Newspaper article Manchester Evening News

A City with Hidden Depths

Newspaper article Manchester Evening News

A City with Hidden Depths

Article excerpt

LYING at the centre of Norway's Vestfold coast, just 74 miles south of Oslo, the northern seaside town of Sandefojrd may not be the obvious choice on the tourist map.

A closer look however, reveals an intriguing city with hidden depths. Boasting miles of beautiful coastline, the city has an eclectic combination of culture, history and scenery with a dynamic, modern business district, shopping and art scene.

Must sees for free Explore Sandefjord and its combination of old and new buildings. In the Bakgaarden (backyard) area, find quirky cafés, boutiques and art stores and also the occasional music concert in the summer, and stop by the harbourside to see Sandejford's famous Whaling Monument by Knut Steen.

Escape the city centre and take a 10-minute drive to Midtasen Sculpture Park. A collection of beautiful bronze and marbleworks from Norwegian sculptor Knut Steen is housed in a pavilion in the middle of a pine forest, overlooking Sandefjord and the fjord itself.

Alternatively, soak up the sun along Sandefjord's coastline. Sheltered coves, soft sandy beaches and shallow waters make it a favourite holiday destination with Norwegians. There are also beachside camping sites, fishing spots and beach volleyball courts.

Top sees for a fee Discover the fascinating tales behind Sandefjord's history as a whaling port during the late 19th and early 20th centuries on a visit to Sandefjord's Whaling Museum. Exhibits on show range from a fullyrestored whale catcher ship to a collection of black and white photos from the 1950s, which reveal the daily lives of the whalers, both on land and on sea.

Sandefjord is also legendary Viking territory and in 1880 a wellpreserved ninth century Gokstad Viking Ship was unearthed from the nearby King's Mound burial site. It is now kept in the Viking Ship Museum in Oslo and visitors can embark on a Viking cruise on the museum's own half-scale replica of the ship, Gaia.

Entry NOK 70 for adults, NOK 50 for ages seven to 17, free for undersevens.

Take to the saddle on one of Sandefjord's many cycling routes. There are flat cycling paths, suitable for even the most novice cyclist. …

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