Seeing the Aurora Borealis has always been top on my bucket list so does visiting the Arctic but we shall leave the Arctic for another time. There are a handful of countries where one can visit in the hope to catch the dancing lights; Iceland, Finland, Sweden, Norway, Canada and Greenland to name a few.
This trip has been in the making for a long, long time. I started my research and planning about 2 years ago and came up with at least 3 detailed itineraries. Cost, traveling dates, cold weather, long traveling hours were some of the issues we faced while planning this trip.
SINGAPORE ⊗ LONDON ⊗ OSLO
Finally, in January 2014, this trip took off. We decided on Norway mainly because it’s the easiest and probably the nearest country to get to; and Tromsø is one of the most popular destinations to view the lights. It took us a total of 19 hours 15 minutes from Singapore to Oslo — excluding flight delays and checking in.
We were fortunate enough to experience the newly refitted Business Class on Singapore Airlines where the seat offers greater recline and an improved ergonomic seat cushion. The seat also flips down into a 28-inch wide full-flat bed at 78-inches in length.
This is also the first time we tried the airline’s Book the Cook premium advance meal selection service. I had Nasi Lemak, Mak had Lobster Thermidor, my sister had Prawn & Chicken Laksa and my brother-in-law had Straits Chinese Chicken Curry (not pictured above). Out of all 4, mine was the least tasty — I highly recommend Lobster Thermidor; lobster tail sautéed in butter, flambéed in brandy, sprinkled with cheese and served with creamy mushroom sauce, garlic, spicy mustard and buttered asparagus.
Our flight from London to Oslo kept delaying due to bad weather conditions.The wait was simply agonizing, part of us is tired and waiting aimlessly didn’t help. And a huge, huge part of us is so excited, we can’t wait to set foot in Norway to begin our adventures.
After waiting for at least 4 hours at the transit lounge, we were at last on our way to the boarding gate.
Upon arriving Oslo, we see lands covered in white snow and that definitely cheered us up and made us forget all the tiredness. I can almost feel the icy breeze from the plane’s window and in my mind, I kept repeating “wow, wow, wow, this is so beautiful, here we are!!”.
THE THIEF HOTEL
I have specially chosen The Thief Hotel for our stay 3 nights stay in Oslo. I have a fascination with small, boutique hotels and while researching on accommodations, this guy here definitely stole my heart.
Located between the iconic Astrup Fearnley Museum, the canals on Tjuvholmen and the Oslofjord, most of the 118 rooms have brilliant views. From our room’s balcony, we look straight across to the Akershus Fortress on the opposite side of the city.
International and Norwegian designers Antonio Citterio, Bruno Rainaldi, Tom Dixon, Anne Haavind and StokkeAustad kept this hotel elegant and timeless with their contemporary furnishings and decorations. This hotel even has their own art curator who hand-picks art for every single room and suite.
View from our balcony and that’s Akershus Fortress.
Our Deluxe Room came with daily breakfast. We love the variety and quality of the spread. The Norwegian Waffles are amongst our favorite, thin and crispy.
DINNER AT FRU K
Fru K represents quality, contrasts, art, creativity, and the culture of cuisine. Regional ingredients play a pivotal role in the kitchen at Fru K. Head Chef Johan Laursen, previously of Maaemo (Oslo), takes the best of Norwegian and Scandinavian gastronomic traditions and creates new food experiences with pure and natural flavours.
On our second night, we had our first Norwegian and Scandinavian meal at this beautifully decorated hotel restaurant — ambient is perfect to end our tiring day. I love the Charcoal Bread and we enjoyed the freshness of all the ingredients. Each dish was indeed flavourful, creative and contrasting but I am not sure if they suit our taste buds entirely, perhaps some getting used to may help.
The Thief Hotel Landgangen 1, N-0252, Oslo, Norway
I look forward to sharing more about this trip in several other blog posts leading up to “the” night. That’s about all for this post, I hope you have enjoyed reading it — see you again soon.
Thank you for reading.