Life in Norway in 2015

Godt Nyttår / Happy New Year!

Thanks to all of you who read and shared my Life in Norway Review of the Year. Although I'm trying to stay away from the insipid goal-setting and resolution posts, I do want to share with some of my plans for the year ahead, so you can decide whether to stick around or not!

If you do, and I hope you do, please sign up to Norway Weekly. It's by far the easiest way to stay in touch with not only what I'm publishing, but also everything important that's happening in Norway every week. Over 1,800 of you read the newsletter each week and I'd love to hit 2,000 as soon as possible.

Anyway, onwards!

Write more

I'm going to try and write every day, no excuses. This means finding some quiet time with no distractions so I can write at least 500 words each and every day. Most likely this will be first thing in the morning. If I can achieve 500 words each day, I'll have written 182,500 words by this time next year. That's over two decent-sized novels.

However, this doesn't mean I'll fill the blog up with meaningless content. To help meet this target, I have a few projects up my sleeve.

Firstly, I'm planning to release more Kindle books following a successful experiment with Christmas in Norway. My second title is almost ready so watch out for that later this month. Secondly, I'm spreading my wings and looking for more outlets. My Norway freelance writing already appears in publications as far afield as Estonia, Latvia and the United States, but there's always room for more.

Writing is what I love to do, so in 2015 I aim to do more. Simples!

Learn more about Sami culture

Sami flag
Sami flag

This is an area of Norwegian culture I've barely touched on in the three-and-a-half years of this blog's life. The Sami are the indigenous people of an enormous Arctic area covering not only most of northern Norway, but parts of Sweden, Finland and Russia too.

There's so much to discover here on topics such as the Sami Parliament, the fascinating language, the colourful dress, and the relationship to reindeer and the outdoors.

Visit Bodø on the Nordland line

The Nordland line is Norway's longest railway, covering 729km between Trondheim and Bodø, passing through Stjørdal, Levanger, Verdal, Steinkjer, Mosjøen, Mo i Rana and Fauske. Whilst not as renowned as the Bergen line or even the Dovre line (between Oslo and Trondheim), the journey passes the Arctic circle and at just 249kr in advance, is easily the cheapest way to reach Bodø. Of course, passing the time on the nine-hour (!) journey will be a challenge, even if I choose the night train.

Bodø itself a compact regional centre with strong military links and plenty to keep the curious visitor occupied for a day or two.

Publish more interviews

Over the years I've spoken with some fascinating people who live in Norway: former professional footballer Trevor Morley, British Olympic skier Andrew Musgrave, and award-winning coffee guru Tim Wendleboe. Over at Technoport, the other outlet for my blogging, my interview with the new Innovation Norway CEO Anita Krohn Traaseth spread around the internet like wildfire.

I love finding people's stories and sharing them with you all, and I have an exciting list of people I'd like to interview this year. If there's someone you'd love to hear from, just let me know in the comments below and I'll see what I can do.

Visit Lofoten

Svolvær, Lofoten
Svolvær, Lofoten

The Lofoten archipelago remains the one place in Norway I'm still desperate to go to, but I'm not sure if I'll have the time or money this year. Fingers crossed I make it, because the scenery around these islands is breathtaking. A cycle trip has been highly recommended to me although I'm not sure I'm fit enough for it… perhaps cruising by on the Hurtigruten is the best way to see Lofoten? Let me know, peoples!

Answer more questions

You wouldn't believe how many questions I receive asking about life in Norway. Every single day. Despite a note on the contact page making it clear I can't help to find people jobs, I receive the same emails time and time again. Some are incredibly detailed – information on the person's experience, family, even health – and some are just begging for work. Others ask about travel, some about the climate, and even some about schools and bringing up children.

I can't answer every email but I do want to help. So in 2015, I plan to release more content aimed at answering these kind of questions. Some may be in the form of blog posts, some through $0.99 Kindle books, some may even be in the form of a training course or eBook.

As a prominent blogger, I'll do my best to better answer your questions. These are my plans for 2015. What are yours?

Photo credit: Florian Seiffert

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About the Author: David Nikel

Originally from the UK, David now lives in Trondheim and was the original founder of Life in Norway back in 2011. He now works as a freelance writer for technology companies in Scandinavia.

4 Comments

  1. Visiting Bodø is very recomended:) The National Aviation Museum (Luftfartsmuseet) is highly recommended, but after that I’d best describe Bodø as a doughnut, a black hole in the middle with AMACING nature around it. The coast line of Helgeland south of Bodø is several times listed as the most beautiful coast line in Norway, and on a nice and clear day you can see the whole “Lofotveggen”, the mountains in Lofoten. The city calls itself “the eagle city” because of the large amount of sea eagles in the area.

    The inhabitants are the most active users of the local nature in Norway, more or less everyone is taking walks, padling etc. It makes Bymarka in Trondheim seem dull and small. The Popular local top is Keiservarden, a 1 hour walk with great view, also used as a concert scene once a year during one of the music festivals.

    Further from the town you have stunning mountains starting at sea level (but at 500-1200 meters they are not as hard for a daytrip), Mjelle is a fantastic beach with red sand (and more stunning mountains), caves, Kjærringøy trading post, Svartisen/Engabreen glaciers, the worlds strongest tidal current Saltstraumen (great fishing) and more. Everthing starts in Bodø, even the ferry to Lofoten.

    As for the train: take the day train in the light days, and once you are done with the dark green forests of Trøndelag prepare to pass your time staring at the stunning landscape, esp. when crossing Saltfjellet and down into Saltdal. It newer gets old or boring, not even on your 10th trip back to the ugly city with beauty all around it. (and sorry for the wall of text!)

    1. Hi TJ, thanks so much for the detailed comment! Some great info in there. It sounds like some extra planning will be required to get the most of the area, rather than just getting the train and wandering around the city 🙂

  2. You can take Hurtigruten from Bodø across to Lofoten and up. We did it in August. Took our car on the ship then drove around. Near Svolvaer the ship went into Trollfjord which was very cool. It doesn’t always do that as it depends on the weather. They had the spotlight going looking for Trolls. We met some students travelling around Lofoten and Vesteralen by coach so that might work for you. At the top, at the town of Andenes, we did whale watching. THAT was amazing. Also a lovely area. We hope to get back there and would consider the train from Oslo so looking forward to your report 🙂 Cheers

  3. Lofoten has been my favorite place to visit in Norway. I have a friend with a home there, which is probably the best way to visit. (Make this a criterion for friendship with any new people you meet? Joking, of course.) We went by car and took the Skutvik – Solvær ferry. I highly recommend visiting Eggum & making the walk around the coast through the Eggum naturreservat where you can see the remains of an old German fort as well as a beautiful and interesting sculpture as you walk along the gorgeous coastline. Henningsvær and Reine are also beautiful if you want somewhere less remote.
    I hope you’ll make it there this year!

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