Next stop on the Science Traveler tour is Scandinavia with its Mermaids, Vikings, and Erotica Museums. Okay, apparently the last one is now closed so I guess we’ll have to find something else to see in Copenhagen.
And Copenhagen is indeed the first stop. Some of the details remain to be arranged, but the plan is to fly into Copenhagen and out of Oslo, with stops in Stockholm and Bergen and day trips as we can squeeze them in. The trip is still a couple of months off so plenty of time to twiddle with the particulars. One thing for certain, we’ll be traveling within the three countries by train with a Scandinavia pass, good for all trains between the major and minor cities.
Copenhagen (Denmark), of course, is known for its waterfront and the Little Mermaid statue based on Hans Christian Andersen’s classic fairy tale. From what I’ve heard, the Little Mermaid is about as impressive as the Manneken-Pis in Brussels, which is to say, not. Luckily there are other features of Copenhagen like the Stroget pedestrian street, the “alternative lifestyle” area of Christiania, the Amalienborg Palace, Tivoli, and museums.
After a day side trip to Roskilde, home of Viking ships, the plan is to train to Stockholm (Sweden) and the first of two possible aquariums for the trip. Here there are more museums, the Drottningholm Palace, Gamla Stan (the old town), canals, and various other local attractions on the fourteen islands that make up the city. So what do you think – should we book a tour of the ABBA museum or not?
Oslo (Norway) is the next stop, again by taking the train from Stockholm across Sweden to the Norwegian capital. Oslo gives us the usual royal palace and Viking ship museum, but also the fabulous artwork in the Vigeland Sculpture Park and the ancient Akershus Fortress. There is even a Kon Tiki Museum so I can check out the famous raft by Thor Heyerdahl I read about during my marine biology days. For the writer in me I’ll check out the haunts of Norwegian crime author Jo Nesbo.
The highlight of highlights on the trip is likely to be Norway in a Nutshell, which is the cute tour name for a convoluted excursion from Oslo to Bergen and back. Starting out by train, we stop halfway and change to the Flam railway that climbs into the mountains of central Norway before dropping us off at the end of the massive Sognefjord, where a ferry scoots through the narrow waterways. Eventually we board a bus to climb the steep roadway back to catch the train again, then on to Bergen on the western coast. A night in the small town and an aquarium before heading back to Oslo for the flights back home.
More still to be done before the trip, plus a few shorter jaunts before then (and another one soon after), so tons of planning to do in the next few weeks. Oh, and somewhere in there I need to write the Edison book I’ve been contracted to write.
David J. Kent has been a scientist for over thirty years, is an avid science traveler, and an independent Abraham Lincoln historian. He is the author of Tesla: The Wizard of Electricity and the e-book Nikola Tesla: Renewable Energy Ahead of Its Time.