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Traveling to Scandinavia and Iceland
Old 02-15-2014, 10:10 AM   #1
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Traveling to Scandinavia and Iceland

I am taking my family on an extended trip to the Scandinavian countries, including Iceland, this summer. I am finding out (a little late) just how expensive this area is.

Has anyone traveled here and do you have any recommendations for lodging, dining, must see places or things to do thing and places to avoid in:
Copenhagen
Bergen
Oslo
Trondheim
Stockholm
Reykjavik

Any input is appreciated.
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Old 02-15-2014, 11:01 AM   #2
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Haven't been yet, but prior to our cruise this Fall, (which departs from Copenhagen and visits a few places on your list), we booked a room, (in a lady's apartment), via Wimdu, (we also used HouseTrip in Prague & Barcelona....they both offer rooms/apartments)......still not cheap in Copenhagen, but cheaper than hotels.


There's another airbnb that we found but haven't used.
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Old 02-15-2014, 11:01 AM   #3
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I used to travel to Copenhagen a lot for w*rk. It's very easy to walk around the city, I used to do that a lot on my own. Dunno if these would appeal to a family group, but these were a few of my favorite places:

In downtown CPH there's the Botanical Garden, I could wander through there for hours. One afternoon I went there right after my flight from CA, sat down on a bench and proceeded to fall asleep.
Botanical Garden – University of Copenhagen

Also, wandering around the pedestrian street (Strøget), window shopping and stopping for a coffee someplace was very nice.

The Louisiana Art Museum is an easy train ride from Copenhagen. Even if you're not into modern art, the grounds of the museum are lovely. Louisiana Museum of Modern Art - Louisiana Museum of Modern Art
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Old 02-15-2014, 11:09 AM   #4
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Rosie: Is Christiania still in existence*? Figure it might be an interesting place to explore while in Copenhagen.

*Heard it might be 'dismantled'.
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Old 02-15-2014, 11:30 AM   #5
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I have not been to any Scandinavian country, but the OP's screen name reminds me of the following song, which is originally an Italian song.

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Old 02-15-2014, 12:13 PM   #6
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Nemo2 View Post
Rosie: Is Christiania still in existence*? Figure it might be an interesting place to explore while in Copenhagen.

*Heard it might be 'dismantled'.
I honestly don't know, it's been ~ 8 years since I've been to CPH. I may need to remedy that soon.
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Old 02-15-2014, 01:39 PM   #7
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Iceland - rent a car and make a day trip or longer to the interior. The snow will be gone in the summer and there is some beautiful scenery in the national parks.

Copenhagen - There's a lot to see and do just wandering around, as Rosie mentioned. We used Airbnb to find a room near Tivoli Gardens and the train station.

Christiania - Yes, go see it. May not be appropriate for children. It was there in 2011.
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Old 02-15-2014, 02:24 PM   #8
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Memories from traveling to several of those cities as a 12 year old, over 40 years ago:
  • Tivoli
  • Wasa viking ship
  • The Little Mermaid statue
  • Buying Mickey Mouse and Archie comic books in strange languages
  • Oslo-Bergen train ride (both the scenery and my brother getting his head stuck in the bunk bed ladder)
  • A ferry boat ride
  • Collecting a sample of each coin from the countries visited
  • Not being bored while my parents checked out the cool Danish housewares and furniture
  • Realizing that most Danes and Norwegians aren't blond
  • My mom buying me a traditional heavy wool sweater. (It was eventually handed down to my younger brothers, but it never wore out.)
  • Seeing a ski jump (Holmenkollen)
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Old 02-15-2014, 05:23 PM   #9
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We camped in Iceland and went on an Icelandic horseback ride. Eridanus provided good advice about national parks. Icebergs and lava fields are very cool. Go to the public pools and the non-tourist steam bath. The artwork in R. was free and fun to see. As I remember lodging was not too expensive ( obviously camping was cheap & other lodging was reasonable). Food was expensive. We got a kick out of visiting the phallic museum not because it was a great museum but just the idea of the museum. Not sure it is still open.
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Old 02-15-2014, 07:17 PM   #10
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Some friends of mine went to Iceland. They said they never wanted to see mutton again.

Ha
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Old 02-17-2014, 08:55 PM   #11
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We have been to all the Scandinavian countries except Iceland. A few money-saving tips that helped us:
- rent a place thru airbnb, ideally with a kitchen
- food and drinks were the most expensive, so having a kitchen was super helpful. We would go to a grocery store, shop for breakfast items and usually ended up preparing a sandwich to carry with us during the day.
- use public transportation - we bought the 72 hour passes in Stockholm and the 48 hour pass in Oslo. We also took trains and ferries (depending on the length of your trip, consider the eurail Scandinavia pass)
- we took the overnight ferry from Stockholm to Oslo; then again from Oslo to Helsinki. Not only was it a fun experience, it saved a couple of nights of accommodation costs.
- if you do take the ferries and have a Eurail pass, remember to ask for the discount. Also, don't pre-book the buffet breakfast or dinner on the ferry. They are super expensive and crowded. There are smaller deli/ snack stand kind of places scattered throughout the ship. They are better value for money
- in Oslo, I think we used a museum pass.

Scandinavia is just so lovely in the summer... You will love it. Just walk around and enjoy the great design and architecture.
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Old 02-24-2014, 06:46 AM   #12
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Here´s something I wrote in the Seasickness thread:
I lived in Keflavik, Iceland for a year. You will be tempted to visit the Blue Lagoon. It is a big tourist trap. It is actually a geo-thermal plant of some sort with a big lake full of runoff water. They charge you to swim in this runoff with a bunch of non-Icelanders.

As an alternative, I suggest the Reykjavik public swimming pool. It will actually be full of locals and the water is much hotter and much cleaner than the Blue Lagoon. There are various temperature hot tubs, an olympic size pool, and a slide or two, not to mention steam rooms and tall blonde Icelandic women. It is probably 5% of the price of the Blue Lagoon
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Old 02-24-2014, 07:01 AM   #13
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Rent a car for Iceland so you can see Dettifoss, Gulfoss, Seljalandsfoss, Thingvellir, the black sand beaches, and Jokulsarlon (the bay full of Icebergs featured in James Bond Die Another Day). Also, take rain gear and lots of warm clothes including gloves and winter hat regardless of the time of year.
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