjords - and is thus, close to the mountains and the water.

Most interesting food - Reindeer Cakes

The first thing that Hubbie likes to do when visiting a new country is to find the most strange and interesting part of local cuisine and dig in. Oslo was no different. Upon arriving in the capital, we located a restaurant that served traditional Norweigan food, and Hubbie helped himself to Reindeer Cakes (kind of like meatballs). T wasn't quite so brave, and instead partook in an omelette!

Most appreciated part of the city infrastructure- transport!

Bike, ferry, bus, tram or train? These five modes of transport which are clean, fast and on-time ensure that you can get anywhere in Oslo very easily! T and hubbie loved the simple transport system in Oslo, it made seeing all the hot-spots super easy. (Puts the Gold Coast to shame!)

Eye-opening Moment

Oslo is host to Holmenkollen Ski Jump - a ski jump which was used for the Winter Olympics in 1952. The ski jump is found a few tram stops out of the city and, once having taking a trip in an elevator, you see just how steep a jump it is. The ski jump is host to some of the best views of Oslo and the Fjords that you can come across.

Best European Park (so far!) - Frognerparken

Frognerparken is host to the Vigeland Sculpture Park which features many sculptures by a Norweigan sculpture artist named Gustav Vigeland. The sculptures are wonderfully interesting and the park is beautiful.

First, and thus favourite castle - Akershus Castle and Fortress

It is hard to believe that after 8 months in London, T and hubs have only visited one castle. We are sure that there are more to come! The Akershus Castle and Fortress was built in the 1200s and is home to a beautiful view of the Oslofjord.

There are countless musueums, exhibitions and monuments worth visiting in Oslo - T and hubs had one of their best weekends so far touring this beautiful city and enjoying their first visit to a Scandinavian country.

Next stop: Berlin!

Friday, 12 September 2008

The Road is Long....

Well, T and hubbie have officially done it.
They, along with a couple of mates and a sibling, completed their first 10k run. Oh, and what a run it was! T, along with 30,000 other runners, trudged out to Wembley Stadium for a concert by Moby and Pendulum and then began the Nike Human Race.

Now, for all the beautiful landmarks in London, let's just say that Wembley (besides the stadium) isn't one of them. T began running from the stadium, through the streets of Wembley and then back again and - to be honest - it merely felt like an advertisement for Ikea and Tesco. The streets were dark, the rain poured down (T's shoes filled with water!) and the only thing to look at, besides the streams of runners, were enormous navy buildings filled with swedish furniture, not quite a London park or bridge!

However, just being a part of the race was fun. T scored two Nike T-shirts, some great memories and her best 10k time so far (58 mins). Traveller was also super happy to be completing the race with some great friends and, even better, her hubby who, in the last month, went from running 2ks to 10ks with ease.


Tuesday, 2 September 2008

Paris, Je t'aime!

Traveller and hubbie's Eurostar trip to Paris finally rolled around on the English long-weekend in August. T could not have been more excited - the thought of Parisian food, landmarks and hot-spots was too much! To put the icing on the cake, T and hubbie's French friend, Stephanie was putting them up for the weekend and being their own personal tour guide...c'est bon!

T's Favourite Parisian Moments....

* Travelling by the Eurostar - there really is no other way. A ten minute ride to St. Pancras International at King's Cross Station and then a two hour trip on the train, and you're in the middle of Paris.

* Being driven around the city by our guide - it gave a really clear view of Paris and where all the key sights are...and made us feel very Parisian!

* Having a drink at a terrace bar overlooking the Eiffel Tower and gazing at it all afternoon...

* Touring The Lourve - seeing the Mona Lisa is a must but it definitely isn't the only thing you should see. Many amazing paintings and sculptures are up for viewing.

* Walking around the streets of Montmarte and being reminded of one of our favourite French films - Amelie.

* Having dinner with (and staying with) our gracious hosts - Stephanie's grandparents. They cooked us a feast to be remembered! We began with champagne (of course) and then proceeded to make our way through three courses. We began with Roasted Guinea fowl accompanied by French beans, potatoes and wine. Then we moved on to the famous French cheese - Brie and Gruyere - which was amazing, easily the best cheese T has ever tasted! Then the meal was complete with a lovely fruit salad of all sorts of exotic fruits... yum!

Overall, it was our favourite weekend trip so far - there was so much to see, eat and experience. T and hubs now officially LOVE Paris and can't wait to go back.

A boat cruise looking at all the famous sights, such as Notre Dame....

Stephanie's lovely grandparents!

The beginnings of our french feast......


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