Norway - Photo Tour
Photos by Brian Bennett (unless otherwise stated)
Norway is Epcot's newest World Showcase pavilion. It opened in 1989 (I remember because that was the year Barb and I got married), and has been one of my favorite pavilions ever since. With Maelstrom, an entertaining if abbreviated attraction, Akershus, a very different (to this Midwesterner's palate) restaurant, and some delightful shops and a great bakery (plus some other surprises) Norway is a fun stop on any tour of World Showcase.
As you approach the pavilion, the most striking feature is the stave church that stands tall just off of World Showcase Promenade.
A not-so-secret secret is that you can actually go inside the stave church, where you can see displays and read information about the history of the stave churches in Norway. Completely made of wood, there were thousands of these churches throughout the nation at one time.
Just behind the stave church to the left as you face the pavilion is a small building with a very unusual roof. It's made of grass... actual, real, growing grass! That is a not uncommon feature of old rural buildings in Norway. This particular building houses the Kringla Bakeri og Kafe.
The Kringla Bakeri og Kafe has a tasty offering of sandwiches and pastries. My own personal favorite snack that you can buy here is the rice cream, which is a very creamy, sweet concoction combining those two ingredients.
Outside the Bakeri og Kafe, there is a nice, little seating area where you can enjoy your meal (or snack). Across the way, a great play area has been built for the little ones to burn off some excess energy.
The Viking ship has lots of things to climb on and over, and is built on a rubber play surface so it's really quite safe, too.
As you face the pavilion from the World Showcase Promenade, at the far right is a re-creation of Norway's Akershus Castle. Inside you'll find Akershus, Norway Pavilion's restaurant.
In the morning, Akershus now hosts a princess character breakfast that is quickly becoming very popular.
At night, the Akershus serves up a hot and kolt board of fish (pickled, marinated and smoked), several salads such as tomato salad, various salmon and herring salads, and cucumber salad. Pasta, meats, and other dishes are available too.
Having seen the restaurants, the other major reasons for visiting Norway is to ride Maelstrom and to browse the Puffin's Roost shops.
Maelstrom is a fun ride, although I think it's a bit short.
After a brief wait, riders board Viking ships for their voyage to Norway's past and beyond.
After seeing the ancient Vikings, dealing with encounters with a fierce polar bear and a terrorizing three-headed troll, and braving a storm on the North Sea guests end up at a peaceful fishing village before being admitted to see a short film on the culture and tradition of Norway. It's a very stirring film that I highly recommend.
After the film, guests are "dumped" into the Puffin's Roost, which has several rooms full of merchandise to browse.
One of the regular visitors to the Puffin's Roost is this troll. He's bigger than he looks!
Well, that wraps up this little photo tour. I hope you enjoyed it... and I hope you'll make sure to stop in to try some rice cream next time you're at the Bakeri!
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