Tuesday July 3, 2012

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On every tour there are days when you’re tempted to think, “Hey, this is as good as it gets!” And today was most definitely one of those. For starters, the weather was perfect – blue skies, bright sunshine, and (by the time the afternoon rolled around) taker-your-jacket-off HOT! But even more perfect still was the scenery.

Glorious deep-green Geirangerfjord is truly one of Norway’s most impressive sights. And surrounding its picture-perfect town is an alpine-like landscape of impossibly-high peaks, gushing streams and waterfalls, mirror lakes, cosy farmlets and panoramic views-to-die-for.

The oohing and aahing began while we ate breakfast, as the Rotterdam made its way slowly through the steeply-sided fjord. Then the anchor was dropped, the lifeboats were lowered, and we Kiwis rode to shore – where a coach was waiting to take us up an ever-winding, ever-climbing road.

We were busy counting the zig-zaggy hairpin bends when, suddenly, at 1000 metres above sea-level, we found ourselves in the middle of a summer ski field, with blinding white snow almost everywhere we looked.

We continued driving along the shores of a still-frozen glacial lake (Djupvatn) and up this even steeper, heart-stopping road to the summit of Mt Dalsnibba, now 1500 metres above sea level.

Oh, boy!

There’s no way words (or photos) can describe the feast-for-sore-eyes that awaited us up there on top of the world. We were quite simply gob-smacked by 360-degree views of endless snowy peaks dropping down to miniature valleys, rivers and roads far, far below us. And way, way off in the distance we could see the cruise-ships (including the Rotterdam) that were anchored in Geirangerfjord.

As if that wasn’t more than enough for one day, we then motored back down through the Geiranger township to another zig-zaggy mountainside route – the Eagle Road – that took us along the shores of a stunning glassy lake, and up along more green, green valleys tucked between more snow-splattered peaks. We arrived, finally, at Herdalsetra,Norway’s largest, still-in-use summer mountain farm, where we were treated to an introductory chat, a chance to photograph the grassy, flowery rooftops, and a tasty sampling of goat cheese and caramels.

Oh, one more glorious highlight: after up-anchoring later this afternoon, we found ourselves cruising up-close to the famous De Syv Sostre (Seven Sisters) Falls.

Count on it: this is one day 25 Mad Midlifers will never forget!


We drop in on a fairytale town famous for its turrets, spires, ornamentation and under-sea tunnels. This grand Baltic adventure aint over yet, folks, so don’t change channels …

Yours bloggedly – JOHN

P.S. If you want to leave a message for someone in our group, just click on the little speech bubble at the top of this page, and add your ‘COMMENTS’! Make sure you say who it’s for and who it’s from – and keep it brief.

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About John Cooney

John Cooney and his wife Robyn have enjoyed more than their fair share of travel. They hesitate to call themselves ‘experts’ – but they’ve grabbed every chance that’s come their way to explore new countries, cultures and customs. They’ve had the privilege (both on their own and as the leaders of numerous successful group-tours) to sample many stunning destinations: Europe, the UK, Singapore, Vanuatu, the USA, Israel, Egypt, Africa, Dubai, China, Laos, Cambodia and Vietnam. And their recent (and most pleasant) memories are of the places ancient-and-modern that border the Mediterranean. John and Robyn are at-home in airports, hotels, cruise ships, and the like … and they know how to make the most of a unique travel opportunity. Travel, they reckon, is an all-five-senses experience – a chance to see, feel, smell, hear and taste the world. And they’ve done it often enough to know for sure: sightseeing with a group of laid-back Kiwis is DOUBLE the fun – lots of laughs, great company, and memories that last forever!


  1. Hey Mum & Dad. The fjords look absolutely stunning! Jealous much… All is well here in Whanga. Off to Taupo with the kids for four days on Saturday. We’ll have Hunters birthday down there so he’s looking forward to it. Enjoy the rest of you trip, love Mike…

  2. Pam and Colin Belcher.
    What absolutely magnificent scenery on the fjords.
    I am just a bit jealous but I think I saw Poppa asleep in one of the photos!
    Hugh and I are enjoying some quiet time with the girls away, they have been to the movies today with Susan so Jenny had a quiet day.
    Apparently Izzy cooked dinner last night for Jenny, mince and pasta and what was even more of a surprise was that she actually ate it.
    I took Hugh to the GP today for a check up and some routine blood tests, the Dr was happy with his progress and he even went ot work today for 2 hours so things are looking up.
    I am off to help Debbie move into her new house tommorrow, she is very excited about it.
    The airport has been closed most of the day due to thick fog so keep your fingers crossed for next Wednesday, I am so looking forward to seeing you but in the meantime WAKE DAD UP so he doesn’t miss any of the spectacular scenery of the Fjords.
    I know cruising and relaxing must be so tiring!
    Lots of love,

  3. Hi john robyn, finally arrived in manchester – bit stressful asthe bus did not arrive. back to good old peanut butter and marmite!!!!! a grandcruise and big thanks for a great holiday. regards to joan cheers pam c.

  4. Hi John, you downloaded those pics from the internet aye?? Totally too good to be true! 🙂 So glad your having such an amazing time! Big hi to Robyn please xx P.S your house is looking as blue as ever!
    xx Love the Beale’s

  5. Roy and Lyn:
    God Dag – (apparently Good Day/hello in Norwegian). Hard to believe you’re home next week. A couple of messages from the girls. Hi, miss you, love Nessy. Karen says “thank you for post cards.She looks forward to seeing your photos”. Me too. Looks awesome!!!! Might see you on your way home otherwise we’ll speak to you soon. Have a good trip home. Lots of love from him and me and from me and him xxxxxxxxxxxx

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