Norway, the Worlds’ Happiest Country.

Just over a month ago, I visited Norway.

It all began with me Google-ing away adventurous holidays  – hiking adventures, mountain climbing and polar bear encounters, whale watching and all the crazy fun stuff!

Since looking up places for an adventurous holiday was in the cards for me, I wanted to make sure I did it right, do my research and homework. It’s got to be something a little different, something a lot more unusual to the normal holidays that I am accustomed by.

I read blogs and articles, reviews on Tripadvisors, checked for holiday packages within the budget because I want a holiday that does not break the bank. This was my responsible duty for the next few days – just reading! Not complaining about it as I love reading.

Only when I stumbled upon an incredible blog by Silvia Lawrence ( the link below ), on Norwegians and the country, Scandinavian culture and architecture, the breathtakingly beautiful sceneries of the Fjords, that intrigued me to further my research on Norway.

Please check in her blog —   https://www.heartmybackpack.com/norway/helpful-norwegian-scandinavian-habits/

I was enjoying my read so much and it made me very excited that I knew that instant, my next holiday had to be – Tromsø, Norway.

Tromsø – situated at the north most of Norway and close to the Arctic Circle, is and has been a major tourist attraction for nature lovers, wildlife enthusiasts and hunters of the Aurora Borealis or Northern Lights in winter and also the Midnight Sun during summer.

So, holiday and apartment booked along with a long list of to-dos!

I can tell you about the adventures that brought me a new perspective on life and the way it opened new opportunities. But then, where is the fun in all that without some visual actions? See, you smile and agree.

Go on. Check in to the photographs of my panoramic adventures; a 5-hour Fjord cruise and wildlife watching, my first ever mountain climbing experience in Kvaløya, hiking and a rocky climb to the Lyngen Alps and Blåvatnet ( Blue Lake, which lived up to its reputation).

It has been weeks since I came home from Tromsø this summer, yet the memories are as ethereal and bright as the midnight sun which I enjoyed day and night.

I still have more of Norway to explore. And I will go back again and again. Till then, these photographs will capture its beauty in my memory.

 

Tromsø, Norway.

Tromsø is a city in the north of Norway. It is located in the Arctic Circle and is popular among tourists for the spectacular sightings of the Northern Lights during winter and the Midnight Sun in summer.

The Port and Mainland in Tromso from the City Centre.

 

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A walk to the park near the apartment led me to this beach. The view was breathtakingly beautiful.

I love boats and ships and yachts.

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A 5-hour day trip – Fjord Cruise Arctic Wildlife.

 

 

 

The Rower.

The most difficult of cardio for me – rowing machine! But, it is a great exercise equipment which targets the whole body and a must do for weight loss, toning up and to build muscles in your body.

Ever since I started gymming, the rowing machine has played a massive role not only on the above mentioned for its benefits, but also to build stamina, increase energy and build endurance.

As I suffered knee pain due to weight gain years ago, running and cycling was not an easy task. I often skip the treadmill and bikes fearing the pain it caused during and after my workouts.

Since my fitness journey was all about weight loss, muscle gains and toning up – I was introduced to the rowing machine by my Personal Trainer.

Practise makes perfect! And months after rowing and slowly introducing running, I lost a lot of weight! And I have a soft spot for this amazing machine.

If you’re looking to add more cardio in your workout routine, get straped to the rowing machine in your local gym and feel your heart rate increase the flow of oxygen in to your lungs!

Share with me your fitness goals and journey. Let’s get healthy together! 😊💪🏽

London Calling To the Faraway Towns…

glory

Big Ben before renovation works.

 

Tower Bridge, a combined Bascule, and Suspension Bridge.

Tower of London – Her Majesty’s Royal Palace and Fortress of the Tower of London.

 

St Paul’s Cathedral – Dome                      The Gherkin              St Paul’s Cathedral

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The Shard, Obelisk, London Eye, River Thames, Palace of Westminster and Elizabeth Tower, Liverpool Station, Piccadilly Circus and Regent Street and the iconic Red Bus.

Buckingham Palace, the London residence, and administrative HQ of the                               Monarch of the United Kingdom.

 

London Eye, height 135m, a gigantic Ferris Wheel on the South Bank of the River Thames. Has 32 ovoidal passenger capsules can hold up to 25 people, and the most popular paid tourist attraction in the United Kingdom.

Go Bananas for Bananas!

Bananas – a staple for many tropical populations. Botanically categorised as a berry, produced by several kinds of herbaceous flowering plants in the genus Musa. Cavendish bananas are commercially available in our supermarkets and commonly consumed all over. Its primary content is composed of Carbohydrates along with other minerals and antioxidants. Bananas are known for its Potassium, Vitamin C, Catechin ( disease-fighting Flavonoids ) and resistant starch. So, eat at least 1 banana a day and reaps the benefits to a healthier you!

A Revisited Land, Became My Home.

I visited the UK as a tourist, 18 years ago.  As I arrived at the gates for Arrivals at Terminal 5, the feeling of absolute freedom filled my senses. Right at that moment, I knew, I’ve found my path.

The United Kingdom consists of four countries, England, Northern Ireland, Scotland and Wales. The country’s parliamentary democracy is ruled under the constitutional monarchy, our Queen Elizabeth II is the Head of State. Long Live the Queen!!

Since I was a tourist, I had a list of touristy stuff to do. Places to visit, photographs to capture, food and drink to experience, and so on.

I hopped on the Jubilee Line and walked to Westminster from London Bridge. There it was the Palace of Westminster. I stood there for almost an hour admiring its’ English Gothic architecture, quite a perpendicular gothic revival style, known to be prevalent from late 14th to mid 16th centuries owing to its’ unique characterizations, arches, vaults and archery windows. I went back again, this time at night. It looked stunning than ever!

Big Ben the Great Bell and Clock Tower, is 159 years old and stands tall at 315 feet, has 11 floors ( which is currently under renovation works, 2017 – 2020, there will be a lift! ). The Clock Tower was renamed Elizabeth Tower in 2012 to mark the Diamond Jubilee of our Queen. If you’ve visited England and been to London to see our Queens’ reign and walked the street of Westminster, then you definitely remember your first feeling of the Big Ben Chimes 15, 30 and 45 minutes past the hour. Although the bells have been silenced due to the renovation works, it has not stopped tourists from swarming in and around Westminster to capture this historical British cultural icon!

Tower Bridge – a combined bascule and suspension bridge, that crosses the River Thames and often confused to London Bridge ( you can see the red bridge from here ).

And since you are here, don’t miss your chance to visit Her Majesty’s Royal Palace and Fortress of the Tower of London. The castle has played a prominent role in the English history and the home of the Crown Jewels of England! I saw an actual Koh-i-Noor diamond ( originally owned by the Kakatiya dynasty ) which was surrendered to Queen Victoria after the British conquest of Punjab.

As my holiday came to an end, I was sad to go. I still had other parts of England and Great Britain to see and explore.

I left determined that I will return someday. This is what I told my mom, I am going back there someday, two years from now actually, and it will be my home.

And I did come back 2 years later.

England –  The country that I adored so much… that I fell in love and made it my home!

Venture Life Through Travels.

Every land I’ve travelled has thought me about my existence. I’ve stood in front of Monuments and Buildings that shaped our history. I’ve walked the same path where history was rewritten. I’ve heard languages spoken which I only knew through literature. All my childhood and teenage life, I spent more time with books rather than people. It opened my mind to creativity, to imaginative lands and the love of writing. Now, I’ve given myself the opportunity to spend time with nature, this incredible planet and its many occupants! So when and if you get a chance, please travel. For me, it’s very personal. I discover a little more about myself. Adapting to this new environment and being a part of this land, regardless of the duration of my stay. It always feels like I’ve lived a completely different character than mine, from a book, yet to be written! Perhaps by me…