Back in a pre-corona 2012 I got inspired by my friend Erik to make an epic rail trip through a part of Europe. I persuaded my best friend to tag along and together we decided to head north, to Scandinavia, to a part of Europe we both hadn’t visited yet and where fascinated about.
We spent the night in the Norwegian capital and in the early morning of the next day we set off heading north towards Trondheim. We used the morning train which consisted of a tilting electric multiple unit. It had a nice interior with warm colours and comfortable seats.
The first part of the route past Gardermoen Airport was a modern double tracked high-speed line on which we easily travelled at top speed. After the airport we joined the old single track line, and it seemed like there was not a single stretch of straight track the rest of the journey. Thanks to the tilting system of the train we could still speed through the curves, but it did feel a bit nauseating after a while.
Along the way we saw some of the venues of the Olympic Games at Lillehammer and a lot more wonderful Norwegian scenery. The line was of course less scenic than the Bergen Line but still one of the nicer scenic routes I travelled on.
In the afternoon we strolled a bit through the city of Trondheim, once again a nice Norwegian town. We saw some picturesque wooden buildings, an old bridge and of course a church.
The next morning we had another early start when we wanted to travel on one of the 2 daily trains between Trondheim in Norway and Östersund in Sweden. The first part of the line in Norway took us past some spectacular scenery and a stop in Hell, which was not frozen over.
As the line was not electrified we travelled in a two-car diesel unit, featuring some nice reclining chairs for a comfortable journey.
After crossing the border into Sweden the landscape became slightly less rugged and opened up for some lakes. The train terminated in Östersund, which is one of the bigger towns in this area of Sweden, as well as one of its top ski resorts.
The rest of the morning and the afternoon was spent walking around the city centre and a visit to Jamtli, the Swedish Open Air Museum. Just like in Bokrijk there where a number of old buildings rebuilt here to depict life in the past in typical Swedish villages.
The reason we spent all day in Östersund was because we had to catch a connection to a sleeper train in the evening but because only 2 trains crossed the border each day between Norway and Sweden and we felt that the 2 minute connection time was a bit too ambitious we decided to travel on the morning train and spend the day in Östersund. How our adventure continued on the sleeper train will be talked about in the next instalment of our Scandinavian trip.
Have you ever made a long connection just to be sure? When and where was it? Let us know in the comments below!