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.
Magma Geopark, Norway

A Somehow Lunar Norway

If we went back to the geological ends of time, we would find southwestern Norway filled with huge mountains and a burning magma that successive glaciers would shape. Scientists have found that the mineral that predominates there is more common on the Moon than on Earth. Several of the scenarios we explore in the region's vast Magma Geopark seem to be taken from our great natural satellite.
Bergen, Norway

The Great Hanseatic Port of Norway

Already populated in the early 1830th century, Bergen became the capital, monopolized northern Norwegian commerce and, until XNUMX, remained one of the largest cities in Scandinavia. Today, Oslo leads the nation. Bergen continues to stand out for its architectural, urban and historical exuberance.
Balestrand, Norway

Balestrand: A Life Among the Fjords

Villages on the slopes of the gorges of Norway are common. Balestrand is at the entrance to three. Its settings stand out in such a way that they have attracted famous painters and continue to seduce intrigued travelers.
Preikestolen - Pulpit Rock, Norway

Pilgrimage to the Pulpit of Rock of Norway

The Norway of the endless fjords abounds in grand scenery. In the heart of Lyse Fjord, the prominent, smooth and almost square top of a cliff over 600 meters forms an unexpected rocky pulpit. Climbing to its heights, peering over the precipices and enjoying the surrounding panoramas is a lot of revelation.
Esteros del Iberá, Pantanal Argentina, Alligator
Iberá Wetlands, Argentina

The Pantanal of the Pampas

On the world map, south of the famous brazilian wetland, a little-known flooded region appears, but almost as vast and rich in biodiversity. the Guarani expression Y bera defines it as “shining waters”. The adjective fits more than its strong luminance.
Young people walk the main street in Chame, Nepal
Annapurna (circuit)
Annapurna Circuit: 1th - Pokhara a ChameNepal

Finally, on the way

After several days of preparation in Pokhara, we left towards the Himalayas. The walking route only starts in Chame, at 2670 meters of altitude, with the snowy peaks of the Annapurna mountain range already in sight. Until then, we complete a painful but necessary road preamble to its subtropical base.
holy plain, Bagan, Myanmar
Architecture & Design
Bagan, Myanmar

The Plain of Pagodas, Temples and other Heavenly Redemptions

Burmese religiosity has always been based on a commitment to redemption. In Bagan, wealthy and fearful believers continue to erect pagodas in hopes of winning the benevolence of the gods.
Totems, Botko Village, Malekula, Vanuatu
Malekula, Vanuatu

Meat and Bone Cannibalism

Until the early XNUMXth century, man-eaters still feasted on the Vanuatu archipelago. In the village of Botko we find out why European settlers were so afraid of the island of Malekula.
Parade and Pomp
Ceremonies and Festivities
Saint Petersburg, Russia

When the Russian Navy Stations in Saint Petersburg

Russia dedicates the last Sunday of July to its naval forces. On that day, a crowd visits large boats moored on the Neva River as alcohol-drenched sailors seize the city.
fastened by several wires
Curitiba, Brazil

The High-Quality Life of Curitiba

It is not only the altitude of almost 1000 meters at which the city is located. Cosmopolitan and multicultural, the capital of Paraná has a quality of life and human development rating that make it a unique case in Brazil.
Beverage Machines, Japan

The Beverage Machines Empire

There are more than 5 million ultra-tech light boxes spread across the country and many more exuberant cans and bottles of appealing drinks. The Japanese have long since stopped resisting them.
Gothic couple

Matarraña to Alcanar, Spain (España)

A Medieval Spain

Traveling through the lands of Aragon and Valencia, we come across towers and detached battlements of houses that fill the slopes. Mile after kilometer, these visions prove to be as anachronistic as they are fascinating.

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.
Chiang Khong to Luang Prabang, Laos, Through the Mekong Below
Chiang Khong - Luang Prabang, In Stock

Slow Boat, Down the Mekong River

Laos' beauty and lower cost are good reasons to sail between Chiang Khong and Luang Prabang. But this long descent of the Mekong River can be as exhausting as it is picturesque.
Coin return
Dawki, India

Dawki, Dawki, Bangladesh on sight

We descended from the high and mountainous lands of Meghalaya to the flats to the south and below. There, the translucent and green stream of the Dawki forms the border between India and Bangladesh. In a damp heat that we haven't felt for a long time, the river also attracts hundreds of Indians and Bangladeshis in a picturesque escape.
Portfolio, Got2Globe, Best Images, Photography, Images, Cleopatra, Dioscorides, Delos, Greece
Got2Globe Photo Portfolio
Got2Globe Portfolio

The Earthly and the Celestial

improvised bank
Ibo Island, Mozambique

Island of a Gone Mozambique

It was fortified in 1791 by the Portuguese who expelled the Arabs from the Quirimbas and seized their trade routes. It became the 2nd Portuguese outpost on the east coast of Africa and later the capital of the province of Cabo Delgado, Mozambique. With the end of the slave trade at the turn of the XNUMXth century and the passage from the capital to Porto Amélia, Ibo Island found itself in the fascinating backwater in which it is located.
Kéré Island, Bijagós, Guinea Bissau, from the air
Kéré Island, Bijagos, Guinea Bissau

The Little Bijagó that hosted a Big Dream

Raised in Ivory Coast, Frenchman Laurent found, in the Bijagós archipelago, the place that enraptured him. The island he shares with his Portuguese wife Sónia accepted them and the affection they felt for Guinea Bissau. Kéré and the Bijagós have long enchanted visitors.
Correspondence verification
Winter White
Rovaniemi, Finland

From the Finnish Lapland to the Arctic. A Visit to the Land of Santa

Fed up with waiting for the bearded old man to descend down the chimney, we reverse the story. We took advantage of a trip to Finnish Lapland and passed through its furtive home.
shadow vs light
Kyoto, Japan

The Kyoto Temple Reborn from the Ashes

The Golden Pavilion has been spared destruction several times throughout history, including that of US-dropped bombs, but it did not withstand the mental disturbance of Hayashi Yoken. When we admired him, he looked like never before.
PN Tortuguero, Costa Rica, public boat
Tortuguero NP, Costa Rica

The Flooded Costa Rica of Tortuguero

The Caribbean Sea and the basins of several rivers bathe the northeast of the Tica nation, one of the wettest and richest areas in flora and fauna in Central America. Named after the green turtles nest in its black sands, Tortuguero stretches inland for 312 km.2 of stunning aquatic jungle.
Sheki, Autumn in the Caucasus, Azerbaijan, Autumn Homes
Sheki, Azerbaijan

autumn in the caucasus

Lost among the snowy mountains that separate Europe from Asia, Sheki is one of Azerbaijan's most iconic towns. Its largely silky history includes periods of great harshness. When we visited it, autumn pastels added color to a peculiar post-Soviet and Muslim life.
Ribeiro Frio, Madeira, Vereda dos Balcões,
Natural Parks
Ribeiro Frio Forest Park, Madeira

Ribeiro Frio Acima, on the Path of Balcões

This region of the high interior of Madeira has been in charge of repopulating the island's rainbow trout for a long time. Among the various trails and levadas that converge in its nurseries, the Parque Florestal Ribeiro Frio hides grandiose panoramas over Pico Arieiro, Pico Ruivo and the Ribeira da Metade valley that extends to the north coast.
Engravings, Karnak Temple, Luxor, Egypt
UNESCO World Heritage
luxor, Egypt

From Luxor to Thebes: Journey to Ancient Egypt

Thebes was raised as the new supreme capital of the Egyptian Empire, the seat of Amon, the God of Gods. Modern Luxor inherited the Temple of Karnak and its sumptuousness. Between one and the other flow the sacred Nile and millennia of dazzling history.
Couple visiting Mikhaylovskoe, village where writer Alexander Pushkin had a home
Saint Petersburg e Mikhaylovkoe, Russia

The Writer Who Succumbed to His Own Plot

Alexander Pushkin is hailed by many as the greatest Russian poet and the founder of modern Russian literature. But Pushkin also dictated an almost tragicomic epilogue to his prolific life.
Santa Maria, Sal Island, Cape Verde, Landing
Santa Maria, Sal Island, Cape Verde

Santa Maria and the Atlantic Blessing of Sal

Santa Maria was founded in the first half of the XNUMXth century, as a salt export warehouse. Today, thanks to the providence of Santa Maria, Sal Ilha is worth much more than the raw material.
Burning prayers, Ohitaki Festival, fushimi temple, kyoto, japan
Kyoto, Japan

A Combustible Faith

During the Shinto celebration of Ohitaki, prayers inscribed on tablets by the Japanese faithful are gathered at the Fushimi temple. There, while being consumed by huge bonfires, her belief is renewed.
Serra do Mar train, Paraná, airy view
On Rails
Curitiba a Morretes, Paraná, Brazil

Down Paraná, on Board the Train Serra do Mar

For more than two centuries, only a winding and narrow road connected Curitiba to the coast. Until, in 1885, a French company opened a 110 km railway. We walked along it to Morretes, the final station for passengers today. 40km from the original coastal terminus of Paranaguá.
Mahu, Third Sex Polynesia, Papeete, Tahiti
Papeete, French Polynesia

The Third Sex of Tahiti

Heirs of Polynesian ancestral culture, the Mahu they preserve an unusual role in society. Lost somewhere between the two genders, these men-women continue to fight for the meaning of their lives.
Fruit sellers, Swarm, Mozambique
Daily life
Enxame Mozambique

Mozambican Fashion Service Area

It is repeated at almost all stops in towns of Mozambique worthy of appearing on maps. The machimbombo (bus) stops and is surrounded by a crowd of eager "businessmen". The products offered can be universal such as water or biscuits or typical of the area. In this region, a few kilometers from Nampula, fruit sales suceeded, in each and every case, quite intense.
Fluvial coming and going
Iriomote, Japan

The Small Tropical Japanese Amazon of Iriomote

Impenetrable rainforests and mangroves fill Iriomote under a pressure cooker climate. Here, foreign visitors are as rare as the yamaneko, an elusive endemic lynx.
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.