Kanadiske Jeff er nok Nomadens mest bereiste - han er så godt som alltid på reisefot. Hvordan han klarer å kombinere alle sine turer med alle sine skift i butikken er fortsatt uvisst, men det kan ha noe å gjøre med at han detaljplanlegger sine reiser opptil tre år i forveien. De siste årene har han tatt med kameraet på turen og har blitt en særdeles dyktig reisefotograf. Han er sannsynligvis også den i Norge som har besøkt flest UNESCO-steder (nesten 400 UNESCO-mål).
10 unique stays in Norway
Choosing a place to stay can be a daunting task, and the choices are often overwhelming. Many people simply don’t have the time nor inclination when choosing where they want to stay. For the majority, where they end up spending the night all too often comes down simple convenience. Still, for those interested, there exists a different kind of accommodation, places that excel at offering a unique experience. These are places where guests take away with them much more than just a place to put their head for a night.
The following is a select list of unique places to stay across Norway. A slight twist from the usual standard hotel, places that not only bring in location, but offer just that extra special touch. Whether its cutting-edge design; gourmet food or a spectacular view, Norway has some above-the-normal, world-class accommodation.
Treehouse Hotels seem to be trend-of-the-moment these days, and they are sprouting up across the globe. Norways Woodnest in Odda brings treehouses to the next level. Built largely by a Norwegian-Australian couple, their treehouses are the ultimate in contemporary design. Handyman Kjartan Aano has brought his skills to the project, so their property really is a labor of love. Tucked into the dense forest high above the town of Odda, each of their treehouses, (there are only two) come complete with fully functional bathrooms, (including a shower) tiny kitchen with refrigerator and a comfy double bed. With floor-to-ceiling glass windows, the views over the Hardangerfjord are spectacular. Guests must be somewhat fit as it is a rather steep 20-minute climb up to the location of the treehouses, scrambling over large boulders along the way. Keep in mind that all luggage must be brought up yourself. Things like towels and bedsheets are supplied ,but food and drinks are not. Trust me - the experience is more than worth the effort! www.woodnest.no
Another trend of the moment seems to be hotels in glass boxes, and Norway has its fair share of unique cabins scattered across the country. Roughly a 2.5-hour drive north of Bodø, guests are collected from the carpark by boat and whisked to another world where futuristic glass box cabins-on-stilts dot the landscape, each one providing a different view of the rugged arctic landscape.
Gourmet meals are served in the main lodge, and booking a table comes highly recommended as the food is sublime. Guests are encouraged to interact with one another at the dining room table, creating a lovely social atmosphere that inevitably leads to more bottles of wine ordered. After a busy day, you may relax in the sauna or jacuzzi (booking advisable).
There are activities on offer during your stay - such as Eagle Safaris, Hiking, Kayaking and Fishing. After a busy day, retreat to your cabin and simply sit back and enjoy the pure serenity of Manshausen.
More well-known but no less impressive, Juvet is truly a beautiful place. Timber-and-glass cabins on stilts placed delicately in the forest, large beds face the floor-to-ceiling windows overlooking the forest and the rushing Valldøla river. It is all about being with nature, and this is as close as it gets. Whoever said that being that close to nature means having to rough it needs to pay a visit here, and will soon change their mind – Juvet is the epitome of glamping. Not an outhouse in sight, this is luxury in the forest for sure - each cabin has a fully functional lavatory. No two cabins are the same in design and each one is placed in such a way that total privacy is assured. There are no curtains here, so don’t forget your eye mask if you are sensitive to light. Still, with all those magnificent views, I suggest you leave it behind – why miss a good thing!
Meals are served in the common lodge where, like at Manshausen, guests share dinner tables encouraging social interaction.
Conveniently, Juvet is close to Trollstigen, just a 25-minute drive away. There is of course lots of other activities in the area from hiking and climbing to rafting and skiing, but being at such a special place, you may just want to stay put and enjoy!
SOLLIA LODGE, Kirkenes
Just 13 kilometers from the center of Kirkenes is another glass cabin hotel, but his time the focus is not necessarily on the surrounding landscape. Rather, guests are encouraged to look up to the heavens, as this property has installed glass on the cabin roofs, thus enabling guests to lie in bed and observe the Northern Lights in total comfort.
The main lodge serves up decent meals, and there is a sauna and jacuzzi for those who would rather take up the night-sky viewing outside. This hotel is about as far north as you can go, with the cold Barnets Sea only meters away, and the Russian Border another kilometer or two to the east.
SORRISNIVA IGLOO HOTEL, Alta
The idea of an igloo hotel may have come from Sweden back in the late 1980s, but the Norwegians have perfected it. Sorrisniva is a triumph in ice architecture, and like all igloo hotels across the globe, they need to be re-built every year after melting away to nothing come the warmer weather. There is a main “normal” lodge to house the on-site restaurant as well as a lounge, changing facilities and storage lockers. It’s all very well organized, as it should be to prepare guests to brave the rooms, which are, obviously completely made of ice. Even the beds are carved out of the ice. As are the chapel (you can get married here) and a couple of bars. Ice-sculptures abound throughout the common rooms and hallways adding to the atmosphere. The entire complex is kept at a chilly -4c, but the beds hold a normal mattress as well as warm sleeping bags and animal skins to assure a good night’s rest. It all sounds like complete kitsch but ,here they have managed to make this gimmick work without losing any credibility. A wonderful experience.
A Dutch touch to a classic Norwegian lodge, Herangtunet Boutique hotel is a remarkable property that marries classic Norwegian furnishings with a modern touch. The owners, originally from Amsterdam, moved to the wilds of central Norway to re-start their careers and try their luck at running a hotel. With design a strong interest with them both, they’ve managed to recreate the charm of a Scandinavian lodge with the sophistication of city living and the result is a winner. Rooms are named after big cities: Rome; London; New York each suite contemporary and fitted with up-to-the-minute furnishings and fabrics in rich vibrant colours creating a warm, relaxing environment.
Wandering the hotel grounds or just sitting in the restaurant you come to the realization that there is true passion here. Attention to detail is evident everywhere and spending time here is a real joy and a true escape from the grind of daily life.
One of the most anticipated hotel openings in Europe in 2019, The Britannia gives the city of Trondheim a much-needed boost securing a place on the global high-end hotel list. Originally opening its doors in 1870, Britannia is back totally revamped and better than ever. In early 2021 the hotel was included in the acclaimed Travel + Leisure´s annual list of best new hotel openings and awarded a Michelin Star for its prestigious Speilsalen restaurant. No expense was spared into the restoration of this beautiful historic building in the heart of the city. The hotel has 257 sumptuous rooms, each with marble bathrooms and high-end quality Hästens beds. Six different bars and restaurants, a large spa & fitness center and modern meeting facilities. Come for afternoon tea served in the magnificent Palmehaven salon. The experience will leave you thinking you are in London, a very British tradition. A member of “Leading Hotels of the World”, it is one of the precious few 5-star hotels in Scandinavia. In June 2020, Britannia Hotel celebrated 150 years since its first opening and to celebrate the occasion, a book on the hotel´s history will be launched. Welcome back!
It´s all about the location here at Tollboden. This historical hotel by the sea dates to the second half of 1700s, and is the proud centerpiece of the community. This glorious timber hotel is located in what was once the customs house of the tiny fishing community of Kragerø. Tollboden is now not only renowned for its history but is equally celebrated for its restaurant and key position along the main thoroughfare by the sea. Platters of fresh seafood is served al fresco right on the sea´s edge, perfect for long afternoon lunches on sunny days. Behind the hotel is an enclosed garden where dinners are also served, should the seaside become too windy.
Rooms are spacious with a modern minimalist design in warm, dark muted earth colours complimenting the wooden walls, floors, and ceilings. High-quality linens and thick duvets ensure a good night’s sleep.
ENGØ GÅRD, Tjøme
Another destination hotel, Engø Gård has a lot to offer their guests, who have been coming here as far back as 1924. Several historical buildings are scattered across the property that line the shores near the town of Tjøme. Activities include Boule, Croquet, and tennis, but the main highlight is the luxurious heated indoor swimming pool. It is also possible to borrow a bicycle for the day and tootle about the area, exploring all the nooks and crannies.
Meals served here are a highlight, and the gourmet kitchen serves extensive 2-3 course lunches and 4-6 course dinners together with wine-pairing packages. On warm summer nights aperitifs and/or dinner can be served al fresco, recommended for long evening sunsets surrounded by lush, peaceful gardens.
Rooms come in many categories, but all are stylish, spacious, and comfortable – the perfect tranquil retreat.
INDAL FOREST RETREAT, Gjøvik
Ever slept in a Yurt? This is glamping at its best! Tucked into the forest, this forest retreat has it all. The yurt is an incredible 30 square metres, built on a wooden foundation that sleeps two comfortably, but with enough room for two more if needed. Complete with a grill for do-it-yourself meals and a built-in mini oven for those chilly mornings and making that fresh pot of hot coffee, this is camping without the stress of having to set everything up yourself. No sleeping bags here, only a full-size double bed with enough pillows and blankets to keep everyone cozy and warm.
It´s all about the peace and tranquility here, the only sounds heard are those from the forest.
There is an onsite sauna, outdoor shower, and warm bath all with views of nearby Lake Mjøsa to complete the experience, truly a forest retreat indeed!