Exploring Oslo, Norway: Den Norske Opera & Ballett, Opera House

Opera House is at very close proximity at the harbor . It’s angled, white exterior looks low its rising from the wage. Climbing the roof is fun on its own, not to mention the panoramic views of Oslo and fjord, at all seasons.

And of course, our traveling family climbed up and enjoyed the sunset and the view!

Oslo’s Opera House in Spring!
The panoramic view of Oslo City seen from the top of Opera House

The opera is designed by the Norwegian architecture firm Snøhetta, and has received several prestigious awards. The Norwegian National Opera & Ballet offers a rich and varied programme from three stages: The Main House (1369 seats), Second House (400 seats) and the Studio (200 seats). The Opera roof and foyer are also used for concerts. 

Climbing up and down Oslo’s Opera House is an adventure in itself!

Enjoying the view of artistic glass sculpture “She Lies” from Oslo’s Opera House.

This art installation lies in the water just beside the Opera House; it’s axis turns with the wind and tide. Like the Opera House, unique experiences is guaranteed every time.

She splits! With the view of Oslo’s New Harbor Promenade

We have yet to visit the inside of the Opera House. There are tours available. Large-scale windows at street level provide the public with glimpses of rehearsals and workshop activities. The building’s interior is mainly oak, and the main hall is shaped like a horseshoe, reminiscent of classical theatres of the past.

Wishing, thinking of watching a performance in the Opera House during our visit to Oslo this time around. Any recommendations?

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Exploring Oslo, Norway: Akershus festning, Akershus Fortress

“Si vis pacem, para bellum”

“Let him who desires peace prepare for war.”

The Norwegian Military Academy (Krigsskolen)

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.

And his command — attack!! So much for peace 😄

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.

That medieval feel to the gate!

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.

“Real” love knights in action with the two kids watching intently.

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!

Norway Day is 17th May!

Norway is our 13th Country to visit – since then, we’ve come back for more and more and more… if we could sum up why we love this country this much, it’s because of this day – May 17.

We celebrated May 17 in Oslo. The highlight of the day is NOT a military parade but more than 60,000 children, most of them in marching bands, with Norwegian flags or in their national costumes. What a fantastic parade to watch!

We’re very excited to observe the Constitution Day Parade – combination of lots of flag, children, ice cream and fun!

Norway is a the ONLY country celebrating anything “National” without the need to show the strength of their military capabilities. They don’t need to. A confident, rich, beautiful person who made it in the world, doesn’t need to flash their big, gigantic, enormous, uummmhhmm, expensive properties to show that they indeed “made it big!” Such is a Norway-no-military parade analogy.

It may not that be, but it’s a big worldschooling lesson for kids.

That and mainly, children being the “hope” of the nation – not military.

Ben & Jerry said so…

PEACE, LOVE and ICE CREAM

A country who values children and ice cream over power and might says a lot!

Although, of course, there are also the traditional magnificent bunads everywhere today, the loyalty towards tradition is also important. Roots before wings, right?

Beautiful ladies, their bunads and our Turknoy little ladies

If those are not enough reason to include Norway’s Constitution Day in your travel bucket-list, there’s diversity! You have to be there to experience the common love and respect towards anybody. It’s a great feeling!

It’s today! #May17 and we’re in #Norge again! Don’t know which day it is? It’s only the Constitution Day, Norway Day, #IceCream Day, Flag Day, Hotdog Day, Parade Day, Children’s Day. It’s a big deal around here! ❤️ 🇧🇻️AND AND AND .. International Day against homophobia, transphobia and biphobia! Could this day get any better?! #equality #constitutionday #familytravel #familyvalues

It’s not your ordinary parade to watch, trust us. We’ve never seen such a diverse, big crowd so organized and so calm. That in itself is something to show the kids that an organized national event is completely possible, admirable and loveable! Our hearts are warm with happiness being able to observe events in this Norway Day celebration (2019!)

Would you like to observe Norway’s Constitution Day one fine May 17? 🇳🇴❤️

COUNTRY 32: USA, All Within Your Reach

“Here today, gone tomorrow.” – American Proverb
There are a lot of things to say about THE United States of America visit. At some point in both this traveling family’s parents life, The USA is The World. Well, for the dad, it was literally his world because he was in it. For the mom, that’s metaphorical. There was a time in her life that “living the American dream” is the best dream.

Delaying this country’s visit for several reasons, mainly enjoying the closest continent closest to our homebase, Qatar – Europe. Thirty-one countries after, off we went to USA!

Seriously,  we started humming… “Start spreading the news…we’re leaving today… to the City  that never sleeps! almost a month before we actually go.

Of course, we enjoyed New York – Turknoy Family Style!

We are then ready to explore other cities and states at our will, after Washington DC ! With the free museums, if we are not on schedule, we would never have left the area.
There are a lot of memorable highlights during our road trip  to half of USA with a lot of nostalgic moments for Turknoy Dad. He spent a five years in Denver,Colorado so off we went to explore the entire Colorado State to create memories with kids, and oh my, did we really have range of memorable emotions.
Several days spent in Pittsburgh, PennsylvaniaOmaha, Nebraska and Chicago, Illinois are all pleasant to our traveling senses. Not expectedly, the Chicago Children Museum turned out to be a good refuge against the wind and rain.
Truth be told, our favorite State, to date, is.. *drum rolls* The Green Mountain State. We were never-failed floored every moment by Vermont’s fall colors, with the Ben and Jerry’s Factory Tour For  Kids ,Vermont Teddy Bear for Kids, Factory Tour and Build -A-Bear , and more importantly  the community and beautiful landscapes of Burlington, Vermont . Vermont-ing seems to  be a nice future hobby for the family.
It’s was Fall 2017 when we visited The New World and since we didn’t blog about our travel goals. We are ready to go back again and now reminiscing our first visit. Our “Some Day, we’ll visit America” is now “It’s been a long time since we’ve been there; feels like ages ago.

For what it’s worth, our family travel stats for our first time visit to our 32nd country, The USA :

Travel days: 30

Days Full of Laughter: 30/30

 

Days Full of Siblings Fight:

 

States Visited:
 

Intercity Train Rides:

 

Delayed Intercity Train Rides:

 

Local Plane Rides:

 

Rent-A-Car:

 

Number of Mega Enormous, Gigantic Delicious, All-American Burgers Eaten:

 

Hotdogs From Hotdog Stands:

 

Apples:

 

Pumpkin Spice Latte:

 

Breakfast In A Bar:

 

Fall Leaves Collected:

 

Snowballs Thrown At Each Other at Bullseye:

 

Number of Days It Took To Get Over the Vacation HangOver:
Number of Days It Took Us to Blog About our USA Experience:
So, did we or did we enjoy United States of America? 

 

Road Trip In Colorado With Kids

“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)! 

This traveling couple has their kids as photographer! At Independence Pass. Freeeeeeeee!!!

Aspen, Colorado

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? 

 

Four seasons within 24-hour in Aspen, Colorado! This day is definitely going to one our favorite family memory.
“The highest place on Earth is a father’s shoulder!” We just got back home-based. Time to show Daddy’s shoulder some loving and rest. When we were in #Colorado for an extreme #fourseasonsinoneday #familytravel experience, we trekked the Maroon Lake Crater, up the #MaroonBells for more than 4-mile hike in snow day, with the youngest one up in Daddy’s shoulder!
The Turknoys and the Crater Lake And Maroon Bells! A perfect place and time to say Thank You God For All The Blessings with all our hearts together. Solemn, fun, sincere, full of love. ❤️❤️❤️❤️❤️
 

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. 

This father and some bonding moment is way too priceless, it could melt hearts. ❤️
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?   

The Explorers’ Bookstore in Aspen, Colorado
A Playground in Aspen, Colorado
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!!!

Serenity, Peace, Calm … Basalt with Kids 😌
What do you know, our family adores rivers!



Vail, Colorado 

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. 

Vail, Colorado



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 In Colorado With Kids
Garden of The Gods
“My profession is to always find God in nature. ” #HenryDavidThoreau #Colorado #GardenoftheGods
Road trip with kids in Colorado? We’ll do it again in a heartbeat! 

Ben and Jerry’s Factory Tour For Kids 

“Ice-cream is the favorite currency of love. ” – Puck


Taking a break from a beautiful weather and fall foliage paradise, off we hopped into Ben and Jerry’s Factory Tour. As if we needed more sugar and cream to add more fun with our naturally hyper traveling kids. 

As if getting a fall foliage treat in Vermont is not paradise enough, a break from nature means Ben and Jerry’s Factory Tour! Whooaaa, life is great! Thank you, God, for all the blessings!


We were given a brief introduction about the company and its mission. Well, we are indeed avid fans of mission-oriented kid-friendly activities and places  and with ice cream product, no less! Love, love, dream, travel and ice cream on. That’s what we say!

We love ice cream, we love flavors, we love colors, we love life! Does it show? 😍


Ben and Jerry’s Economic Mission: To operate a company g on a sustainable financial basis of profitable growth, increasing value for our stakeholders of profitable growth & expanding opportunities for development and career growth for our employees. 

After all, Ben and Jerry is a business and business needs to make money. The company is also has shareholders who has investment in the company and, naturally, want their investment to grow. 

Dannndaaandaannn … and at this point, the kids would know what their mom and dad would say to them.  Every family should have a similar mission. Of course, we want sustainable financial basis of continued family earnings so we can increase the value of all our family members. At this point, we achieve that by two working parents, acquired properties and calculated investments. At the end of the end, even though we aim to travel to 100 beautiful countries, islands and landmarks, we also have a mission to create little humans who will make their marks in the world.  

Economic Mission – After all Ben and Jerry’s is a business institution



Ben and Jerry’s Product Mission: To Make, distribute and seek the finest quality natural ice cream and euphoric concoctions with a continued commitment to incorporating wholesome, natural ingredients and promoting business practices that respect the Earth and the Environment. 

As a home educating and worldschooling family, this mission exactly. Of course? Instead of ice cream, we have our kids. Not actually as products but more like, the output of raising up unique individuals enhancing their natural and God-given gifts and their euphoric passions in life. In addition, with respect to the world we live in, including all the diverse living things that live in it. 

Product Mission

Ben ans Jerry’s Social Mission: To operate the Company in a way that actively recognizes the central role that business plays in society by initiating, innovative ways to improve the quality of life locally, nationally and internationally. 

Ben and Jerry’s changing the world one ice cream at a time. Turknoy Travels 100 is commitment to change the world, one family member at a time. 

Social Mission
Hoops, yes, the kids enjoyed he ice cream Factory Tour, too! 
We had a lot of talks but then we had a lot ice cream, too. 


Dad’s Choice – Stephen Colbert flavor ice cream! 😜
Ice cream like it’s summer please…


Guess who wants a truckload of ice cream? 😜



Do you have Life’s Mission while eating ice cream? 😝


Vermont Teddy Bear For Kids, Factory Tour and Build-A-Bear 

“A teddy bear will give you love. A grizzly bear will give you a mauling. Some bears aren’t just the same.” – Anthony T.Hincks

Do you know how a teddy bear is made and born? Well, these three traveling Turknoys definitely does now.

Deciding to have a Teddy Bear?! It’s a big decision to consider, think it through… 😘

Once kids made the big leap of choosing to own a best friend teddy, like life, they’ll be face with more decisions to make, not just for themselves, be for their Teddy Bears. 

Choose wisely all the bear parts and assemble the skeletal and muscular system of the Teddy Bear
 
Fill the Teddy Bear with positive vibes!
Choose any type of positive vibes!
 

A friend for life is born! Complete with brith certificate. Meet WAYBEAR! ❤️
After making their own personal Teddy Bear  BFFs, the Turknoys made a Factory Tour at the Vermont Teddy Bear to check if all the teddies are made in accordance to the quality assurance of all BFFs. Spoiler alert – it does! 
All across USA, Vermont Teddy Bears comply with the most personal customer quality ever for a teddy bear. We saw it for ourselves ❤️
There is Forever when it comes to Vermont Teddy Bears! Lifetime guarantee, including a TLC for every sick Teddy Bear!

We are definitely going home with more luggages than we want. Better yet, from family of five to traveling family of eight, 2 adults, 3 kids and 3 Vermont teddies. Luckily, the kids didn’t choose that big, gigantic bear. 

When we travel
When we travel light like an expert, along came three teddy bears! 😂😂😂
Do you own a Vermont Teddy Bear?