Archive for November, 2011

Nov 25 2011

Posted by under Trips

Sunrises in Merang, Terengganu

I was in Merang, Terengganu for 10 nights, recently. I was on assignment, arriving late at night on 13th Nov and left the place exactly 10 days later, on 23rd Nov.

 

It is the monsoon season there, and only a few days out of the stay were relatively dry.

 

I tried my best to catch the sunrise each morning (when it didn’t rain), and here are the photos (taken from my old faithful Blackberry).

 

On the 4th day, I saw this:

 

As the sun got higher:

 

On the 5th morning, I rushed to catch the sunrise again:

 

A direct look at it:

 

Sunrise on the 6th day:

 

I thought it was beautiful:

 

As it got brighter:

When the sun finally came out:

 

That was it, really. Only 3 out of 10 mornings were we greeted with the sun rise!

 

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Nov 25 2011

Posted by under Trips

Tromsø to Oslo

Date: 18th October 2011

After 4 night-stay in Tromsø and finally managed to see the Northern Lights, it was time to leave for Oslo (and eventually home).

 

We walked ouir way to the nearest bus stop, to catch the airport bus:

 

Very quiet:

 

Some window display (of items for sale):

 

it was so serene, at 5.30 am in the morning:

Soon the bus came. We boarded the bus.

An underground roundabout?

 

Tromsø Airport:

 

Or, Lufthavn, as the locals call it:

 

Self-checking in was harmless:

 

Even the departure lounge was still very empty:

 

Our flight was the first to leave:

 

Free wi-fi, so I got engrossed with my Ipad2 :) :

 

Taxing to take off:

 

Still a wet morning:

 

A view while still taxi-ing on the tarmac:

 

Finally we were in the air, and I whispered a final goodbye to Tromsø:

 

The sun was finally out:

 

Beautiful sight, with the sun ray and fjords:

 

Nice, eh?

 

The peaks with frozen lakes:

 

The long and winding river…..

 

Oslo, finally:



Walking towards our arrival hall:

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Nov 03 2011

Posted by under Trips

Finally, The Northern Lights!

Date: 17th October 2011

Place: Tromsø, Norway

 

We had spent 3 nights in Tromsø, and that night was our final night there. The previous 3 nights had been wet and cloudy. We were hoping our final night in this northern city is as fruitful as we hoped for when we arrived here.

 

As promised, our guide arrived at our hotel just after 7pm. He later had to pick other passengers for the night – a family from India, a couple from Japan, a Kiwi girl, and a few other Europeans. Altogether there were 15 of us.

 

Ivan, the guide cum driver took us to the island north-west of Tromsø, via a tunnel:

 

He put on a powerpoint presentation on the screen, which told a lot of myths and legends behind the Northern Lights aka Aurora Borealis. He also informed us that he had been taking people out to see the lights for 11 years now, and our chances of seeing one wass actually 70%. One of us said that we hoped we would not be part of the less lucky 30% :) .

While most parts of the sky were still clouded, there were patches of clear sky each time the wind blew the clouds away, and we could see the full moon:

 

We stopped a few times, each time when we saw some clear sky or rather patches of clear sky. We waited and there was no luck.

At one stopped, we had hot chocolate and chocolate cakes.

The last destination was at the lattitude of 70.02 North (that’s the northern-most part on earth I had ever been!), and Ivan told us that was the furthest we could go.

We waited until it was 11.15pm, and Ivan sadly told us we had to head back to Tromsø.

Reluctantly we resigned to the fact that we were finally to be part of the unlucky 30% :( . We got back into the bus, and one after another we started to doze off.

 

Suddenly the bus stopped! Ivan rushed us out. Half asleep, we were told to look up to the sky, and we saw this:

 

 

A very pale aurora!! DH quickly tried to capture as many shots as possible:

 

We looked in amazement, despite the light being very faint:

 

It moves from the right to the left (as expected – east to west):

 

Never mind that others had better luck, but we were very contented :)

 

The light seemed to thank us for our presence:

and it didn’t want to disappoint us, after all:

 

While we were gawking with amazement and disbelieve, it faded away…. The whole thing lasted for only  10 minutes or so.

 

That was our experience for the night, and I have to say the highlight of our stay in Norway!

 

Since that night, DH keeps on talking about the next aurora chasing trip – To Alaska!!

 

But for now, the next destination would be Oslo, en route home…

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Nov 02 2011

Posted by under Uncategorized

Wordless Wednesday

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