Norway – The Home Of Black Metal

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After a really nice flight with Norwegian on their new Boeing 787 Dreamliner I landed in Oslo, Norway on Sunday 11th May and the difference hit me in the face with a POW. First up I was still wearing shorts, and it was freezing cold when I landed. Secondly, going from one of the cheapest places in the world e.g. £0.70 for a beer, to one of the most expensive places in the world e.g. £10.00 for a beer, made me cry.

My seat had a really cool Android tablet which offered a wide variety of movies and more importantly, let me press buttons to order booze. The windows also had a magic electronic coating, rather than a blind, and at the push of a button the would dim to a dark blue colour blocking out all the light!

Bergen

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The railway from Oslo to Bergen is one of the most beautiful rail journeys in the world, and Bergen is the home of Black Metal, so I simply had to pay the place a visit. The trip to Bergen was pretty amusing. There was an avalanche and the line was blocked, so we had a replacement boat service take us some of the way followed by a replacement bus service and then another train for the last mile. It was quite the adventure.

Unfortunately I arrived during a National Holiday so there wasn’t much to do. I was hoping to catch a true kvlt black metal band in a cellar somewhere, but mostly I just walked about and drank beer.

Fantoft Stave Church

Fantoft Stave Church in Bergen was originally built around the year 1150 and looked totally badass. Then it was burned down in 1992 by Varg Vikernes of the one-man band Burzum as retaliation against Christianity for building a church on sacred, pagan grounds. It was then rebuilt in 1997 and now Black Metal fans all across the world come to visit. Unfortunately I visited 2 days out of season, so it was closed.. my timing on this trip was rubbish! It still looked awesome from the outside though.

National Day Of Liberation

The 8th May is Norway’s National Day of Liberation where everyone dresses up in their best suits, has a champagne breakfast, watches some parades, then get drunk. This meant I had to do some clothes shopping as all I had was shorts and muscle tops.

Food

I was hoping to finally do some cooking, but my mate’s kitchen was still being built so we ate out for every meal, with style. I have to say a huge thank you to Andreas and all the other wonderful people I met for showing me around and getting me drunk a lot 🙂