3rd August 2006

Back from Lapland and Norway

One-week road-trip to the North of this continent, away from the heat wave of the South. 3500 to 4000 Kms, starting from Savonlinna, ending in Helsinki.

Lapland first, with its huge forests, countless lakes, and colorful swamps. With its comfortable cottages to stop by, when the day ends, to have a nice sauna and relax. With all those silly group of reindeers on the road, when you expect them the least. At this time of the year, the Inari Lake is wonderful and if midnight sun time is officially finished, the sky stay very light by night, and the sun goes to sleep for only short times.

Norway, in three steps. A first step in Kirkenes, North-East. Weather there was chilly (5 to 8°C), windy and rainy, but still, with nice lappish lanscape around, it is a place to go to.

Second step was to reach Vardø, a bit more in the North. To get there, you have to go all around a long fjord, pass Vadsø, and get to the eastermost point of Norway. Vardø is an island that can be via a 3km long tunnel. As we stopped for a coffee, the restaurant owner of ABC (if you get there, pay him a visit !), advised us to go on with the smaller road ending in Hamningberg . “If you stop now, you haven’t seen anything. Go there, you won’t regret it.” And so we went, and so we didn’t regret. It was a very rocky coast, with mountain between 200 and 300 meter high I’d say, black and mysterious. Some sheeps are to be found occupying the road, like a deja-vu of Ireland, especially in this kind of small rocky plains. The funny part with these mountains and plains, is that the rocks are very sharp, toward the sky and down there, toward the Barents Sea, like thousands of knives ready to cut the waves and the clouds. Add to the picture a very dark sky and a lot of wind, and you’ll have an idea of what this “End of the World” looks like. Why do I call it so ? because the road getting to that place finishes there, and the only way to reach BÃ¥tsfjord for example (35Km north-west), is with motoski in the winter, or to take the same road back to Tana Bru (200Km), then head north for another 120Km. And also because trying to go further (North) with a boat, leads to no land.

The third part of our trip started close to TanaBru, and had Gamvik as an objective. The road to get there is far from being boring : it is a typical mountain road, turning all the time, going up and down, being even scary sometimes, as one of the side doesn’t have a safeguard to prevent you from falling from the cliff. You’ll travel between mountains mainly 300m high I think, but up to 600. Their sides are quite steep, and show impressive lanscapes. In Gamvik, we found a small beach, and the sun made an apparition for half an hour, showing wonderful colours around us, from the blue of the sea to the light green of the grass, red and yellow houses, the black rocks, the white birds. If you have a look on the map, it is also an End Of The World place …

This entry was posted on Thursday, August 3rd, 2006 at 16:31 and is filed under Finlande, in English please !, news, voyages. You can follow any responses to this entry through the RSS 2.0 feed. Both comments and pings are currently closed.

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