Norway: Bergen (Revisited)
Bergen is a stunningly beautiful city in western Norway, surrounded by fjords and mountains and partially spread over multiple islands. It is the second largest city in Norway now, but used to be the capital and the largest city for most of the Norwegian history. The core of the city is the Hanseatic wharf, which is the oldest UNESCO World Heritage Site in Norway. The medieval Hanseatic League of independent German city-states established an official port and trading post here in the 13th century. The wooden buildings that front the wharf today are several centuries older, but still medieval in character and look; especially if you go inside and inbetween the tightly packed houses with overhanging balconies and upper floors. The front buildings all used to be merchant houses while the buildings in the back served as warehouses for fish from Norway and goods from Europe. Today most of the buildings are museums or restaurants or boutique hotels.