Come on Down to my Boat(Every Mothers Son) - Stavanger to Bergen,Norway Via Two Ferries and Three Subsea Tunnels - 3rd July 2016 Part Two

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July 3rd 2016
Published: July 8th 2016
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The ferry to take us back to Lauvikk was ready and waiting when we reached Oanes and it was short of 4pm.This would when we would usually be reaching our destination for the day and not leaving the one we had just been at.

Ahead of us is just over 200kms of road and 2 ferry crossings to get to our next apartment near Bergen.

Gina, the GPS, was telling us we wouldn’t be arriving until 10.30pm which in itself sounded horrendous but then again it will still be light. We had also figured out that Gina had calculated the time including waiting times for a ferry which might or might not be necessary depending if we arrive just in time to drive straight onboard.

Once we were on the other side of the fjord it was just a 20 minute drive to the E39 and we would be on that highway all the way to Bergen. Or that was what we intended.

One thing our GPS lacks is an option to put a highway number in and then you would go exactly where you want to go. Ours gives 4 options and then you look at a map to see the directions on offer. We have then been matching the GPS map to our atlas and figuring out the highway numbers that it appears the GPS was going to take us.

Most of the time this has worked out well but you can’t always be sure and it is a good idea to have the atlas at the ready when changes in direction come up.

We got ourselves through the major roadworks just outside of Stavanger city and soon we were approaching the first tunnel of the day the 5.8km tunnel that takes you under the sea and several islands between Randaburg and one that we did not see named and then a short distance on another shorter tunnel again under the sea to Rennesoy.

Traffic volumes were light although we were a bit surprised by the number of trucks on the road. And while they were nowhere near the numbers as on mainland Europe they still stand out in the traffic flow.

Like in Germany etc their speed maximum is 80kph but then that matches to the car speed limits too so all traffic moves at the same pace and there is almost no overtaking. Not that overtaking is often an option as the roads are one lane each direction with few passing lanes.

A further few kilometres on this small island where there didn’t seem to be a lot of people living we came to our first ferry.

We had timed it perfectly as a ferry had just arrived and was unloading. So we paid our fare, another half price for the senior citizen!) and drove on for the 15minute ride to Arsvagan.

There was time to get out of the car and admire the scenery of the small islands dotted here and there and then the ferry docked and we were on our way again.

The next stretch of road took us virtually directly north. We were travelling over what seemed to be one island but then it was hard to tell as we kept upon coming across water on one side and then the other.

Then we did come to the end of the island at Valevag and we plunged down under the sea again through a 7.8km tunnel coming up again on the island of Stord.This tunnel reached 260 metres below mean sea level and is the longest subsea tunnel in Norway and has been open for 3 years.

It was all very straight forward and our progress towards Bergen was very consistent and we had just one other place that we might get slowed down and that was the last ferry crossing at Sandvikvag.

Again though we struck just the right time because as we rolled down the hill to the harbour another ferry was just starting to load and we joined the queue and were on the ship within a few minutes.

This ferry was much bigger than the previous one and the journey to Halhjem was going to take around half an hour across the Bjornafjord.

So there was enough time to leave the car and head up to the lounge for a coffee and watch the fjord scenery pass by.

There were ferries going in all directions on the large fjord which indicated just how important the ferry system is to the outlying places along the fjords is.

The trucks were the first off at Halhjem and this had the effect of slowing the traffic down as the cars followed.

Everyone was going towards Bergen and we were in the flow until it was time to drop out at Nesttun about 10km short of the city.

Our apartment was located nearby and our GPS guided us there with no problem.

We are staying in a quiet suburban locality with the light rail tram just down the road that we will use to travel into Bergen tomorrow to take a walk around the old town which is a UNESCO site.

Our host Kari had said she might be out when we arrived but that the key to our upstairs apartment would be under the mat. We still can’t get over how trusting all our Air BnB hosts have been.

The GPS had been out considerably and obviously the allowance added in for waiting for ferries was a bit over the top for us as we had arrived just in time for both the connections we had to make.It was just after 8.30pm when we pulled into the parking space for the apartment.Not bad when you consider there were two ferry trips included and one of those took just over 30 minutes.

It had been a very long day and despite the fact it was my birthday we have put the celebrations on hold until tomorrow settling for a boiled egg and toast for dinner.

It will be a quiet day for us tomorrow with sightseeing the only activity on the menu and we will probably have a lie in to catch up on some sleep.

Let’s hope the weather behaves although Bergen is notorious for being a city that receives more than a fair share of rain.

PS: ferries and tunnels played the biggest part in getting us from Stavanger to Bergen with ease so 'Come on Down to Our Boat....Baby!Enjoy on Youtube

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