Oslo, Norway

A Overcapitalized Capital

blue trolley
Trolleybus passes in front of the City Hall in Oslo.
Elegant facades of the center of the Norwegian capital.
3 guests
Guests of a religious ceremony in traditional costume at the door of the City Hall.
One of the many statues in Vigeland Park, a natural and artistic retreat of the Norwegian capital.
feather problem
Oslo royal palace guard in front of his lair.
Medieval Oslo
Akeshus Castle, one of the historic bastions of the Norwegian capital, built in 1299 and later used as a royal residence
space time
Detail of the astronomical clock at the City Hall in Oslo.
Free afternoon
At the end of Sunday, customers talk on a sheltered terrace in the Oslense neighborhood of Pipervika.
child in statue
Girl conquers the top of one of the many sculptures in the park of Vigeland.
Opera House
Oslo Opera House is a luxurious and creative building located on the city's waterfront and designed by the architect Tarald Lundevall.
in typical costumes
Amalie Frank, a Norwegian from a village on the west coast of the country, dressed to watch a Confirmation taking place at the City Hall in Oslo.
solitary march
Oslo royal palace guard carries out their protocol round trip.
A Norwegian Nobel Prize
Statue of the writer Bjornstjerne Martinius Bjornson who received, in 1903, the Nobel Prize for Literature.
Table on the Terrace
Inhabitants live on an esplanade in the capital, despite the unwelcoming weather.
Unforeseen drama
A girl afraid of falling, she hugs one of the many expressive statues in the park of Vigeland.
Guests of a religious ceremony in traditional costume at the door of the City Hall.
Jogging in Vigeland
Athlete runs in front of the Vigeland statue complex.
In the name of peace
Facade of the Nobel Peace Center building, located in the historic heart of Oslo.
One of Norway's problems has been deciding how to invest the billions of euros from its record-breaking sovereign wealth fund. But even immoderate resources don't save Oslo from its social inconsistencies.

Traveling from the airport on the ultra-tech FlyToGet train is nothing but praise for us.

Santiago Garrido, a Venezuelan friend who is exploring Europe, summed up well the financial frustration that can be felt immediately in Norway, as in the rest of Scandinavia: “so I fly from southern Europe there for twenty euros and then land and pay double just to get to the city center??

Something is wrong on this continent of yours!”

trolley, city hall, capital, oslo, norway

Trolleybus passes in front of the City Hall in Oslo.

Another aspect that intrigues us more. As we walk through the station on our way to the exit, we have a different feeling than we expected when we arrived in Norway.

The tall, fair-skinned, blond or red-haired passersby seem to us a small minority in the multi-ethnic mosaic we are crossing.

The Unexpected Multi-Ethnicity Upon Arrival in Oslo

Groups of Somalis stand out completely from the Scandinavian imagination for their dark complexion and, above all, for the women's long and exuberant garments. These Africans are not the only inhabitants to differ.

We passed busy clans of Kurdish men, hailing from Bosnia and Kosovo as well as other parts of Eastern Europe. Also by Pakistanis and Vietnamese. Few or none look like tourists.

Its presence is more visible than ever in front of the central station and in the Gronland district. It is due, in part, to the Norwegian tradition of receiving refugees – despite only those already considered so by the United Nations – and also to a recent openness to emigration that the recurrent lack of labor demanded.

Few nations contribute like Norway to foreign aid and refugee programs.

paternity statue in vigeland park capital oslo norway

One of the many statues in Vigeland Park, a natural and artistic retreat of the Norwegian capital.

Oslo immigrants now number over 25% and their rate of reproduction, together with that of the Norwegians themselves, makes the city's population one of the fastest growing in Europe.

The prosperity of this Nordic nation also contributes to the number of newborn children we also meet.

The Savings and Weighing Some Say to Come from Viking Times

The notion persists that Norwegians are obsessed with saving and investing well.

In bygone times in its history, the Viking ascendants norse they have gone through atrocious needs. They often had to resort to systematic raids and looting that terrorized Europe and earned them an unenviable reputation as incorrigible barbarians.

Akeshus castle, former royal residence, capital, oslo, norway

Akeshus Castle, one of the historic bastions of the Norwegian capital, built in 1299 and later used as a royal residence

In addition to medieval plunder, the nation later went through other difficult phases that led to a strong movement of emigration to the Americas and – joke with the subject – generated in Edvard Munch the despair that led him to paint “The Scream".

guard, royal palace, capital, oslo, norway

Oslo royal palace guard in front of his lair.

These days, the European economy is languishing but it was recently reported that the Oslo government was having trouble deciding how to invest the 570 billion euros accumulated in its gigantic sovereign wealth fund, an amount originated mainly with the sale of extracted oil and natural gas in the North, Norwegian and Barents Seas.

As might be expected, the city's inhabitants show no apprehension. Neither with the solution to the investment problem nor with any national or private financial issue.

opera house, architect Tarald Lundevall, capital, oslo, norway

Oslo Opera House is a luxurious and creative building located on the city's waterfront and designed by the architect Tarald Lundevall.

Oslo's Well-Being That Norwegian Prosperity Only Reinforces

It's Saturday morning. The capital gave itself heart and soul to the outdoors and sport.

On the streets, an athletics event is being prepared in which several thousand Scandinavians participate and which blocks traffic in several key streets. A little everywhere skaters pass us at great speed.

And, on trails in vast green areas, even cross-country skiers who, even without snow, continue to keep in shape for the competitions that will return with the winter.

jogging, vigeland park, capital, oslo, norway.

Athlete runs in front of the Vigeland statue complex.

But it's not just physical activity that makes the day. We walked through Slotts Park when we came across two little women and a boy, all in traditional costume. In the distance, we glimpse several other people in similar robes.

The discovery intrigues us. We can't resist starting a conversation and asking questions.

The Added Value of Norwegian Cultural Roots

Amalie, the eldest of the brothers aged 19, offered to explain: “We have all come for Lutheran profession of faith ceremonies. The costumes are typical of the region and village in which we live, called Frank, just like our nickname.

typical costumes, religious ceremony, capital, oslo, norway

Amalie Frank, a Norwegian from a village on the west coast of the country, dressed to watch a Confirmation taking place at the City Hall in Oslo.

It is on the west coast of Norway. The ceremonies will take place in the City Hall. Several of the guests are atheists or agnostics and, therefore, chose not to do them in any church.”

Respect for the beliefs of others and a strong tradition of intervention in the pacification of the World and its celebration is predominant in the country.

center nobel paz, capital, oslo, norway

Facade of the Nobel Peace Center building, located in the historic heart of Oslo.

It has headquarters at the famous Nobel Institute and the Nobel Peace Center which we passed after a strategic stop at the entrance to City Hall.

There, we can contemplate and photograph the dozens of picturesque natives from the Frank area who arrive and greet each other with feeling.

guests confirming the city hall, capital, oslo, norway

Guests of a religious ceremony in traditional costume at the door of the City Hall.

It has never been more notorious than now that Norway, and Oslo in particular, have their problems.

The Stains of the Far Right and Apolitical Crime

With the crazy attacks that perpetrated against government buildings in the center and in Utoya island, against the young participants of the AUF summer camp (Working Ungdomsfylking or League of Young Workers), Anders Breivik gave expression to a tiny faction of xenophobic Norwegians and, at the same time, extremists.

Even if the Oslo police declared some time ago that the city was the safest in Europe, surprising figures show that crime has increased, surpassing that of other cities in the north of the old continent, to the point that a German travel guide book having dared to dub Oslo the city of “The Scandinavian Crime Capital”.

In the superficial day-to-day of a visitor, this reality shows little or nothing.

esplanade, inhabitants, convivio, capital, oslo, norway

Inhabitants live on an esplanade in the capital, despite the unwelcoming weather.

At Vigeland Sculpture Park, a laid-back crowd of residents and tourists alike enjoy the eccentric statues. They photograph themselves interacting with them.

The summer day weather does not match that of southern countries. But it only takes a few more minutes of walking, this time along the Stranden docks, to see how the Oslo Norwegians have become used to compensating for the lack of sun.

Reassured by the unquestionable national prosperity, they now enjoy increased well-being, travel frequently to distant and exotic places, consume much more and almost always more expensive.

Austerity no longer makes sense in these parts.

Stavanger, Norway

The Motor City of Norway

The abundance of offshore oil and natural gas and the headquarters of the companies in charge of exploiting them have promoted Stavanger from the Norwegian energy capital preserve. Even so, this city didn't conform. With a prolific historical legacy, at the gates of a majestic fjord, cosmopolitan Stavanger has long propelled the Land of the Midnight Sun.
Nesbyen to Flam, Norway

Flam Railway: Sublime Norway from the First to the Last Station

By road and aboard the Flam Railway, on one of the steepest railway routes in the world, we reach Flam and the entrance to the Sognefjord, the largest, deepest and most revered of the Scandinavian fjords. From the starting point to the last station, this monumental Norway that we have unveiled is confirmed.
Flam a Balestrand, Norway

Where the Mountains Give In to the Fjords

The final station of the Flam Railway marks the end of the dizzying railway descent from the highlands of Hallingskarvet to the plains of Flam. In this town too small for its fame, we leave the train and sail down the Aurland fjord towards the prodigious Balestrand.
Las Vegas, USA

World Capital of Weddings vs Sin City

The greed of the game, the lust of prostitution and the widespread ostentation are all part of Las Vegas. Like the chapels that have neither eyes nor ears and promote eccentric, quick and cheap marriages.
Cape of Good Hope - Cape of Good Hope NP, South Africa

On the edge of the Old End of the World

We arrived where great Africa yielded to the domains of the “Mostrengo” Adamastor and the Portuguese navigators trembled like sticks. There, where Earth was, after all, far from ending, the sailors' hope of rounding the tenebrous Cape was challenged by the same storms that continue to ravage there.
Valletta, Malta

An ex-Humble Amazing Capital

At the time of its foundation, the Order of Knights Hospitaller called it "the most humble". Over the centuries, the title ceased to serve him. In 2018, Valletta was the tiniest European Capital of Culture ever and one of the most steeped in history and dazzling in memory.
Melbourne, Australia

An "Asienated" Australia

Cultural capital aussie, Melbourne is also frequently voted the best quality of life city in the world. Nearly a million eastern emigrants took advantage of this immaculate welcome.
Perth, Australia

the lonely city

More 2000km away from a worthy counterpart, Perth is considered the most remote city on the face of the Earth. Despite being isolated between the Indian Ocean and the vast Outback, few people complain.

The Island of Success and Monotony

Accustomed to planning and winning, Singapore seduces and recruits ambitious people from all over the world. At the same time, it seems to bore to death some of its most creative inhabitants.
Lion, Elephants, PN Hwange, Zimbabwe
PN Hwange, Zimbabwe

The Legacy of the Late Cecil Lion

On July 1, 2015, Walter Palmer, a dentist and trophy hunter from Minnesota killed Cecil, Zimbabwe's most famous lion. The slaughter generated a viral wave of outrage. As we saw in PN Hwange, nearly two years later, Cecil's descendants thrive.
Hikers on the Ice Lake Trail, Annapurna Circuit, Nepal
Annapurna (circuit)
Annapurna Circuit: 7th - Braga - Ice Lake, Nepal

Annapurna Circuit – The Painful Acclimatization of the Ice Lake

On the way up to the Ghyaru village, we had a first and unexpected show of how ecstatic the Annapurna Circuit can be tasted. Nine kilometers later, in Braga, due to the need to acclimatize, we climbed from 3.470m from Braga to 4.600m from Lake Kicho Tal. We only felt some expected tiredness and the increase in the wonder of the Annapurna Mountains.
Sculptural Garden, Edward James, Xilitla, Huasteca Potosina, San Luis Potosi, Mexico, Cobra dos Pecados
Architecture & Design
Xilitla, San Luis Potosí, Mexico

Edward James' Mexican Delirium

In the rainforest of Xilitla, the restless mind of poet Edward James has twinned an eccentric home garden. Today, Xilitla is lauded as an Eden of the Surreal.
Tibetan heights, altitude sickness, mountain prevent to treat, travel

Altitude Sickness: the Grievances of Getting Mountain Sick

When traveling, it happens that we find ourselves confronted with the lack of time to explore a place as unmissable as it is high. Medicine and previous experiences with Altitude Evil dictate that we should not risk ascending in a hurry.
Conflicted Way
Ceremonies and Festivities
Jerusalem, Israel

Through the Belicious Streets of Via Dolorosa

In Jerusalem, while traveling the Via Dolorosa, the most sensitive believers realize how difficult the peace of the Lord is to achieve in the most disputed streets on the face of the earth.
China's occupation of Tibet, Roof of the World, The occupying forces
Lhasa, Tibet

The Sino-Demolition of the Roof of the World

Any debate about sovereignty is incidental and a waste of time. Anyone who wants to be dazzled by the purity, affability and exoticism of Tibetan culture should visit the territory as soon as possible. The Han civilizational greed that moves China will soon bury millenary Tibet.
Cocoa, Chocolate, Sao Tome Principe, Agua Izé farm
São Tomé and Principe

Cocoa Roças, Corallo and the Chocolate Factory

At the beginning of the century. In the XNUMXth century, São Tomé and Príncipe generated more cocoa than any other territory. Thanks to the dedication of some entrepreneurs, production survives and the two islands taste like the best chocolate.
One against all, Sera Monastery, Sacred Debate, Tibet
Lhasa, Tibet

Sera, the Monastery of the Sacred Debate

In few places in the world a dialect is used as vehemently as in the monastery of Sera. There, hundreds of monks, in Tibetan, engage in intense and raucous debates about the teachings of the Buddha.
Spectator, Melbourne Cricket Ground-Rules footbal, Melbourne, Australia
Melbourne, Australia

The Football the Australians Rule

Although played since 1841, Australian Football has only conquered part of the big island. Internationalization has never gone beyond paper, held back by competition from rugby and classical football.
Gyantse, Kumbum temple
Lhasa a Gyantse, Tibet

Gyantse, through the Heights of Tibet

The final target is the Tibetan Everest Base Camp. On this first route, starting from Lhasa, we pass by the sacred lake of Yamdrok (4.441m) and the glacier of the Karo gorge (5.020m). In Gyantse, we surrender to the Tibetan-Buddhist splendor of the old citadel.
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Honiara e Gizo, Solomon Islands

The Profaned Temple of the Solomon Islands

A Spanish navigator baptized them, eager for riches like those of the biblical king. Ravaged by World War II, conflicts and natural disasters, the Solomon Islands are far from prosperity.
ice tunnel, black gold route, Valdez, Alaska, USA
Got2Globe Photo Portfolio
Got2Globe Portfolio

Sensations vs Impressions

Chania Crete Greece, Venetian Port
Chania, Crete, Greece

Chania: In the West of Crete's History

Chania was Minoan, Roman, Byzantine, Arab, Venetian and Ottoman. It got to the present Hellenic nation as the most seductive city in Crete.
Bonaire, island, Netherlands Antilles, ABC, Caribbean, Rincon
Rincon, Bonaire

The Pioneering Corner of the Netherlands Antilles

Shortly after Columbus' arrival in the Americas, the Castilians discovered a Caribbean island they called Brazil. Afraid of the pirate threat, they hid their first village in a valley. One century after, the Dutch took over this island and renamed it Bonaire. They didn't erase the unpretentious name of the trailblazer colony: Rincon.
coast, fjord, Seydisfjordur, Iceland
Winter White
Seydisfjordur, Iceland

From the Art of Fishing to the Fishing of Art

When shipowners from Reykjavik bought the Seydisfjordur fishing fleet, the village had to adapt. Today, it captures Dieter Roth's art disciples and other bohemian and creative souls.
Lake Manyara, National Park, Ernest Hemingway, Giraffes
Lake Manyara NP, Tanzania

Hemingway's Favorite Africa

Situated on the western edge of the Rift Valley, Lake Manyara National Park is one of the smallest but charming and richest in Europe. wild life of Tanzania. In 1933, between hunting and literary discussions, Ernest Hemingway dedicated a month of his troubled life to him. He narrated those adventurous safari days in “The Green Hills of Africa".
Porto Santo, view to the south of Pico Branco
Terra Chã and Pico Branco footpaths, Porto Santo

Pico Branco, Terra Chã and Other Whims of the Golden Island

In its northeast corner, Porto Santo is another thing. With its back facing south and its large beach, we unveil a mountainous, rugged and even wooded coastline, dotted with islets that dot an even bluer Atlantic.
Mother Armenia Statue, Yerevan, Armenia
Yerevan, Armenia

A Capital between East and West

Heiress of the Soviet civilization, aligned with the great Russia, Armenia allows itself to be seduced by the most democratic and sophisticated ways of Western Europe. In recent times, the two worlds have collided in the streets of your capital. From popular and political dispute, Yerevan will dictate the new course of the nation.
Agua Grande Platform, Iguacu Falls, Brazil, Argentina
Natural Parks
Iguazu/Iguazu Falls, Brazil/Argentina

The Great Water Thunder

After a long tropical journey, the Iguaçu River gives a dip for diving. There, on the border between Brazil and Argentina, form the largest and most impressive waterfalls on the face of the Earth.
Newar celebration, Bhaktapur, Nepal
UNESCO World Heritage
Bhaktapur, Nepal

The Nepalese Masks of Life

The Newar Indigenous People of the Kathmandu Valley attach great importance to the Hindu and Buddhist religiosity that unites them with each other and with the Earth. Accordingly, he blesses their rites of passage with newar dances of men masked as deities. Even if repeated long ago from birth to reincarnation, these ancestral dances do not elude modernity and begin to see an end.
Look-alikes, Actors and Extras

Make-believe stars

They are the protagonists of events or are street entrepreneurs. They embody unavoidable characters, represent social classes or epochs. Even miles from Hollywood, without them, the world would be more dull.
Swimming, Western Australia, Aussie Style, Sun rising in the eyes
Busselton, Australia

2000 meters in Aussie Style

In 1853, Busselton was equipped with one of the longest pontoons in the world. World. When the structure collapsed, the residents decided to turn the problem around. Since 1996 they have been doing it every year. Swimming.
Peasant woman, Majuli, Assam, India
Majuli Island, India

An Island in Countdown

Majuli is the largest river island in India and would still be one of the largest on Earth were it not for the erosion of the river Bramaputra that has been making it diminish for centuries. If, as feared, it is submerged within twenty years, more than an island, a truly mystical cultural and landscape stronghold of the Subcontinent will disappear.
Chepe Express, Chihuahua Al Pacifico Railway
On Rails
Creel to Los Mochis, Mexico

The Barrancas del Cobre & the CHEPE Iron Horse

The Sierra Madre Occidental's relief turned the dream into a construction nightmare that lasted six decades. In 1961, at last, the prodigious Chihuahua al Pacifico Railroad was opened. Its 643km cross some of the most dramatic scenery in Mexico.
Executives sleep subway seat, sleep, sleep, subway, train, Tokyo, Japan
Tokyo, Japan

Tokyo's Hypno-Passengers

Japan is served by millions of executives slaughtered with infernal work rates and sparse vacations. Every minute of respite on the way to work or home serves them for their inemuri, napping in public.
Saksun, Faroe Islands, Streymoy, warning
Daily life
Saksun, streymoyFaroe Islands

The Faroese Village That Doesn't Want to be Disneyland

Saksun is one of several stunning small villages in the Faroe Islands that more and more outsiders visit. It is distinguished by the aversion to tourists of its main rural owner, author of repeated antipathies and attacks against the invaders of his land.
Howler Monkey, PN Tortuguero, Costa Rica
PN Tortuguero, Costa Rica

Tortuguero: From the Flooded Jungle to the Caribbean Sea

After two days of impasse due to torrential rain, we set out to discover the Tortuguero National Park. Channel after channel, we marvel at the natural richness and exuberance of this Costa Rican fluvial marine ecosystem.
Napali Coast and Waimea Canyon, Kauai, Hawaii Wrinkles
Scenic Flights
napali coast, Hawaii

Hawaii's Dazzling Wrinkles

Kauai is the greenest and rainiest island in the Hawaiian archipelago. It is also the oldest. As we explore its Napalo Coast by land, sea and air, we are amazed to see how the passage of millennia has only favored it.