Saturday, July 07, 2012

UPDATED: Peru from A-Z on Enjoy Food & Travel

View Peru March 2012 in a larger map
In March I will travel to Peru to visit my nephew that works temporarily for a Norwegian company in this South American country. This is by far one of the most exotic destinations I have visited until now, and the 12 hour flight from Amsterdam will bring me half way around the globe where I can admire the sunset over the Pacific Ocean.

I will spend time in Lima as well as Cuzco, the old Inca capital. Here is a map showing bars, hotels, restaurants, sights, and transportation links. The list will be continuously extended and updated throughout my journey. 

Stories published during travel:

Food stories: (Introduction ahead of full story):
 Hotels (Introduction ahead of full story): 
Bars and restaurants (Introduction ahead of full story):
Shopping (Introduction ahead of full story):
Sights (Introduction ahead of full story):
Transportation (Introduction ahead of full story):

Friday, July 06, 2012

In quest of Peruvian delicacies

What I am really looking forward to is a drink made from this - pisco sour made from the content of this bottle from the Andes
I did some serious grocery shopping before leaving Lima, but there were at least one ingredient that I did not get - a good bottle of Pisco, in order to make a pisco sour. My friend John (who is born and raised in Peru) went on a quest to find some Peruvian ingredients in Barcelona a few weeks ago, and he did! Not funny though, considering the connection between Spain amd South America.
Huacatay leaves
John went to the famous Bouqeria Market off La Rambla and asked if they'd ever heard of Huacatay. The lady he asked confirmed  that she had some fresh Huacatay in packages. 
Packages of Peruvian ají amarillo and ají panca
Tagetes minuta, also known as black mint is called Huacatay in quecha. It is used as seasoning in Peruvian cuisine.

John also asked whether they had ají (peruvian chillie). They did have dried ají amarillo and ají Panca. When in Lima, I bought the aji amarillo as powder and it was fiercely strong.  
John also found Peruvian Pisco about a block from Casa Batllo on the western corner of Carrer d' Arrago and Rambla de Catalunya streets. This liquor is the base of pisco sour, my favourite drink.
So I really hope that with these ingredients in house may mean that I can be invited to a Peruvian feast soon. 

Wednesday, July 04, 2012

Autumn 2012: 18 daily flights from eastern Norway to London

As British Airways increase from four to five daily flights from Oslo Airport to the English capital, Norwegian Air Shuttle launch flights from Torp Airport four days a week as a start. The Norwegian budget air carrier may have daily flights from Torp after a short period.
Currently, the following airlines have or will launch flights to London from main Norwegian Airports:

  • British Airways (Bergen Airport - London, Heathrow Airport)*
  • Norwegian Air Shuttle (Bergen Airport - London, Gatwick Airport)
  • Ryanair: (Moss-Rygge Airport - London, Stanstead Airport)
  • British Airways (Oslo Airport - London, Heathrow Airport)
  • Norwegian Air Shuttle (Oslo Airport - London, Gatwick Airport)
  • Scandinavian Airlines (Oslo Airport - London, Heathrow Airport)
  • British Airways (Stavanger Airport - London, Heathrow Airport)*
  • Norwegian Air Shuttle (Stavanger Airport - London, Gatwick Airport)
  • COMING: Norwegian Air Shuttle (Torp Airport - London, Gatwick Airport)
  • Ryanair: (Torp Airport - London, Stanstead Airport)
  • Norwegian Air Shuttle (Trondheim Airport - London, Gatwick Airport)

*Previously operated by British Midlands

Tuesday, July 03, 2012

UPDATED: Enjoy Food & Travel - main index 2006-2012

Enjoy Food & Travel has written close to 2000 stories on bars, restaurants, hotels, shopping and travel from destinations throughout the world. In order for you to find what stories important to you, we've created a main index on all main categories on the web from 2006 to 2011. 

Bars and restaurants
Destinations from A-Z
Food stories
Food and travel websites


Wine and spirits

Monday, July 02, 2012

UPDATED: Geneva / Ferney Voltaire June 2011

View Geneva on Enjoy Food & Travel 2011 in a larger map

Enjoy Food & Travel has returned after four days in Geneva and Ferney-Voltaire in neighbouring France. This region is located between the Alps and the Jura mountains, and beautifully set by the shores of the Lac Leman.
Lac Leman It is one of the largest lakes in Western Europe. It covers 345.31 square kilometres under the jurisdiction of the Swiss cantons of Vaud, Geneva, and Valais and the French departement Haute-Savoie.
Geneva is home to a large number of international organizations. It has the European headquarters of the United Nations and UN organizations as well as The Red Cross/ Red Crescent, World Trade Organization, and the CERN.
It is an area of extraordinary beauty. Along the Lac Leman you will find beautiful beaches, and a short drive away you may ramble in breathtaking mountain scenery.
Here are stories to come on Enjoy Food & Travel from the Swiss/French border area.

  • Restaurant Le Patriarche
  • Féte de l’Oiseaux, Saint Genis-Poilly
Food stories
Videos (posted on YouTube)

Chapel - Chateau Voltaire, Ferney-Voltaire

Erected to God by Voltaire - 1761
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.
Nature claims back that which is not taken care of
The philosopher settled in the small village of Ferney in order to be close to Switzerland, a country he could flee to in times of persecution. He built a small chapel in the grounds of the castle. The tower has the following inscription.

The beauty is still there
Even though Voltaire is one of the ultimate heroes of France, it is shocking to enter, and find his home in such a state. The chateau itself bears the mark of neglect, after the French state bought from a private owner in 1998. It was declared a National Monument as far back as 1958.
The chateau is also marked by neglect
The state of the chapel is the most shocking, as the roof has given in to the elements, and weeds and shrubbery is growing in cracks everywhere in the dilapidated building. I am tempted to cry shame on you for such a neglect of a man that is buried in Paris’s Panthéon, with the motto inscribed at the entrance reads, “To its great men, a greatful fatherland.”
So those of you that want to see this building Voltaire built to God’s Honor should hurry up, as nature will claim, what man does not care for, and that even counts for the French government.
Read more on the state of Chateau Voltaire and the chapel in this fascinating  blog entry on The personal website of Malcolm Curtis, a Swiss communications professional. 

UPDATED - TRAVEL ALERT: No strike among Norwegian air traffic controllers from July 2nd 2012

Air Traffic Controller in EHAM TOWER, Schiphol Airport. Photo:Mark Brouwer
Air traffic to and from Norway would have stopped July 2nd 2012 if negotiations between Norwegian air traffic controllers and their counterpart Spekter break down July 1st 2012. 

July 2nd 2012: There will be no strike, as the two parties reached an agreement on a settlement 4 AM Monday morning. This according to the Norwegian travel website    

Sunday, July 01, 2012

Plans for new standing area on Ryanair flights

Here is a clip from 2010 on budget airline Ryanair's plans to introduce a "toilet tax" which will fund new "vertical seats" at the back of planes. Their planes has until now not materialized, but I wonder when O'Leary will reintroduce these ideas. 

Ryanair to Beauvais-Tillé - July 2012

Passengers av Beauvais Tillé airport terminal 1. Photo: Rastrojo
In July I am flying with Ryanair for the second time. I am certainly not a lover of the Irish budget air carrier, but I fly Ryanair to be together with friends. I paid next to nothing for the air fare, but beware - if you do not follow Ryanairs rigid systems you may have to pay a much higher price. 
I am flying from Moss-Rygge Airport to Beauvais Tillé airport just outside Paris. The plane leaves extremely early, 6.45 AM and we will have to catch an airport express bus at 4:00 AM (yawn) from Oslo. A terrible prospect when being on vacation.
Beauvais Tillé - airport off the beaten track 

Moss-Rygge Airport has become the main base for Ryanair that has shifted its traffic from
its former main airport - Sandefjord-Torp the last years.
The unfinished Beauvais cathedral. Photo: Sokoljan 
Moss-Rygge Airport is located around an hours drive south of Oslo. Beauvais Tillé is also, typically enough, quite a way off from the French capital. 
I had my first arrival at Beauvais Tillé airport in 1984, when I stayed a week in Paris. Back then this airport was primarely used for charter tourists and was nothing more than a shack, really. We were brought to Paris by bus, quite a long drive then. My friends has told that the transportation to Paris has improved, as the airport is used by large budget airlines as Ryanair.
What (NOT) to do to keep air fare down at Ryanair

My warnings here on Enjoy Food & Travel NOT to use Ryanair has not been unfounded. Here are a few pieces of advise for those of you planning to travel with Ryanair - to keep your air fare low. If you fail to follow these instructions you may end up paying in excess of normal price for your flight, as they are rigidly enforced by Ryanair. 
  • When booking online, make sure you write your name correctly, as changing it will cost €160 per person.
  • When booking do remember to print boarding card and take them with you. Failing to do so, will cost you a whopping €60 per person.
  • You must print everything, including the advertisement. If not you may have to pay  €60 per person
  • If print of boarding pass of is of bad quality,  you may have to pay €60 per person  
  • If page of boarding pass is damaged,  you may have to pay €60 per person  
  • If part of the page of boarding pass is missing,  you may have to pay €60 per person . 
  • When traveling, do bring one piece of hand luggage weighing under 10 kilos and measuring 55cm x 40cm x 20cm. If you exceed any of these criteria, be prepared having to pay for check-in or overweight. Additional checked in luggage may cost you from 15-70 EUR.
  • Make sure that your duty free goods may be squeezed into your hand luggage, as Ryanair enforce a strict one piece of hand luggage only!
Michael O'Leary. Photo: Lamos
I addition to these ridiculous fees, Michael O'Leary has toyed with other mad ideas, including introducing standing space and toilet fees on board.

So you understand it is hard to convince me that traveling with Ryanair is a good idea, but I have to try it in order to find whether it is as bad as I think.

Certainly, neither my friends nor my sister agree with me and travel with Ryanair incessantly.

So I will rate my second Ryanair experience in a little of a weeks time. I will keep you posted.

More Ryanair stories on Enjoy Food & Travel