Tuesday, September 22, 2009

Oslo Airport Gardermoen

Hi, just back from Norway and for those into flying, I’ve got here some airplane and airport eye candies while I work on my Oslo fotos.

Flight to Norway is about 2 hours including taxiing. The flight itself was uneventful; I mostly spent my time reading the travel entries in the in-flight magazine. One of the interesting stories there is a Norwegian couple who got married in a romantic chateau in France. For the Norwegians, and their astronomical eye-popping prices duly inflated with government tax, it is much cheaper for them to wed outside their home land. Or, to vacation all the time and stay away from home.

We took Norwegian Air, the new price fighter airline company of Norway. They fly direct to Oslo and Copenhagen from Amsterdam.I’m not fond of flying. I get tense when its take off and landing. And when there is turbulence I try to diffuse my nervousness by forcing myself to nap.

There are a few airports in Norway but the main international airport is called Oslo Airport Gardermoen located about 50 kilometers north of Oslo in the Akershus region.

Now here’s something to fittingly rave about the Gardermoen Airport: It is a glass house! There is so much light everywhere and I can perfectly understand why there is a need. During late autumn, throughout the winter until early spring, darkness envelops the whole country with during winter only having 4 to 5 hours of daylight. So with placing glass walls and glass ceilings, this bids a positive psychological effect that facilitates a much lighter and happier atmosphere. Light always livens up the mood. Even the tube connecting the airport gates to the airplanes are made of glass.

Here is a couple of unfortunate baggage's falling off from the cart in Gardermoen during handling from the plane to the baggage belt. Aside from this, we witnessed a young blonde man (local methinks) handcuffed and literally dragged by his feet, while protesting, by two police officers.
The glass see-through tube from the airport gate to the airplane and queuing up for our take-off turn on the runway.
As a visitor, the easiest and cost-effective way to get from Oslo Aiport to Oslo Sentralstasjon (Oslo Central Station) is by train, and the best choice, which unfortunately is not advertised visibly in the airport, is the NSB train, the country’s national train. The local stop train takes roughly 25 minutes to get to Oslo Sentral. One-way ticket is 102 NOK per person, and re-tour is 204 NOK, which is about €24. Not cheap.

When leaving Oslo S to the airport, take the Lillehammer stop train as this stop in Oslo Airport Gardermoen. Don’t mistake this with the Lillestrom train!

The other train option from the Oslo Airport to Oslo Sentral is the expensive airport express train called Flytoget. I strongly suggest--use this only if you are going to Norway on business and you need to be at your meeting early. Flytoget Express Train takes 19 minutes to get to Oslo Sentral and services the tracks 6x per hour. Not much difference in time really compared to the national train but the price, yes! One-way ticket is 170 NOK and re-tour ticket is 340 NOK, a whopping almost €40 train ticket! The price closely rivals Heathrow Express and Gatwick Express but not comparable really because the UK railway and London metro is a complete enigma for someone who is not local. Norway railway on the other hand is very straightforward.

Dutchman likes to film take-offs and landings. He is crazy about airplanes or anything artifical that flies . He should have been a pilot.
Our plane, Norwegian Air enroute to Amsterdam flying above Oslo or nearby in the surroundings.
Dutchman describes the city as a ‘uitgegroeid dorp’ which means—a developed [insert smirk here] village. Oslo is really small, 10 minutes of biking and you will find yourself in the outskirts of the city already.

Still, I’d like to go back there sometime in the near future to see the Fjords. I’ve already done some research, about 1200 kilometers coastal drive from Kristiansand to Trondheim via picturesque towns of Stavanger and Bergen, but I plan to combine this trip with boat and train to cover all the bases.

More stories about Oslo soon. 

Travel Period: September 2009
Destination: Akershus (Ostlandet), Norway

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