Living with intent, social engagement, learning, growing, giving
After docking on the Hurtigruten in Bergen I carried my cabin bag across the charming cobblestones in the winding alleyways near the port.
The port area is not seedy like many cities but there are some derelict buildings quite near the town centre, like the central swimming centre. We stayed in the Marken Gjesthus (hostel) in the old and a bit rundown area called Marken that is near the railway station. I soon found the building and was delighted to discover that my family had already arrived and were waiting for me outside the hostel. We checked into a large and comfortable family room with bunk beds and a double bed and private bathroom and kitchenette. I was provided with linen to make the beds myself and paid 10 NOK per day per towel.
We decided to make the most of the uncharacteristically sunny weather and walked the short distance to the funicular station via the Coop Extra where we bought lunch. We bought a family return ticket for the funicular and hurried to catch the next one before it left (they depart every 15 minutes). If it was just my husband and me we would certainly have walked up and back down but that’s too much to ask of our children, especially considering the amount of walking that they do daily living on the hill in Trondheim without a car.
We had spectacular views of Bergen and sunshine to enjoy too. Our children had fun playing at the playground behind the viewing point and then playing in the forest. They got a bit muddy but they used the free and nice public toilets to clean themselves up a bit. Afterwards we walked up the hill and had fun playing in the adventure playground behind the troll forest (trollskogen).
We stayed a bit too late and the cloud cover made it chilly. We hurried back down in the funicular and vacillated over dinner options. Finally I bought for myself a delicious herb sausage in a bun with tomato sauce and mustard and fried onions for 60 NOK from the sausage van in the street that connects the funicular station to the dock. Our children had sausages and pizza slices from seven eleven. My husband had torsk patties from the supermarket. We stocked up at the Kiwi supermarket afterwards for breakfast and lunches for the next 2 days because the next day (Thursday) was Ascension public holiday and we correctly suspected that the supermarkets would be closed.
It was late when we got back to the hostel and our children were over-tired and paradoxically took quite a while to fall asleep because they aren’t used to the 4 of us sharing one room. Whenever we travel with our children we struggle to find suitable accommodation in a good location that is affordable and has separate beds for our children instead of impractical sofa beds. The hostel that we chose was great. We didn’t hear a peep out of any of the other guests. I hope that our over-tired and cranky children didn’t disturb anyone else!