Photo Of The Day: Milford Sound, New Zealand

New Zealand seems to be infinitely photogenic and these unbelievable fjords in Milford Sound are an astounding testament to that notion. Taken by Andrea Schaffer, this image gets me incredibly excited about different ideas for traveling the North and South Islands. I’m now filled with daydreams of jetting off to below the equator and living in a campervan.

You too can have your photography featured here on Gadling as our Photo of the Day by submitting it either to our Gadling Flickr Group or by mentioning us on Instagram, @GadlingTravel, and tagging your photo with #gadling.

[Photo Credit: Flickr User Andrea Schaffer]

The Viking Ship Museum In Oslo, Norway

Viking ship, Oseberg ship
Norway is famous for its breathtaking fjords and Viking heritage. A hundred years ago at the Oseberg fjord, archaeologists discovered a Viking ship burial containing the bodies of two women. The ship was so well preserved that it could be entirely reconstructed. Now it’s the centerpiece of Oslo’s Viking Ship Museum and one of the country’s most popular attractions.

The Oseberg ship is 21.58 meters (70.8 feet) long and 5.1 meters (16.73 feet) wide. It had a single square sail and fifteen pairs of oars for when the wind wasn’t favorable. Researchers estimate it could achieve a speed of up to 10 knots and was built in the first decades of the ninth century A.D. Its prow and stern are elaborately carved and have graced the covers of many books on the Vikings. Check out the photo gallery for some close-up shots.

The identities of the two women found with the ship are a mystery. One was 60-70 years old when she died, the other about 25-30. Some researchers believe the old woman was a Viking queen or other noblewoman, and the young woman was her slave, sacrificed to accompany her into the afterlife. Others say they were female shamans. One outfit included silk imported all the way from China. Buried with them were household items, a cart and agricultural tools.

%Gallery-157476%The Viking Ship Museum has two other ships. The Gokstad ship is 23.24 meters (76.2 feet) long and 5.20 meters (17.1 feet) wide. It had 16 pairs of oars and a single square sail. Archaeologists estimate up to seventy people could sail in it. Like the Oseberg ship, it was a burial and contained the remains of an elderly man. It’s almost as well preserved as the Oseberg ship and only a little younger, having been made around 890 A.D. Some adventurous Norwegians made a replica of the Gokstad ship and sailed it across the Atlantic to visit the Chicago World’s Fair in 1893.

The Tune Viking ship, dating to about 900 A.D., is also housed at the museum. Although only about half of it survives, it’s still impressive to see.

Besides the ships, the museum houses many of the artifacts found with them, including weapons, clothing, gold and silver, and furniture.

Now curators are worried because they have found the preservative used by the archaeologists who first worked on the Oseberg ship is slowly deteriorating the wood fibers. The race is on to save this precious survival from the early Middle Ages.

[Photo courtesy Wikimedia Commons]

Video of the Day: From Nordhordland with Love

Quick, tell us everything that you know about Nordhordland. Of course, you know it’s a region of western Norway. Don’t know much else? Well, apparently it’s the perfect place for a super villian to establish is base of operations. Why? Well, proximity to the sea, ample power sources and a vast supply of educated labor make are just a few of the reasons that Nordhordland would be a great place to build a doomsday device. Of course, its low crime rate might throw a wrench in that evil machine. Regardless, this is one of the most creative promotional videos we’ve ever seen. Well played, Nordhordland.

A day in the life of a Norwegian?

Ever wonder what people like to do in Norway? According to the graphic above, posted on Reddit, favorite Norwegian activities include “dreaming about fjords,” “eating lutefisk” and “skiing to work.” Having never had a chance to visit this Scandinavian country of snow, socialized medicine and reindeer, I can only laugh at whoever came up with this chart. And I’m beginning to wonder, why do I have a sudden urge to visit? Considering one of the activities listed on the graphic is “submitting things on Reddit on behalf of the Norwegian Tourist Board,” I’m guessing some clever viral marketing is probably at work…

[Via Buzzfeed]