New job, new city, foreign country - Christian dared to take a step into the unknown and moved from Switzerland to Bergen, Norway. We asked him, what he did to feel home as quick as possible.
1. To be on holidays in a foreign city is one thing, but to move your whole live to it is something completely different. How did you feel, when you arrived in Bergen?
It was a big challenge: new country, new language, new job. It was a complete new beginning. But I had a good feeling after the interview at the company I now work for. I like the mentality of the Norwegian. They are direct and honest, friendly and helpful. And the fact that almost everyone speaks good English makes things much easier.
2. For all that come to Bergen for the first time: what’s the city like?
I liked the city from the first moment. It was helpful, of course, that the weather was nice when I came here for the first time. The statistics speak for themselves and unfortunately it is true: it rains very often. But when the sun fights the clouds, it is wonderful to see, how it lights up the colorful facades of the typical, wooden houses.
3. In your opinion:with which city can Bergen be compared most?
Bergen is relatively small compared to other cities I have been to. It has the typical Scandinavian flair of Copenhagen and Stockholm, but the direct connection to nature like a Canadian city - such as Vancouver for example. There are various hiking trails and seven mountains that surround the town and wait for getting discovered.
"When I arrived here with my packed car, I first parked it and then discovered the city by feet or by tram (Bybanen)."
4. What did you do to get an overview as quickly as possible?
When I arrived here with my packed car, I first parked it and then discovered the city by feet or by tram (Bybanen). The city center is quite small. From there you can easily get to the funicular, that brings you on top of the Fløyen – one of the seven mountains surrounding Bergen. From up there you have a beautiful view and I also can recommend the Fløyen Folkerestaurant for lunch or dinner. A lot of helpful information and a large selection of hiking maps and tour suggestions are provided by the tourist information office at the fish market. But I found it exciting to explore the city by myself, by connecting with the people – when asking for the right direction or a good restaurant for example.
5. How would you describe the inhabitants of Bergen?
People here are super friendly. And they are always outdoors: somewhere in the city or up on the Fløyen when the weather is good. In general, the Norwegians are very family-oriented and so you find entire families including baby carriages on their way to the mountain. For many mothers it seems to be a kind of workout. Also for me it has become a weekly ritual to climb on top of the most famous mountain of Bergen. You can make the 331 meters altitude in about 45 Minutes without too much effort.