An article from Donald Lewis
The most unexpected trip to take this spring isn't to some super-exclusive villa — it's to travel to Norway. You may think that these Scandinavians are just a bunch of weird hillbillies, but these people got some excellent tourist attractions.
Norway offers international crowds and is known for being pricey, but, of course, it'll let you escape the heat.
On your travel to Norway, and once you touch down in the country's capital city, you could spend days exploring the area on foot. Museum hop from the National Gallery to the Holmenkollen Ski Museum, and don't stop until you've witnessed history and culture unfold at the Viking Ship, Polarship Fram or Folk Museums on Bygdoy.
Though Oslo is one of Europe's largest capitals, it has one of the smallest populations. That didn't stop people from building a striking, white opera house on the waterfront that could make even Sydney a bit jealous.
Enjoy lunch and views from the roof or catch a show if you can.
Abandoned cliff-side farms, towering waterfalls and twisty mountain walls make the ferry ride between Geiranger and Hellesylt a must-see on any travel to Norway.
Geirangerfjord, a UNESCO World Heritage Site, boasts several waterfalls, including the Seven Sisters, the Suitor and the Bridal Veil.
Though the village of Geiranger has noticeably waned due to an influx of visitors over the years, the scenery seen from an open-air seat on the top deck of the hour-long ferry makes it worth it.
If you and a partner are feeling adventurous, unpack your motorcycle jackets, strap on a camera and rent a motorbike for the day.
The Sykkelguide booklet, available at any tourist office in town, includes maps of 10 bike routes around Lofoten, according to LonelyPlanet.com.
Wooden stave churches are scattered across Norway and come in all shapes and sizes. The Urnes Stave Church (photo: Nina Aldin Thune) in the natural setting of Sogn og Fjordane was built in the 12th and 13th centuries and is a true example of early elaborate Scandinavian architecture, according to UNESCO.org.
Whatever the form, these wooden architectural masterpieces, may make you feel as you're living a fairytale.
The nearly five kilometer hike may cost you a few sore muscles, but the view from the edge of Pulpit Rock will be worth it. Photo: Stefan Krause, Germany
Preikestolen has become one of Norway's signature spots — a sheer cliff plateau that towers about 600 meters above the waters of Lysefjord.
Upon first glance, you may wonder how travelers venture so close to the edge — some even dangle their feet off the side — but as you get closer you may find yourself being drawn to the ledge for spectacular vistas seen in few other places, in the world.
As the total hike (not including time spent on the plateau) can take four to five hours, pack water, food and a wind or waterproof jacket.
Though you can't predict or plan on the Aurora Borealis, travelers visiting Norway between October and March can usually catch a glimpse of the colorful natural phenomena as it dances across the sky.
The Northern Lights are visible on dark winter nights, and the lights often shift in intensity and form, making the view unique and memorable for anyone lucky enough to experience it.
Hundreds of colorful, cute timber-clad houses line the streets and waterfront of this beautiful, charming city of Bergen.
Also classified as a UNESCO World Heritage site, Bryggen and Vagen Harbour are the city's centerpiece.
In summer, the area can get a bit crowded, but any other time of year the great museums, friendly locals and stunning views offer a fun and cultural experience.
If you make a travel to Norway, seeing Bergen is a must, and when you are in town: Concider a journey on the Hurtigruten Classic Cruise.
About the author: Donald Lewis
Don's been to Japan, India, New Zealand, Australia and Taiwan. He's visited almost every country in Africa and every province in Canada. He hopes to travel the world before it's time for him to leave the planet.