As we were planning our move to Norway, I was both physically and mentally preparing for the adventure ahead. Part of that mental preparation was for the dark, cold winters and rainy,cool summers with all day light. I love the sun and warm weather of the summer as much as I love bundling up in the cold with fresh snow in the winter, so I was basically prepared to ‘give up’ one true summer of my life, leaving the warm weather and sunshiny days behind for a year. May arrived along with over 10 days of weather above 20 degrees Celsius – a new record for number of warm sunny days in a row in Tromsø for that time of year. In June we had a little rain then more sunshine for the duration of our visit from Grandma and Grandpa. We left town for the end of June through mid July where we were greeted with beautiful weather through Finland, Estonia, and Sweden. Rumor has it that it rained in Tromsø that entire time! We returned to rainy weather and I was worried that the visit from Oma and Opa would be a rainy one…our summer weather luck continued. Oma and Opa arrived and so did the sunshine!
Oma and Opa had just completed a wonderful cruise through the Southern Norwegian fjords and arrived ready to explore the North of Norway for a week. We began with a nice tourist day through town, visiting a well preserved Arctic Exploration ship, walking along the water and taking in the sights of Tromsø.
Next on the agenda was a nice retreat to the seaside village of Malangen Brygger, about an hour drive from Tromsø on a neighborhing fjord. We rented a great little hytta, translated to hut and the name Norwegians give to their seaside or mountain cabins. Almost all Norwegians own a small hytta somewhere within a short drive of their home. They spend summer vacations, weekends and year round holidays at their hyttas and take pride in their simplicity. In the summer, they enjoy berry picking and the sea, in the winter it is cross country skiing. Our hytta looked out over a beautiful fjord that was glittering with sunshine. We took a few little walks, enjoyed some ice cream, had a delicious fresh salmon dinner and of course great company!
We returned to Tromsø and decided to take the cable car to the top of the mountain. I have watched the cable car for months making repeated trips up the mountainside, but this would be our first venture up. It is of course a major tourist attraction, but I was surprised to find a number of locals with backpacks and hiking poles or in their running gear also taking the cable car up to the top. I now know why. It is breathtakingly beautiful to look out over the island of Tromsø and its neighboring fjords from atop the mountain. There is a fantastic network of trails and public hyttas sprinkling the surrounding mountain tops. The kids loved running around in this high altitude, treeless Arctic landscape, and moving rocks to add to the numerous cairns that dotted the trails. Another lovely day.
Thank you Oma and Opa for a wonderful visit. It was so great to have you here and sad to see you go. We created some wonderful memories to last a lifetime and look forward to the next adventure!