lørdag 24. august 2019

Summer on the islands of Askrova and Tansøy

This week’s guest blogger is Jan Arne Holm. He was born in Florø in 1953 and the first time he visited Tansøy he was 1/2 years old. Although he grew up in Stavanger, he used most of his summer holidays at Tansøy where he went fishing, played football with the locals and harvested grass for winterfeeding the sheep. Today Jan Arne lives in Florø and travel to his cabin on Tansøy as often as he can.


  Askrova and Tansøy is a walker's paradise. 

Askrova, Tansøy and its small surrounding islands, located a short distance south of Florø, has a remarkably green and lush nature. After a busy day at work in Florø this is a fantastic place for me to go to for a walk in the small mountains, to go kayaking and fishing, meet the locals - or just to relax feeling the fresh air and tranquillity calming your soul.


Walking in a lush landscape

For generations Askrova and Tansøy have been cultivated, mostly by sheep which give the landscape an open and welcoming appearance. The view from the highest mountain top "Skaret" (219 meters above sea level) to the fields of green grass and heather as well as the ocean in the west is magnificent. The paths from "Myra" in the south to "Hammarset" in the north invites you to a walk in beautiful terrain. 

View from Skaret

On the islands you find a few pine trees and hardwood, but mostly you find heather, grass and a huge diversity of costal plants flowering from March to November - especially visible along the road to Valvik. The open landscape on the islands give you fantastic view in all directions almost wherever you go.

Beautiful scenery on the way from "Hammarset"


Kayaking at sunset

Another way to find the silence and tranquillity to ease your mind and soul is taking a trip by kayak. I usually do this when the wind is calm, leaving the ocean as a smooth carpet of velvet. Then the kayak slide quietly along, often to find an otter or two swimming, hunting for fish. Sometimes you also may see some porpoises, the nice dolphin like whales. Usually you see one or more eagles, as well as many other coastal birds. The small islands, islets and inserts surrounding Askrova and Tansøy invites to several possible routes. As the kayak need only a few inches of water to float, you can pass very shallow places where a boat cannot reach. 

A special dimension of these kayak trips is when a nice day comes to an end and the sun slowly disappears in the ocean, painting the sky in marvellous yellow, orange, red and violet colours. When you return to the cabin your batteries feel fully loaded. 


Celebrating the Norwegian Constitution Day at "Øykjeskjersholten", my favourite spot 

However, my favourite spot is "Øykjeskjersholten" on the north western side of Askrova. Here my wife and I have a tradition walking for a breakfast every 17th of May, the Norwegian Constitution Day. The feeling combining a good breakfast on this day with the natural silence and seaside view is fantastic. 

My favourite spot, "Øykjeskjersholten"


Easy access from the coastal town of Florø make Askrova a great year-round excursion. The local ferry runs between the islands from Florø to Askrova every day throughout the year. There are 5-6 departures on weekdays, and 2 departures every Saturday and Sunday. Would you like to visit Askrova from Bergen? A express boat can take you from Bergen to Florø in 3 and a half hours. After a relaxing boat tour with incredible views passing by you arrive in Florø. Here you can change to the local ferry and arrive on Askrova after 30 minutes. You can see the schedule for both the express and local ferry at en-tur.no

Askrova lies at the heart of Western Norway, halfway between Bergen and Ålesund.

You’ll have the choice if you would like to go on a one-day trip or book accommodation on the islands and take the tour over several days. Askrova Holiday House and Kvammen Holiday Houses offer you accommodation on the beautiful islands. They have boats available if you want to go on a boat trip or go fishing.

You can find more information at fjordkysten.no

Welcome to Askrova and Tansøy!

søndag 31. mars 2019

Top 5 in Flora

Flora has a swarm of islands, inland rivers, lovely mountain tops, glacier and quiet lakes. In other words, perfect for nature lovers! Are you wondering what are the best things to do in Flora and Florø? Here is Visit FjordKysten's top list.

Top 5 good reasons to visit Flora 

1. The archipelago

Explore the archipelago around Florø with islands as varied as they are beautiful. The local boat sails through a magnificent landscape to the different islands in the archipelago all year round. Some of the most popular things to do is exploring the thrilling history at the island of Kinn, enjoy the view from the top of Store Batalden and feeding the deer on Svanøy. Looking for a breathtaking experience? Hiking at the islands of Askrova, Reksta and Skropa will for sure give you a spectacular view!

2. Ausevika Rock Carvings

Ausevika is one of the most extensive rock-carving sites in Norway, with figures dating back more than 3000 years. There are more than 300 carvings, of both animals and humans. There are also fertility and agricultural motifs, known as Veidemannskunst, literally ‘huntsman’s art’. You can follow a cultural trail at Ausevika where the fascinating history is brought to life through video or audio stories on your mobile. 

3. The coastal town of Florø

Florø. Photo: Nicholas Iannone

Facing out to sea is Norway’s westernmost town – Florø. Enjoy the combination of small-town idyll, with charming cafes and good shops, and spectacular nature experiences just a short distance away. In Florø you can join in on a beer tasting at Kinn Brewery, visit the Coastal Museum and pet the animals at Soldalen Besøksgård.

4. The festivals

Outdoor theatre Kinnaspelet. Photo: Merete Mellingen

Flora has an exciting cultural life with small and large festivals and events. Here are some of the highlights! In mid-June every year you can experience the world’s longest herring table in Florø. The same weekend you can enjoy the outdoor theatre Kinnaspelet on the saga island of Kinn. Everything is set for spectacular experiences at the water sport festival Våt Moro in July. Have you ever tried Stand Up Paddle, water skiing or rafting at sea? At the festival you'll have the chance to try it all in just one weekend!

5. The lighthouses

Stabben lighthouse. Photo: Eivind Hauge

Would you like to experience something out of the ordinary? Try visiting a lighthouse! Visit the island Hovden and follow the North Sea trail to Kvanhovden lighthouse, where you can also stay overnight. Located on a cliff, the lighthouse has a spectacular location! The charming Stabben lighthouse is located on a slippery, rounded-off skerry in the middle of the shipping lane. Stabben lighthouse have been guiding sailors safe towards Florø since 1866. 

You can find information on other attractions and accommodation at fjordkysten.no

Welcome to Flora!

tirsdag 26. mars 2019

Top 5 in Solund

Solund is an island paradise with 1700 islands, islets and skerries where the fjord meets the open sea. Norway’s westernmost municipality is an excellent destination for everyone looking for exhilarating nature experiences. Solund is located just two hours from Bergen at the outermost point of the Sognefjord. Are you wondering what are the best things to do in Solund? Here is Visit FjordKysten's top list.

Top 5 in Solund

1. Kayaking

Kayaking to the distinctive rock formations, Lågøystolane. Photo: Magnus R. Furset

Solund is a dream come true for kayakers. The many islands provide shelter from winds and waves - and when the weather is good it’s just a short way out to the mighty ocean. Experience charming fishing villages and a unique geology from the seat of your kayak. Perhaps you’ll see the eagles that live out here? 

The Norwegian Coastal Culture Academy, NKKA offer guided kayak tours and courses in this spectacular coastal scenery. 

2. Utvær

Utvær Lighthouse. Photo: Merete Mellingen. 

You cannot go further west in Norway than the islands of Utvær. The island boasts both historical significance and captivating natural surroundings. Here you’ll find the monumental Utvær Lighthouse built in 1900. The light from the lighthouse can be seen 35 km out in the North Sea. For decades the light have been the first sight of land for the ones approaching the Norwegian coast at night.

Did you know Utvær Lighthouse is the motif on the newly launched 50-krone banknote?

3. Island Hopping by the postal boat

Island Hopping. Photo: Susanne Odijk Solbakken

Some of the charming islands in the Solund archipelago are car free and have no road connections. The local postal boat binds the communities together by delivering mail and transport passengers from one island to another. You can join the post boat and go island hopping among the multitude of islands. The captain will be your local guide and show you hidden treasure along the way. 

You can choose if you would like to go island hopping as a daytrip or take the trip over several days. Daytrips from Bergen can be booked on gofjords.com and single tickets for the island hopping between Hardbakke and Bulandet can be booked on fjordkysten.no. To get a sense of what it is like to live on Norway's westernmost islands we recommend booking accommodation in the municipalities Solund and Askvoll, and go island hopping over several days.

4. Storm watching

Storm watching. Photo: Merete Mellingen.

Norway’s westernmost municipality boasts an outstanding setting for storm watching. Winters in Solund are often mild, green and stormy, with fantastic winter light. October to March is high season for storms! Some days are clear and sunny, but stormy weather is usually just around the corner. A comfortable stay is an important part of the experience. Enjoy a great view from your hotel room, snuggle under a blanket and enjoy a hot drink with your nearest and dearest.

You can book Stormwatching tours to Solund on gofjords.com. Delicious food, guided storm experiences, transport and accommodation are included. 

5. Pollatinden

Great view from Pollatinden. Photo: Hildur Ytreøy

Solund is great for hiking with clearly waymarked footpaths in varied terrain. Pollatinden (541 masl) is the second highest peak in Solund. From the top you get a breathtaking view of the archipelago! 

You can find information on other attractions and accommodation at fjordkysten.no

Welcome to Solund!

fredag 22. mars 2019

Top 5 in Hyllestad

Hyllestad has many small, idyllic places where you can experience pure relaxation and tranquillity. Hire a holiday house or stay at a cosy family hotel - whatever you choose, fjord views are guaranteed! Are you wondering what are the best things to do in Hyllestad? Here is Visit FjordKysten's top list.

 Top 5 in Hyllestad

1. Lihesten

Mount Lihesten. Photo: Petur Thor

Spectacular Lihesten (777 masl) is a famous landmark on the coast and probably one of the most photographed mountains in the region. The mountain has many trails and you can spend days exploring them. Lihesten is also popular for mountain climbing.  A round trip to the most popular peaks on the mountain takes about 8 hours. The path is demanding, but the pay-off is the fantastic view!

You can join a guided tour to Lihesten together with the experienced guides from lihesten.com.

2. Millstone Park

Millstone Park/ Kvernsteinsparken. Photo: Espen Mills

Travel back in time in Hyllestad. At the Millstone Park you can see traces of the distinctive production of millstones, going right back to the Viking period and Middle Ages. The whole family are invited to participate in a wide range of activities. What about grinding grain by using a quern stone, use the flour to make a dough and bake it over the bonfire?

3. Fishing
Great catch. Photo: FjordKick

If you enjoy fishing, you’ve come to the right place! In Hyllestad you can combine rich sea fishing, with fishing in the Sognefjord and in excellent waters for trout. Hyllestad is a paradise for fishing enthusiasts from all over the world. You can choose if you would like to go on a guided fishing trip - or rent a boat and go on your own.

4. Trondheim Postal Road
Foss bridge. Photo: Per Storemyr

The old Trondheim Postal Road is great for hiking and cycling. The road was built between 1801-1806. There were originally 19 stone bridges on the route between Dale and Leirvik, and many of them are still standing as proud and impressive examples of early dry masonry.

5. Kvernhusfossen waterfall in Skor

Kvernhusfossen waterfall in Skor is one of Norway’s finest collections of watermill buildings. Here you’ll find five beautiful grinding mills and a water-driven sawmill.

You can find information on other attractions and accommodation at fjordkysten.no

Welcome to Hyllestad!

tirsdag 12. mars 2019

5 top attractions in Askvoll

Askvoll offers impressive nature experiences, from the fjord itself to islands far out where the fjord meets the open sea. Are you wondering what are the best places to visit in Askvoll? Here is Visit FjordKysten's top list.

Top 5 in Askvoll

1. Værlandet and Bulandet

Visit the charming islands of Bulandet and Værlandet. The islands here are like a string of pearls, beautifully linked by six bridges and a 11 km road. These islands are a popular holiday destination for those who enjoy cycling, paddling, fishing or hiking. It is wonderful to go Island Hopping between the myriad of islands and bike from Værlandet to Bulandet

2. Alden 

Photo: Kieran Kolle

Mount Alden rises straight out of the ocean, 481 m above sea level. This is one of the most significant sailing marks on the western coast of Norway and it is visible from more than a 100 km away. From the top you can enjoy a spectacular 360-degree view!

3. Helle knife factory

In the idyllic village Holmedal you’ll find the knife factory Helle Knivfabrikk. The factory produces high quality knives inspired by the wild mountains, fjords and open seas. If you are interested in history and culture, a visit to Helle knife factory is for sure well worth your time! 

4. Atløy 

Photo:  Sylvia Vindheim

Visit the charming island of Atløy and let yourself be captivated by the beautiful scenery. Atløy is home to the wooden Vilnes church built in 1674. The island is a walker’s paradise with great hiking trails.

5. Blegja 

Photo: Gustav Skaar

Blegja (1304 meters above sea level) is the highest mountain in the Fjord Coast region. You can see all the way to Jostedalsbreen and the 7 mountains surrounding Bergen from the top! The path is steep and demanding, but the pay-off is the fantastic view!

You can find information on other attractions and accommodation at fjordkysten.no

Welcome to Askvoll!

fredag 8. mars 2019

5 top attractions in Bremanger

Bremanger is famous for its beautiful scenery, with white beaches, high mountains, fjords and glaciers. With more than 100 waymarked and adapted footpaths, Bremanger is a walker’s paradise. Are you wondering what are the best places to visit in Bremanger? Here is Visit FjordKysten's top list.

Top 5 attractions in Bremanger

1. Hornelen

Stunning view from Hornelen. Photo: Sverre Hjørnevik

Hornelen is Europe’s highest sea cliff, 860 precipitous metres above the sea. A hike to Hornelen is a truly spectacular experience! The path is steep and demanding, but the pay-off is the fantastic views on the way. This is a day hike suitable for those used to hiking in rough terrain. You can also enjoy views of Hornelen from the Gloføykje Millennium Site in Bremanger. 

2. Vetvika

A visit to the bay of Vetvika is truly an experience out of the ordinary! Photo: Åse-Berit Nytun

Vetvika bay is untamed, beautiful and magical. The white sandy beach is surrounded by high mountains and clear blue water. You can reach the road-free beach by hiking over Steinfjellet or by boat.

3. Kalvåg

Kalvåg seen from viewpoint Varden. Photo: Wenny Irene Hansen. 

The charming village Kalvåg is located far out where the fjord meets the open sea. Kalvåg is one of Western Norway’s best-preserved fishing villages, which bustles with life in the summer. Here you’ll find an excellent gallery, a top-class restaurant, a spa and different types of accommodation.

4. Ålfoten and Hjortegarden 

Meet the red deer in Ålfoten. Photo: Hjortegarden

Ålfoten is a charming village located by the Ålfotfjord. Here the majestic red deer wander around in the forests - from the fjord, up along the rivers to the bare mountains and the mighty Ålfotbreen glacier. Have you ever seen a red deer at close quarters? In Ålfoten you’ll find the red deer farm Hjortegarden. Here you can feed the red deer! 

5. Vingen 

Guided tour in Vingen. Photo: Bremanger Tourist Information.

Deep in Vingepollen, a narrow fjord arm surrounded by steep mountains, is Vingen - one of Northern Europe’s largest and most distinctive rock-carving sites. More than 2200 carvings have been discovered here, probably created by neolithic hunters (approximately 6000 years ago). The deer is the most popular motif, but there are also human figures and abstract symbols. In the summer you can join a guided tour to Vingen.

Welcome to Bremanger!

lørdag 17. november 2018

Romantic getaway at the Fjord Coast

Top 5 romantic getaways

Sunset in the coastal town of Florø. Photo: Truls Kleiven

Rediscover romance in an environment of fresh sea air, beautiful landscapes and with no crowds of people. Fill your days with wellness treatments, recharging hikes, sightseeing and wildlife watching, or a paddle between small islands. At the Fjord Coast you can stay in comfortable hotels and enjoy the local food - either you catch it yourself or let a chef prepare a tasty meal with fresh, local ingredients. It's all about surroundings that give you and your loved one the perfect frame for nourishing your relation.

Top 5 romantic getaways

1. In the charming fishing village of Kalvåg you will find good atmosphere, great food and savour coastal culture. Knutholmen is the heart of the village. Placed around the little bay you will find sea houses, a restaurant with a dance floor, hotel rooms and conference facilities. Kalvåg itself is a large living hotel! Knutholmen specialize in food from the sea. Fresh raw ingredients are important for a good result; Kalvåg is located literally in the larder with fishing grounds just a stone throw away.

Kalvåg is one of the best-preserved fishing villages in Western Norway. 

In Kalvåg you can enjoy wellness treatments or just relax on the indoor beach at the spa. There are many hiking trails to choose from, from easy, family friendly walks to Hornelen - the highest sea cliff in Europe. Don't miss a visit to Grotlesanden, a beautiful white sandy beach. A fascinating sight in all kinds of weather!

Go for a stroll along beautiful Grotlesanden beach. Photo: Jørund Nygård

2. Værlandet Havhotell at Værlandet in Askvoll is a unique oceanfront hotel. You are invited to stay within modern architecture in an open landscape close to the sea. From your room you may rejoice in endless views of the horizon and the majestic cliff island Alden. The hotel is a perfect base to explore the beautiful archipelago Værlandet and Bulandet in your own time. The best time to do anything - or nothing.

Every room at Værlandet Havhotell is unique in colour theme and interior. Photo: Værlandet Havhotell

Right by the hotel you can enjoy local food at Værlandet Gjestehamn. Meet the local hosts – you are guaranteed to be well taken care of! Other good locations for a romantic getaway on these islands are Bulandsferie and Liv & Lyst. Here you can stay at comfortable cabins, located right by the sea side.

3. The old trading post Skjerjehamn is located on a beautiful petite island just one and a half hour by boat from Bergen. At Skjerjehamn you can stay in the charming Swiss-style chalet dating from 1891 and enjoy great food made from locally sourced ingredients. 

Skjerjehamn has a lot to offer all year round. Photo: Jouni Kuuva

The Blue Garden, a new sculpture walk that explores the impact of modern aquaculture, opened in the spring of 2018. Skjerjehamn is an excellent get away for anyone who appreciate nature, art and history. 

4.  Dreaming of a hotel with a fjord view? Hotel Sognefjord is located in Leirvik by the beautiful Sognefjord. Here you can take a break from the bustle of daily life, walk hand in hand in the charming fjord village and eat a tasty dinner for two in the restaurant. 

The rooms at Hotel Sognefjord have newly been redecorated. Photo: Hotel Sognefjord

You can enjoy the stunning nature surrounding the hotel together with a guide from Lihesten. Perfect for the adventurous couple! 

5. Quality Hotel Florø is beautifully situated in the heart of the coastal city of Florø, the westernmost town in Norway. The hotel is located directly on the waterfront with a scenic view of the fjords and the majestic mountains. The hotel restaurant is one of the best in town. 

Quality Hotel Florø. Photo: Nordic Choice Hotels.

Florø is home to one of the best craft breweries in Norway - Kinn Brewery. In the city centre you will find both their test brewery and the beer café Vesle Kinn. Some of the beers from the test brewery you'll only find at Vesle Kinn. You'll also find almost the whole Kinn selection on bottles and classics from both Norwegian and foreign breweries. Kinn Brewery’s slogan is “doing it the old-fashioned way” - and a visit to Vesle Kinn is for sure a tasty experience! If you want to enjoy the nature, you don’t have to go far. Go for a walk up Storeåsen or Brandsøyåsen, which offers great views of the islands, fjords and mountains. This is also a great spots to watch the sunsets!

Romantic hike to Brandsøåsen. Photo: Truls Kleiven

There are many ways to explore the Fjord Coast with your loved one. Which hotel would you like to visit?

Plan your vacation at fjordkysten.no.