Alternative title: Ruebi and M’s adventures in Norway Part 2: Ålesund, the only place in the world to completely rival my love of Vancouver…And I really, really love Vancouver…If you missed Part 1 of our trip (in which we arrived in Bergen), you can find the post here!
Receptionist: “And we have complimentary waffles, tea and coffee between 3pm and 6pm”
Me: “I’m sorry…Did you say ‘complimentary waffles’?”
Receptionist: “Yes, complimentary waffles…”
Brain: “Ruebi, are you crying?”
Me: “I’m…Just *sob*…So…*sniffle* HAPPY!”
Ålesund is the largest city in the Møre og Romsdal county and (according to the Lonely Planet Guide) is “home to Norway’s largest cod-fishing fleet”. On January 23rd 1904 a fire devastated the town, most of it’s buildings lost to the flames; upon hearing the news Kaiser Wilhelm II (of Germany) sent help – in honour of this there is a statue of him in Town Park and one of the main streets is named after him.
The rebuild of Ålesund was heavily influenced by the Art Nouveau style and as a result the place looks like this:
I was really quite taken with these buildings…In fact I think I took more photo’s of them than anything else while here! If you are visiting Ålesund and want to know more about the fire and architecture have a look at their Art Nouveau centre (Jugendstilsenteret).
We picked our hotel (Clarion Collection Hotel Bryggen) for it’s location…And the fact that breakfast and evening meals were included with our stay (these were delicious by the way!).
I should probably show you a little of the hotel otherwise I’ll get stuck in a waffle loop…Ummm waffles.
As we were only in Ålesund for a short time (2.5 days and one of those was reserved for an excursion) we spent most of our time just traipsing around and admiring this beautiful place!
The idea of walking the 418 steps up Mount Aksla filled me with quite a bit of anxiety, I was absolutely positive that it couldn’t be done by my little legs…For some reason it gave me flashbacks of the last time I clambered up Helm Crag (in the Lake District) and did nothing but swear the whole way up. My legs hated me for days after. And no, I’m not proud of myself.
With that said, the idea of having panoramic views of Ålesund and the Sunnmøre alps seemed too great an opportunity to ignore (or to whinge about) so…
If we had more time here (and a bit more cash) I would have loved to have seen the puffins at Runde! The next Norway post will be about our day trip from Ålesund to Geirangerfjord…Have I told you folks just how much I dislike ferries?!
R & M x