When the little town of Lillehammer in the municipality of Oppland county, Norway presented its bid to host the 1992 winter Olympic Games, everybody thought the town was joking. However, nothing can replace consistency and when it bid again for the 1994 event, it outbid what you would call 'big cities' including Anchorage in the United States; Östersund in Sweden; and Sofia in Bulgaria. Today, the town boasts some of the most historic sites courtesy of being one of the towns that have hosted the global sporting event. Below are some of these sites.
This is a ski jumping hill in Lillehammer that was opened in 1993 in readiness for the 1994 Olympic Winter Games. AAs fate would have it, the arena hosted the ski jumping and Nordic combined events as well as the opening and closing ceremonies. After refurbishments, the venue has a capacity of 35,000 people and hosts approximately 80,000 jumps during winter and 20,000 jumps during summer.
2. Birkebeineren Skistadion
This arena hosted the cross-country skiing and biathlon during the games. Today, the arena is still popular with the fun-loving skiers from around the world. It has a capacity of 31,000.
3. Kanthugen Freestyle Arena
This is a freestyle skiing arena located on the foothills of Kanthaugen. It boasts 3 hills that include; aerials, moguls and ski ballet. The venue is poised to host the 2016 Youth Winter Olympics.
4. Hakons Hall
This is the largest handball and ice hockey venue in Norway, with a capacity of 11,500. It was opened in 1993 to host the 1994 Winter Olympics games. Nowadays, the venue is used for handball and ice hockey tournaments, big concerts, exhibitions, conferences and banquets. Make sure you attend one of the events held here while in Norway.
5. Gjøvik Olympic Cavern Hall
With a 5,500 capacity, a 25-meter swimming pool and telecommunication installations, this facility was also opened in 1993 in preparation for the 1994 winter Olympics ice hockey games - it hosted a whopping 16 matches. The building is the world's largest cavern that is available for public use.
Lillehammer is an idyllic little Norwegian Town that is also popular for sighting the Northern Lights. A visit to the town will take you back in time when life was not complicated and all you were required to do was to wake up at six, do your 8 hours and go to the stadium for some energy packed game.