MY WIFE AND I ARE HEADING TO UPPSALA IN LATE JUNE 2016 FOR A FAMILY WEDDING. WE WANT TO SPEND ABOUT THREE WEEKS SEEING SOME OF NORWAY, SWEDEN AND DENMARK. WOULD WE BE BETTER OFF HIRING A CAR OR TRAVELLING BY TRAIN? WHAT ITINERARY AND SIGHTS WOULD YOU RECOMMEND?
P. SULLIVAN, PUTNEY.
I prefer self-drive trips in Europe, and especially so in places where I might want to stop and admire the view and get to villages where trains don't go, and that applies particularly to Scandinavia. Nordic Visitor (combination.nordicvisitor.com) has a Highlights of Scandinavia Tour, a 16-day self-drive loop that travels from Stockholm to Sweden's lovely Dalarna region, west to Norway and along the fjords then south to Oslo and Copenhagen and finally along the southern coast of Sweden before returning to Stockholm. There's a good balance between cities, villages and the majestic scenery of these three countries. As well as a vehicle with insurance, the tour includes accommodation, a GPS, detailed trip notes and a mobile phone and the price is reasonable.
Even though you'd be seeing some of the fiords from the vehicle you might want to devote more time to exploring Norway's spectacular and dramatic coastline, and seeing it from the waterline is a very different experience. The Hurtigruten vessels (hurtigrutencruiseline.com) make a one-week trip between Kirkenes in the Arctic Circle and Bergen. As well as a viewing platform for the wonders of the fiords, the cruise also offers a chance to explore some of the ports along the way. Hurtigruten has several vessels and some rate better than others. Check the reviews on Cruise Critic (cruisecritic.com.au).