Norway
Vefsn

Here you’ll find travel reports about Vefsn. Discover travel destinations in Norway of travelers writing a travel blog on FindPenguins.

32 travelers at this place:

  • Day385

    Ømmervatnet lake layby

    July 16, 2017 in Norway ⋅ 🌧 13 °C

    Our Arctic adventure had come to an end. After entering the Arctic Circle in Sweden, today we passed back over the line in Norway. This time the crossing was marked by 'The Arctic Circle Centre', a commercialised tourist trap that sold a range of 'Arctic' and 66°33' souvenirs and clothing. We ventured in but were soon put off by the taxidermied polar bear, seal pup, arctic fox and hare, eagle and moose interspersed with the pricey products they were trying to flog. We didn't like the mix of commercialisation and the display of these animals so we went outside to the biting cold wind and stinging rain. There was a field of cairns and a bare wood structure supporting a black, metal rod globe, similar to that at Nordkapp. The moors around still had snow patches and it wasn't a day to hang about outside so after a quick pee for Poppy we set off with the hot air blower on high.

    After an uneventful but scenic day's drive we found a pull off close to the road to spend the night. On the other side of the road was a lake but it was raining pretty much all evening so we didn't venture over to explore.
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  • Day386

    Lakeside wildcamp south of Kvalfors

    July 17, 2017 in Norway ⋅ ⛅ 11 °C

    We didn't drive far today because we were looking for a good spot to spend a couple of nights and before long we spotted a small hard mud parking area at the end of a lake. We were almost on top of it when we saw it and had to double back, but we are so glad we did! The long thin lake stretched away from us between two high hillsides, the left covered with mixed woodland, the right barren save for a few small plants clinging on here and there.

    The rain that seems to have been with us almost every day since we entered Norway, was once again intermittent but we wrapped up and in a dry spell, launched the canoe and paddled it up to the head of the lake where we discovered a large waterfall! (Luckily it was feeding in, not flowing out of the lake!)
    It was worth getting rained on for this relaxing journey that quickly took us away from the road and into nature.

    The following day felt indulgent as we caught up with a few things, knitted, played guitar and watched the rain drops falling into the lake and glittering as they hit its surface. A pair of sandpipers occasionally flitted between the rocks on the shore and after a while we were enticed out for another canoe, this time getting out at the other end to scramble over slippy rocks to the powerful waterfall. All in all, it was a wonderfully relaxing spot to stay.
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  • Day8

    Mosjoen

    July 9 in Norway ⋅ ⛅ 18 °C

    Nach ausgiebigem Frühstück in der Sonne zieht es uns weiter südlich, unterwegs halten wir auf Anraten unseres Dumont Hefts in Mosjøen und erkunden die niedliche Altstadt. Von außen sieht die Stadt wenig einladend aus, aber der Stadtkern am Ende eines Fjords ist wirklich sehenswert. Hier stehen sehr gepflegte alte Holzhäuser, blumenreiche Gärten und kleine Gassen laden zum Herumstromern und stehenbleiben ein. Und die maulenden Jungs sind dank Softeis auch erstmal still...mit Erdbeerzucker UND Kakao oben drauf.Read more

  • Day9

    Tussi on Tour - Tag 9

    June 23 in Norway ⋅ 🌧 12 °C

    oder: Herrin der Ringe. Das Auenland liegt hinter uns und der Weg nach Mordor ist lang und kalt und nass...

    😱 bei 8 Grad und Pisswetter auf der E6 unterwegs Richtung Lofoten...
    untergekommen in Mosjoen. Minihütte. die is mit unserer Ausrüstung schon voll... aber das Gepäck wird immer leichter, ich hab ja alles an 😉😉😉

    EdT: jetzt weiß ich wie es Frodo erging 😩
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  • Day417

    Goodbye Norway ☉

    August 17, 2017 in Norway ⋅ ⛅ 16 °C

    (Apologies for the late publication!)

    Norway is a country of extremes. While it won our hearts in enough ways to become our favourite country on this tour, it wasn't an easy place to stay at times.

    After spending 2 months touring from North to South, here is the good, the bad and the beautiful of Norway (sorry, this country doesn't do ugly!):

    The Good

    1. Stopovers and Services: Many Norwegians holiday in motorhomes and the country has a well developed infrastructure of free van service points. Wild camping is an accepted part of the Norwegian culture and despite not staying in a single campsite, we often found ourselves alongside people who had pitched tents. Up north, many rest areas have compost loos and you can top up your tank from the abundant streams and waterfalls whose water is clear, cool and clean enough to drink.

    2. Isolation: Norway ranks 213th in the world for population density and is the least populated country we've visited so far by this measure. We LOVED the wide open spaces, the quiet, the lack of bustle and the freedom to access and park in many places that would have been difficult had there been more people.

    3. The Cleanliness: It was such a refreshing change not to be confronted by litter in laybys, scum on lake surfaces or rubbish and filth on city streets. The low numbers of people make a difference, but the Norwegians take pride in their beautiful country. Bins and recycling are frequently provided and the high standard of living gives people the time and means to care for their area's appearance.

    4. The Water: We both naturally gravitate towards bodies of water and Norway had them in abundance. We visited in July/August and the melt water from the snow created more waterfalls than we'd seen in the whole of the rest of our lives. There was frequently access to the shore of a fjord, lake or river and when the weather and temperatures allowed we canoed, paddled and swam. Will spent many happy hours fishing in fjords and caught a good number of fish. We also spent a great deal of time mesmerised as we watched the light and conditions change over the water. Oh, and the glaciers, we began by making a beeline towards them but ended up discovering that we'd parked facing one by chance. These incredible blocks of blue ice are a 'must-see'.

    5. The Wildlife: Like its human population, wildlife isn't to be found in high concentrations in Norway but the great swathes of shoreline, stretches of countryside and hundreds of mountains provide some wonderful opportunities to watch incredible animals in their natural environments. The 'stand out' animals we saw in our 2 months were Harbour Porpoises, Sea Otters, Eagles and Reindeer. We failed to see one of the elusive wild Elk, so are pinning our hopes on catching sight of one when we visit Finland in a few years time!

    6. The Light: We lost track of time around midsummer when darkness leaves the Arctic Circle for months on end. Spending 24 days in constant daylight as we did, is a slightly unnerving experience and takes some adjudsting to. It makes you really think about the things you take for granted, such as sunsets and stars and is one of those things where only being there and experiencing it can give you a proper sense of what it is like.

    7. The Natural Beauty: Norway has overtaken Scotland as the most beautiful country we've ever visited. The sheer immense scale of the valleys is breathtaking and you can travel for days, if not weeks without seeing any settlements larger than small handfuls of picture perfect wooden board homes, painted in rich reds, blues and yellows. Archipelagos and snow capped mountains reflected in the still surface of the sea are sights we'll never forget. It just goes on and on and on and some of the scenery seems impossibly beautiful, so much so that we both found herself overwhelmed on several occasions.

    The Bad

    1. The Budget: By far the worst thing about Norway is the cost of everything! It is a rich country and even the lowest paid jobs are remunerated with the equivalent of £15 per hour so for us Brits, with the Pound performing so poorly, the cost of shopping, even at the cheapest supermarket seemed exorbitant. Our normal haunts of Lidl and Aldi do not exist here and we got much of our food from Rema 1000, the Norwegian budget supermarket where you could find a tin of beans for about £4. We had stocked up on dry and tinned food before we came and got by using these supplies, tightening our belts and eating the fish Will managed to catch. One thing we couldn't avoid was the tolls for roads and the cost of ferry crossings (you need to take at least one ferry to travel from North to South Norway and it was necessary for us to take two because of a road closure). The crossings that ranged from £25 - 40 for our 7 metre long van are the only sensible way to get from A to B. They are efficient, fast and fun but do drain the funds.

    2. Prohibitions in some areas: In the vast majority places, if you could park, you could sleep, but a few regions, especially those such as the Lofoten Islands that get flooded with summer campers, had begun to erect signs asking you to move on after a few hours in a restplace. This made it more difficult to find overnight spots, but it was still a lot easier than in many countries and we were still able to stay in laybys and on rough ground where we could find it.

    3. Van Services up North: We entered Norway from the top of Sweden and drove North to Nordkapp. In these isolated areas there was a lack of drinking water taps to fill up from. It took us a little while to get our heads around being able to collect water at streams and waterfalls, but in a way it was quite freeing once we did.

    4. Vast Distances: The long stretches between settlements in the North provided some wonderful freedoms and opportunities for wild camping but they also required an additional level of planning. When the only LPG station within 200km has run out of gas because the tanker that takes 1 month from dispatch to delivery is running late, you need to have kept that little bit in reserve for such an eventuality. The distances also affect the availability supermarkets, their range and price of fresh fruit and veg, the frequency of petrol stations and quality of phone and data signal. We spent a lot of days in the first month just driving and whilst we saw the most incredible views, we didn't spend as much time as we like to, getting out and about on foot or in the canoe and were left with a feeling that we hadn't done much in depth because there had just been so much to take in. Yes, we could have slowed the pace, but if you want to experience Northern Norway (we really can't recommend it enough), you are going to spend a lot of time on the roads, many of which weave their way around mountains and fjords on the deeply indented coastline. This being said, the roads were excellent quality and Norwegian drivers courteous.

    5. Culture: All the Norwegians we met spoke excellent English. They were friendly, open and helpful, whilst being quiet and a little reserved. In other countries we have eaten out relatively frequently and spent a lot more time in cities and towns where we brushed shoulders with many of the locals. Due to the cost, we didn't eat or drink out more than once in 2 months, we mostly stayed in the countryside and there are only a handfull of cities to visit so we have come away not having spent as much time alongside the the people of Norway and therefore got to know them less than has been the case in other countries. This 'bad' point has a flipside because given the time again, we wouldn't have wanted to spend any less time out by ourselves, taking a refreshing break from civilisation.

    6. Alcohol: Norway is the antipathy of a booze cruise. Alcohol sales are strictly controlled and anything above 4.75% may only be sold in Vinmonopolet (the state run shops). We went in one but the cheapest bottle of wine was £20 so we came out again.
    Supermarkets sell beer but in a very understated way. The one time we bought alcohol was at Pingvinen pub in Bergen where the cheapest ale was £7 for 0.4l. We brought drinks with us in the van but the amount you are allowed to import is limited to the equivalent of 1 bottle of spirits, 4 bottles of wine and 6 cans of beer per person, less if you bring tobacco with you. It wasn't a big issue for us but if you are looking for a boozy holiday, Norway is not the best choice.

    7. Rain, rain go away: Finally, barely a day went by when there wasn't a a drop of rain at some point and many days were spent with wall to wall rain. It stopped us getting out and doing things and put a slight 'dampener' on the scenery at times. The temperatures, especially in the Arctic, meant we needed to wrap up warm, with hats and scarves, before venturing out and even Will thought twice about walking over snow to go for a swim! Not every day is wet or cold and when the sun does come out, you can get some really warm days. In the end it is the water and temperature that has forged the incredible landscape and that gives you the rainbows, waterfalls and swathes of rich forest up here. You just need to come prepared!

    The Beautiful

    All in all, Norway is the most incredible country in terms of scenery, natural phenomena such as glaciers, and wildlife. The Arctic Circle transported us away from the familiar in terms of the light and the season (hailstorms and snow on the ground in August). We fell in love with the reindeer and were blown away when watching Harbour Porpoises and Sea Otters in the wild. We spent so many hours alone in the quiet of nature with jaw dropping views outside our windows. Our time in Norway has been refreshing and relaxing and we feel we've had a holiday from the hustle and bustle that is never far from many places in central and southern Europe. It has a few disadvantages but these pale against the raw beauty and peacefulness of the place. If you ever get the chance, visiting Norway is a must, especially if you are in a campervan!
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You might also know this place by the following names:

Vefsn, VEF

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