So you think Norway is expensive? Maybe. Maybe not.
In Oslo, yes, dining in is expensive. With the tax added in plus the table fee, of course, we think it is insanely expensive.
However, eating in Oslo (or in Norway, in general) doesn’t have to be expensive.
Case in point, food trucks! With food trucks, there are a lot of relatively cheaper food options with greater quality at accessible and convenient locations.
The lower operation cost of food truck industry while providing high quality service and food options may be the most obvious rationale why there are a lot of food trucks in Oslo. The perfect choice for travellers looking for quick-stop convenient access to food without the super excessive cost!
Staying in Aker Brygge area, these are the food trucks available with the view.
Late afternoon, these 4-5 food trucks will line up and open right at the Promenade leading to Aker Brygge. Perfect for hungry stomachs craving dinner/ snack/ very late lunch after exploring/ doing business/ enjoying Oslo city!
Stay tuned. We are still in Oslo, Norway for ten days or so and really intend to hunt more food trucks! If you are also in the city and knows of food trucks to check out, give us a shout out!
The Akershus Fortress was built to protect Oslo and had successfully survived many attempted sieges, most of them from Swedish forces.
Fast forward to present date, the central location of the Akershus Fortress makes it the number one tourist landmarks in Oslo. The city’s landscape with the sea view can give anybody and calming and relaxing experience.
Akershus festning or the Akershus Fortress was built in the late 1290s under King Haakon V.
The fortress protects the fabulous medieval castle completed in 14th century, in its strategic location at the tip of the headland.
The fortress close proximity to the sea played a strategic naval power in protecting the interests of early Norwegian trade which was mainly sea-based during the period.
The fortress has also bee used as a prison and now houses The Norwegian Resistance Museum.
The Norwegian Military and Armed Forces still in operation in the fortress, playing around with the fortress defense “attack cannons” was then main thing to do for our peace-loving little travellers.
All those things, above all, the view and family bonding in a relaxed setting!
The view is majestic, to say the least. The landscape, the luxury cruises and yachts make the Oslo horizon perfect when viewed from the fortress.
With this fortress gate, those Swedish invasions never stood a chance!
Dating from 1299, this medieval castle and royal residence developed into a fortress in 1592 and was rebuilt into a renaissance castle between 1637 and 1648.Akershus Castle today contains banquet halls, the Royal Mausoleum and the government’s reception rooms, and its small, historic church is the home of the royal sarcophagi.Norwegian name: Akershus slott
The medieval castle is perfect for our knight-loving traveling little man. Just see how proud he looks by the castle entrance.
The medieval castle serves as the Mausoleum for Norwegian Royalties including King Sigurd I, King Haakon V, King Haakon VI, Queen Eufemia, King Olav V and Crown Princess Martha.
Knowing the actual royalties are buried in the castle, somehow, makes it cooler for our traveling boy!
Not to mention, real live knights protecting the castle! Well, live knights – yes! Real? Am they are working towards being awesome knights by practice, not by being anointed.
Truth be told, we chance upon the knights club practicing in the castle square which took up most of our time exploring the medieval castle and it was very well worth it. Watching the knights in semi-costume fight is amusing in itself.
Exploring Akershus Fortress easily took a full day for us. Top with ice cream after, it was a perfect family day in Oslo, Norway!
Love knights and medieval castle? Consider exploring Oslo’s Akershus festning or the Akershus Fortress!
By baking the country’s popular pastry! This time around, as we can’t contain our excitement for Norway, the traveling dad baked us no less than the world’s best cake!
Kvæfjordkake is popularly referred to as ‘the world’s best’. The key ingredients are meringue, vanilla cream and almonds. This sponge cake is known and enjoyed throughout Norway and can be considered as Norway’s national cake.
Imagine fresh eggs white used to make the delectable, chewy, almost crispy, almond flavoured meringue. The fresh egg yolks are then used to make the sponge base and custard filling.
The key ingredient is eggs. The whites are used to make the crisp, chewy almond meringue, and the yolks to make both the sponge base and the custard filling.
The cake originates from Kvæfjord, an area close to Vesterålen and Lofoten in the north of Norway. Despite much of the area being mountains and fjords, it’s known for agriculture and farming, strawberries and eggs come in plenty!
So, how did our Kvæfjordkake fair with actual cake we got from Drøbak ,Norway? Well, not far and it didn’t disappoint. We have the becoming of a great chef in Norway! Hospitality recruiters, hear ye! Hear ye!
Have you tried Kvæfjordkake? Well, did that slice of heaven live up to the hype?
“Today is your day! Your mountain is waiting, so get on your way! “ – Dr. Seuss
Ohhh my! Time flies when we our family is on our goal realization/ exploring mode. It seems ages ago when we left Omaha, Nebraska on an overnight train to Denver, Colorado.
In Denver, we have walked the nostalgia lane with the Turknoy Dad as he reminisced his good old days as a working bachelor in the city. Has it been eleven years already since he left US just to meet the Turknoy Mom? Gosh, are we on some time warp speed loop?! ❤️
After two days in Denver, meeting old friends and enjoying Denver Children Museum, off we went for a road trip around Colorful Colorado! And indeed, it was a colorful road trippin’.
First road trip in the USA and off we passed by State Highway 5, the highest paved road in Road America. What a scenic route it is towards Mr. Evans with an altitude 14,264 feet (4,347 m)!
We head on to Aspen, Colorado hoping for fall foliage. We got that and way more, four seasons! We arrived in Aspen in a very gorgeous fall weather, and woke up to several inches of snow in the morning, summer-y mid-morning, spring in the afternoon and fall again in the afternoon.
The snow didn’t stop us from hiking the Maroon Bells. The most photographed peaks in North America, so we’ve read.
We also experienced our first family snowy hike, up to the Maroon Crater Lake. It took us more than two hours to hike up the Crater Lake, barely few minutes before the sunset. We were the last one on the Crater Lake, it feels extravagantly majestic and terrifying at the same time. The kids needed to answer nature’s call, figuratively and literally. After the pee-pp and the family selfie almost every corner of the lake, we had to rush to go back down. We made it in the dark, using our mobile phone as flashlights, of course, not without scary stories and grateful fun ramblings from all of us.
We have blisters in our feet, and the fantastic traveling dad carried our youngest traveller/ hiker up his shoulder almost all the way! Such strength. We didn’t tell anyone that adventure with young kids is easy, right? It’s worth it, but nothing worth it comes easy, right?
The hiking we’ve done, the weather conditions, the challenges we’ve overcome will always be fondly and profoundly remebered. After all, this is what Turknoy Travels 100 is all about. It’s about realizing milestones we never even considered yet together because we are still part of the matrix of society’s rules.
Of course, after the adventure, we explored the very fancy city of Aspen, Colorado and off we went to two places we almost always go in any city we explore – bookstore and playground. If any city or town doesn’t have any of these, it’s really an indication of the village, isn’t it?
Basalt , Colorado
Although we explored Aspen and Snowmass Billage quite extensively, we stayed the nights in a nearby city, almost one hour drive away from Aspen, Basalt. Basalt turned out to be a like Aspen, and better. Roaring Fork Valley is a river paradise for us. Basalt sits at the confluence of two Gold Medal rivers, the Frying Pan River and the Roaring Fork River, which is Paradise!!!
Known as “Little Aspen,” Vail, Colorado is another fancy, skiing and snowboarding, gorgeous, beautiful little town tucked away at the base of Vail Mountain within the White River National Forest.
Colorado Springs, Colorado
From West to South, we drove almost three hours to enjoy the magnificent landscapes of the Rocky Mountains to visit the Garden of Gods in Colorado Springs. A drive worth every minute.
Road trip with kids in Colorado? We’ll do it again in a heartbeat!
“By the pricking of my thumbs, something wicked this may come. ” – William Shakespeare, Macbeth
Okay, the traveling parents caved in with the kids with regards to participating in a Halloween party while in USA. It’s not that we don’t celebrate Halloween. It’s not that we agree that it’s anti- religion nor anti-God. It may be a country tradition but how we see it is more like a commercial manipulation while waiting for Thanksgiving and Christmas season. Bring on the pumpkins, the season spices, costumes and gazillion candies and the retailers had October and November sales covered.
Boy, did we see how customers shopped and crammed getting the costumes. It’s part of what made us want to be part of it – better to experience it once, rather than be nagging on the edge of being bitter about it every year. So, off we celebrate Halloween, kids costumes, party and sweets!
Having said that, we choose a free Halloween event and oh boy, did we enjoy.. and the kids, too! It’s a family event in a great weather with friendly awesome people by Lake Champlain. It’s a fabulous event. We are very glad to joined.
Halloween Howl in Burlington, Vermont is a spooktakular good time on a hay ride and wandering through the haunted walk with costume contest, music and games!
Feels like superheroes walking around in the park, the forest, by the lake and in bouncy castle, that’s one awesome afternoon spent in Burlington, Vermont.
Our family members in character while one in nature is a perfect way to celebrate an awesome Halloween Howl in Burlington, Vermont.
What’s your Halloween plan? Do share Halloween traditions you do with your family.
“I love it. You know, I was born almost a mile away from here, and I’ve never have a bad experience in Omaha. Omaha and Nebraska are home to me. It’s a pace. It’s relationships. There’s a lot of continuity. There’s a lot of community. There’s a lot of friendship. It’s a very solid place, a friendly place in which to grow up and in which to conduct a business. ” – Warren Buffet, Becoming Warren Buffet, on why he chooses to live in Omaha.
We tried to find where Warren Buffet, the world’s richest multibillionaire, lives. We managed to get to his mailing address and we tried to get all the billionaire vibes in the area. Omaha has lots of gorgeous houses, it’s easy to imagine Warren Buffet’s home in the city.
To be able to get around Omaha, Nebraska, we needed to rent a car and realized that fact later on after walking from the train station wee hours in the morning, coming straight from our Chicago, Illinois family travel and waking up way too early walking around the very quiet, almost deserted city, with not even a single cab is available.
Off we went to the city’s airport and rented a car to roam the city. At the airport, we realized the the city has lady Mayor! Yay, raising global girls needed a discussion of a little bit of governance of the world and what part do ladies of power play.
We then hang out at the Old Market after realizing that we won’t be able to find Warren Buffet’s house.
After driving around the city and the nearby cities in Nebraska, we went to do exactly an “American” fall/ autumn tradition… Visit a farm, explore a corn maze and pumpkin patch. We picked our pumpkin but of course, didn’t buy any.
Going back to Omaha, we got tempted yet again to visit local bookstore and had another share of our family book haul.
We didn’t want to leave the Bookstore, but dinner called and we enjoyed a very scrumptious local dinner at Upstream Brewing Company.
If Omaha is a glimpse of Mid West USA, then we definitely need to be back soon to explore the region.
What cities in the Midwest USA would you recommend?
“Eventually, I think Chicago will be the most beautiful great city left in the world.” – Frank Lloyd Wright
We were welcomed by a 100% probability of rain on our first hour in the city! Actually, strong rain welcomed our train from Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania we were scared to get out the Station Union.
Rain. Chilly and windy rain. Okay, that surprised us. A lot. Well, it’s Chicago is not called “The Windy City” for fun or pun. Windy the city really is.
Nothing can stop our family from enjoying the beauty and architecture of Chicago. Not even 100% certainty of bad weather.
Our first stop, to get equipped. We don’t like to shopping (window shopping specially nor shopping for fun — any kind if shopping for that matter. On the side note, this is actually obvious in all our family photos, we are always wearing the same clothes over and over and over and over….), but for necessity, we do what we need to. Off we went to get our traveling feet warm while we explore. Although we make sure we know the weather for days and weeks of the place we will explore, we were caught off guard by the winds of Chicago!
Armed with a lot of umbrellas and water proof shoes, we went to visit Cloud Gate Park and checked out “The Bean.” Oh boy, was it still crowded, amidst the rain.
We had a blast taking photos in this architectural wonder. Oh yeah, it seems that the phrase “architectural wonder” goes together with Chicago! The skyscrapers are extraodinaire when it comes to architecture design. Or it our visual description – fabulous and looks functional.
In addition to the Chicago skyscrapers, we visited the Chicago Cultural Center and checked out their extraordinaire biennial exhibition on Architecture! Arxhitects, designers and students everywhere socializing with our three traveling kids talking about design, construction and mine crafts. Minecrafts mainly from our Turknoys, of course. That counts.
Then comes the bronze cow in The Windy City.
The next day, we didn’t want to be overwhelmed with all the “must-sees” in Chicago, so we decided to visit the Chicago Children’s Museum. We didn’t realize we will be there for hours and hours of adult and kids fun!
There are also lots of things to see and enjoy at the Navy Pier!
Top of our list, Chicago’s famous deep dish pizza! A pizza which takes more than an hour wait to bake. Our verdic -calorific!
If you think that’s loaded, try the glazed and infused donuts, another Chicago born and raised idea of culinary speciality!
We went to Grant Park and enjoyed a nice sunny and cloudy (and windy!) stroll along the Buckingham Fountain, one of the largest in the world and one that resembles Versailles Fountain. That sounds familiar, yes, the one in France.
We spent our last day in the Water Tower Place – Dr. Seuss and Lego. Two things that these kids would want not to leave any place.
We’ve seen a little of the city but the kids did a whole lot of Chicago loving their way!
Someday, we’ll return and for sure we’ll enjoy this city more, especially the must-sees.
Have you been to Chicago? What did you love most? Do tell.