Scandinavian Surprises

The trip to Scandinavia was, in a word, awesome (a word I rarely use, I assure you). In 10 days we visited Copenhagen, Stockholm, Olso, Bergen, and points in between. I previewed the route in a previous post and I’m working my way through the first 2800 photographs for future posts, so stay tuned for details.

Each city has its own well-known attractions (e.g., Little Mermaid, Royal Palaces, The Scream, etc.) but we ran into a few surprises as well.

spiral tower

For example, in Copenhagen there was the changing of the guard we accidentally stumbled upon, not to mention the replica of Michaelangelo’s David tucked into an out-of-the-way canal-side walkway, and the big band concert and fireworks at Tivoli. There was also the cool spiral tower above, which I’ll have more on later. Oh, and then there is the Copenhagen Marathon, which blocked our route while about 10,000 runners passed in front of us.

Kungstradgarden subway station

In Stockholm there was the unfortunate surprise that we had scheduled our whole day Monday around the mistaken belief that the museums and other attractions would be open, only to find out that most are closed on Mondays. [Tip: Check the tour books before you plan your schedule.] But that was offset by the more pleasant surprises, like the really cool artwork unique to each subway station (and the station agent at Kungstradgarden that let us go down to the platform gratis to take photos like the one above).

Air and Water Gauges

In Oslo I was pleasantly surprised to find the Ra, the papyrus reed raft Thor Heyerdahl traveled in, which was tucked into the lower level of the Kon Tiki Museum. Of course, the Kon Tiki balsa wood raft he used on his first epic voyage was there too. Meanwhile, the scientist in me liked the above stone slabs on the street that gave visual gauges of air and water quality; more on that in the future too.

In Bergen, nothing can beat the impromptu “makeover/fashion show” that emptied off the train onto the platform (complete with loud dance music, TV coverage, and a catwalk).

And then there was the free beer on the Lufthansa flight from Oslo to Frankfurt. I may have a new favorite air carrier (hint to United Airlines). 🙂

Tesla car

Given the success of my Tesla book, there was one more surprise that seemed appropriate – the prevalence of Tesla Model S and other electric cars and charging stations in all three countries.

There is tons more to talk about, which I’ll do in follow up posts complete with photos and videos as soon as I can sort through them.

David J. Kent is an avid science traveler and the author of Lincoln: The Man Who Saved America, now available. His previous books include Tesla: The Wizard of Electricity and Edison: The Inventor of the Modern World (both Fall River Press). He has also written two e-books: Nikola Tesla: Renewable Energy Ahead of Its Time and Abraham Lincoln and Nikola Tesla: Connected by Fate.

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3 thoughts on “Scandinavian Surprises

  1. 2,800 photographs! I’m a little envious.

    Interesting about the Tesla charging stations. Checked out a Model S P85D last weekend. (Too bad they wouldn’t let me drive it.) ;] I didn’t realize that there’s a gratis charging station a couple of towns over.

    • It’s closer to 3000. Hope one or two are good ones. 🙂

      There were charging stations all over the place, not specifically Tesla, but I saw more Tesla’s on this trip than I’ve seen to date in the US. Europe definitely has the edge on moving to electric car technology (as well as train routes/technology).

      I’m still waiting for Elon Musk to give me a Tesla Model S (or even better, a roadster). After all, I sent him a signed copy of my Tesla book. 🙂

  2. Pingback: Scandinavia Trip Brief | Ru...

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