We practically crawled into Geiranger and then came to a complete stop. Geiranger is the fjord town based at the foot of this UNESCO Heritage site. The fjord is spectacular. I feel I have used that word alot lately but Norway is incredibly spectacular.
We came to a stop for 2 reasons:
1) I spied a laundry which is the first sighting since The Netherlands and
2) the sun was blazing and there was a waterfront picnic table with our name on it 5 metres from the laundry.
Easiest laundry I’ve ever done. Just an extra note here, even though laundromats have been rare, the other services like water and dump stations are practically on every corner which has made travelling in a motorhome through Norway a breeze.
We honestly sat for the whole day just watching the boats and the cruise ship passengers being ferried around the fjord until the driver said “we must get somewhere today”. So we left.
The drive out of Geiranger is good practice for the Trollstigen as the road loops sharply up the hillside to the viewpoint at the top. Im still amazed at how Norwegian farmers can farm such hilly countryside and that they utilise every inch of the available grazing. Same goes for the orchardists that grow their crops of apples, pears and plums on the banks of the steepest mountainside.
Its a no brainer to assume that the view from the top over the Geiranger Fjord is … spectacular.
The road from the top to the beginning of The Trollstigen is through the mountains, our favorite thing, so the camera got a thrashing out the motorhome window and the driver very nicely stopped as many times as was asked so I could take as many shots as possible. Yeah right.
Actually I can’t complain as he is standing here cooking me breakfast while I write. He’s in his dressing gown otherwise I’d take a snap for proof for you all but he wouldn’t appreciate it.
I must mention that I have now been chauffeured over 10,000kms around Europe at an average speed of 42km/hour. Yes it has been an amazingly scenic drive.
Our plan was to stay in the mountains for the night so we found a perfect spot by a river as clear as glass but then the sun went behind a mountain and we decided to move on and get the Trollstigen over and done with.
For those of you who no nothing of the Trollstigen, it looks like this.
Its an amazing feat of engineering that spans a mountainside complete with 2 waterfalls that run through it.
You know you are coming to the Trollstigen even before you arrive because there in the middle of nowhere is an impressive architectural structure that is a toilet. Then there’s a cafe and a water feature all made to integrate themselves into nature yet stand out for their architectural features. That’s Norway for you.
The road itself is not the scariest road we have done in here but definitely the most impressive and it was a complete pleasure to drive.
The other pleasure was that the sun was still shining on the other side of the mountain so we got our deck chairs out and had dinner and a beer to celebrate driving the Trollstigen.
We have had many contemplations over the last few days about whether or not to head to The Arctic Circle. Our hearts say “Yes”but our minds say “No”. The no is because we never planned on Norway, our plan was Europe and we kind of need to stick to the plan because we only have 6 months.
So the final drive north will be The Atlantic Road tomorrow towards the fishing villages around Bud and Kristiansund. It makes me feel more than a little sad.