Christmas in Bergen: Not So White
We were drawn to the idea of spending Christmas in Bergen because a quick google search led us to believe that there would be lots of Christmas festivities happening and plenty of snow to play around in. Not entirely true, it seems.
For the few days that we were in Bergen before Christmas, it rained and rained and rained. There wasn’t even any sign of snow on the ground, presumably because the rain had washed it away. Luckily, we spent the time doing day trips around south west Norway, finding ourselves in several snowy places – admiring the ridiculously stunning landscape.
In the evenings, we would return to Bergen and attempt to partake in Christmassy activities.
We managed to find a ginger bread village – where residents of Bergen had donated their best gingerbread creations and it was all carefully put together to form a village. There was a bunch of castles, schools and hotels as well as a Sydney opera house, a Big Ben and even two huge Ferris wheels. Super impressive. Extra bonus: we arrived only 15 minutes before closing, so they let us in for free! Winner!
However, the rest of our Christmassy activities just didn’t happen. We walked by the Christmas market but couldn’t seem to figure out its opening hours, and all the shops, restaurants and bars seemed to be forever closed. The town was dead! All our snowy activities (sledding, building snowmen…) were of course redundant given the rain.
However, on Christmas morning we were pleasantly surprised to find that it wasn’t raining! The skies were grey, so we figured we’d better step on it before the rain inevitably hit.
After a quick Skype with family back home and an exchanging of gifts (I bet you can guess from the picture what I got Ross…) we headed up to a viewpoint just outside of town. We got not only a view of the town and surrounding mountains, but also a nearby lake that we perhaps wouldn’t have otherwise known existed. Following a path through the forest, we found more glorious views before (of course) it eventually started raining.
We legged it back down a rather questionable path, spotting some waterfalls on the way, heading home to get warm and dry.
Chef Ross cooked up a Christmas feast and we lounged about on the couch while we slipped gently into a food coma.
Despite the lack of snow, it was a lovely relaxing Christmas. And to top it all off – that evening we started our cruise all the way up the coast of Norway! More on that soon.