Scandinavia Goes Blue

Trip Region: Europe
Country(ies): Denmark, Sweden, Norway
Partners Trek? No
Trip Cost: $2485
Airfare Estimate: $1500
Nightlife: 6   •   Activity: 5

There is “NOR-way” you could find a better way to celebrate the beginning of the two best years of your life than by venturing to Scandinavia to bike the kingdom of fairytale, watch the dark waves of the Baltic sea crash with the vivid blue ones of the Northern sea , and take a look at the classicist palaces of 18th century. All of your trek leaders couldn’t have imagined a better way to kick off their Ross MBA lives than MTrek, and want to pass this love and passion along to you. We will guarantee a trek through Scandinavia that will be one of the best trips of your life.

Travel Day — Friday, Aug 17

Today is reserved for travel from Ann Arbor. You are free to depart Ann Arbor after orientation activities are over around 5pm.

Day 1 — Saturday, Aug 18

Welcome to Copenhagen! We meet at the hotel at 6pm local time. After settling into the hotel we’ll be staying at for the next few nights, we will visit the pastel-colored waterfront houses in the Nyhavn area and stroll around the famous Tivoli Gardens which has the world’s oldest roller coaster. After dinner, we will start our night with drinks at an industrial-chic bar.

Day 2 — Sunday, Aug 19

Today we will explore the city’s many hidden corners we didn’t explore last night by bike. Hopping on a bike allows you to go to all the places that can be somewhat harder to reach by foot or public transport. One such place is Kalvebod Fælled, a sprawling natural area just outside the city. The afternoon is free for us to further explore this Scandinavian city. Stroll along the harbor or head out to the classicist palaces of 18th century Amalienborg, to this day the main residence of the Danish Royal family. Afterwards, Zheng, the mastermind behind this trip will lead the way to show us his former city.

Day 3 — Monday, Aug 20

Today we will explore Helsingør. The main sight is the gigantic Kronborg Slot, made famous as Elsinore Castle in Shakespeare’s Hamlet. Krongbor was once known for big parties and banquets. We will visit the market, the big halls, creepy catacombs and crypts, and possibly wake up the danish mythical hero “Holger the dane” who’ll defend Denmark. We will then visit the Church of St Mary. The church, originally an abbey church, was constructed as a part of the magnificent Karmeliter monastery (Our Lady Monastery) in Elsinore by poor White Brothers during the years 1430-1500. The White Brothers were mendicant friars who came to Denmark at the instance of King Erik of Pomerania. He donated the site to them and it is said that these erudite men were under the protection of the Virgin Mary and that this is the reason all of their monasteries were consecrated to her.

Day 4 — Tuesday, Aug 21

We depart Copenhagen this morning via train to Odense, the birthplace of the famous author Hans Christian Andersen. The lists mentions i.e. the Hans Christian Andersen House - his birthplace in Hans Jensen's Street, but also the place down by the river where his mother washed clothes for the more well-to-do citizens of Odense. We will visit the museum dedicated to his life and work while getting lost in this charming town that is going through a major revamp at the moment.

Day 5 — Wednesday, Aug 22

Have you visited a place where two seas meet? Skagen is the point that dark waves of the Baltic sea crash with the vivid blue ones of the Northern sea and then disappear in the loud splash. Because of the special shadow and lights the collision creates, Skagen is a very popular vacation destination for the painters and other artists. Today we board train through the Danish countryside to the city of Frederikshavn. After check-in and lunch, we will travel the short distance to the town of Skagen. Time here will be a leisure and we will have time to explore the art galleries and the intimate, older neighborhoods. Tonight, we feast on the fresh seafood that is brought in daily from the market.

Day 6 — Thursday, Aug 23

Travel by ferry to Gothenburg in Sweden. After a walk and becoming familiar with the city, enjoy a free afternoon. Perhaps visit the Göteborg City Museum, housed in the former East India Company House, built during the time when Gothenburg's role was that of a major maritime trading center. Take in the architectural ensemble on Gustav Adolfs Torg, go shopping along the main boulevard Avenyn, check out the iconic Skansen Kronan, stroll along bohemian Långgatan street or sip a coffee in the charming Haga quarter, known for its picturesque wooden houses, 19th century atmosphere and the so-called hagabulle, a cinnamon pastry similar to kanelbulle.

Day 7 — Friday, Aug 24

Catch a train across the border to Norway's capital Oslo. After an initial orientation walk explore this quirky, colorful city. Spend the day perusing delicacies at Maschmanns Food Market, admiring the handiwork of glass blowers at the Hadeland Glassverk, or simply strolling along Karl Johans Gate, the main shopping strip of the city. We’ll head to the National Gallery of Art to glimpse Edvard Munch's famous 19th century painting, The Scream. In the evening say 'skal' ('cheers') to the group at your last dinner together. We will seek out some traditional Norwegian fare, dinner based around cod and mackerel dishes.

Day 8 — Saturday, Aug 25

Viking Day! But first, we’ll travel to the nearby area of Holmenkollen for a visit to the Ski Museum, housed inside the famous monumental Holmenkollbakken (ski jump), which looks more like a work of art than a sports venue. Highlights in the museum include the history of skiing over the past 4,000 years, of Norwegian polar expeditions, and lesser known glimpses from the Winter Olympics at Oslo and Lillehammer. At the top of the jump tower there are 360 degree views of the city, its fjords and forests. Then, time for island hopping on Oslofjord. We have free time to become vikings, putting the hammer down at the Viking Museum, browsing the harbor-front Astrup Fearnley Museum of Modern Art, tasting local flavors at the food hall Vulkan, exploring the immense Akershus Castle & Fortress, or checking out the cool shops in the Grunerløkka district. There's so much to get stuck into.

Departure Day — Sunday, Aug 26

Check out from hotel at 11am. There are no activities planned for the final day and you can depart the accommodation at any time.

Sunny Zhang

Sunny = Sunshine . We might get some rain during our trip, but it will always be sunshine when Sunny is around. Blessed with a twin sister, Sunny is luckily not the only child in her family. Before coming to Ross, she worked for a British bank in Shanghai for 4 years. She enjoys exploring new places, meeting new people and listening to their stories. At Ross, she is the president of Greater China Association. Don’t let the committed, responsible side of her fool you. Sunny is super excited to eat all the food, drink all the drinks, party at all the parties, bike all the roads, and hike all the mountains with you. Her sole purpose for this trek is to build memories with all of you and experience the awesomeness of MTrek once again!

Zoey Zuo

Zoey is a born-and-raised Chinese with passion for Astrology and running. Most of the time, she can correctly guess people’s zodiac sign within three trials (no kidding! Join and see the magic!). After working 5 years in commercial banking, Zoey decided to leave her comfort life behind and start a new journey in B-school, meeting new friends and having a gorgeous (=fat salary?) career 2 years later. She is looking forward to making this MTrek a Mojito for herself (yes, it’s her favorite!) and an appetizer (maybe… bruschetta?) for you guys before your MBA main dishes’ coming.

Arlene Tjoarman

Arlene will tell you she’s from Los Angeles, but she’s really from Orange County. Tired of sunshine and working at a law firm with inventions she can’t tell you about, she was able to escape the heat at Michigan but not her laid-back Californian stereotypes. Don’t be fooled by her size, this girl is always down to eat and is determined to find epic smorgasbords on this trip. Arlene never learns and once again signed up for an MTrek that involves bike riding even though she forgot how to. When not climbing into fountains or shopping carts, Arlene can be found dancing at clubs and singing out of tune karaoke. With zero life skills, she will be the trek’s enabler-in-chief and the last to leave parties.

Shreyance Mandaliya

Born and brought up in Mumbai, Shreyance moved to Ann Arbor to study business as an undergrad at Ross. After struggling through the winters of Ann Arbor, he made the sensible choice to move to California, a warm place! He worked as a consultant for six years and then decided to make a few changes. He bid adieu to the warm weather and enrolled in an MBA at Ross (once a Wolverine, always a Wolverine). You can now find him in the quiet study rooms at Ross, trying his best to do 50 pages of readings an hour before his class (did we tell you he is an ardent procrastinator). When not pretending to study, you can find him “networking” at Dominic’s or exploring one of the many eating joints in Ann Arbor. A voracious consumer of TV shows, he often sacrifices sleep to see that one extra episode (he is quick to blame the post-play feature on Netflix). As someone who’s never been to Scandinavia, Shreyance is excited to explore the sights and get to know all you wonderful folks!

Zheng Zhang

Born and raised in Beijing, Zheng grew up loving all Asian foods and the old Beijing lifestyle. He never regrets hanging around in Denmark for five years pretending to study and work. This trip to him is like going back to his second hometown. As a former software engineer, Zheng is ready to teach you how to decipher the “Da Vinci code” of Nordic countries.