10 things I love about Norway

Just before leaving the UK I did a post on 10 things I love about the UK
as well as a post on 10 things I dislike about the UK
and I promised I’d do the same regarding Norway. Though I’m born and raised here, I’ve spent so much time away that even after four months, I feel relatively new to Oslo, but in a good way. It’s nice to rediscover and actually quite enjoy the city I was desperate to leave at the age of 19.

But let’s get to the list!

1. The chocolate! It’s not too sweet an there are so many varieties from the pure milk chocolate to the one with bubbles and the ones with crunchy/biscuit fillings or soft fillings. When I lived in the UK, I made sure to bring a stock of Norwegian chocolate which I hardly shared with my friends because I enjoyed it so much. And as I’ve resettled in Norway, I still can’t get enough. However, I’ll happily share with friends now as I need only walk for 10 minutes to buy more.
2. The nature. As a child, I groaned and moaned when my parents made me go for a Sunday walk in the forest. BORING! But now I really like it. I had a couple of friends from London visiting me earlier this week and on their last day; we went for a walk in the woods near my house. As we sat down on a picnic bench in the sun, listened to the birds sing and the ducks walking close buy, feeling the fresh air and the smell, I was proud of living in a country with such lovely nature. I am by all means a city girl, but a walk in the Norwegian nature, be it forests, mountains or parks, with or without skis on, will always clear my head and lift my spirit.

3. Oslo. I love it especially in the summer when the main street has a market, buskers and other street artists from all over the world doing their thing, the restaurants on board boats down at the port and, well I could go on forever. It also has the multiculturalism I love so much in the form of shops, restaurants, cafes and people from everywhere. There is also a lot to see, so it’s a great place for tourists.

4. The water. It tastes great and it doesn’t have that white stuff in it that London water has, so washing up is easier. The water is so good; I don’t by bottled water unless I want sparkling stuff.

5. Norwegians. My people are not fuzzy, down to earth and honest. You don’t get that oh so annoying British politeness and I find that if I’m ever lost and Norwegians offer help, they do so without all the “I’m ever so sorry if I intrude” or the “are you absolutely sure?” if you decline. If I had any criticism, it has to be that I wish there was more warmth between and towards people like you find in other parts of the world, but Norwegians are generally quite friendly.

6. Everything is very organized. Buying and selling property is very easy here. It took me only 3 weeks from I saw the flat I wanted till it was mine. And it only took that long because we waited to sign the contract on purpose so that it could be done on my birthday. Otherwise the whole thing would have taken less than a week. Also there are not all the middle men involved in buying and selling like there is in Britain.

7. Good quality houses. In the UK, I often got the feeling the houses and flats were not built very well on the inside. I remember my heavy glass shower door falling over me one day I was cleaning without me even moving it. I also think the doors and wood of the walls were bad quality which would need frequent renewing. And carpets! I hate carpets! Rugs that can be moved I like, because they can be cleaned. Here I have a feeling more thought is put in to the building and the quality of what’s inside the houses.

8. Food quality. I’m not really talking about the Norwegian cuisine itself, more that the food usually is nice, clean and of good quality. And I no longer have the 5 extra kilos I seemed to carry in the UK.
9. Beauty. I know this is both biased and boasting, but Norwegians are generally quite pretty and dress well.

10. There is no class divide. Sure we have rich and poor, like anywhere else in the world, but there isn’t quite the working class, upper class thing there is in the UK.

Watch out for my post on the 10 things I dislike which I’ll do my best to put up tomorrow!

8 thoughts on “10 things I love about Norway

  1. My brother lived in Stavanger, Norway for about 2 years and I visited him there. His rented house was one block away from the water and although I am also a city girl (New York City), I enjoyed walking by the water and taking it all in. I thought that if I lived in Stavanger, I would spend some time during the week either walking or sitting by the water. I also enjoyed the multiculturalism in Oslo although I spent very little time there. I don’t recall having any chocolate when I was there, but you have made me curious to try some Norwegian chocolate.

  2. I just looked at your earlier post and I wanted to tell you that in the United States, audiodescription is called descriptive video. There is a site for the blind and visually impaired called http://www.accessibleworld.org which sometimes has descriptive films. On May 11, they are having the film “The Descendants” with George Clooney in English if you are interested in listening to this film.

  3. we are quite different in age I think, but thanks for your comments about Norwegian men not being active “chasers” in dating situations! I always get a great feeling in person with my Norge guy, but in e-mail or text he is dry and impersonal. In person he is romantic and warm. He waits an almost unbearable amount of time between calls or contact…a week or even more, which is so unlike an American guy when he is interested in you. It’s really hard to figure out if he is shy about saying “I miss you”, or doesn’t want to be seen as aggressive. Thanks for all your Norway likes and dislikes. I went to visit in November, and since I live in a hot and sunny climate it was in fact very cold, but manageable. I would want to try visiting in a rainy month to see what that is like before committing to moving there.

    1. Thanks for your comment Sallee.
      If I lived in a hot sunny climate, there’s NO WAY I’d move unless I had a good reason, but if you have a Norwegian man I can understand. My friends who have dated Norwegian men, tell me they are quite romantic when you date them. I think I struggle with inital attraction to Norwegian men because many, of course not all, don’t have that outgoing way of being that attracts me in the first place.

      Good luck if you decide to move to Norway. It depends where you live, but the west has more rain than the east. It can be both warm and cold when it rains. In my experience, June is a very rainy month.


    2. Shelley, thanks for this comment, i’m american and have recently been chatting with a guy from norway and I was ‘testing’ to see if he’d message me after a day of me not messaging him. he did send me a nice ‘hope you have a fine day’ message but i was noticing it wasn’t very clingy. I’m quite fine with that, but it has thrown me off a bit. 🙂

      1. The thing is with Norwegian culture is that we are very careful about bothering people, we donæt want to be rude or intrude. Normal socialbel talk, talking to someone on the bus etc, isn’t really considered rude, but just to be sure, we don’t seem to do it. So if he sends you messages like that, he’s surely interested! But he doesn’t want to be rude og intrusive by sending lots of messages. Also, in Norway if you (as a guy) send a lot of messages, you fear that you might be seen as desperate. Yes, we are strange perhaps, but there are so few of us, we aren’t used to crowds and small talk haha 🙂

  4. Thanks for replying Gunnar. I think your comment has made me understand why I find it hard to make Norwegian friends, let alone understand and hit it off with Norwegian men. I’ve been abroad for so long that my Norwegian ways are lost to me. Your comment was eye opening and needed. 🙂

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