Opera in Scandinavia

     
   
4 Opera houses

    4 Capitals 
 
    4 Countries

     1 Journey

 

Opera in Scandinavia

Day 1                                                                                                               HELSINKI - FINLAND
                                                                                                                       

Welcome to Scandinavia and Helsinki, the capital of Finland. Helsinki is a city of contrasts, a high-tech metropolis by the sea with proximity to peaceful and quiet natural surroundings. In the morning, enjoy a guided tour showing the most important and interesting parts of the city, such as the historical centre and the diplomatic quarters at Kaivopuisto Park, the Presidential Palace, the City Hall, the Parliament building, and Finlandia Hall. The tour will stop at Senate Square, where the University and Lutheran Cathedral display neo-classical architecture of the 1840s. This is followed by a walk to the colorful Market Square by the sea in the South Harbor, with a visit to the indoor Market Hall (weather permitting). The next stop will be at the magnificent Temppeliaukio Church (Rock Church), carved into solid rock, followed by a visit to the Sibelius Monument.

 
   Day 2                                                                                                           HELSINKI

After breakfast, embark on the tour's first opera visit – a guided tour behind the scenes of the Finnish National Opera in Helsinki.

Helsinki Opera Helsinki Opera

The Opera House was designed by Hyvämäki-Karhunen-Parkkinen Architects (1977). The elevations are finished in ceramic tile and natural stone, while the public spaces inside combine the lucidity of Carrara marble with the glow of red beech. The great glass wall of the main foyer opens out towards Töölönlahti Bay and Hesperia Park. Almost all of the furniture and lighting fixtures were custom-designed for the Opera House.
 

The rest of day is free to explore lovely and lively Helsinki. Enjoy the colorful Market Square, marvel at the stunning architecture, or stroll the tree-lined esplanade for a close look at the jewelry, porcelain, crystal, and apparel offering the distinctive purity of Finnish design.
 

In the evening, embark on the Tallink Silja line for the cruise to Stockholm, Sweden. Sail through the unbelievably beautiful Finnish and Swedish archipelago, viewing thousands of picturesque islands. The Midnight Sun will set for only a couple of hours. You will have plenty of time to enjoy yourself on board the ship.


Day 3                                                                                                              STOCKHOLM, SWEDEN

Arrive in Stockholm, the Royal Capital of Sweden, after a delicious buffet breakfast.

Discover a city like no other – a city built on 14 islands, where you are never far from the water. Well-preserved medieval buildings stand alongside modern architecture. Stockholm is also home of the Nobel Prize. Stockholm is a city of contrasts – water and islands, history and innovation, small town and big city, short winter days and long, light summer nights – with a dazzling array of impressions. Thanks to the city’s compact size, you can see and do most things in a short space of time.

Take a three-hour guided tour of Stockholm. Famous sights on the tour include the Royal Palace, the island of Djurgården, and the Parliament Buildings. The highlight of the tour is a visit to City Hall with its famous Blue and Golden Rooms, where the Nobel Prize Banquet is held each year.

Drottningholm Court Theatre (1766). Drottningholm Court Theatre (1766).

For this royal journey, a magnificent turn-of-the-century ship will take you from central Stockholm (City Hall) out to the royal residence Drottningholm and the theater.
 

Drottningholm Court Theatre, located just outside Stockholm, was built at the request of Queen Lovisa Ulrika by Carl Fredrik Adelcrantz. It was completed in 1766 and has been preserved in its entirety until today. Thus even today, the original stage machinery allows for quick changes of scenery, and in addition there are moving waves, trapdoors, cloud carriages, and wind and thunder machines. A unique collection of original 18th Century scenery is also preserved. The heyday of the theatre began in 1777 with Gustaf III, who initiated drama and opera in the Swedish language. Following his death in 1792 the theatre was closed for 130 years, until it was rediscovered in the 1920s. Every summer the theatre presents a festival of 18th Century opera (May to August). This festival started in 1946, making it one of the longest running festivals in Europe. In 1991, Drottningholm Court Theatre was proclaimed a UNESCO World Heritage Site.

 

There are also guided tours of the Royal palace, but be sure not to miss the beautiful palace park and the Chinese Pavilion. The journey itself is a great way to experience Stockholm and its surroundings from the water.
 

Optional evening opera performance at Drottningholm Court Theatre. For program information please contact Scandinavian Performance Tours.


Day 4                                                                                                               STOCKHOLM
 

Visit Vasa museum, Scandinavia’s most popular tourist attraction! The warship Vasa was lost on her first voyage in 1628. The preserved ship is today exhibited in her own museum in Stockholm. The Museum was inaugurated in 1990. In the large ship hall stands the warship Vasa – the only remaining, intact 17th Century ship in the world. The lower rig has been rebuilt, complete with masts, stays and shrouds. More than 95 percent of the ship is original, decorated with hundreds of carved sculptures – just like the Vasa would have looked when set for winter in harbor. The wreck, salvaged in 1961, is now once again a complete ship.
 

Guided tour of the Royal Swedish Opera (1898). A new way to experience the Royal Opera House! Take a look backstage, visit the King´s and Queen´s Royal Suite, see some of the opera´s many hidden rooms. Learn about the opera´s history and get a glimpse of how the Royal Swedish Opera works today.
 

Optional evening opera performance at the Royal Swedish Opera. For program information please contact Scandinavian Performance Tours.


Day 5                                                                                                              OSLO, NORWAY    
 

Oslo Aker Brygge Oslo Aker Brygge

Travel west by train (or motor coach) and reach Oslo in the evening.  Check in at the hotel in downtown Oslo. Discover Oslo, a modern European city with an exciting history and interesting cultural life. Surrounded by sea, hills, and forests on all sides, this city offers a number of opportunities. In the centre of Oslo near Karl Johan Street you will find a wide variety of restaurants, jazz clubs, and cafés – among all the shops. There are suitable establishments for visitors of all ages in this area. The large concert halls are also well situated in the centre of town within walking distance of Karl Johan Street. 


Enjoy a walking tour to Aker Brygge. Once housing one of Norway’s largest shipyards, Aker Brygge now appears as a city within the city, a shopping and entertainment entity on its own, including shops, restaurants, apartments and offices, cinemas, bars & pubs, marina, etc. With exciting architecture and a panorama view of the Oslo fjord, all this makes Aker Brygge Oslo’s unique pearl window to the sea. 


Optional evening opera performance at the Norwegian Opera.

Day 6                                                                                                              OSLO
 

Viking Ship from 890 A.D. Viking Ship from 890 A.D.

City orientation tour of Oslo by coach and half day sightseeing tour: 

The Vigeland park, Norway’s most visited attraction with over 1 million visitors every year, includes approximately 200 sculptures by Gustav Vigeland (1869-1943), who also designed the layout of the park. This is a monumental artistic creation with a human message that is well worth seeing.
 

Kon-Tiki Museum, here you can see the original Kon-Tiki raft (1947) with a 30 foot whale shark underneath, statues and a secret family cave from Easter Island (1956), the papyrus boat Ra II (1970), and an exciting collection of archaeological finds from Easter Island, East Polynesia, Galapagos, and Peru.  


The Viking Ship Museum houses the great ship burials and finds from Oseberg, Gokstad and Tune, as well as finds from the chieftain grave at Borre, Vestfold county. The three ships, which are the best preserved Viking ships in existence, were found in large burial mounds in the Oslo fjord area. They contained rich burial gifts of wood and textiles. Such materials, dating from the 9th Century, are rarely found in such a good state of preservation.   

Oslo Opera Oslo Opera

Lunchtime and the guided tour at The Norwegian Opera & Ballet.
 

The Norwegian Opera & Ballet opened its new house on April 2008. The construction of the new opera house is the largest single cultural-political initiative in contemporary Norway. It took five years to build and the cost is estimated to 500 million Euros. The result is an extraordinary building in white marble with a roof surface that rises directly from beneath the fjord. The opera house is designed by the acclaimed Norwegian architectural firm Snøhetta.


In the afternoon, transfer to DFDS Seaways terminal for your overnight cruise to Copenhagen, departing at 5:00 pm. Enjoy a delicious Scandinavian buffet dinner as you cruise gently up the Kattegat on your way to Copenhagen. There are varied amenities, such as movie theater, sauna, live entertainment, mini-casino, shopping, nightclub - or you may prefer to sit out on deck and watch the sunset.


Day 7                                                                                                               COPENHAGEN, DENMARK
 

Scandinavian breakfast buffet onboard before arriving in Copenhagen at 09:30 in the morning. After arrival in Copenhagen, it is time for a guided tour of the fabulous opera house.

Copenhagen Opera Copenhagen Opera

The Copenhagen opera house, Operaen, is a unique building designed by Danish architect Henning Larsen with commissioned artworks by Danish artists such as Per Arnoldi and Per Kirkeby.
 

All levels of the marble-clad foyer offer sweeping views of Renaissance Copenhagen and the city harbor. A restaurant with roof terrace is situated on the top floor offering a panoramic view of the royal palace, Amalienborg, and the adjacent domed Marble Church.

Experience the extensive backstage facilities consisting of five mobile stage units as well as a small experimental stage, Takkelloftet, in addition to the auditorium and the rehearsal and training rooms for the ballet and the opera.
 

Optional evening opera performance at the Copenhagen opera. For program information please contact Scandinavian Performance Tours.


Day 8                                                                                                              COPENHAGEN
 

The day begins with a three-hour guided tour of the city. During the tour you will see the Amalienborg Palace, Christiansborg Palace (seat of the Danish Parliament), Hans Christian Andersen’s statue, Gefion Fountain, the old harbor of Nyhavn, the famous Little Mermaid and many other popular sights.
 

The afternoon is free in Copenhagen. We can recommend a tour down the popular pedestrian shopping street - Strøget, or a visit to Rosenborg Palace. This evening you will be taken by your tour escort for dinner in the famous Tivoli Gardens.


Day 9                                                                                                             COPENHAGEN - HOME               

Breakfast at the hotel. Departure from Copenhagen according to your own itinerary.