Disclaimer: Due to the number of comments that have been received it has been felt necessary to clarify that this trip is in no way based on "The Long Way Round" which the authors of the trip were not aware and nor was it first broadcast of at the time at which this trip was drunkenly conceived. The authors of this trip would like to distinguish their intended trip from the journey undertaken in "The Long Way Round" in that unlike Charlie Borman and Ewan McGregor they are not experienced riders (they have both only been riding motorbikes for just over one year), they are not receiving sponsorship and they will not have a support crew with them at any point on the journey. Just to avoid any further confusion it has been thought that it would be helpful to point out that Tom Horovitch and Peter Caley are both fictional characters and are not famous film stars.

Tuesday, June 13, 2006

Oslo, Norway - 1317 miles from London

We arrived in Oslo this morning after uneventfully crossing the border from Sweden yesterday evening into our first non-EU country. The border crossing was so uneventful that we weren't even required to stop the bikes, but were cheerfully waved through the border toll gate. We are also very fortunate that motorbike are not required to pay a toll on any of the many toll roads or bridges in Norway. Oslo seems like a fairly unattractive city. We decided not to stick around and so we took bus tour in order to get an overall impression of the city without actually walking anywhere! We actually ended up getting stuck in traffic jam after traffic jam and by the end we were not at all impressed by the over priced tour with its American commentary and not particularly impressed with what we saw of the city. After the tour we headed for the hills (quite literally). Heading north west along the same route taken by the famous Oslo to Bergen train line (famed for the stunning and varied countryside the line passes by and referred to in the guide book as "one of the most spectacular rail journeys on earth") we were looking forward to riding through some more of scenic Norway.

Here are a few interesting facts about Norway:
Norway has no external debt!;
Norway has a GDP per capita of US$37,700 (3rd highest in the world);
Norway has 413 doctors and 1840 nurses per 100,000 of the population (compared with 162 / 500 in the UK);
27% of the country is covered by forests;
Oil wealth: 14th largest reserves in the world, 6th largest producer, and 3rd biggest oil exporter, and
Alcohol is extremely expensive in Norway. Norway was one of the few countries in the world where the population actually voted for prohibition (in 1919, although the ban was lifted in 1927).

Above, two views of the exterior of the central station and the National Theatre with statues of Ibsen outside

Written by Tom


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