I have traveled to so many different places all over the world, but there is still so much more to discover – and Norway is just one destination that is still on my bucket list. An old friend of mine moved to Norway a few years ago and decided to settle down in the beautiful country of  mountains, fjords and glaciers. He told me why Norway is so special to him.

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The magic of Norway

For how long have you been living in Norway and where exactly are you based in Norway?

“My first time in Norway was in 2006 during the summer season at the Hjelle Hotel in Stryn, where I took on a summer job and was employed as a chef for 4.5 months. After the sommer season in 2010, I then decided to move to Stryn and got all settled in by October. Stryn is located at the end of the Nordfjord in Western Norway that belongs to the state of Sogn og Fjordane.”

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Why did you decide to move to Norway?

“My first visit to Norway in 2006 was quite spontaneously, after I had decided to quit University. I just thought, Norway would be a great country to travel to, before I would start my working live in Germany again – I just wanted a little break.– Well, and then I fell in love with the country, its people and surroundings.”

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What makes Norway so special for you?

“The working hours and conditions are so much better over here – I finally had some free time and a private life again. I have to say, that this is pretty rare in the food service industry in Germany, since you basically have to work 24/7. Besides, the nature is just amazing, breathtaking… – I immediately got hooked and fell in love with the country. And I also met so many wonderful people, found new friends, which made it easy to relocate. This is what home should feel like.”

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What were some difficulties and challenges in the beginning? Any language barriers?

“It was difficult not to have family around and of course, I also missed my old friends. But since my new friends welcomed me with open arms, it wasn’t too bad. Regarding the language, it was no problem at all. Since everybody speaks English, I could easily get around. And now, after a few years, I can even speak some Norwegian.”

What are your favorite spots?

“There are so many beautiful spots. But if I had to name one, I would say Hjelle in Oppstryn by the lake.”

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Describe your perfect weekend in Norway.

“My perfect weekend would start with skiing in the Summerskisenter in nice sunny weather. Afterwards, I would take a trip down to the valley, going for a swim and having a nice bbq at the lake. And in the evening, a great party with life music in the pub at Folven camping. The next day, I would also go skiing and afterwards, I would simply relax out in the sun and cure my hangover at the lake.”

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If I came visiting you, to which places would you take me?

“Places I would take you are: Oppstryn, Sommerskisenter Stryn, Briksdalsbreen, Dalsnibba, Geirangerfjord, Segestad, Ålesund,Sunndalssætra, Trollstigen.”

Just by looking at these amazing pictures, I have to admit that Norway just moved up a few spots on my bucket list. 😀

xoxo

photo credentials: Tobias Surmann, Juan Antonio F. Segal (flickr), Creative Commons 2.0