Wednesday, April 24, 2013

COMING JUNE-JULY 2013: Madrid, Barcelona and Sitges - Spain

Vis Spain on Enjoy Food & Travel 2006-2013 i et større kart
These last Norwegian summers have been too cold and humid for most of us, and to ensure an adquate dose of sun and summer Enjoy Food & Travel pack up and leave for lovely Spain two weeks in June and July 2013. 
Gran Versalles**** (Photo courtesy  Hotel website)
Our last trip to Spain was in 2011, when we stayed for a week in Sitges. We both agreed that that was too little, and this summer we decided that we would stay for at least two weeks.

We discovered that air fare had skyrocketed when we started looking for tickets a few weeks ago. But we managed to get reasonably priced fare.
We will fly to Madrid with Norwegian Air Shuttle, leaving Oslo Airport 7.40 AM, arriving Copenhagen 8.50 AM. At Kastrup Airport we have a one hour and ten minutes to our flight to Madrid Barajas where we arrive at 1.10 PM.
Aparthotel Atenea Calabria *** (Photo:  Hotel website)
Price paid for two: NOK 3308,- (432 Euros / 565 USD), hardly a rip-off for air fare during high season. 
We will stay three nights at Gran Versalles****, close to the famous Prado Museum. Our 18 square metre / 193 square feet of the Spanish capital cost us around 304 NOK (40, 5 Euros / 52,80 USD) per person per night. Compared to Norway this is dead cheap. It does not include breakfast. 
After three nights, we plan to catch the high speed train service from Madrid to Barcelona. The 621 km (386 mile) journey takes less than three hours.
I've been to Barcelona several times before, but this time we are excited to stay in a one room apartment with our own kitchen in Aparthotel Athaenea Calabria*** in the Eixample area. The 35 square meter (376 square feet) apartment  cost us 375,54 NOK (Euros 50 / 65 USD), including breakfast. I do look forward to do some home cooking in the Catalan capital.  
Subur*** (Photo courtesy  Hotel website)
After another three nights we head for the beach. The vibrant resort town of Sitges is located a half hour train ride south of Barcelona, and this is a destination I look forward to return to.  
Last time, we stayed at Hotel Port Sitges Resort, outside the city centre. In spite of the comfort of a spacious two room apartments, we felt isolated from the vibrant night life in the area by the main beach. Now we have booked a double room with balcony at Subur***, located at the beach. In spite of the location, even this hotel is no rip-off. We pay less than NOK 350 (46 Euros / 60 USD) per night. This does not include breakfast, but who cares. There are dozens of reasonably priced breakfast cafes nearby.
8 nights by the beach to be looking forward to, before our return Vueling flight from Barcelona to Oslo. NOK 1957 for two in July is a bargain.

Final costs for trip

The final cost of air fare and accommodation for two weeks per person is:

  • Airfare Oslo-Copenhagen-Madrid (Norwegian Air Shuttle): NOK 1654,-, EUR 219,60 (
  • Accommodation Gran Versalles****, Madrid (3 nights): NOK 913,-,  EUR 121, 50 (
  • Accommodation Aparthotel Atenea Calabria*** , Barcelona (3 nights): NOK 1127,-,  EUR 150 (
  • Accommodation Subur, Sitges*** (8 nights): NOK 2794,-,  EUR 372,- (
  • Airfare Barcelona-Oslo (Vueling): NOK 953,50,  EUR 130 (
  • TOTAL: NOK 7466,-, EUR 993,- 

Thursday, April 11, 2013

The New Jewish Synagogue, Berlin

The beautiful dome of the New Synagogue
Close to Hackisher Markt in Berlin, you find the New Synagogue - a remarkable building. What you see is just a fraction of what this structure used to hold.
The two side towers underline its Moorish influence
In Oranienburg Strasse in Berlin you find an awesome historic monument. The beautiful New Synagogue was built in 1866 and was  inaugurated by the famous Count Otto von Bismarck
Sadly, the present building is a reconstruction after it was badly damaged by fire during the Kristallnacht prior to World War II. 
It was a huge building when it was built, seating more than 3 000 people. What is left, however, is mainly the magnificent facade and a few rooms behind it.
I would love to visit the huge golden dome, that is open to public, and maybe I will, as I will return to Berlin in a months time.

Vis Berlin on Enjoy Food & Travel i et større kart

Monday, April 01, 2013

New flights from Kristiansand Kjevik Airport April 2013

Vis MARCH 2013: All non-stop flights from Kjevik Airport i et større kart

Following new flights starts from Kristiansand Kjevik Airport - April 2013:

  • Barcelona (ES) (Fly NonStop) 
  • Berlin  (DE) (Fly NonStop) 
  • Chania (GR) (Scandinavian Airlines - Charter)
  • London (UK) (Fly NonStop)
  • Nice (FR) (Fly NonStop)
  • Palma de Mallorca (Fly Nonstop)
  • Paris /Fly Nonstop)
  • Parma (Fly NonStop)

New flights from Oslo International Airport April 2013

Vis APRIL 2013: All non-stop flights from Oslo Airport i et større kart

 New flights from Oslo International Airport to following destinations April 2013:

  • Ålborg (DK)
  • Burgas (BG)
  • Chania (GR)
  • Dubrovnik (CR)
  • Malta 
  • Pisa (IT)
  • Pula (CR)
  • Rhodes (GR)
  • Split (CR)
  • Valencia (ES)
  • Venice
Seasonal closing*
  • Aqaba (JO)
  • Dubai (UAE)
  • Grenoble (FR)
  • Krabi (TH)
  • Lanzarote (ES)
  • Marrakech (MO)
  • Phuket (TH)
  • Salzburg (AU)
  • Sharjah 
* Based on listings on the Oslo Airport website

Wednesday, March 27, 2013

Food stories on Enjoy Food & Travel 2013

Here is a list of food stories published on Enjoy Food & Travel 2013

  • End of shelf life discounts
    Look for discounts for products at the end of their shelf life. I did today and stocked up quality food for my freezer
  • Paella for dinner
    Paella, the Spanish Risotto originating from the Valencia Region is a inexpensive, simple and tasty dinner.

Monday, March 25, 2013

NEW AND BETTER: Direct flights from Bergen Airport

Vis MARCH 2013: All non-stop flights from Bergen Airport i et større kart
This new and improved map shows domestic, charter and international direct flights operated by all airlines from Bergen Flesland Airport. It shows seasonal as well as flights running all year.
It is based on information from the Bergen Flesland Airport official website. Errors may occur. Do consult airport website or airline for updated information.
  • Red marker means that flights has been cancelled or seasonal and not in operation.
  • Green marker for planned services. Time span mean that one or more flights will be operating during the period. Check the label for more information.
  • Airplane marker means that at least one air carrier has service in operation all year around. More airlines may have seasonal flights to the destination.  Check the label for more information. 
  • Activity marker means the destination is predominantly a charter destination. Seasonal regular flights may operate. Check the label for more information.  
New flights from Bergen Airport - April 2013: 
  • Chania - Greece (Seasonal)
  • Dubrovnik - Croatia (Seasonal)
  • Edinburgh - United Kingdom (Seasonal)
  • Larnaca - Cyprus (Charter)
  • Nice - France (Seasonal)
  • Palma de Mallorca - Spain (Charter / seasonal)
  • Warsaw - Poland (All year)
Ending flights from Bergen Airport - April 2013: 
  • Lanzarote - Spain (Charter)
  • Salzburg - Austria (Seasonal)
  • Sharm el Sheikh - Egypt (Charter)
  • Tenerife - Spain (Charter)

UPDATED: Bergen A-Z 2007-2012

View Bergen and Surrounding areas 2007-2012 in a larger map

Bergen is the only genuine medieval city in Norway. The city centre has been ravaged by flames many times, the latest being by the large fire of 1702. Over and over has the city risen from the flames, along the same old narrow medieval streets and passages. Among the most beautiful areas is Bryggen, rebuilt after the last large fire, it still reflects centuries of building tradition.

Here is a map and all stories written from Bergen on Enjoy Food & Travel from 2006-2012 in case you would need where to go, what see, and where to eat in Norway's only medieval city. I am so pleased to  go back to this beautiful ancient city in April 2012 to attend a conference.

Food stories:

Bars and restaurants
Latest travel stories on Enjoy Food & Travel 

How to get to Bergen 

- By air

On this map you will find markers that display status on different non-stop flights from Bergen Airport to destinations in Europe. A red marker means that flights is seasonal and not in operation or that an earlier non-stop flight has been canceled. A green marker shows that there is a new non-stop flight planned to this destination. A yellow marker means that there a seasonal flight still operating to this airport. An airplane button means that service is in operation all year around from one or several European destination to Bergen.

See map of direct flights from Europe to Bergen airport Flesland


- By sea

Enjoy Food & Travel proudly introduce a new service to travelers from Europe to Norway. On this special map you find ferry connection from European to Norwegian ports.

See map of ferry connections from the continent to Norwegian ports here

EasyJet chose Bergen as its Norwegian base

I sincerely hope that these planes may soon be seen at Oslo Airport as well  as in Bergen . Photo: Arpingstone
British budget airline EasyJet has flights from most European countries, but Norway has been one of the few countries not serviced by this air carrier. This may change, as EasyJet has chosen Norway's second airport Bergen Flesland as its base.  
Bergen Flesland Airport. Photo: Arsenikk
EasyJet is the third biggest air carrier in Europe with more than 50 million passengers each year. It has 22 bases in Europe, and is one of Ryanair's fiercest competitors. 
The Bergen Airport management hopes that EasyJet flights to Bergen and the Norwegian West coast may boost the local travel industry. 
As a traveler, I would certainly welcome EasyJet to Norway, and hope the air carrier may challenge the growing dominance of Ryanair and Norwegian Air Shuttle.

Start flights Bergen - London 

EasyJet will start its first flights from Bergen May 20th. It will challenge Norwegian Air Shuttle on flights from Bergen to London Gatwick Airport and British Airways on flights to London Heathrow. .   

Sunday, March 24, 2013

Confit de Canard du Souq or Moroccan duck legs

Piper Longum - one rare ingredient in my Moroccan duck. Photo: Lemmikkipuu
Yesterday I made another duck confit. This time I substituted (or added to the) salt and pepper with some very different Moroccan spices and ingredients thus the name; Confit de canard de Souq, from the bazaars.   
Ras el Hanout. Photo: Sarefo
I have described how to make a duck confit earlier, so here I will talk about the seasoning. I wanted to make duck legs with a distinct and exotic taste. What could be better than picking some of the spices I have brought back from my travels.
Red paprika powder. Photo: Bandagnani
For heat I took out piper longum or long pepper, a very spicy variety of pepper known to Europeans as far back as ancient Greece. It is very hot, and the grains are up to 1 cm (1/2 inch) long. It is a very rare ingredient and I aqcuired it at Izrael, the extraordinary spice shop in Marais in Paris.  
Dried figs. Photo: Rich Smith
I pounded the pepperkorns with salt in my large morter and I sprinkled on the duck legs.
Then I added ras el hanout, a blend of spices from North Africa bought in the souqs of Marrakech made from cardamom, clove, cinnamon, ground chili peppers, coriander, cumin, nutmeg, peppercorn, and turmeric.
The last seasoning on my Moroccan duck was also purchased in the souq, smokey red paprika powder. To add to the Moroccan theme I placed chalottes and dried figs from the bazaars in the oven proof dish. The idea was that the dried fruit would soak up the juices from the duck. 
I also drizzled a little honey over the duck legs to create balance, and allowed them to bake for 8 hours on 100 degrees Celsius (215F). By then onions and fics had taken up the aromas of the duck and the seasoning. Just like the many of the tagines served in Morocco combining savoury and sweet ingedients, I had succeeded in creating a touch of Morocco for my guests. 
More duck confit and duck dishes 

Saturday, March 23, 2013

UPDATED: Sights on Enjoy Food & Travel 2012

Mosaic at Pammakaristos Church, Istanbul Turkey
To make it easier for you, I have compiled all the sights on Enjoy Food & Travel for the year 2012 on this page. Enjoy!!

  • Alte Brucke - Heidelberg (August 23rd 2012) The old bridge or die Alte Brucke is one of the most famous sights of Heidelberg. The bridge is the ninth over the river Neckar since Roman times and dates back to 1788.

  • Archbishops Palace - Lima, Peru (August 1st 2012)
    The current Archbishops Palace in Lima was built as late as 1924, but the Archbishops have resided here since 1530. The building is baroque in appearance.
  • Bergen Aquarium, Bergen Norway (February 19th 2012) 
    The large aquarium at the Nordnes peninsula in Bergen, Norway has, since it was opened in 1960 been one of the city's main attractions

  • Bispegården - Tromsø, Norway (July 12th 2012)
    One of the most beautiful houses in Tromsø city centre is the residence of the bishop of the northern most Roman Catholic diocese in the world.

  • Bosque el Olivar, Lima (March 30th 2012)
    The Bosque El Olivar is an olive grove going back 450 years, to three trees that survived the transportation from Europe in 1560.

  • Chapel - Chateau Voltaire, Ferney-Voltaire (July 2nd 2012)
    The philosopher Voltaire erected a chapel in the park of his own Chateau in 1761. It and even the chateau itself are now in a state of disrepair, so much so that the chapel is falling down.

  • Crowninshield-Bentley House (ca. 1727), Salem MA (September 19th 2012)
    This magnificent Georgian-style house was built for a captain John Crowninshield in 1727. It has been moved to its present location in 126 Essex Street.
  • Derby House (1762) Salem MA (September 19th 2012)The beautiful red-brick Derby House is an exquisite example of American Georgian Architecture. It   was built in 1762 as a marriage present by Elias Hasket Derby to his wife Elisabeth Crowninshield in 1762.

  • Destination Røros (February 27th 2012)
    The old mining town Røros was founded in 1644 after a farmer discovered huge amounts of copper close by. From the mid 1600's the city grew into the most prosperous cities in the country.
  • Église Russe, Geneva, Switzerland (January 1st 2012)
    When strolling in Geneva City Centre we spotted these beautiful gilded domes. They belong to the Église Russe, The Russian Church.
  • First Meeting House, Salem MA (March 14th 2012)
    Salem MA is, as one of the oldest cities in the US, filled with historical sites commemorating the earliest stages of American history, as this plaque telling the story about the first meeting house that stood on this location until 1673. 

  • Fløibanen, Bergen (May 6th 2012)
    Fløibanen is, in my opinion, one of the best attractions Bergen has to offer. The carts of funicular will bring you 320 meters in 7 minutes, and when up you will have a superb view over the city.

  • Fort Van Tyle, Minisink NY (August 30th 2012) 
    I love local history, and traveling around upstate New York gave me an opportunity to visit historic sights of the Port Jervis / Greenville area. We spotted this sign when driving along a quiet country road. 

  • Gardner Pingree House (1804)Salem MA (September 19th 2012)
    This is one of several houses in Salem designed by the famous architect Samuel McIntire. It was built in Federal style for Samuel West Gardner, but was sold on in 1814 to cover losses to Gardner caused events leading up to the War of 1812.

  • Gideon Tucker House (1808), Salem MA (September 19th 2012) 
    The Gideon Tucker House is a third house I saw designed by Samuel McIntire. It was built for Gideon Tucker in 1808 or 1809, a man that worked as a clerk, but ended up as a wealthy businessman.

  • Hagia Irene Church, Istanbul (March 23rd 2012)
    Hagia Irene, located on the grounds of the Topkapi Palace, is an ancient building. It is in fact the oldest church in Istanbul, but most of what you see today dates from the 8th century when the church was damaged by a eartquake.

  • Hamburg Rathaus, Hamburg (September 8th 2012) 
    Hamburg Rathaus or Hamburg City Hall is a massive building located in the heart of the city.

  • Hamilton Hall (1805), Salem MA (September 19th 2012) 
    The magnificent Hamilton Hall mansion is located in 9 Chestnut Street. It was not built as a private house but as assembling hall for the Salem federalists.

  • Hauptkirche St. Jacobi, Hamburg (February 5th 2012)
    Most of what you see of Hauptkirche St. Jacobi today is rebuilt after the bombings after the war. It is dedicated to James the Great and the original structure dated back to the midt 14th century

  • House of Seven Gables, Salem MA (January 15th 2012)The oldest part of the  House of the Seven Gables was built in 1668 for Capt. John Turner, and it remained in his family for three generations, descending from John Turner II to John Turner III.

  • Huaca Pucllana, Lima (June 5th 2012)Peru is famous for the Inca culture. This culture was however the latest in a long line of different cultures on which the Inca rulers built their reign. Historic monuments from these are scattered over this large country and many are also found in Lima. One of them is the Huaca Pucllana - the large pyramide.
    • Jet d'Eau - a Geneva signature  (February 26th 2012)
      The Jet d'Eau or the water jet is an impressive fountain is the signature of the city of Geneva, Switzerland  

    • Jonathan Archer House, Salem, MA (September 19th 2012) 
      The gray wooden building in 8 Hawthorne Boulevard is over 300 years old and was built by cordwainer Jonathan Archer in 1710.

    • Jonathan Corwin House, Salem, MA (January 15th 2012)
      The home of Judge Jonathan Corwin is built around 1660 and is a beautiful example of 17th century architecture.
    • Koutoubia Mosque - Marrakech (April 25th 2012)
      If there is a trademark of Marrakech it has to be the Koutoubia Mosque. It is by far the oldest and largest mosque in the city dating back over 800 years. 

    • London Coffee House, Salem MA (January 15th 2012)
      This late 17th century building was the gathering place of the Patriots before the American Revolution.
    • Medieval Copenhagen (March 4th 2012)Copehagen City museum is located in Fredriksberg in central Copenhagen. Outside the museum you find a model of how Copenhagen looked like in the middle ages.

    • Minot light, Cohasset, MA (November 20th 2012)
      The present Minot Lighthouse is located on a granite rock off the coast of Cohasset and Scituate MA. When looking out she grows out of the sea and it is barely visible to the naked eye. The first tower was erected 1850 and disappeared ten years later in dramatic events.

    • Miss Fan - the ghost of Dimmick Inn (February 23rd 2012)Dimmick Inn is daid to have a ghost that haunts them. Ms. Fan or Miss Frances Dimmick is said to roam around the old building. 

    • Mosque of the Golden Apples (Mosque El Mansour) Marrakech (January 29th 2012)The Mosque El Mansour or Mosque of the Golden Apples is one out of three main mosques in Marrakech and the largest mosque in the Kasbah area.

    • Musée des beaux-arts de Lyon, Lyon (February 14th 2012)Musée des beaux-arts de Lyon has a beautiful collection of art spanning thousands of years. Here are a few of them from very different periods of human history.

    • Palmhuset, Gothenburg Sweden (January 22nd 2012)
      I love botanical gardens and in particular green houses with tropical flowers. In Gothenburg city centre you find a horticultural gem, a large green house filled with most exquisite tropical plants and trees.

    • Pammakaristos Church, Istanbul, Turkey (January 8th 2012)
      Pammakaristos Church in Istanbul is one of the most beautiful churches I have ever seen. Hidden behind the rather gray facade is an 850 year old art treasure.

    • Paris: Medieval houses in Rue François Miron (July 26th 2012)
      When walking down Rue François Miron, I found that this was not true. One of the houses in this street predates the alchymists house by at least 70 years.

    • Philosophen weg or the philosophers' walk - Heidelberg (D) (June 12th 2012)
      A great way to start your sightseeing in Heidelberg is to take the scenic Philosophers' Walk where you can enjoy a great view of the valley and the old town.

    • Pickering House, Salem MA (January 15th 2012)
      The Pickering House is the oldest house in Salem, dating back 350 years. It is also the home of 10 generations of the Pickering family, making it the oldest house in the United States continuously occupied by one family.

    • Pickman House, Salem MA (January 15th 2012)
      The Pickman House is located by the Old Burying Ground, the second oldest cemetery in the United States.

    • Place de Vosges - a jewel of the Marais district , Paris (F) (June 15th 2012)
      The Marais district of Paris is one of the areas of the French capital that escaped the urban planners of the 19th century. 
    • Qubba Fatima Zohra - Marrakech (August 8th 2012)
      By the Koutobia Mosque you will see a small, white building. It is the 400 year old Qubba or mausoleum of the famous Fatima Zohra.
    • St. Pers Church Ruin - Sigtuna, Sweden (June 25th 2012)
      Church of Sankt Per’s (or St. Peter’s) used to be the main church of the Archdiocese before it was moved to the city of Uppsala.

    • Speicherstadt - Hamburg (D) (June 18th 2012)
      Speicherstadt is Hamburgs warehouse district. It has, during the last years, gone through an extensive restoration the last decade, and is today one of the most beautiful areas of Hamburg.
    • Tomb of Suleyman the Great, Istanbul (July 12th 2012)
      Suleyman I (Ottoman Turkish: سليمان Sulaymān, Turkish: Süleyman) died on September 6th 1566) after 46 years on the throne. He was known in the West as "the Magnificent" but is most often referred to as "the Lawgiver."

    View Sights on Enjoy Food & Travel 2012 in a larger map