Van life takes a dramatic twist

Maybe it was a twist of fate, or maybe things were going just a little too well…whatever  the reason, life in the van came to an abrupt end shortly after my last blog post. It was something that we had feared might happen, but didn’t quite believe it would!

Luckily for us it was a beautiful day, so we could bask in the sun while we waited for the tow truck. And we were stuck in the most beautiful place: Aurland, right next to the fjord.

Jetty-at-Aurland-overlooking-the-fjord
Aurland. There are worst places to be broken down!

Thereafter followed a couple of weeks’ headache while we waited around for the mechanics and the insurance company to sort things. Unfortunately the van was beyond repair, and we had to get it scrapped. It was a sad day, but we did our best to keep our chins up and to keep on trucking. We came to the decision that it would be far too easy to go home and we would rather continue our journey on foot than return to the UK.

Van-broken-down-being-towed-in-Norway
A sad, sad day for the van and our plans of driving through Norway.
Backpacking-around-Norway-waiting-for-the-bus
It was sad to see the van go, but exciting that the adventure continues!

Backpacking and tent life begins

Although it has not even been two weeks since we had the van scrapped, we are already so happy with our decision to keep travelling. We’ve climbed Galdhøpiggen, the highest mountain in Norway (and northern Europe), caught our own fish for dinner, free camped next to a waterfall and seen some unbelievably beautiful scenery.

Climbing-
At the top of Galdhøpiggen, Norway’s highest mountain at 2,469 metres – that’s 8100 feet for our British and American friends!

Our first night camping was in Jotunheimen National Park, near the mountain. It was a slight shock to the system when you’re used to sleeping in a custom-built bed in a van! The ground was rocky, the wind was blowing and there were patches of snow around us. Still, we survived and now any temperature above zero feels tropical!

As well as the sublime nature we’ve also seen some really interesting architecture while in Norway. At Lom, there is a very beautiful stave church. It’s over a thousand years old, which is quite staggering when you consider the harsh winter conditions Norway faces.

Interior-pulpit-and-altar-Lom-Stave-Church-Norway
Looking towards the altar in Lom stave church.
Lom-Stave-Church-Norway
The stave church at Lom.

Of course it’s the sublime nature that Norway is best know for! And we have seen plenty of it. Everywhere you look there are waterfalls, mountains and wide open spaces. And just when you think it can’t get any more breathtaking, it does. One of our favourite experiences since leaving the van has been wild camping next to a mountain and in front of a waterfall where we could get water.

Wild-camping-next-to-Lake-and-mountains-near-Geiranger-Norway
Wild camping – making dinner with no one else around!

While we may not have planned the trip to work out quite like this, I think that everything happens for a reason. The most important thing is that we are both OK and that we can carry on exploring this beautiful country that we have both slightly fallen in love with!

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6 thoughts on “Van life takes a dramatic twist

  1. Wow! You are so brave and your travels look beautiful. I would like to think I would be as gracious & open to the opportunities around me as you guys have been in the same situation…but I think I might actually just freak out instead!

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    1. Thank you for your lovely words. I’m not sure if I thought of it as brave, more just trying to roll with the punches that life inevitably throws. That’s the beauty of travelling, it takes us way out of our comfort zone…and hopefully provides plenty of rewards along the way!

      Liked by 1 person

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