Charming Faro & Visby

Today we are on the Charming Faro & Visby tour scheduled for meeting in the Queens Room at 8:45 am.  After assembly, we boarded our waiting bus at 9am with 46 other guests.  Sitting on the right provided the best views of the Tingstäde Church, the Baltic Sea, and much-needed shade for this morning tour.

Our excursion began by first heading to the farthest away place and then working our way back to the port of Visby.  I always feel this is a perfect way to run tours.

The journey took us via Road 148, to Tingstäde and Lärbro to reach an automobile ferry that would shuttle us to Fårö Island.  Along the way, Marie-Louise provided insight into the region.

We learned the area was better identified as Gotland and was about the size of Rhode Island.  The Vikings, led by King Olaf, occupied this region from 600 to 1000 A.D. To this end modern-day farmers often dredge up buried Viking treasure as they plow their fields.  The most recent recorded event of this kind contained 67 kilos of silver.

We reached the Farosund Ferry at 10:05am and were assigned a 10:30am departure time.  With 25 minutes to just stretch out, everybody stepped out of the bus to take in the scenery.  The item that first caught my eye turned out to be an Old Limestone Oven that was used for quarried limestone. I snapped a few photos’s, and then milled about the Ferry area.  Soon I was back on board for the 7-minute crossing to Fårö.

The journey was a mostly circular trail around the region known as Norrsund.  Norrsund is aptly recognized for its Strawberry production.

Our initial stop in Faro came at 10:52am when we left the bus to observe the Digerhuvud Sea Stack Field.  These rocky precipices of coastal limestone are quite picturesque and a bit troublesome to climb about.

We were back on the bus by 11:15am continuing the circular trail while observing seaside terrain.

At 11:50 am we stopped for lunch at Restaurant Fårögården encompassing a semi-detached Bed & Breakfast.

Our allotted lunchtime was 1 hour and 10 minutes.  They served lunch on both indoor and outdoor seating areas of this 1950s style diner.  The serving comprised ground Lamb patties, cream sauce, small potatoes, and Lingonberries (a brown berry with a nut flavor).  Sparking water was provided at no cost while beer and wine were also available for a nominal fee.  We enjoyed a glass of the Riesling which cost 92 Swedish Krona.  Guest WIFI was available for the asking.

After lunch, we went for a stroll around the property and captured some beautiful poppies growing in the wild.

Once our relaxing lunch was over, we climbed back on the bus and pressed on to Fårö Church the gravesite of the late Ingmar Bergman.  Ingmar Bergman was a prominent Swedish director, writer, and producer who fell in love with Fårö during the filming of Through a Glass Darkly in 1961.  He relocated to Fårö for the privacy it granted.

After visiting the Ingmar Bergman gravesite we had a cursory jaunt around the chapel and neighboring property. We re-boarded the bus at 1:25pm and arrived at Farosund Ferry for the return journey at 1:30 pm.

Somehow, we sidesteped all the waiting vehicles and just drove right on.  I noticed on the schedule that the Ferry leaves every half hour until 10pm.  A road sign declared that Visby was 54km away.

We reached Visby at 2:25 pm where we left the bus and set out on a walking tour of the old town.

We wandered through one of the many medieval gates surrounding the town.  Our first stop was at Visby Cathedral, one of the most noteworthy buildings in Visby, with its black cloisters.

We heard a brief history of the Cathedral then continued inside for a look around.  The inside contained beautiful stained glass with many crypts about the floor.

After leaving Visby Cathedral, we walked the streets of Visby stopping periodically to learn more history.  One of the many buildings we admired was the Apoteket Wilby, an 800-year-old shop in the middle of town.

After going on for about 90 minutes on foot, we made our way to the bus waiting area and reboarded our coach at 3:55pm for our return journey to the port.

Cruise Port: Visby Gotland, Sweden

Tour Name: Charming Faro & Visby

Cruise Ship: Queen Elizabeth

Tour Guide: Marie-Louise