Tuesday, 29 July 2014

Guided city walk in Kristiansand

When visiting a new city I always use some time just walking around to see the sights. With a experienced city guide you learn much more about the history of the city, the hidden gems and some local knowledge that it is hard to get from a guidebook.
"Posebyen" is the old part of the city of Kristiansand
I was invited to join one of the guides from the Guide Association (Guideforeningen) / Kristiansand tourist office as she showed a group from the cruise ship “Crystal Symphony” around in the city center of Kristiansand, Southern Norway.
We were lucky to get invited inside one of the old houses by a charming couple. This was a a highlight for the tourists!
The group was around 25 American and Asian tourists that were very interested in Norwegian culture and how we live our life as Norwegian citizens.
The owners take care and pride of their houses in the old town.
The duration of the guided city tours is 1-2 hours. If you are a group you can order it through 
Full speed ahead!
After the city walk we drove on to Kristiansand Cannon Museum, we will blog about that later. 
Beautiful day in Kristiansand
Town square with the tourist office in the town hall (red building).
Kristiansand cathedral 
Inside Kristiansand Cathedral - often with free organ concerts. 

"Markens" - the main shopping street. Buses or the city train transported the cruise tourists back to the ship.

Friday, 18 July 2014

Driving the boat to work.

Adam from Visit Sørlandet took the boat into work one day during the summer...

I like to get to work early in the mornings. Always have. I hate to go to work late or stress about not getting there on time, so I always prepare for the day.

Due to the fantastic weather Kristiansand has been having, I thought it was a good idea to go in on the boat. The river was nice and calm as was the ocean.

Drove under the Varoddbrua bridge...

and past the nudist beach where thankfully there was no action.


Here is an old German bunker from World War 2.

Someone on an early morning rowing trip

and stopped by at Korsvik Marina to get some petrol.

Passed by Queen Victoria cruise liner on her way into the port.

On the way into town, there were a line of yachts at the docks.

and I found a place to park at Fiskebrygga next to some flowers.

It is a nice way to start the day.

Hiking to Brufjell in Flekkfjord

Adam from Visit Sørlandet went to the Brufjell cliffs in Flekkefjord.

I had heard about the holes in the mountain side in Flekkefjord and had seen a couple of pictures, but I honestly had no idea of what to expect when I ventured out there.

We then drove to the Brufjell carpark to begin the adventure. We met the Flekkefjord Small Town Project Leader Frode and his family as well as his twin brother, wife and one year old son.

I took my seven year old son Levi who is fit and strong and he was keen to try something new.

The walk from the carpark to the start of the hiking trail is one kilometre and is for local traffic only.

We stopped at a few places on the way.

The kids were enjoying themselves.

It was a beautiful summers day with top temperatures of 28 degrees.

There are flowers everywhere, berries to pick and a large lake with boat houses dotted along the way.

The hike to the Brufjell holes was enjoyable and there are signs and painted trees and stones along the way to help guide you.

At one point there is a sign to Sandviga and Brufjell. If you continue to Brufjell, it is considerably longer. So my advice is to go to Brufjell via Sandviga. Sandviga (also pronounced and written Sandvika) is a little picturesque beach. 

We took a few breaks along the way so the kids could have something to drink. They were very strong considering the heat and the steep climbs.

When we eventually reached the top, we enjoyed the views and had something to eat. Due to the clear skies, it was the perfect day for photos. 

Next was the adventurous part - the steep descent to the infamous Brufjell holes. I had to watch levi very carefully here and had him by my side the whole time. There were a few different sections that are a little risky, so it is advised to take children 10 and above.

Levi managed to do it, but I was a little afraid for him. He was strong and did not really care and just kept on going. I helped him step by step with the inserted steel steps down.

After we passed the most difficult part, it was time to check out the holes. They are located about 200 metres from the end of the steep descent.

The holes were made over 20,000 years ago by high seas that crashed onto the cliff face. Now people can visit them and take great pictures. We did just that. it is also said that these mountain ranges were once higher than Mt Everest!

Levi then took charge of the camera and got a couple of pictures of me.

It was time to climb back up the steep cliff. It went easier this time and Levi was way ahead of me.

There is a stream that falls down the steep section and the water is crystal clear and drinkable. We ran out of water, so that was a relief.

On the way back to the road, we stopped at Sandviga and had a swim. It was well deserved!

In all, that journey took us over five hours and it was a great day out. Like I said, you can do it in 3 no problem if you take the correct trail.

Fresh air, exercise, amazing views and a little swim, who could ask for more.

Levi and the other kids were treated to an ice cream and ice cold drink at the end. Well deserved.


1. Take at least 2 litres of water with you if hiking on a hot day.
2. Take sunscreen
3. A hat
4. Food for a picnic at the top
5. Mobile phone in case you get into trouble. (There is reception most of the way)
6. A good camera with a big memory card
7. Swim shorts
8. Tell people that you are going there so someone knows where you are.
9. If you are scared of heights, this is not a hiking trip for you to Brufjell however Sandviga is fine as the journey there is easy.
10. Kids should be 10 years and older otherwise you need to pay close attention to younger kids.

Contact the Flekkefjord Tourist Office for more information:
Address: Elvegaten 3, Flekkefjord
Telephone: +47 38 32 80 81
Dra på ferie til Flekkefjord

Thursday, 17 July 2014

Flipside summer camp Southern Norway

Summer camp is not just something that happens in America. At a coastal area in Lista Farsund, Southern Norway, there is a summer camp for kids that goes over 5 weeks.

Flipside camp is a great place for the kids and a great initiative. The camp is open in the summer and kids can stay for one week at a time. They need to be aged between 10 and 17.

The camp usually starts in the last week of June when it is the school summer break in Norway and lasts between 3 and 5 weeks depending on how many have registered.

During the registration process, everyone signs up for one activity and is assigned one or more activity leader that will be with them for the week. In all there are approximately 20 staff members on site.

Action sports include BMX, Skateboarding and scooters. Additional activities include Go-karting, paintball and Radio Controlled Car races. In the future, the camp plans on having more activities for the kids including acrobatics, arts, multimedia, IT etc etc.

There is also musical instruments and rehersal studios that the kids can use in conjunction with a girls camp called "Loud". 

Its a band camp where anyone from beginner to experienced can participate. No songs or rehearsed music are required in advance. From day one they will be split into groups that they will be working with the whole week. From then on they get to rotate on instruments with lessons and work out the band name, signature moves, dance, logo, t-shirt printing and career planning. At their last day each band will have one rehersed song that they play on concert for the camp.

There is also a concert room where the kids can perform their rehersed music. Other bands and musicians are sometimes invited to play.

The kids live at hostels on the Flipside Camp Grounds in groups of 6 to 16 and they can choose their own rooms. There are bunk beds and bedding and towels are included. The kids have four meals a day which includes, breakfast, lunch, dinner and an evening snack/barbeque.

There are many competitions during the camp including skate boarding, bmx or scooters. 

Fun games and prizes are also added to the mix.

The main focus is that the kids have fun and socialise.

The kids need to bring their own equipment - skateboards etc, or they can be hired and booked in advance. Parents are advised to book these early as they are rented very quickly.

Parents can drop of their kids for check-in on Sunday at about 18:00. After that, there is an information meeting where parents can join in. During the camp, parents can stay in the flipside Hotels and enjoy activities in and around Lista. 

There are the amazing beaches along the coastline, the Lista lighthouse, the American Festival in June, bird watching, surfing, horse riding, boating, fishing... the list is endless.

However, parents are not allowed on the camp premises so that all the kids get to have the same camp experience. Flipside has responsible leaders around the kids at all times.

After the camp the it is open everyday from 10:00 to 18:00, and booking is possible for anytime.

Price per child for one week is 5900 kr and the band camp is 3500 kr. Shorter and longer stays are available.

Check out more information on the Flipside Camp website www.flipsidecamp.no. Camp registering is only valid through an online form with a credit card transaction. 

Parents are encouraged to check the website, instagram and Flipside Facebook Group for more information on opening times etc.Dra på ferie til Farsund

Tlf: +47 455 02 806     E-mail: info@flipsidecamp.no     Adr: Lista Flypark 4560 Vanse

(All pictures are courtesy of Flipside Camp).