Are you tired of staying at hotel chains? Have already ticked the snow hotel and glass igloo off your bucket list? Or are you simply not willing to spend your hard-earned money on an overpriced cabin just because it’s hyped up on Instagram? I hear you! Norway has so many accommodation options to choose from and a great majority come with spectacular views and easy access to nature. You don’t have to stay in a glass igloo to see the Northern Lights, and that cabin with a view you’ve seen on Instagram is certainly not the only one of its kind. Instead, why not stay somewhere more historic? Somewhere a little more authentic but equally charming? Somewhere traditionally Norwegian and not new and boutiquey? Somewhere like this:
When I visited Helsinki for my second time back in March, I made sure to contact my friend Christina to ask her if she knew of any good vegan restaurants in town. Luckily, there was absolutely no need for concern. My wonderful friend, not a vegan or vegetarian herself, made sure to ask all her vegan friends and colleagues and send over an entire list of places I should check out while in town. Unfortunately, I didn’t have time to try them all as my Helsinki visit was rather short, but I thought I’d pass the recommendations on to you!
In Norway/Tromso, many landlords want to see testimonials from former places you've lived in to make sure that you're a responsible and tidy person. This doesn't have to be a written statement, mostly it's enough to provide a phone number to your previous landlord. I admit, I definitely feel that this is a bit over the top - especially when some people require at least 3 testimonials, like how often do they expect you to move?
So, I had to visit the dentist recently, for the first time since moving to Norway, and let me tell you - it ain’t cheap! It’s so expensive, in fact, that I briefly considered a trip to Poland to get my teeth fixed there… Luckily, I did manage to find an affordable way to visit the dentist in Norway though and I’m sharing all my money-saving secrets, along with more information on dental and healthcare in Norway in this video!
Having lived in and explored the Nordics quite extensively over the past few years, I often forget that not everyone is quite as crazy about snow and hygge as I am. In fact, it seems that not everyone even knows what the Nordics really are! Since that’s (sort of) mind-boggling to me, I’ve decided to do something about it and bust 7 common misconceptions and myths about the Nordics in this article!
After 4 years of living in Norway and 3,5 years of dating a Norwegian, I thought it was about time to tell you everything I know about dating in Norway and more importantly, what Norwegian men (and women) are like! Of course, it’s very difficult to generalize the dating culture in Norway, so this video is based on personal experiences. Hopefully it does give you a better idea of what to expect, though, if you plan on moving to Norway yourself!
As you might know, I absolutely love all things Nordic and there are so many things to buy someone like me - whether one of your loved ones is planning a trip up north or whether they’re just equally crazy about the Nordics as I am. The following list will give you some inspiration for Nordic Christmas gifts, ranging from jewellery, clothes and cosmetics to entertainment and interior.
You want to live in Norway and experience all the gorgeous sights that tourists get to see for free - or even better - while getting paid for it? It’s the end of the guiding season for me now and to say that I’m exhausted is an understatement - BUT I’m already looking forward to summer next year as I’m going to work as a tour guide in Stavanger again! And maybe you’ll be my new colleague? Here’s everything you need to know if you want to work as a tour guide in Norway!
Of course, how locals deal with winter depends a lot on each individual person and where they live exactly. Having lived for 3 years in the Norwegian Arctic and (at this point) 1 year in Southern Norway, I know that perceptions about winter differ greatly throughout the north and south of Norway alone, so surely they differ a lot more across cultures. The general attitude about winter seems to differ between areas north and south of the Arctic Circle, though. While most people I know in Tromsø or Bodø in Northern Norway are either quite fond of winter or simply don’t really care about the lack of daylight much, people here in the south of the country seem to be affected a lot more. What seems to be the key in this issue isn’t the lack of daylight, though - it seems as though it’s the lack of snow!
So, the other day I got this question on Instagram: “Are electric cars really a thing in Norway? I mean... it's a huge country. Do they hide a large battery somewhere in the mountains?” LOL! Well, I don’t know about the battery, though, how awesome would that be?! To be honest with you, I get this question all the time working as a tour guide. Apparently, whenever international media report about Norway nowadays, it’s either for tourism purposes or to talk about electric cars. The latter seems to have sparked quite an interest abroad:
It might seem like Stavanger in summertime is full of tourists, while all the locals disappear to either their summer cabin or to Spain in search of vitamin D. However, there's actually loads going on in the city during the summer months and besides Hafrsfjordkaupangen in June, late July is a time when the entire region gathers in Stavanger again after the summer break to celebrate food at Glad Mat Food Festival and this year, also to have a look behind the scenes of the world's sailing vessels at the Tall Ships Races.
This post is long overdue considering the fact that I visited mainland Denmark in 2017 but better late than never. Prior to that, I'd been to Copenhagen several times but you haven't really seen a country until you venture out of its capital, right? So, that's what I did last year. I based myself and my parents for a week in Aarhus and we went on to explore Aalborg, Odense and Ribe from there. Needless to say that I got to know a different side of Denmark on this trip and learnt SO many things about the country that I didn't know before!
Stavanger is one of the oldest cities of Norway and remnants of human settlement in the area date back to the Viking Age. All the more reason to stop obsessing with Pulpit Rock for a moment and have a closer look at the city and its history itself! Often overlooked by tourists coming to visit, Stavanger actually has an abundance of Viking culture to offer - there are old gravestones with runic inscriptions, the former residence of Harald Fairhair at Utstein, and, of course, several monuments paying tribute to the Battle of Hafrsfjord. The biggest and for most people probably also most interesting attraction when it comes to experiencing Viking culture in Stavanger however, has got to be Hafrsfjordkaupangen!
Nonetheless, vegetarianism, veganism and food allergies are all widely known in the country and if you're visiting, you shouldn't have to lose any sleep over where and what to eat during your trip. Therefore I decided to give you the rundown of allergy-friendly Norwegian dishes and restaurants in the biggest cities of the country that cater well for anyone on a special diet - whether you're vegetarian, vegan, lactose-intolerant, or suffering from an IBD/IBS or celiac disease.
This is my fourth year of living in Norway and you should think that Norway's National Day isn't a big deal for me anymore, except that this year was the first one I got to spend in my new home of Stavanger! Having spent it in cold and rainy (and one year even snowy) Tromsø in previous years, I had high hopes of lovely weather and warm temperatures for the day - which, except for the coastal wind, was a wish come true!
Today I wanted to take the time to not only update you on myself, though, but also fill you in on the Norwegian healthcare system that I've now been forced to get to know a lot better than I ever did before in recent weeks. Whether you're a tourist coming to Norway on holiday or planning to move to the country, in this article I'd like to tell you everything I've learnt about what happens when you get sick in Norway!
Imagine my excitement over getting the chance to visit a reindeer farm in Lapland this winter! Feeding and cuddling baby reindeer in a winter wonderland? That does sound like a day too good to be true, doesn't it? Well, you're lucky because I'm going to recap the entire day for you in this post - and don't worry, there's plenty of cute reindeer footage coming along!*
Long story short, I thought I knew the true meaning of "winter wonderland" from what I've experienced in Tromsø these past few years. Little did I know, though, that there's one place that takes snow to a whole new level: Ruka-Kuusamo in Finnish Lapland! Read on to find out why the area might very well be the most stunning part of Finland - and why the country needs more than just 1 word for snow!
Now, it might be the yummy cuisine of Finland or maybe just all those views and nature, but Finns seem like a very happy people - and I could totally picture myself living in Helsinki!While that's probably never going to happen as my brain doesn't seem willing to learn a 7th language - at least if the language in question is Finnish - I did have the pleasure to get a taste for what life as a Finn is like in Ruka-Kuusamo!