Continuing my trip through Scandinavia, my next stop was Stockholm, the capital of Sweden. Best known for things like meatballs, Ikea, Ikea and their meatballs (yes, I’m talking to all you folks who go to Rockdale just to eat their meatballs!) I actually planned to visit Stockholm back in December to meet up with two friends from Australia who registered for the annual Stockholm Marathon at the end of May. Whilst I was initially considering registering for the marathon as well, I pulled out as I didn’t have to will to train for it! Continue reading Stockholm Syndrome
Search the net for the “Top European travel destinations”, “Best places to visit in Europe” or even “Top European capital cities” and Oslo will not feature on any of those lists… So why the heck did I choose to spend another 3 days in one of the most expensive
countries cities in the world? How about because I’ve never been here before? Anyway, I wasn’t quite sure myself, but decided to go to see what all the non-fuss was about. Besides, you can take a really cool railway from Bergen to Oslo – supposedly one of the most scenic in the world!
The gateway to the fjords and Norway’s second largest city, Bergen is a popular arrival destination for tourists visiting Norway and it was the second stop on my journey through the country.
As the flight from Stavanger to Bergen never went above 10,000 ft, you could get an awesome view of the fjords, the rugged coastline and the 7 mountains surrounding Begen if the weather is clear. Big tip- sit on the right hand side of the plane! Continue reading Bergen and the Hardangerfjord
Billed as one of the most visited attraction in Norway, Preikestolen or the Pulpit Rock is a 620m high rock cliff above the Lysefjord, which as the name suggests, looks like a pulpit. (Quoting The Castle: “Dad, what’s a pulpit?” “Where the minister gives his sermon from. How much?” “Eight hundred…” “Tell’em he’s dreamin…“). What makes the Pulpit Rock such a highly visited attraction is that it gives people the opportunity to literally live life on the edge as there are no safety rails or barriers preventing anyone from falling off the cliff face. In fact, many people tempt fate by nervously creeping towards the edge, some on their stomachs to peer over and straight down into the Lysefjord… Continue reading Preikestolen and the Stavanger Region
In Part 1 of my trek to Everest Base Camp, I had a section on the smells and sounds of Kathmandu. Enter the Himalayas and these sounds are gone, replaced with the roaring sound of the Dudh Kosi or Milk River, yak bells and literally the sound of air being beaten into submission by the many helicopters which fly overhead…
On the second day of my trek, a massive avalanche occurred on the Khumbu Icefall, resulting in the death of 16 Sherpa’s. The ensuing search and rescue mission meant that every 10-20 minutes, a helicopter would fly past, either to or from Base Camp. Now I’m not sure how regular the air traffic is in normal operating conditions, but the high flight activity did allow for some cool shots of the helicopters flying through the mountains. Continue reading Himalayan Helo’s
Reaching Base Camp
Day 8: By this time, most of us in the group had no idea what was the day of the week let alone the date, though it was not like we had any real need to know up in the mountains. Either way, my hope of getting a good night’s sleep were quickly killed alongside a few brain cells as Yoon and I nearly suffocated overnight, having forgotten to open our room’s window. At 4910m, only 56% of the air at sea level is available with every breath so ensuring that you have a fresh supply of air in the room overnight is a must! (A pretty cool website on the effects of altitude can be found here.) Only after managing to open our window at 4:00am was I able to get an hour and a half of continuous sleep before having to wake up for breakfast. Continue reading Everest Base Camp Part 3: Arrival and descent
The trek begins…
Flying out from Kathmandu on one of the first flights of the day meant delaying breakfast until the group reached Lukla. Therefore after a short walk carrying our main packs up the hill, we stopped at the Khumbu Resort for a quick breakfast and the morning’s brief, including a summary of the trek and an introduction to our assistant guides and porters. Continue reading Everest Base Camp Part 2: The trek begins