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Published: August 8th 2014
Driving from Tromso Norway to Oula Finland 6 to 7 August
We drove out of Tromso in low cloud, at about 10.30am, after I went for a run, we down-loaded our emails and I loaded the Tromso blog. This was the 1st time this trip that I had published the blog on the day we were at the town. The fog in Tromso wasn't as thick as it had been the night before when we attended the midnight concert at the Arctic Cathedral. We drove along the fjord and as we came to the end of it, the cloud disappeared. From there on, the sun was peeping from behind a few scattered clouds.
You may be interested to know that we travelled 6,250kms while in Norway - data from my stats officer (Tom)!
We first climbed to about 700m a.s.l., after passing a number fjords. From there on, and once we said our final goodbyes to Norway at the welcome sign of Finland, we drove along very flat territory, much of which was framed by pine forests. We passed a large number of lakes. but of course, there are many, many more in southern Finland. Finland has approximately
188,000 lakes (about 10% of the country) and a similar number of islands.
We stopped several times on the 1st day of driving 430kms. The 1st stop was at Kelottifarvi in Finland, at a Sami souvenir shop. What caught our eye was a big stuffed elk out the front of the shop, as well as a white bear and wolf. In the shop was 1000s of souvenirs. Next stop was at Muomio, for a coffee. There was even a Thai Restaurant there used by tourist bus companies.
A little further on, we saw a rest stop which had 2 big semi-trailers from Estonia, plus a little shop and bar that obviously locals can to meet. It was by a river and the locals had about a dozen small boats with outboard motors for hire. Several people had just returned from a fishing expedition as they had a lot of fishing rods. After cleaning our carpet in the front of the motor home, which still had Iceland dust/mud on it (!!!!) we drove onto Kolari and found a lake to park next to for the night.
The next morning we drove further south towards the Baltic Sea to
Tornio, after crossing the Arctic Circle on Highway 8. This road is in Finland but follows the Sweden/Finland border.
We made a lunch stop at Kemi which is a harbour town, more known for its Ice Hotel and snow activities in winter rather than anything startling in summer.
We then followed the coast SE to Oulu which is a thriving town of more than 140,000 people. The town is spread across several islands, well connected by pedestrian bridges, and water never seams far away. In 1878 there was a severe flood in the town. There were several pulp factories that we could see on the perimeter of the town, but it is known for its technology/It expertise now.
On the advice of the Tourist Office, we went on a walking tour and saw all the historic buildings, stopping for a cold beer on the way. it was a really hot day.
We visited Market Square where the Italian and French group had dozens of stalls selling fresh produce from their areas - olives, cheese, meat, lollies, nougat etc.
We then drove down the beach where there 100s of people. As they only get
2 months of summer, the locals make the most of it. We cooked out dinner down the beach and then drove out of town. We stopped at a little town called Utajarvi next to their museum, church and war graves, and parked over night.
Tot: 0.094s; Tpl: 0.055s; cc: 8; qc: 23; dbt: 0.0172s; 1; m:saturn w:www (188.8.131.52); sld: 2;
; mem: 1.3mb