Spinna II

During Norway's early history, Bergen and Trondheim vied with each other for the designation as the nation's capi­tal. Today they rank as Norway's second and third largest cities. The picturesque Bergen is located on the southwest coast, about 190 miles (300 km.) from Olso, on a small fiord surrounded by seven mountains. It has been a trade center for almost 1,000 years and is proud of its his­tory, which can be felt everywhere—from Haakonshallen, the medieval banquet hall of the kings of Norway, to the Bryggen (Quay) from the Hanseatic period. Bergen is the home of Norway's second university and its College of Business Administration and is one of the world's leading centers of oceanographic research. Each spring thousands of visitors flock to its international festival of music, drama, and arts, when some of the concerts are held in Edvard Grieg's home, Troldhaugen ("troll's hill"), near the city. Bergen is also the starting point for tours of the great fiords, where the intense blues and greens of the crystal-clear waters reflect fruit orchards near sea-level and snow-clad mountain peaks high above.