Today was our last day in Norway, and there were a few sights we wanted to explore before flying out to Amsterdam in the evening. We crammed all our stuff back into our suitcases and stored our luggage at the hotel. First stop was Vigeland Park, where the life works of sculptor Gustav Vigeland are displayed. I’m not much good at interpreting art at the best of times, and these works were well beyond me. Basically it’s whole lot of naked people piled up in various formations. It’s certainly different and the snow gave it a very different feel than last time I visited in the summer. The whole park was beautiful covered in snow though, and it was lovely to take a walk in the chilly air.
We caught the tram back to the city and headed to the waterfront to check out the opera house. The Oslo opera house is a very cool building as you can walk all over the roof. It was covered in snow and pretty slippery in some parts. I’m sure in most countries this attraction would be closed for health and safety reasons, but the Norwegians don’t let icy conditions stop anything they do. There was a rare warning sign, but we were free to roam all over the roof. The area around the opera house was very modern, a complete contrast to the more traditional area we were staying in.
After a good feed of pizza to warm up, we checked out a few shops and then walked back past the fortress by day (well barely daylight, it was a very bleak day so felt like it was getting dark all day). We also checked out the Nobel Peace Centre and the Oslo City Hall where the Peace Prize is presented each year.
Our flight to Amsterdam was early evening, but we headed to the airport a bit early and grabbed some dinner. We were slightly late leaving as there was a bit of chaos with the hand luggage. With a 10kg limit on hand luggage and a charge for checked luggage, the overhead lockers were full with about half the passengers on the plane. The solution was for cabin crew to check in hand luggage as people boarded the plane. It was quite entertaining to watch and fortunately we had boarded quite early and found a home for our hand luggage. We were further delayed due to de-icing. As each plane approached the runway, it was surrounded by three de-icing trucks – one for each wing and one for the tail. These trucks sprayed water on the plane to remove the ice before take-off.
We made up a bit of time and landed just after 9pm in Amsterdam. Passport control was non-existent this time, unlike when we landed in Norway and been pulled aside to be questioned by police at the end of the air bridge. A quick train ride followed by an even quicker taxi ride had us at the Hotel Clemens. The hotel is upstairs above shops, and the stairs are seriously steep. Fortunately we received a very warm welcome and our bags were carried up for us. After a complimentary drink and a play with the two resident cats (Linda and Michael) we crashed into another new bed.