Friday, May 21, 2010

Fjordline started Skagerak express crossings April 30th

Fjordline started April 3oth their seasonal crossings between Kristiansand on the southern tip of Norway, and the North Danish port of Hirtshals. This is by far the fastest connection by sea between the two countries.

The HSC Fjord Cat will bring you and up to 675 fellow passengers and 220 cars past Skagerrak, the stretch of sea separating Norway and Denmark in only 2 hours and 15 minutes. This is the fastest sea crossing between the two countries. It will sail up to three times a day until September 19th.

View Ferry services from Norway to European ports in a larger map

More information
More stories on ferries from Kristiansand on Enjoy Food & Travel
(Photo: Company website)

Thursday, May 20, 2010

Arsenal am Pfaffenteig, Schwerin

By the Pfaffenteig lake, in the heart of the city of Schwerin you find a large Medieval style building. The Arsenal am Pfaffenteig was built to the local rulers by two famous German architects.

The arsenal was built in 1840 by Hofbaumeister Georg Aldolph Demmler and Hermann Willebrand. Demmler worked as architect of the Dukes of Mecklenburg-Schwerin and left his mark on this German city. Willebrand worked with monuments in klassisism and historism.

The most famous monument of the Hofbaumeiser is the extensions to Palace in Schwerin, the home of the Dukes of Mecklenburg-Vorpommern.

The Arsenal stands out as the most interesting one. It is said to be designed in English Tudor style and housed the grand duke's armoury. It is a huge structure consisting of more than 6 million bricks and cost the dukes 134 000 Thaler to build.

It served as armoury, and served the local army during the Third Reich. Currently it houses the Ministry of the Interior of Mecklenburg-Vorpommern.

More stories from Schwerin
See more bars, hotels, restaurants and sights of Schwerin, Germany here

Vis Schwerin from A-Z i et større kart

Wednesday, May 19, 2010

Yaya's - a Thai beach club in Oslo

For those of you that miss that trip to Thailand during the volcanic ash incidence a few weeks ago, a Thai beach club is not far away. Yaya's in Oslo offers terrific food, colourful lighting, East Asian thunderstorms and power outages.

My good friend Susanne Koch invited me to dinner at Yaya's a few months ago. When descending into a dark basement in downtown Oslo, I found myself in a dark, odd interior with fake exotic plants, bamboo railings and funny looking tables and chairs.

You never saw such a place, I guarantee, unless you have happened to dine by Chaweng Beach in Thailand. Susanne assured me that Yaya's was as close as it gets to the real thing. I found the seating arrangements a little uncomfortable, but as we were the only one's there (nearly) the service was good.

We missed one of Yaya's most striking features, as randomly its dark rooms turn even darker as the lights go out and a rumbling of thunder mimics the shifting weather by the Thai beaches.

I ordered one number 10 Goong satay, i.e. fried prawns with peanut sauce (79 NOK), followed by Gaeng Ped Gai, casserole with chicken in red curry, coconut milk and vegetables. (NOK 39). First characterized as "mild" second as "strong".

Prawns served in a boat shaped plate. Delicious, one of the best servings I've had, lately - with a creamy tasty peanut sauce, and not very hot. The Gaeng Ped Gai, however, was a refreshingly hot experience. Much, maybe too much taste, as the many flavours fought each other in an intense cacophony. Very much was going on on the plate, indeed. I would have preferred fewer and more distinct flavours, as found in many other Thai dishes.

Would I visit Yaya's interpretation of a Thai beach club again? Most certainly! It is one of those extraordinary restaurants visits you will hardly forget, and for those of you who have not visited Thailand yet (me included), you will get a good idea of how a dining experience in the tropical dusk would be.

More Thai stories on Enjoy Food & Travel

Yaya's Thai Beach Bungalow Restaurant Vika
Munkedamsveien 53B 0250 Oslo

Vis Oslo on Enjoy Food & Travel - from A-Z i et større kart

Tuesday, May 18, 2010

COMING UP: Clarion Hotel Tyholmen, Arendal

It is 30 years since I graduated from college. June 12th I will meet my fellow students to celebrate this anniversary. The banquet will take place at Clarion Hotel Tyholmen in Arendal, my home town. Conveniently I have booked a room there from June 12th to June 13th.

Clarion Hotel Tyholmen is a relatively new hotel, built in traditional style and located in the middle of Tyholmen, the old part of Arendal. If you are lucky you'll get a room facing the fjord separating the city centre from the islands of Hisøy and Tromøy. A better location is hard to find. Close to the bars and restaurants, and with a proximity to the waters.


The hotel 96 rooms are located in the original hotel building and has a traditional decor, and in the new wing is decorated in modern Scandinavian design. Most rooms have sea view.

All room have free wireless internet access, flat screen TV's, water kettle and mini-bar. There
are two allergy rooms (without carpets), and two handicap rooms.


The hotel has:
  • 96 rooms
  • Conference facilities for groups from 2 – 300 personer
  • New conference room/banquet hall from June 2007 seating up to 300 people
  • Two new board rooms from September 2008 for up to 26 people
  • Exhibit hall
  • Restaurant "Tre Seil" (Three sails)
  • Bar "Åtte Glass" (8 glasses)
  • 24- hour room service
  • Sauna
  • Parking in the hotel and close by
  • Good location in Arendal city centre
  • Free exercise facilities at Trimit, the city's largest fitness centre for all paying guests
  • Free wireless access for paying guests throughout the hotel.
I will present a full review of Clarion Hotel Tyholmen here on Enjoy Food & Travel after my stay in June.

More stories from the Arendal Area
Where to find Clarion Hotel Tyholmen

View Arendal on Enjoy Food & Travel in a larger map
(Photo: Company website)

Monday, May 17, 2010

Hip Hooray - 17th of May!!

Today, May 17th is our National Day, marking the signing of the Norwegian constitution on May 17th 1814. The day progress from salutes from the canons on Akershus fortress, to parades of children going down Oslos main street, Karl Johansgate, ending up in front of the Royal Palace where the Royal family has to spend hours greeting the young generation with their parents.

I am proud to be a descendant of one of those men that laid the foundation of the modern Norwegian democracy. My great-great grandfather, Even Thorsen, was born in 1778 and died in 1867. He was a poor farmer and sailor until he died, but left an important mark in the Norwegian military legislation.

This year I will stay in my summer home May 17th, only a 15 minute walk away from where Even Thorsen lived and died. Most other Consitutions day I have hosted a brunch where I have served good food. The condition for these brunches was that guests brought enough champagne, and they always have.

Here are a few stories from previous national celebrations here on Enjoy Food & Travel - and Happy Birthday, Norway!!