The Veierland Golf Club sits on the north end of the idyllic Veierland. The course is a 6-hole par 3 training course.

Island Hopping Gem Veierland 

Don’t like reading maps, but feeling adventurous? On the island Veierland, nothing can go wrong. You can cross the island on superb bike trails within an hour! If you’re looking to play some golf in these new surroundings, you've come to the right place.

Bring your family and friends on an island hopping adventure; explore the islands and the archipelago in Vestfold in a whole new way. Island hopping by bike is a popular activity for the whole family. Set aside a day of your holiday to visit the exciting and car-free island of Veierland. The island is made for bicycling around to find spectacular views. Here there is a large network of wide gravel roads and narrow forest trails. There are few steep hills on the island so you can rest assured that the whole family can manage a ride around the island. Veierland also has several nice child-friendly swimming areas where you can have a well-deserved, refreshing swim.

The café and beer garden Dagros opens in the summer season where you can get a meal, snack, or something to drink. The cafe also has a restroom. On the north side of the island is Veierland church. A few yards off the church’s farm, you’ll find an outside toilet and sink.

The ferry "Jutøya" carries people and goods between Veierland and Tenvik on Nøtterøy Island, and Engø in Sandefjord every day. The ferry ride from the mainland takes just a few minutes (see timetable on If you don’t have time to go ashore, a trip to this cozy ferry can be a great trip in itself, also for children. From the sundeck, you’ll see the beautiful archipelago of Nøtterøy’s western side and the lush countryside of Stokke and Sandefjord's east side.

In the northern part of the island, there is a 6-hole golf course. It is both surprising and lots of fun to find a great golf course right in the archipelago paradise. The course is excellent as training for green cards. All are welcome to come along with a person who has a valid green card (see Veierland Golf Club on the web for further info).

Veierland has a 17 km land beach line, paths, and gravel roads without car traffic. The burial finds from the late Iron Age show evidence of early settlement here. The island is excellent for outdoor activities, rambling and cycling in these beautiful surroundings.





Archipelago on the border of the Telemark coast 

Vacation Idyll

Near Vestfold’s border with Telemark furthest out in the Langesundsfjord, are Stokkøya, Store Arøy, Lille Arøy, and Vesle Arøy. The Arøy islands are together with Stokkøya, the only one of the islands in Langesundsfjord that stands in Vestfold county and Larvik municipality. The four islands are located no more than a few minutes swimming distance between each other. Lille Arøy is the northernmost island with Vesle Arøy to the west, Stokkøya is located east of Store Arøy, which is the southernmost of the islands and is there as a last stand against Skagerrak. The islands are located in a wonderful archipelago in the outer part of the area between Helgeroa and Langesund. Most of the buildings on the islands are summer cottages. There are few permanent residents on the islands, mostly fishermen and some artists. The islands are connected by ferry with Helgeroa and Langesund throughout the year. During the summer, there are a considerable amount of summer visitors using the ferry connections. There is a summer kiosk in the bay at the top of Lille Arøy. This is the only retailer on the three islands.


If you’re choosing to take a trip to one of the islands in the summer, you are guaranteed an idyllic trip whether you arrive by boat or ferry from Helgeroa. The islands are located so far out in Vestfold that vacationing anywhere in Vestfold, a trip out here could be described as a day-long trip. It’s also this that makes it so exciting to visit these relatively unknown islands. Although there are many cabins on the islands, there are still much more space without buildings. There are large areas of forest, small sandy beaches, and lots of rocks. Here the clean seawater flows in and the fish bite often.



On Store Arøya, there is a small campground with tent sites and cabins. The four islands are very suitable for outdoor tours, offering varied scenery and great experiences. On the largest island, Store Arøya, it may in some places have very dense vegetation so that you can hardly see the path, and all the lush vegetation and damp clay soil almost reminds you a little of swamp-like jungle. On Store Arøya, you can actually walk for an hour without seeing the sea, although the sea is seldom farther than 100 meters as the crow flies. On Lille Arøya, there are some great viewpoints where you have a great 360 degree views of Langesund, Porsgrunnlandet, Mørjefjorden, Helgeroa, and Skagerrak. Lille Arøya has an exciting landscape of numerous islets and rocks facing Skagerrak. You can literally "island hop" over the rocks and find your favorite rocks for sunny days. Especially in the southwest part of Stokkøya, there is the large area of open grassland and child-friendly sandy beaches. Yes, Stokkøya is probably the most kid-friendly if you decide to go out on a walk. IF you should just settle on a beach spot with the whole family one day, it really does not matter which of the islands you choose. You’re bound to find great archipelago experiences in any case.


The narrow, picturesque strait between Lille Arøya and Vesle Arøya is called Bukkespranget. It is said that the name comes from an observation of a buck that actually managed to jump across the narrow strait of the steep rock walls. Miles of film have been used over the years at this place.




Travel to Holmestrand and experience the cozy wharf life, the sight of the trees in green splendor that climb along the black rock wall towards Holmestrand center, which was the architectural style of the 1700s. Go shopping in the city "To Levels", or just enjoy yourself at the town's two scenic beaches.

Even better than its reputation
Holmestrand has quite unfairly been perceived as a "town you pass by." Many people associate the city of waiting in endless queues, traffic congestion, and tunnel trouble. Earlier the heavy traffic on the E18 went right through Holmestrand’s narrow downtown streets. In 2001, the E18 moved inland, which led to Holmestrand regaining much of its former idyllic feel. It is amazing to think that the otherwise peaceful city was plagued by massive traffic problems before. We hope with this article to correct some of the false and negative impressions many have of this town with the dream location in Oslofjord.

Scenic recreational and leisure areas
Holmestrand is known as the town under the mountain. The cliff, Veggfjellet, behind the center gives Holmestrand a characteristic profile and creates contrast between the coast and inland. Holmestrand as a municipality is much more than the 11 km narrow coastal strip at Holmestrandfjord. From the bay, Holmestrand creeps up the mountain and extends inland. Here on top of the "mountains" are trade centers, large living spaces, and farmland.
The municipality's varied topography and geographical coverage is a good starting point for rich and varied outdoor activities. On the plateau of the center are very beautiful viewpoints with beautiful views of the bay and the scenic islands Kommersøya and Bjerkøya. The plateau behind the town also offers opportunities for great countryside experiences with a large network of trails that wind through forests and deep valleys. Some nice lakes are also along the trails.

But there is sun and sea which are natural summer attractions in the coastal town of Holmestrand. 1000 places for small boats and a premiere guest marina in the city center, clean water, and nice swimming spots are within walking distance just north and south of the city center. As so often when it comes to coastal cities, the brewery and the port area serve as the city's major tourist attraction. Here you can eat freshly cooked prawns on the wharf. Enjoy refreshments or a meal on the terrace while watching the crowded wharf and boating in the harbor. You can get up close and personal with the maritime environment and boat traffic. Leisure boats, fishermen, and merchant vessels lie side by side along the quays. Although it is nice and cozy in the harbor, it can be even better. The municipality has made a development plan for the port area and it is now gearing up for a NOK 100 million project which will result in even more magnificent facilities for city residents and tourists.

The islands in Homestrandfjord are well adapted for boaters with excellent swimming and recreation areas on the islands. Swim life is combined with plants and fossil studies in the nature reserves. The coastal trail through Holmestrand Municipality is part of the coastal path from Hurum in Buskerud to Borre in Vestfold.

Highway 319 winds and meanders along the coastal stretch of Sande and Svelvik. Sometimes down by the water, other times up on high hills and through valleys. The valley you see in the image extends from the highway down to the fjord at Sandvika in Sande.

Open your senses for our beautiful adventure in Vestfold’s two northernmost municipalities. Next time you are going to or from Vestfold, we recommend that you travel via Sande and Svelvik. Read why.


In Midgard´s Kingdom

What a great nature and location!
Almost right between Horten and Åsgårdstrand is Borre, the viking´s favorite area. It is not hard to understand why the Vikings chose this area as their home when you look at the beautiful nature going down to the Oslo fjord and the fertile soil everywhere you go. The summer of 2013, the Gildehallen opened, and has become one of Vestfold´s most popular attractions. 

Midgard historic center and the Borre park
At Borre in Horten county is Midgard historic center, which can offer experiences and activites for all ages. Inside, you can visit exhibitions with original items from the Viking era in Vestfold, as well as see relevant, international exhibitions. If you´re tired of spending the time indoors, we recommend visiting the Midgard´s Viking playground. This is where the young ones can play archeologists and excavate treasures from the ground, or practice their balance through a obstacle run. The older ones can test their bow and arrow skills, or try throwing axes. The whole family can play a log game, how about the children vs. adults? If you want to challenge your tactical skills, we recommend playing the viking´s own board game, Hefnatafl. 

The center has a café with a panorama view of the Borre mounds.  You can enjoy vaffles or other temptations in the café or on the outside terrace.

 Midgard is connected to the Borre park which has North Europe´s largest collection og large mounds from the young iron age (Viking era). The park has seven large mounds, around 40 smaller mounds, three rockeries and two star shaped mounds (“treodder”). It was believed to be all of one family, the Yngling family, that was buried in the mounds, but new research based on DNA analytics, suggests that large grave yards like these usually contains remains from different families. But there are no doubt that there are some very important people of the Viking era buried at Borre.

Just one of the large mounds at Borre is completely excavated, which happened in 1853, and this is where the valuable findings at Borre were found. Many of the items found at Midgard can be seen in the exhibition “Borre in the bay, Borre in the world”. Midgard also exhibits great findings from the iron age in the exhibition “Mounded – the viking´s burials at Gulli” and “There are no borders from space”. 

The Borre park is a favored hiking area for the locals, and is great of picnics and trips in summer time. Maybe a little swim is tempting if the weather is hot? Only a short walk between the park from Midgard is between you and the beautiful Borre beach with a view of the Oslo fjord´s outlet!
Explore the Borre park during the Viking era on your iPhone or iPad!
Have you ever wondered what the landscape at the Borre park was like during the Viking era? Download Midgard´s app “Borrehallen” to your iPhone or iPad from App store and experience a virtual Viking era where the Borre hall still stand at its original location, and the sea level is 4 meter higher than today. The app is like a window into the past, and you´ll se an almost identical picture of the virtual and real landscape because of the 3D graphics on the screen.

Photo text: The Gilde hall
Right next to the Midgard historical center is the new kings hall – the Gilde hall. This showpiece of a Viking hall was opened for visitor during the Viking festival, July 6th 2013. The whole building is covered in tree decorated by fantastic carvings. The entrance to the hall is decorated by a carved portal, and inside are four carved poles. The stories are about the Yngling family, born by Gods and giants which in the end takes the throne in their own gilde hall in 822 after Christ. Bjarte Aarseth is an educated carver and works at the Viking ship house in Bygdøy where he recreates wooden Viking art. He constructed and drew the carvings of the gilde hall in Borre.

See the Viking era from the Viking road
No other place is the memories from the Viking era as rich as here in Vestfold. The Viking road in Vestfold is a road leading to both exciting experiences and knowledge.

The Viking road extends from Mølen by Larvik to the Borre mounds and Midgard historical center in Borre, a 37 miles stretch. The memories of the Vikings are everywhere along the Vestfold-ra, the moraine that is left along the coast after the ice withdrew 10.000 years ago. This is where the people settled after the ice disappeared and the land rose. It was easy to cultivate here because of the self-draining soil. It was easy to walk along the moraine, so it became a natural road. It was just as nice to live in Vestfold back then as it is now. 

The Viking city of Kaupang
Between Larvik and Sandefjord is Skiringssal-kaupangen, the trading place that is counted as Norway´s first ever city. Today, there are not many visible traces from the city that is a key area of out Viking knowledge. The area where the city of Kaupang used to be is a part of the idyllic Viksfjord today. The area along the Viksfjord is a favored vacation paradise for the 1000 cabins on each side of the fjord. It is easy to imagine why the Vikings liked it here in the beautiful natural area with great soil and easy access to the open ocean.

Between 200 and 500 people lived here during the 800s, and the population could have been closer to 900 in the early 900s. Around year 930, the activates in the area stopped quite sudden, and we don´t know why.  After a while, forests grew, and during the medieval ages, the area was used for farming and animal keeping. 
The Skiringssal-chief probably lived on a farm with a large chief hall at Huseby, a little north of Kaupang. It is believed that Skiringssal was the viking´s name for Huseby. The Viking city must have developed from the protection and control of the chief. Craftsmen and traders lived in Kaupang. Ships came from north and south to unload and load at the dock. Whetstones and soapstone came from the nearby areas, ceramics, glass, amber from Baltikum or Denmark, and pearls from Asia, the Mid-east and the Mediterranean area. No other place has given us such extensive knowledge about the trading ativites during the Viking era as Kaupang. Today, visitors can learn about Kaupang´s history at the Vestfold museum´s exhibition located there. 

Where is the Viking road?
It is the pattern of the mentioned societies we follow when we follow the Viking road. The recent years, the traffic has found new directions, mainly on the inside of the moraine.  This is an advantage for those who want to follow the Viking road. The road takes you through coastal nature, beautiful and open culture landscape and an area with little traffic. You can follow the route by car, bicycle, or by foot. The Viking road offers many experiences. You will see large and impressive grave mounds, memories of Norway´s first city, Kaupang, and the places where our most important Viking findings were found. Vestfold county has made an informative brochure about this road that us from Møler, via Kaupang, Istrehågan, Gokstadhaugen, de large grave mounds in Tønsberg, Oseberghaugen and Tønsberg city, before the trip ends in the beautiful Borre park.

Picture Text: the Klåstad ship
Both Sandefjord and Tønsberg has their own replica of the Gokstad ship and the Oseberg ship that sails along the coast of Vestfold, but it isn´t common knowledge that Vestfold has an original Viking ship exhibited in the county! The trading ship from Klåstad is actually the only preserved ship exhibited outside of Oslo. The Klåstad ship was excavated in Tjølling around 1970, and is exhibited in the Slottsfjell museum in Tønsberg. In the Viking hall inside the Slottsfjell museum is also the history of the Oseberg finding, the grave ship with Europe´s larges Viking finding, found 3 kilometers north of Tønsberg´s center. The original Viking ships, the Oseberg ship and the Gokstad ship is exhibited in the Viking ship museum in Oslo.

A battle could begin in different ways. It could be a planned battle where they prepared and made plans before hand, but a battle could also happen by two groups “bumping into each other”.

The Borre park
Saga Oseberg is a full siza copy of the Oseberg ship from Tønsberg in Vestfold, built in 2011-2012 by the foundation New Oseberg Ship. The construction site was right outside Oseberg´s culture building in Tønsberg. The contruction was done as extensive and detailed as possible, with materials and techniques that were used when the original ship was made in year 820.

The Gilde hall is a great contruction, based on the Viking era´s construction techniques. 

The Gokstad ship and its 23 meters makes the longest Viking ship found in Norway. Here is the copy, Gaia, sailing next to the Vesterøya in Sandefjord.

The Viking era was one of the most expansive and innovative eras in the history of the Nordic countries. The plundering and wars lead the Vikings all the way to America, Greenland, and all corners of Europe, and even further. 


Strategem on the battlefield
The Vikings used stratagem on the battlefields. They often split the army in half before they met the enemy. One half were hiding while the others appeared to be weakened. When the fight started, the hidden part attacked the opponents from behind. 

The culture heritage is brought forward. A meeting of modern Vikings at the Gokstad mound by Sandefjord.

In the park, outside of the museum are many activities to chose from. Among those are throwing of axes, shooting with a bow and arrow lead by an instructor. 

The berserks are referred to as horrible enemies to run into. Is is said that they were so high on the desire to fight that they bit their shields, attacked rocks and trees, and they even killed each other waiting for the battles to begin.

Schools often visit the Saga in Oseberg.

The viking´s ravages were feared all over the world.

No matter how much you practiced, a status as a warrior had to be earned on the battlefield.

The Viking ship
The ship was the most potent symbol of power, and the most important way of transport during the Viking era. The ship was one of the most important prerequisites of political power and prestige, which in many cases was based on the control of the ocean.

The sail revolutionized the Viking ship
The use of sails made it possible to sail the open sea, and it opened the way to the countries in the North sea for the Vikings. It is believed that the sail has been used some places from as early as the 600s, and by the mid 700s, it was common in many places. By using a sail, they could get to the countries that used to be out of reach. You can see Gaia (the Gokstad ship copy) sailing between the island of Veierland and Sandefjord´s mainland in the picture. 

The Vikings had a nice view of the Oslo fjord from the beautiful area we called the Borre park today.

The city of Kaupang was an idyllic place next to Viksfjord in Tjølling. The beautiful nature is now used for vacation and cabins.

The Viking county of Vestfold
All the most famous Viking ships found in Norway, were found in Vestfold. 


Horten – a capital of great holiday experiences

In the middle of Vestfold, you’ll find Horten with its pleasant gardens, shopping, military past, museums, and last but not least, swimming areas. No matter where you have a cabin in Vestfold, the town is within easy driving distance and it’s not far from Østfold and the Bastøy ferry either. Horten is also a small boat’s town and the guest port has been on the top 10 of Norway’s best guest ports many times. You’ll find a jetty for bathing, restaurants, playgrounds, and the Horten Tourist Office here. Horten Harbor 

Her finner vi badebrygge, spisesteder, lekeplass og Horten turistkontor. Horten Harbor puts out overnight-buoys in the Horten archipelago, in cooperation with Oslofjord Recreation. 

Horten is a green town. Horten’s characteristics are small houses in lush, green gardens and large magnificent deciduous trees in the city's many green spaces. Part of what makes Horten so beautiful are the tall canopies bursting with mistletoe. The plant that otherwise is so rare in northern latitudes is found in Horten in large quantities. If you’d like to experience large trees and mistletoe, Lystlunden Park, Horten forest, and the marine station Karljohansvern are places you should definitely visit.

A Little History
Horten was an early ferry hub. There has been a ferry connection between Horten and Moss since 1582, but in 1815, Horten was designated to become Norway's new fleet station, which replaced Fredriksvern in Stavern. Plans for a new Norwegian Navy were large and the fleet port of Stavern was too small. At the time, Horten had a population of about 100 people at four farms and the old ferry landing. Karljohansvern was established in Horten Navy Headquarters by royal decree in 1818, a few years after the signing of the union with Sweden. They needed better defense for Oslofjord. Horten naval base was controversial from the start, and over the years, the naval base endured many setbacks. Work on the fleet station began in 1820, but it wasn’t ready until 1850. The many challenges of a destitute Norway, as well as the conflict between the monarchy and parliament, led to the naval base in Horten never to become what it was going to be. There were plans to build a large fortress at Hortenstangen, but these were shelved prior to 1850.

The houses that were built for the workers and soldiers in connection with yard eventually became the basis for Horten city. Horten grew rapidly and developed into a town of over 5,000 inhabitants as Karljohansvern stood ready. In 1963, the Navy headquarters moved to Bergen, but Karljohansvern had lots of military activity and still was the base for the Eastern Norway Naval District. It was the defense’s need for modern technology that led to the research that cared for a number of technology companies and has made Horten a marine electronic center in Norway.

Karljohansvern today
Today, the old naval base at idyllic Karljohansvern is under conservation protection by the culture center. Over time, the defense limited its military operations here. Several buildings, including the shipyard, have been sold for civilian use. In addition, you’ll find the Marine Museum here, which incidentally is the world's oldest naval museum in operation. Preus museum, which is the national museum for photography, is also worth a visit with its treasure trove of photographs, equipment and photography literature in a historical building. In addition, Karljohansvern offers everything from small specialty stores to large chain stores. Cafés and eateries with and without galleries are tempting with food from all over the world. There is no through traffic on the island. There are beaches, Horten forest and the picturesque Horten Channel that separates Karljohansvern from Horten city. Along the canal, you can walk in peace and quiet, only occasionally interrupted by an occasional silent “snekke,” or picnic boat, that uses this shortcut between the inner harbor and Oslofjord.

The Fortress
If you want to find an overview of Horten municipality, you should visit viewpoint "Festningen", or “the fortress,” which is an old military facility from the previous century. Here you can see the entire municipality surrounded by Oslofjord.

Explore the Submarine «Utstein»
The Mrine Museum in Horten is the oldest of its kind. The Marine Museum is located at the old naval headquarters and now has large collections related to the navy’s history through war and peace. Many items are unique globally. The collection includes vessels and equipment related to the Norwegian Navy, Allied and German equipment, ship models, paintings, and pictures just to name a few. The 45 meter long submarine "Utstein" occupies the land outside the Navy Museum in Horten, and is open to the public. "Utstein" operated at sea from 1964 until 1998.
Exciting Car Museum
In traditional Horten Brewery's old beer halls is the Horten Car Museum. Here you can see a large collection of vehicles from 1900 until 1970. The collection includes everything from rare cars to old used cars. The museum went through a renovation period in winter, but opened recently with an upgrade of the exhibition and premises. A model railway of 24 m² is an extra special touch to your experience. 

Alfred Berg – Good old-fashioned colonial in Horten

On your visit to Horten, you should take a trip to the store of Alfred Berg on Storgata. The traditional, nostalgic store is 115 years old, and gives you the feeling of having traveled far back in time. Everything from the building, style, and products on old shelves is original from back in the day. The store was originally one of the few stores that only included the best ingredients, such as imported Swiss cheeses and healthy juices, and could rightly call itself "prettier colonial". Alfred Berg is up to this day a great colonial focusing on service and quality goods.

Slightly north of Horten is the historic island called Løvøya. The peninsula is the western of the three islands originally named Western, Central and East Løvøy. Being  merely 0.7 km², Løvøya is a relatively small island. The bedrock of the island consists of lava from volcanoes that were active in the Permian period about 250 million years ago. Previously, it was possible to take boats across the strait between Løvøya and Drasundodden, hence the name Drasundet, or “the Dra sound.” This was practiced until the 1950s. Today, the sound is filled up and a road goes over Drasundet.

Løvøya has a nice marina for visitors at the bay Løvøypollen on the east side of Falkensten Bay. The place offers various facilities there including electricity, toilet, washing machine, garbage collection and camping. East of the island is a 200 meter long beach. It's nice to take a dive in the outdoors at Løvøysund. Remember to bring your fishing pole. The area around the strait and the bridge between Løvøya and Mellomøya are considered to be the most popular fishing spots in the region. There is a nice three kilometer long marked trail on the island and there are several sights worth checking out. There was a settlement here in the Viking Age.

The Løvøy Chapel
Løvøya is perhaps best known for its stone chapel that adorns the landscape when was built in the 1200s from local stone. The chapel is the smallest of Horten Municipality's three medieval churches, and is considered to be the most distinctive of them. The church was in ruins for many years after the Reformation in 1536, and became protected in 1882. Long restoration work started in 1928, and in 1950, the chapel could be reopened to religious use.

St. Olav’s Wells on Løvøya
According to legend, St. Olav was in contact with higher powers. It was discovered that water sources around the country were associated with Olav the Holy. It was said that the water in the well could cure disease. Adjacent to the chapel on Løvøya we find the holy well of St. Olav. The well was one of the main places in Østlandet of Catholic times. The belief in the healing waters was long lived and it is said that a sailor as late as 1820 went from Stavern to Løvøya and returned with two bottles of spring water to a sick marine captain. Today, the well is bricked up and restored.

Robber Cave
If you are good at climbing, you can search for caves on the north side of the island, the Veggfjell by Jesus Bay. There are a lot of legends and stories about Røverhulen, or Robber Cave. A legend tells of robbers who abducted a service girl in the neighborhood by the cave. One day when she was sent out to buy food, she was threatened with death if she were to reveal them. The girl did not dare reveal the robbers but was clever enough to cut a hole in a bag of noodles that she brought with her, so she was found. Røver trail runs 200 m along the vertical rock wall. There is also another cave which bears the “røver” name. This cave is difficult to get to, but a long mysterious cave.

Bicycling Haven
Horten and the surroundings are a paradise for cyclists. On all sides of the city, there is magnificent scenery that ranges from the general surface tension between Åsgårdstrand and Horten to forests and rolling hills and rural landscape on the other edges of the city.

Lovely lazy days on Løvøya

Shopping in the cozy town center. 
Next time you go shopping in Vestfold, give Horten a try! The city has a cozy trade center with pedestrian streets, squares, and a large variety of a very diverse range of shops. The three shopping centers along Horten’s new beautiful pedestrian street offer a total of 70-80 stores. You will find everything you need - and you will find that the Horten has a very dynamic and exciting commercial center to offer! The newest mall, Scales Farm, offers the city's "best" parking facility. Easy access - great spots - and very reasonable prices! Free after 4 p.m. and direct access into the Spar supermarket means easy and comfortable access to groceries.

Two of the country's leading museums within its genre are located inside the Karjohansvern. The Marine Museum shows Norway naval history and photo art, and you’ll find photographic history at the Preus Museum.

Løvøy Chapel. The island was flocked by people of the Catholic world. It was no more than reasonable that a church was built on site. Exactly when this happened is not known, but it must have been in the 1200s. To the right in the picture, you can see St. Olav's well.

Horten city seen from the southeast. 



Åsgårdstrand is an idyllic small coastal communities. Just to stroll around this small town and see all the manicured gardens provide a lovely ambience in the body. Beautiful and white painted snugly settlement in Åsgårdstrand, with a population of about 3,000 residents.

Overnight at the wharf in Åsgårdstrand ->

Munch's vacation paradise

Especially in summer, this city has much to offer. Åsgårdstrand is a wonderful mix of boats, galleries, cyclists and swimmers. One can swim almost all along the shoreline in the city center, and the shoreline is good about space. Åsgårdstrand is very popular among summer visitors by boat and cabin area. The port is however not so great, and it may be wise to bring in the sails before entering the harbor. The port is expanded with two new pools and it has thus become better accommodate visiting boats. Cobblestones give quay a special touch. In 2007 Åsgårdstrand classified as tourist because the number of tourists and visitors are so high in relation to permanent residents. Summer visitors are largely involved in shaping the atmosphere of the city.

The White City by the Oslo fjord - Åsgårdstrand

Åsgårdstrand is Horten Municipality smallest and oldest city, and was founded about 450 years ago on the basis of timber and shipbuilding. But not until the mid-1800s began passenger boats between Oslo and Vestfold towns to visit Åsgårdstrand, which made the city a popular bathing and holiday resort. Åsgårdstrand eventually became known as the center for artists because of the unique light here.

Ride on the coastal path from Horten to Åsgårdstrand? Read more ->

There is no doubt that Edward Munch enjoyed staying in Åsgårdstrand, and was inspired as an artist. In 1889, he spent his first of many summers in Åsgårdstrand, and bought a few years later a simple fisherman's house from the 1700s. In this house decorated his living room to serve as bedrooms, study and dining room. Today owned house of Horten Municipality, and it serves as a museum where everything is preserved as it was when Edward Munch lived there. The museum is open every day during the summer months of June, July and August, except Mondays.

The light of the Oslo Fjord and the beaches of Åsgårdstrand fascinates as much today as in Edvard Munch's time.

Edward Munch painted many of the most famous paintings in Åsgårdstrand res, including "Girls on the Bridge" in 1902. There have been many famous artists in Åsgårdstrand, and primarily painters. The place became known as the center for artists and since 1880 a number of artists painted in Åsgårdstrand, among them world names like Christian Krogh and Hans Heyerdahl as well as Edvard Munch, as already mentioned. In the center we find several galleries, and many artists have sommeratelierene its here. The place is known for its distinctive light that is reminiscent of the unique light at Skagen. Artists went to either Skagen or Åsgårdstrand to paint this special light.

Charming café life in Åsgårdstrand streets

In Åsgårdstrand we find a number of inviting restaurants and cafes. If you go up the steep hill from the harbor next to the hotel and turn left at the top, you are moving into a typical Åsgårdstrand-coat with picket fences and whitewashed houses. Here is Frantz Confectionery with backyard cafe next door to the cozy Munch's Café. Here you can sample the local traditional favorite crab wonder. A crab lure is a round donut baking, reminiscent donut. The cafe is a cross between patisserie and restaurant. The chowder here can heartily recommend. And in Åsgårdstrand only pub boathouse has been life for many years. Come and savor the local atmosphere.

Bike ride to art and donuts at
Åsgård Beach

Would you like to have culture, nature, and history without uphill slops this summer? Join the short ride between Horten and Åsgårdstrand, or Åsgård Beach. A bike ride without lots of effort but nonetheless beautiful stretches of coastal path. 

You need not be a bike enthusiast to enjoy cycling from Horten to Åsgårdstrand. You just have to know how to ride a bicycle. The ride is safe for kids, too. The path is clearly marked, and running mostly through forests and hills. It's not far. Uphill conspicuous by its absence, and there is much to see along the way. Don’t have a bicycle? At the tourist office on the pier in Horten, you can rent one for 35 kroner. Then you have the bike and helmet for three days, if you’d like. From Horten, you must ride through some lovely residential areas before going to the forest.

After a few kilometers through the forest, we arrive at Borre, Scandinavia's largest collection of graves from the Viking era. The nine large mounds still reign over the majestic landscape. You can have a picnic under an oak tree, or grab a cup of coffee and watch the show at Midgard Historical Centre. Now comes the final treat of the ride: The last part of the way through Fjugstad nature reserve, with Scandinavia's largest ash forest. The trail is sun speckled, with ash trees closing around us and buttercups growing in the grass. All we hear are birds chirping.

- I'm sitting in the only nice house I have lived in – the house in Åsgårdstrand, wrote Edvard Munch to his friend Sigurd Autumn. If you follow the road straight ahead when entering Åsgårdstrand, you’ll reach Munch's house. The house was bought by Åsgårdstrand municipality in 1944 and is a museum today. Everything here is preserved as it was when the painter lived there. His suit hangs on the wall, collars in the closet, inkwell and pen splits on the table. Munch bought the house in 1897 for 900 kroner. At the time, this was the poor district of Åsgårdstrand.  Fishermen here lived in small houses with their large families. But Munch enjoyed living here. He sought the real and original. Munch came here when he was very young, and was looking for his expression, which was largely shaped here in Åsgårdstrand. Here he met his great love, Mille Thaulow, which he never forgot. She was married, so they faced each other off in bird song, which is the forest we just rode through. Munch’s motives are everywhere in Åsgårdstrand. Portions of Munch iconography, moon pillar, and the shoreline are taken from this area.

Åsgårdstrand offers a variety of galleries, studios, restaurants and nice little shops. Munch Café has been the area’s confectionery since 1914. Back then, the painter often ate krabbelurer, or “crab wonders,” here, which is a kind of roll with donut dough. It’s normal to buy a krabbelurer and take it down to the pier where Munch painted girls on the bridge, sit down on a bench and recharge the return trip: The forty-five minute bike ride on a sunny trail along the lake.




In the heart of Vestfold, you’ll find Tønsberg, the charming town that grows each and every summer. Tønsberg offers everything from fantastic beaches to shopping and visiting the wharf – in addition to cultural activities such as summer shows, art exhibitions, and music festivals.



From hibernation to vibrant life


Tønsberg is like a bear that hibernates every winter. Not before the ice melts and a horse hoof trots along the grass, Vestfold’s main city comes back to life. But in turn keeps the city as vibrant and full of desire until the autumn darkness once again arrives.


Tønsberg folk who have been wearing black throughout winter sitting down on the wet asphalt and taking a taxi to get away from the cold and other people, now get to use their spring clothes, hop on a bike, and buy rosé at one of the wharf’s outdoor seating areas. Suddenly, you’ll understand the joke of the locals.


Bustling Summer Life


Summer is finally here and glistens from dawn till dusk from the canal which runs through Norway’s oldest town. We celebrate the joy of winter’s bitter winds by traveling out to the nearby archipelagos. Here we can relax, enjoy the warmth of the tide pools, bathe in crystal-clear lakes, maybe even fish. Hum along with Tønsberg-born Jahn Teigens old melody. Breathe. After a refreshing swim and boat ride, we look for the exciting and historically interesting town with festivals, theater, revues, and concerts. Or simply wander the streets with an ice cream cone in hand. We are able to get our shopping “scavenger hunt” done in the beautiful market and the surrounding cozy quarters of the town's alleyways and historic surroundings.


The wharf in Tønsberg has become the town’s outdoor venue, a magnet for visitors. Could you think of something more pleasant than a summer evening along the wharfs of Tønsberg? The countless restaurants on the wharf offer a wonderful view of the canal and pier. Here we sit and enjoy a long evening dinner with good drinks. From the restaurant table we admire the boats of varieties and sizes that sit anchored one after another along the entire pier.

There is a crowded and relaxing atmosphere on the pier now being covered in the warm orange color of the evening sunshine. From the crowds of vacationers on the pier sums of the voices that both have their origin in Europe and other continents, plus a great mix of Norway's many dialects. It is cheerful mood here now. Some come from cinema, some are on the way home at a leisurely pace, some hurry to arrive before the last food serving, and others have just started the evening and will participate in the festivities until dawn. Ignore the worries of tomorrow; everything seems at least carefree now.


When we leave the restaurant, the sun is at peace having disappeared behind the Stokkes hills to the west. Tønsberg will apparently have gone by the name “The party town Tønsberg” by the numerous events in the town. The locals are known to be in a good mood and go clubbing in the summer nights. On the Tønsberg Wharf and on Nedre Langgata Street you’ll find nightlife lined up in a row.



Tønsberg is the summer town with the liveliest nightlife and it can get very impetuous and hot. Even under the under the darkest hours of the night, we jump into the water to wash the sweat off from the dancing at a packed nightclub off of Nedre Langgate street.


Archipelago life and island hopping


The islands outside of Tønsberg are abundant and diverse. The seaplanes navigate Vestvold’s archipelago well and know where the treasures amongst the island lay. The seaplanes based in Husvik take you island hopping out amongst the archipelago and is one of the great experiences in the area. Also, the seaplanes take route over the fjords in Oslo to Østfold.


Art and culture


Tønsberg has a vibrant arts and cultural life that is worth seeing it. We'll treat you to a weekend in Tønsberg and check out a real Viking ship, the largest Blue Whale, and Vestfold's whaling history at the Slottsfjell Museum which sits in a beautiful setting at the foot of Castle Rock. The museum and surrounding area is a part of the cultural heritage of the city's long history, and close by the Slottsfjell plateau shows the remains of one of the largest medieval castles. On Tallak, the plateau between Slottsfjellet and the main museum by Farmannsveien, is the museum's air department. Vestfold courtyard house contains several transferred homes, including Vestfold's oldest: a medieval loft dated 1407.


Art is displayed in the impressing brick building that houses the Hauger Vestfold Kustmuseum. The museum is located by the early Seaman’s school in the middle of Tønsberg town center. The location is beautiful and historic, with the museum sitting in a park between the antique Haugating and a few even older burial mounds.


Known artists from all over the world visit the popular Slottsfjell festival every summer. In addition to the festival, you can pick and choose among small and large music events in all genres. The Tønsberg medieval festival on the first weekend of June is the largest of Norge. It is an enormous celebration of Tønsberg’s rich middle age history that attracts craftsmen and artists from all over Europe.


Tønsberg is among Norway’s most important show-towns and has proud traditions from the 60s with Dizzie Tunes, Wesenlund, and many others. Today, the Slottsfjell festival, the Thespian Theater in Thaulowhullet, and the celebrity show on the wharf are some of the many annual events that are worth making a trip to in the summer. 


The History


Tønsberg is Norway’s oldest town, founded in the time of the Vikings. The biggest piece of evidence from the time is the world-famous Osebergskip that was found just north of the center of Tønsberg. In the middle ages, Tønsberg was a power center. The houses, churches, monasteries, and graveyards of Tønsberg have characterized the town. Up until 1671 it was the only town of Vestfold. As well as being a trade and maritime town since the Vikings, Tønsberg is known as a whaling and hanseatic town.


According to Snorre, Tønsberg city had already existed when Harald Fairhair was passing through on the way to his decisive blow upon Hafrsfjord. The year of the battle has been stated to be in 872, but evidence for such an advanced age is not yet available. What’s for certain is that, in 1871, the city celebrated its grand anniversary in 1000 and a hundred years later, celebrated a no less magnificent 1,100-year anniversary.


Historical source criticism of the Snorre is necessary because he wrote his records of history several hundred years after the Battle of Hafrsfjord. Perhaps it will be necessary to revise the city's founding story, as Oslo has had to do.

It has been suggested that around the year 1100 could be the correct year in which Tønsberg was founded.  Tønsberg must have been nonetheless founded before 1130 because in that year, Tønsberg was first mentioned in resources of the same time. It will continuously be discussed whether Tønsberg has connections back to the time before Christ, but the town’s old age is still solidly documented. The Oseberg ship that was found in Tønsberg in 1903 was first built in the south west of Norway as early as 820.

Slottsfjell is a little mountain in Tønsberg in Vestfold with an elevation of 63 meters (about 206 feet). There you’ll find the ruins of a church and the Tønsberg fortress of the Middle Ages, as well as the Slottsfjell tower, the town’s landmark. 

In the 1300s, Tønsberg was the most central place in the country. Many historical events took place on Slottsfjell which is why it is the largest group of ruins in the North. The heyday came to an end once Norway and Denmark created the union, and Copenhagen became the power’s center.  

The castle atop Slottsfjell. The Tønsberg fortress (Castrum Tunsbergis) on top of the mountain has most likely dominated the town and the surrounding land area before the 1100s when the Baglers (a faction participating in the Norwegian Civil Wars) fortified themselves there under siege of King Sverre and the Birkebeiners. The fortress went through a large-scale development under Håkan Håkansson’s and Magnus Lagabøte’s reign in the 1200s. Up until 1503, the fortress was occupied, but then it was burnt down and never built back up. Today the foundation ruins still stand on the mountain.

The Slottsfjell tower was erected in 1888 on a private initiative as a memorial of the thousand year anniversary of Tønsberg. The 17 meter high tower is built of stone and a simple, round-arched new renaissance style that relates back to the Donjon of the Middle Ages. The façade is decorated with a quote from Bjørnstjerne Bjørnson, inscription “871-1871 Maa Byen som paa Tunet staar, faa blomstre nye Tusind-aar” (The town standing in the yard, the flowers will live another thousand years) and the signatures of Kings “Haakon R August 1st, 1906,” “Olav R July 1st, 1958,”and “Harald R. March 9th, 1992.” The stone tower replaced a tower of three that stood on the on the mountain from 1856 to 1874, then it burned down. The Slottsfjell tower was in use as the Tønsberg museum from 1894 to 1930.

Maritime History. Tønsberg is a historic seafaring town. Maritime has always characterized Tønsberg since Viking times. In the old, newly restored customs house on the Tønsberg pier, you’ll find Tønsberg Maritime History Center, a center crammed with maritime history from the time Tønsberg was one of the greatest seafaring towns up to today.

One of the people who put the greatest impact on Norway's whaling history was Svend Foyn. The modern industrial whaling was developed by Svend Foyn of Tønsberg in 1860. He had lots of experience of seal hunting in northern waters and in 1864, he ran experimental whaling in Finnmark in northern Norway. He combined three factors: a harpoon and grenade were combined into a modern grenade harpoon and placed in a steamboat. In 1863 he developed the world's first grenade harpoon which in 1864 was installed at the world's first steam-powered whaling ship, "Spes & Fides". Foyn helped greatly with the financial support of the local population in Tønsberg in the form of houses of worship, schools and orphanages.



Summer HolidayScandinaviaNorwayDestinations

Tjøme´s archipelago paradise 

Out by the sea, south of Tønsberg and the island Nøtterøy, you´ll find the holiday paradise and island of summer, Tjøme. That´s where the sun is shining, the waves are coming in, and the people enjoy life. It is one of Norway´s cities with most hours of sun, combined with great sandy beaches and warm rocky shores which has made Tjøme´s islands to an attractive destination and a place for artist, nature enthusiasts and boaters. Tjøme, the next to largest city in Vestfold offers varying nature, summer life, hotels of top notch, music and shows, relaxation and a wonderful boat life.

Tjøme, the island kingdom
In addition to the main islands Tjøme, Brøtso and Hvasser, the county consists of about 500 smaller islands, islets, and skerries. The three main islands has permanent settlement and a bridge connection. Some of the other islands has been inhabited earlier, like Sandø (or Sandøy), the vacation colony island Hudøy (Hudø or Hui) and Ildverket. Furthest out towards the Oslo fjord lies Leistein which shows the sailors the direction of Vrengsundet. Furthest south lies the Tristein islands and Færder lighthouse. This is considered the Oslo fjord´s most southern point.

Tjøme lies on old sea floor which the old clay deposits in valleys and singings clearly shoes. When the last ice age started to withdrawal about 200 000 years ago, Tjøme was under the surface of the sea. About 4000 years ago, the contours of today´s Tjøme started to take shape.

Naturally, Tjøme is most known as a holiday paradise because of the beautiful nature. You cannot find more holiday houses anywhere else in Norway.  There are 2800 of them in the county. In the month of July, the population rises from about 4 500 to 50 000. The largest proportion of the holiday guests are the cabin people. The recent years, more and more hotel guests, camping guests and one-day guests have found their way to this summer paradise. In addition to this, the boaters visit the guest docks. Tjøme´s city center, originally called Kirkely is the county center. There are about 800 jobs in Tjøme.

Unique Nature

Green forest trails leads to polished rock formations almost wherever you go. Tjøme has great hiking areas that are great for the whole family. It is often surprising how many great forest trails you can find out on this island by the ocean. At Rød, straight south for the Town Hall, you can find a small golf court, and westbound, by the coast, is Øvre Rød Natural reserve. The archipelago around Tjøme, Brøtsø, and Hvasser can offer many islands and islets with thick vegetation, polished rocks, fine-grained sandy beaches and many sheltered boat places. At the very south of Tjøme, the walk is short to the islands most famous places, The World´s End and Moutmarka.
The coastal landscape in the southern part of Tjøme with Moutmarka and The World´s End has always pulled a large audience. This is because of the location with a great view of the sea, but also the special nature with thick vegetation between naked mountain crags.

The World´s End
At the World´s End, it is easy to gaze at the horizon towards the ocean and the sky that meet at infinity. If you look eastbound, you can see the neighbors in Østfold, or maybe even Sweden.

Bring a lunch basket and enjoy it on one of the outermost islands you can get to. Polished rocks honed by the ice age, and salty water through thousands of years seems special designed to sit and lie down on. In these surroundings, you´ll find hundreds of places to have nice conversations with family and friends, sunbathing, read a book, or just gaze at the archipelago life with music from seagulls, waves and kids bathing.

The area called The World´s End was originally called Helgerødtangen. The name The World´s End was given by travelers at the beginning of the 19th century. Earlier, the area was most knows as a fishing harbor and a lookout spot for sailors looking for missions.

The nature is dominated by rocky shores formed by glaciers over 10.000 years ago. Strandnelliken is one of the few plan species which lives in the cracks of the rocks facing the sea. In the north and south facing mountain hills are bushes and trees sheltered from the wind. The birds species are common gulls, herring gulls, black-backed gulls, eiders, and oystercatchers. South of the restaurant lives the nightingale. If you´re lucky, you might spot the seals laying on the outermost rocks.

The restuarant, the lighthouse and the old aquarium was built in 1932-35. The lighthouse has no historic background in the Tjøme area, but was built in the end of the 30s as a tourist attraction as well as the restaurant. Pebbles for these building was picked up from the pebble beaches of Moutmarka, among other places. The recreation area of The World´s End is especially adapted for disabled, with a bathing platform and a fishing ramp, among other things. The aquarium was closed in 1974. The harbor with the pier was constructed in 1946 as a fishing harbor and emergency harbor. Today, the harbor is also used as a guest harbor for hobby boats, with a service building, water and electricity for the boats. A new fishing harbor with boathouses for the fishermen was constructed in 2002. The restaurant and kiosk are open in summer.


On the west side along the archipelago is a natural area called Moutmarka. This is a great recreation area where you can walk all the way down to the water. Moutmarka has a great collection of large rock ridges which you can only see a few places in the coast of Vestfold. It´s tempting to just look at the view, but if you look down to the water, you might find some small orange snail houses which kids in many generations have been making jewelries from or collection into mason jars. Remember, when you´re on vacation, you have the time to just stop and enjoy summer.

Moutmarka used to be a shared pasture for many farms in the area. Most of the animal business ended in the 50s and 60s, and therefore also the pasturing. This resulted in the open fields being overgrown by blackthorn, juniper, rose hip bushes, and other bushes. Large parts of the Mouthmarka is therefore not easily available, but there are three different marked trails that will take you through the area.

The beach trail is marked with blue and heads south along the sea. The landscape will go from grey rocks, pebble beaches and open fields. Normal plant species in this area are gulmaure, yarrow, blue button, Geranium, bluebell, tiriltunge and many more. In the spring, different kinds of orchids will flourish in Moutmarka.

Hvasser is the nest to largest island in Tjøme county. The road leading to Hvasser crosses the Vrengen bridge from Nøtterøy to Tjøme, then to Ormelet and across the Røssesundbroa to Brøtsø. A bridge will lead to Hvasser from here. Hvasser has a unique contact with the archipelago and the sea.

Few places has such a significant maritime atmosphere like Sandøsund, which is considered Hvasse´s center. Krukehavn, or Sandøsund like most people call it nowadays, is an old fishing harbor with a fish store that sells shellfish and the fish of the season.

It is one of the most used harbors around. This is also where the rescue company´s coastal patrol is stationed, ready for escort services across the Oslo Fjord tip Hvaler. Sandøsund also has a harbor for small boats and guests.

In 1882, our great artist Christian Krogh creates his well known painting «Hardt le.» The painting is showcased at the National Gallery. A funny thing about this is that Krogh used the sailor Julius Pedersen Grepan from Hvasser as the model.The island Hvasser in Tjøme county was at that time - and still is - the most important pilot station in Vestfold. Already in Magnus Lagabøter´s law from 1276, the provision of piloting was embodied, but in 1561 a pilot obligation for ships was introduced.

Sandøsund has through all times been the place for both small and big events. The vikings has sailed here, Tordenskjold´s naval vessels stayed here in 1718 as a shelter from the storm, Norwegian canon boats were stationed here during the Napoleon War of 1807. Intense smuggling of spirits during the prohibition also took place here. From 1858-70s ocean postal expedition had its own stamp from Sandøsund postal office of post between Norway and United Kingdom. But also the passenger traffic to Denmark, Germany and England had its headquarters in Sandøsund. If you´re visiting Sandøsund, we recommend visiting the Coastal Museum, which is about Tjøme´s maritime history and the sailor business here.

At the pier, there is a grocery store and the cozy coastal restaurant «The Blue Pier». On the other side of the harbor, you´ll find the «trattoria» of the area, The Sunny Side, where Giuseppe Sapienza offers great Italian dishes for both dinner and lunch. Giuseppe is also responsible for the most popular take away among the vacationers. Many also visits the restaurant´s ice cream and coffee bar. They also have an outside restaurant where you can enjoy the view of the teeming life of the harbor. Hvasser Guesthouse is the last addition to the restaurants in Sandøsund which opened its doors in 2011. This restaurant also lies in the harbor and has a great view of the ocean and harbor.

You´ll also find the Gudem Gallery in the harbor which opened in 2011. A place for sale and showcasing of contemporary art; pictures and crafts. On the «strip» leading away from the harbor are several specialized stores like interior stores, boat equipment and clothing, ceramic workshop, antiques and the venerable Hvasser Motel. Slightly outside of Sandøsund, you can visit the popular Kilen Gallery to get inspiration from art and crafts of high standard.

But Hvasser is much more than a harbor and a base for the coastal patrol and sailors. The people who lives there or owns a summer house, would call Hvasser a summer paradise. Hvasser offers rocky shores and nice beaches, forests, hills, and mountains, sheltered bays, islets and reefs. At the northern part of the island lies Lilleskagen. This place is idyllic and has a nature of great flowers. The name Lilleksagen (Little skagen) is a new name, and comes from the flat landscape of sand which can remind some of Skagen, north in Jylland, in Denmark. This 350 acre recreational area lies next to cabin areas in both north and south. The area has both hills and plains, forests and rocks.

Rocks polished by the ice made of monzonite are nicknamed whale-carcasses mountain     s.  There are several potholes by the shore, and one is below the small lantern. The area has two great beaches with a lot of people on sunny days. The area is also used for hiking. Parking spaces can be found close to the Hvasser Chapel. Paths lead to Lilleskagen from there. South of Krukehavn is Mellombakken with the Fyn beach - another name that comes from the similarity of Danish nature. This 40 acres space is a great recreational area.

Rich and unique fauna and flora
If you keep traveling south of Krukehavn, you´ll end up in the natural reserve of Storemyr-Fagervarn Conservation Area. This area has a large selection of noble woodlands. Half dry areas are dominated by hazel and pine trees with some aspen in the southern parts. You can also find a few cherry trees. The more humid swamp areas are dominated by black alder. There are also some ash and elm here.

There are colorful flowers in this natural reserve during the spring and summer. There are white anemones, blue anemones, golden stars, Solomon´s seal, early purple orchids and Lesser celandines. On the dry fields, especially at Fagerbakke, the special and poisonous Small Pasque Flower blooms. Small Pasque Flower grows only in this area and few places along the Oslo Fjord. The most northern part a Small Pasque Flower has been found is Hovedøya in Oslo.

The birdlife is especially rich in the conservation area. You´ll find a lot of nests for robins, blackbirds, thrush, redwing, chaffinches, monks, gardensingers, willow warblers, great tits, blue tits, Nuthatch, great spotter woodpeckers, woodcocks, and more. The loud singing of the nightingale can also be heard here, and in May, the Cuckoo is crowing. The forest has a rich insect fauna, and you can also meet predators like foxes, badgers and deers. In some ponds inside the protected area lives the small salamander, and the rare moor frog, but it seems like the most normal frog is absent in Hvasser. Several red listed dragonfly species has been observed in Hvasser. Remember that the adder is preserved!

After the hike through the lush forest, the landscape will open up to nice fields and rocky shores. There is also a great view of the Færder lighthouse from here.

Sandøsund separates Sandø from Hvasser in the west. Sandø is something special. In the northern part, there is a big, beautiful beahc, Furustrand, which is very much known and used, but has no harbor. The waters here are shallow, so the boats has to stay pretty far away from the beach. South in Sandø, the terrain is more varied. There are lots of cabins, around 50 of them, but most of the cabins in Sandø are located along the Sandøsundet in the west, towards Hvasser. Along this strait, are some old, well tended and small farms. The sailors, the master pilots and the ship owner who lived out there.

Boat trip in Røssesundet
Røssesund is the strait between Hvasser and Brøstso in the east, and the island of Tjøme in the west. Røssesundet goes all the way from Engø in the north and the World´s End in the south, and contains many small islands. If you travel by boat, the Røssesund is a fun, tight and crooket, and of course crumble, sheltered from all the islands facing the sea.

Several types of cabins has national price records.

Rich Culture
Tjøme is not only nature, the island also has a rich culture. Tjøme, and the islands of Brøtsø and Hvasser can offer a rich culture life with art galleries which presents everything from ceramics to paintings and photographies. The concert stage at the Old Ormelet has a lot of traditions, and a sunrise concert at The World´s End is recommended. Outdoors concerts with well known artists can also be experienced in the garden of Engø Farm. The many artists at Tjøme got their inspiration from the landscape and the beautiful and special lighting. If you take some time off after a long day at the beach to visit one of the galleries, you might return home with a piece of one of the local artists, a memory for life.


Tagged: TjømeVisit NorwayTravel to NorwayHoliday in Norway


«During our morning coffee, we were pondering on the big questions in life: Which beach should we choose today? It feels like the sun is always shining in Sandefjord, and life is just one long summers day. Later that day we went on a bike ride out to the sandy beach, Tallakshavn at Østerøya.»

Why travel to the south? Strandvika at Østerøya.

Skjellvika is one of Østfold´s best family beaches.

The many rocky shores, beaches and sheltered bays offers great possibilities for recreation. Sandefjord has a total of 116 islands and islets. The motive comes from the group of islands, Stauper, which is out in the Tønsberg Fjord between Sandefjord and Tjøme.

The island of Natholmen, or Knattholmen (a newer name that many use) is a small coastal paradise in Sandefjord. This place is idyllic, with only one road that winds between white and red wooden houses. A beautiful bridge in a nice coastal environment will lead you to the main land and to the island. Natholmen is to many a hidden and secret treasure - yes, even many of the residents in Sanefjord have never been here!
The island is relatively small, but you´ll find two bathing spots and forrest trails + the beautiful archipelago that surrounds the island. And it is not hard to find your wait to Natholmen. There are parking spots right next to the bridge that leads to the island, and there is a bus (route 163) that goes from Sandefjord that´ll take you to the same parking lot. There are 9 km between Sandefjord center and Natholmen, and this route is great for biking, if you like to use bicycles as your way of transport.

Midtåsen used to be the home of the famous shipowner Anders Jahre, and his wife Bess Jahre. The house was built in 1933 by Arnstein Arneberg. Today, Sandefjord county is responsible for maintaining the park area. 

The house is surrounded by a 60 acres park which makes up the perfect place for outdoors events in summertime. You have a great view of the city and fjord from the garden.

Delicate tables are set to any event with 1800s candelabra and flowers of your own choice. 

Indoors out in the nature. Midtåsen sculpture pavilion and park in Sandefjord makes up the frame of a selection from the artist Knut Steen´s sculptures in marble and bronze. Twelve marble sculptures is places within the pavillion, and four bronze sculptures are placed in the landscape outdoors.

The pavilion is made of light concrete, and the art is surrounded by exposed light concrete in both the walls and floor. A fancy roof construction of glass beams and glass plates let the sunlight in.

Sandefjord is a city and a county within Vestfold. The center of Sandefjord lies by the Sandefjordsfjord. Together with the half islands of Østerøya and Vesterøya, the county has a coast line of 146 km, which together with this beaches, and the cabin and camping tourists makes Sandefjord to a summer city.

The Whaleingship «Southern Actor» is a floating museum.

You get a nice view when almost a thousand boats meets at the Sandefjordsfjord at midsummer´s eve.

The Whaling museum in Sandefjord is Europa´s only special museum for whales and whaling. The museum is located in the center of the city.

The beach pearl of Vesterøya. The Langeby beach is one of Sandefjor´s most popular beaches. A long, shallow beach, 150 meters long. Many nice facilities at the Langeby beach like stores, toilets and a shower at the camping ground. A sand volleyball court, footbal court, and playground. You can easily spot the beach, as it is right next to the main road, to the right when you´re driving across Vesterøya.

The sea mark, Tønsberg barrel. 

Magical Midsummer. Sandefjord is the perfect place for celebrating the midsummer´s eve. At the sandy beach by Vøra Camping.

Sandefjord, the summer city.

Sandefjord by night. Summertime in the whaling city is full of life and activities both day and night.

The summer city of Sandefjord lies by the edge of the Sandefjordsfjord. Sandefjord is a city of maritime and culture traditions. Sandefjord has a lot to offer to those interested in history, culture, outdoor activities and those who love the good life. The vikings left important traces here. Some great international people has visited the city´s spas, and the whalers had their golden age. The former whaling city can offer its own whaling museum and a bustling summer life. 

The Whaling Monument in Sandefjord.

The golden water drops will remind you of sputtering, running gold, and is a symbol of Sandefjord´s growth and prosperity throughout the city´s whaling history.


Sandefjord is the city that comes to life in summer. The otherwise calm and quiet city comes to life when all the vacationers come to enjoy the long awaited summer days here. A big selection of shops and nice clubs, combines by rocky shores, many outdoor areas and long, shallow beaches, makes this places to a popular destination. We will give you a list of the things Sandefjord has to offer today, and what it once was. 
Sandefjord has a lot to offer for those interested in history, culture, the outdoors, and for those who like the good life.

Sandefjord by Sea
Sandefjord is a maritime city with many traditions. Today, the Sandefjordsfjord is the main road for those visiting Sandefjord by boat. The pair of long, characteristic half islands east of the city center, the islands of Vesterøya and Østerøya, used to be two islands. In that way, the vikings could go straight from the place Sandefjord is located today and out to the Tønsbergfjord without having to sail the long way around the southern part of Østerøys, Holteskjær and Tønsberg Barrel. They removed the inner path of water in the 1600s.
Vestfold´s most populated county is a nice harbor to visit by boat, both if you´re planning on staying on one of the islets, or if you´re visiting the city. By the seafront, below the Rika Park Hotel, there is a great harbor for smaller boats with marked guest spaces. You can easily walk from the seafront to the city. The green and shallow waterpark is the nearest neighbor of the seafront, a natural place to wander through before you get to the more urban part of Sandefjord with all kinds of shops and eateries both inside and outside. You´ll find great restaurants both in the city and down by the dock. What about ending the night with a delicious whale beef dinner at one of the restaurants, or visiting the world champion in cooking, Geir Skeie´s restaurant in the inner dock, Harbor 11. From the harbor area, you´ll have a great view of the beautiful fjord, and you´ll often see the two competing ferry company´s ferries that goes from Strømstad to Sweden. Both of the companies has daily departures from Sandefjord.

Outdoor Paradise
For those interested in the outdoors, Sandefjord´s natural area is a paradise, and you don´t have to travel far from the city center to get to the beautiful nature. Sandefjord is lucky in that they have three close hills and outdoor areas like Preståsen, Mokollen and Virikskogen surrounding the city. Several parks close to the city center melts the green with the harmonic city life. In geographical sizing, Sandefjord is a relatively small county, but it has a great archipelago where the three fjords, the Sandefjordsfjord, the Mefjord and the Tønsbergfjord makes 146 kilometers of coastline. 
In 2009, Sandefjord county was elected the outdoors county of the year in Norway. The award was given because of the long-term work in trying to save and show cultural memories and outdoor areas for the city´s population and visitors. The city has registered 2800 cultural memories that are accessible for everyone.

Tønsberg Barrel
The southern tip of Østerøya in Sandefjord is the best of the archipelago in Vestfold. Yxney is today used as the name of the outermost part of Østerøya. The area consists of a natural reserve and Tønsberg Barrel. The Tønsberg Barrel is a beacon that you easily see when entering the Tønsbergfjord. As a beacon, this is a very old one, most likely the country´s oldest. This old beacon was mentioned as early as in the Sverre saga from the 1200s.  The beacon may have been a barrel on a pole back then. The beacon has been replaced by a large stone painted black and white.

The waters outside of the Tønsberg Barrel are tough, even when there is not much wind. Many ships have gone down here, the last one in 1960 (the transport vessel Bjørgvin). The German transport vessel, Völkenburg, sunk in 1944. These two ships are very well preserved 20 meters under the surface. 

If you use the parking lot by the beach in Trubervika, it is about a 30 minute walk out to the Barrel. The last bit of the walk up to the viewpoint is pretty rough, but with a little bit of patience, you´ll make it. You´ll pass two nice beaches on the way there. We recommend visiting in fall or spring, as the insects can be annoying during the mid summer.  There are traces from the Second World War in the area, and they are well preserved. It is beautiful with all the flowers in spring time. 
On the cape where the Tønsberg Barrel there is a barrack built into a ravine, and four observation/machine gun positions built into the mountain rocks. The fairway next to the Barrel was controlled from here. There are three machine gun positions built into the steep mountain, these were used as «swallow´s nests». A gorge goes across with a bridge above it, and down in the gorge is a soldier barrack. On the side of the mountain to the west are steps carved into the wall to help the soldiers easier get to their lookout point. From this post, you can see the open sea, the Vesterøya to the right, and Torås/The World´s End to the left. This post covered the inlet between Tjøme and the mainland. This probably was an important listening and observation post, as it is located far up and on its own. It is also very hard to get there, as there are steep gorges around the cape. In the mountain side to the west, there are stairs of steel inserter into the wall. Steady shoes and some courage is needed to get to this post. If you visit a calm summers day, or a stormy day in fall, you´ll get an amazing experience and a view from one of the German posts.

Idyllic White painted wooden houses
The streets of Bjerggat and Thaulowsgata is located in the old part of Sandefjord city. A short trip to this place is recommended. Only a few minutes walk from the center will lead you to white painted wooden houses from the beginning of the 1800s. The quiet and idyllic area is one of Sandefjord´s best preserved residential areas. 

A popular health spa
There was not as much happening in Sandefjord before the place was made a health spa. There was some timber floating down from Kodal to the land, but much of the inner part of the fjord was uninhabited. But in 1837, dr. Heinrich A. Thaulow established a health spa. He had lived in the city since 1833. Short after, he discovered a sulfuric source that was used in the treatment. He also introduced the use of jellyfish. The so called thaulowsky method was a combination cure that led to the spas growth in popularity.
Even though being in the spa was a social thing, the spa was a medical institution that treated rheumatic disorders as its main focus. The cures included sulfur water by the sulfur well every morning. 
Both the royal family, prime minister and cultural personalities came to visit the spa. It was still swampy in the area, and to get from the great Swiss villa to the buildings with the small pools, you had to walk across bars to get across the swamp. Pavillions for music was built in several places to entertain the people crossing the bars on the way to their refreshment. It is believed that about 50.000 people visited the spa between 1837 to 1939. The majority of the guests were Norwegians, but Danes, Swedes, Germans, Brits, Americans, and Russians also visited. They organized direct boats from Germany past Sweden that ended up in the fjord. The spa´s reputation made the whole district a popular destination.

Rich whaling history
Already in 1850, a good amount of ships were conducting sealing and whaling in the Arctic Ocean and the coast of Finnmark. But this was a a small business; the Norwegian whaling in the north was more than employment for the people living on the west coast. But, in 1905, the pelagic whaling began; Chr. Christensen sent the first whaling expedition from Sandefjord to the Southern Ocean. In the years between 1905 and 1914, 25 whaling companies was founded in Sandefjord. The city experienced a great upturn in its economy. By the end of the 1920s, Sandefjord had a fleet of 15 factories and 90 whaling ships. When the industry was on its peak in the 1950s, the harbor was a busy place during the summer when the whole fleet was home. In addition to mechanical workshops and production companies, the whole business community earned well form the returned whalers. Over  2800 men were hired in the whaling industry in 1954. 
From mid 1950, the whaling industry was down-titrated. The whale occurrences at the Antarctic had dramatically decreased, and the conservation interests grew. A gradual transition to tankers suggested that even the industry itself knew that the whaling fairytale was coming to an end. During the 1960s the amount of expiditions to the south decreased, and the season of 1967/68 was the last for Sandefjord.
Today, the memory of this important period for the city´s history is kept alive through the whaling museum and the restored whaling ship, the «Southern Actor» at the museum´s dock.

Whaling boat museum
The whaling ship «Souther Actor» was build in 1950 by Smith´s Ltd. in Middlesbrough in England. It was used for whaling in the Southern Ocean until 1962, then it was used along the Norwegian coast and in Spain. Until 1962, it was used for whaling in the Antarctic Ocean, and then it was used for fishing along the Norwegian coast and in Spain. In 1989, the boat was discovered when it was dismantled in northern Spain, and quick action led to the old whale boat later being bought for Sandefjord later that year. By getting "Southern Actor,” Sandefjord got a whaling ship to use aspects a living museum and a tourist attraction. Thanks to grants and donations, not to mention close to 80,000 of voluteer hours conducted by former whalers, the old whaling boat with a lookout tower was excellently restored. "Southern Actor" is now part of the Whaling Museum, and it is located on a private pier museum in Sandefjord Harbour. The boat represents of the type of whale boats that were built mostly between 1945-55 and Sandefjord has been given a unique opportunity to convey important aspects of Vestfold whaling culture. "Southern Actor» is a museum and a whaling veterans iact as a crew that like to talk about "life on board." There are guided tours of the boat in the summer. If you would like to arrange a boat trip, you can rent the boat by appointment.

Midtåsen Mansion
On a hill overlooking the bay is Midtåsen Mansion in Sandefjord. This was the home of shipowner Anders Jahre and his wife Bess Jahre for many years until he died in 1982. Widow Bess continued to live there until her death in summer 2006. After her death, the property was purchased by Sandefjord, Vestfold County and The Anders Jahre Humanitarian foundation through Midtåsen AS. 
The main house of 1,200 square meters was designed by renowned architect Arnstein Arneberg in 1933. The house was finished by the end of the 1950s, after more additions. The architecture can be characterized as subdued functionalism. The house is on a hill along a terraced axis against Sandefjord. On the back of the house, you´ll ´find a stair system with sculptures, ancient oak trees and beautiful plants. The gardens comprise nearly 60 acres of parkland and beautiful scenery, and are open to the public. A unique venue for summer events. The main building and the park are protected. 
The house has been renovated and preserved as it was when the couple Anders and Bess Jahre lived there, except for the kitchen which are refurbished in modern style. The house oozes quality. The rooms are relatively small, as Jahre wanted a homely house. The Jahre offices is still kept just as it was in its day, and perhaps the most famous part of the property. It is said that he burned accounting papers in the fireplace here to withhold them from the IRS. The most impressing room at Midtåsen is Arneberg Hall, which was finished in 1960. It has held celebrity dinners, among other known people such as the Swedish tenor Jussi Björling singer, as well as Norwegian and Swedish royalty. Large tapestries from the early 1700s adorn the walls. These are so old that they cannot be dismantled and cleaned. The trailer also has a number of paintings of Anders Jahre itself, as well as art that the couple collected through time. Glass paintings tell personal stories and wallpapers are specially designed. The beautiful old porcelain in the dining room is still being used. The suites in the house is designed in different colors. Including a room on the first floor called "the Onassis Suite". The room was named after Aristotle Onassis who stayed there. In the basement you can still smell the cigar and the old port wine. The vault is also where it was originally, but now it is empty of any valuables. Part of the house is currently furnished as conference facilities, and buildings to be used for both reception rooms, seminars and concerts. 
In June 2009 Knut Steen opened the pavilion and sculpture park on Midtåsen. Here you´ll find 16 of the artist's works together. Twelve marble sculptures found inside the pavilion, while four bronze sculptures are placed around the landscape.

Wonderful midsummer celebration 

Midsummer-evening´s largest and finest boat processions. Flowers and bonfires. Waves, friends, wine and barbecue. Such evenings are pure luxury for the soul. Few places celebrate Midsummer better than the people of Sandefjord. When night hours ebb away at dawn and the preceding hours seem like a magical dream, Sandefjorders can not go to bed safe in the knowledge that the Sandefjord public holidays are coming. 

The unique Midsummer celebration in Sandefjord Midsummer Day, 24 June, was a general public holiday until 1771. Until recently, June 24th holiday has still been celebrated in some Norwegian municipalities, but now it is just Sandefjord, who cling to tradition. Larvik discontinued it as vestfold´s phenomenon 11 years ago. Since then, most municipalities in Vestfold done as Larvik, and, three years ago, Tønsberg remained closed for the last time. So now Sandefjord Municipality is the only municipality in the country where the offices are closed and employees have a free day. 

Midsummer Eve. Midsummer celebration is particularly strong in Sandefjord. June 24th is the city's birthday. Boat processions from the anniversary year 1994 on the city's 150th birthday, were recorded in the Guinness Book of Records. Being free after Midsummer's Eve, the people of Sandfjord celebrate Midsummer on islets and rocks until late in the bright night hours. No wonder that there has been a baby boom around March 24 in the years after the war... 
A long-standing tradition in Sandefjord has been the spectacular boat processions starting in Sandefjord's inner harbor which sail the entire Sandefjord fjord. Almost a thousand boats sail through the fjord. Here you can see all kinds of boats, from great cruisers to self-composed contraptions. Boats are decorated with flags, flowers and birch branches with the green leaves that are quite characteristic of this time period in the late spring. If you do not have the opportunity to experience the  parade of boats from the gunwale, we recommend to watch it from
Thorøya, which is along the west side of the bay (Highway 303 towards Larvik). After Granholm watches the parade, boaters continue the party in their boats or make ashore on a beach or islet. On campgrounds and several public beaches in the archipelago, people like to grill and light a fire. In some places it is also pier dance that lasts into the wee hours. 

Culture and summer show
Sandefjord´s dense cultural program during the summer offers concerts on several stages, three movie theaters, theater, cabaret, shows and dancing. There are many and varied facilities, ranging from theater and shows in backyards to summer shows at the Park Hotel. The Fjord festival has been held in the water park in the middle
August and every year it attracts many famous and beloved performers. It feels like the entire city's population is in concert at the same time. A cultural institution, Sandefjord Jazz, organizes concerts and Jazz Café throughout the year, roughly every 14 days. Definitely worth a visit. 

From the hotel you have this view out to Oslo Fjord ..... 

The Park Spa. Here you can swim in the lovely heated saltwater pool. There is direct access from the bathing area into a relaxing garden with sun loungers and views of the bay. The Spa has a serving of lunch dishes and drinks. 

Culinary experiences 

The artwork in the environment with atmosphere 

Park is well known for food, wine and service. But we are also proud of another element of the hotel experience: art. In our environment, you can become more familiar with old and new art. Lots of artwork has been purchased for the new wing, Parkfløyen. 

Enjoy the food and the ambiance of our restaurant. 

Reach out to European destinations
Sandefjord Vestfold´s communications hub, located just 10 minutes from the airport. From the airport, you can be, in a short time, out to European destinations and to Norway's main airports. 

Take a break and enjoy life as a hotel guest. 

SPA and Wellness 

Everyone needs a little break from a busy day. The Park Spa is many opportunities to enjoy

Welcome to the hotel experiences at Scandic Park Hotel Sandefjord 

Scandic Park Hotel Sandefjord is a hotel with a special atmosphere, rich traditions and pride in the walls. The hotel was established in 1959 and has since stood as a monument in the city. The initiator of the hotel was Sandefjord´s great son and shipowner, Anders Jahre. Drawn by the renowned architect Arnstein Arnberg, the hotel was already then a gem, and the newspapers wrote that the hotel was built of gold and marble. Today, the newly renovated Scandic Park Hotel is known as one of the nation's premier hotels with modern facilities. Comfortable rooms, culinary temptations, exclusive artwork, and amazing theaters. The magnificent halls used for a variety of occasions from weddings to gala and conferences and theater. In April 2013, the park opened the new wing with 118 rooms and the hotel now has a total capacity of 350 rooms and 680 beds. The hotel is now the largest between Oslo and Bergen. 

Sandefjord has been known as a spa town for over a hundred years. At Scandic Park Hotel continues tradition of commitment to the Park Spa, which is open all summer. Here you can swim in the lovely heated saltwater pool. There is direct access from the spa into a relaxing garden with sun loungers and views of the bay. The spa has servings of lunch dishes and drinks. The fitness room is newly renovated with many new gyms. Park Spa can offer steam and dry saunas and solariums. And for many, it is tempting to take advantage of the gorgeous spa and wellness center in the hotel. 

Noble lobby and reception area 

Comfortable business
It is important for us that during your work placement, you may perform work in comfortable surroundings.

South Norway´s course and conference hotel
Rica Park is Norway´s biggest conference hotel between Oslo and Bergen. We have all kinds of facilities that will meet the expectations of everyone, from small meetings to a large congress. The hotel is perfectly made for courses, conferences, seminars, meetings and kick-offs.  Our extensive experience in this market will give you a safety, so you can concentrate about the academics, while we take care of the practical parts.

Cultural experiences
The Park Theatre´s great facilities will make a great frame for a concert or a night of entertainment.

Rica Park Hotel Sandefjord has a great location, next to the Waterpark and the harbor.

Family fun
Park is a family friendly hotel. We put a lot of effort into making all generations have a good time among our facilities.

Good morning!
In addition to having beds that should be nice to wake up in, you´ll enjoy one of the country´s best hotel breakfasts.

Service in Vestfold´s most beautiful outdoor dining
What attracts people to us in summer time is with no doubt the environment, the food, and the service we offer in Parkhaven.

The library is close to the restaurant, and it´s nice if you want a little more suttle pary, or if you just want to enjoy the atmosphere.

Rica Park Hotel Sandefjord is Norway´s largest course and conference hotel between Oslo and Bergen.

Finally done for the day
I think we´ve all felt the fantastic feeling of finally being able to lock ourself in our hotel room after a long day of travelling or working. The room is tidy and pretty, everything you need to be comfortable is there. It´s time to calm down, maybe lay down in the tub and plan out the night, or not plan anything at all, just be yourself and let laziness rule the night.

Everything from national romanticism to contemporary art at the art hotel
Few hotels in Norway can offer as much art as Rica Park Hotel Sandefjord. The hotel is a piece of art itself with its special façade and its many halls and great decorations, paintings and wall hangings. The famous architect, Arnstein Arneberg drew the hotel which has a lot of art, beautiful rooms of gold and marble.

If you have yet to experience Park´s treasures of art, you should visit the hotel this summer. You´ll find unique pieces of art in basically all of the hotel´s environments. There are many treasures painted by the biggest artists throughout the times, large and majestic paintings from the times of the national romanticism to today´s temporary art decorate the hotel´s halls and rooms.

Take some time to wander among the masterpieces of Norwegian and international painters. Examples of all the beautiful art can be seen everywhere in the hotel are for example from Peder Balke, Tidemand and Gude, Christian Krogh, Mac Chagall, Anders Zorn, Jacob Weidemann, Per Krogh, Frans Widerberg, Hålen Bleken and more. There are also expensive tapestries a few places. The sculptur Knut Steens´sculptures can be seen in the wing that connects the old and new part of the hotel.

Rica Park Hotel is located right next to Sandefjord Art Assosiation, and the hotel and the art assosiaten has worked together with shows and events throughout the years.  After last years expansion of the hotel, Rica Park Hotel is now the hotel with the largest art collection in Norway.




Quiet spring evening in Ula. It is one of the first evenings in May and still long until summer guests begin mingling around Ula´s waterfront. The fishing boats rock, resting before the next day's dawn to join his skipper in Skagerrak.




Skagerrak. From the beaches of Ula, it is a wonderful sight right out in Skagerrak


Scandinavia swamp forests. In coastal forests along the coast of Larvik, the black alder form some of the country's richest and most major growing populations. Here, the living conditions for a vibrant life of micro-organisms and birds. The trees develop high tufts of roots, almost tropical mangroves. With reason, these instances have been given the name 'Scandinavia swamp forests. "The picture shows the jungle that separates Herfell and Ula.



Late Summer Evening in Ula.


Svaberg Paradise. The colorful rocks in Ula stand as a nice contrast to the gray sands and blue sea. Here from the largest sandy beach in Ula.


Ulabrand. At an altitude of Ula towers as the monument of Ulabrand.






Hiking in such a beautiful landscape brings tears to the eyes.  Sandy beaches more beautiful that you have ever seen before. Picturesque villas blend with the fishing harbor environment. Which fills the air with the lovely scent of lilac!


Charming Ula


Ula is probably Vestfold´s most distinctive beach, with atmosphere of an old fishing harbor.  By the harbor, there are old wooden houses from the last century preserved and cared for. Increasingly more residents have been finding their new homes out on these archipelago pearls, and vacation guests from far and wide come over land and sea to their favorite summer spot.


Ula sits just a short drive from the towns Larvik and Sandefjord. From highway 303, the drive quickly guides you down to the harbor in Ula. Once you arive in Ula,it will be difficult not to be captivated by the charming harbor. This place is by the port to Skagerrak is one of our most famous small harbors in these parts.


Ula´s great son

The place grew up on fish and the activities of marine pilots in the second half of the 1700s. Here lived the famous navigator hero Ulabrand, Anders Jacob Johansen. Over Norway, navigation history is enough for Ulabrand to become the most famed navigator of all. Ulabrand became a symbol of good seamanship and the important service navigators made or safety at sea. Ulabrand served as a navigator in Ula from 1850 until he died at sea with his son during an autumn storm in 1881 by reefs just off Rauer (archipelago of polished rocks slightly outside the entrance to Ula). The Ulabrand monument was built on Ula knoll, the old viewpoint east of the buildings in Ula and just above Ulabrand´s own little house from 1837.


The Great Beaches

In sailing times, Ula was a crucial exporter of ice blocks. Ulaseilskutetiden var Ula en viktig utskipningshavn for isblokker. Ula is still fishing, but the summer is dominated instead by a large number of cottage dwellers, campers and day visitors who are attracted by the environment, the marina and the two stunning beaches with a total sandy stretch of over 350 m. These beaches are undoubtedly the podium for the country best sandy beaches.

Recreation and Idyllic Tours

The first tourists rented themselves places here at turn of the century, and later became the first houses sold and used as summer residences. Around the harbor are cottages with rich floral gardens. The small and cozy gravel roads between summer houses allows for a quiet walk in the evening when the air has been cooler. There are many great hiking trails that run in all directions out of Ula. The paths can lead you to deep forests, and of course the orange rocks and mountain peaks above the sea where you have breathtaking views of Svenner Lighthouse and Skagerrak.



By the sandy beaches, there is a café / kiosk and outdoor seating. Here it’s so great to be so far from civilization. In the port of Ula, there is a small grocery shop which is open during the summer season.


Unique Geology


The Ula region is known for its many potholes and extraordinary delicate rock formations. Some of the finest you will find are at the inlet between the Ryggen and Foksund.


In Ula we find a particular mineral deposit; a "moonstone". The deposits of moonstone are great in Ula. The name was given by the professor and university president WC Brogger (1851-1940) because of the bluish-white color. The color is reminiscent of the light of the moon, and going by fusion of the two elements, alkali-feldspar and albite-feldspar. The formations give a special array of light. Moon Stone of Ula is called kryptoperthitt for the technical term. Mineral deposit has been regularly frequented by researchers and stone collectors since the late 1800s. Moonstone is also found elsewhere in southern Vestfold.


It is said that a moon rock is exhibited in York, England. This stone is believed to have come from Ula. The crown jewels of Denmark are said to contain a piece of moon rock from Ula. The incidence of moonstone in Ula has suffered badly under numerous geological expeditions that have made ignificant removals of this rare stone. Included, a German expedition during WW2 dug out and removed a lot of the rocks. They also took out all the crystals of the mountains of Ula. It was partly based on the many expeditions of this kind that Ula has well ensured the preservation of the whole moon stone source in 1980, later named an Ula Natural Monument.


Beautiful words about Ula


Here the sea grabs with all its variability and all the nuances in the day´s and night's light, while the rocks are just as yellow and pale pink as they want them. The sea as clean and crisp as it entices even the smaller sea lovers out in the nature. The lush vegetation on the forest floor draws nature lovers to them - she and he enjoy life.


Wild honeysuckle winds its long arms up the slopes and fills the air with fragrance. Wild apples, ditto currants and gooseberries grow just as in the Garden of Eden. The peacefulness goes around the beach house and cottages, a protected place on earth. Even on a crowded campground feels quiet.


These beautiful words are taken for the book: Ula - From the harbor to the bathing places.


Kjerringvik and the delightful surroundings


A narrow and winding road leads through to Kjerringvik, beach spot which is the most northeasterly and smallest of the old ports in Larvik Coast. Here in the changing nature between forests, beaches, rocky shores and mountain views, the Vestfold idyll couldn’t be more apparent. Let the rocks warm your feet, the wind dance through your hair and cool off in the clean, clear waters of some of the many swimming spots.


Idyllic Vacation

Kjerringvik is sheltered by steep hills and knolls, although the place is totally out at sea.

It’s probably not too surprising that this place was known as smuggling port in the first quarter of the 1900s. Kjerringvik is an idyllic place where old architectural building styles are mixed with the new. White, wooden houses with manicured gardens surrounded by a picket fence are a common sight in Kjerringvik. There are no restaurants or shops in Kjerringvik but a summertime kiosk has the most necessary goods. Kjerringvik is a part of the northern-most part of the Eftang peninsula and pretty close to Sandefjord, but within Larvik country lines.


Boating and Bathing

Kjerringvik has two great children-friendly beaches, Northern Harbor and Southern Harbor, located on either side of the pier out to the island of Fornet. The two sandy beaches are frequented by sun lovers. Residents of the pleasant village and visitors come often to the beaches. In addition, there are excellent places to swim from the rocks in areas outside of Kjerringvik and the islands south of the harbor.


Martaholm, the southern of the two Kjerring islands south of Kjerringvik, is a popular place to swim throughout the summer season. People come from far and wide to the islands. Both guests who own cabins in the area or are here on vacation love the place and those who take boats along the coast are welcomed to Martaholm, a lovely port with shelter from the weather. Although toilet and waste amenities are unavailable at Martaholm, but what the island lacks the facilities, it makes up in beautiful archipelago nature. Here, high cliffs plunge straight into the sea, while the center of the island is smooth and flat and goes by the name "The Dancehall". There is a wonderful grass area suitable for a camping trip, and the bay to the north has shallow beach for swimming. The beach is closed off by buoys for protection against boat traffic. Martaholm is blessed with beautiful evening sun and great fishing around the whole island.



Maritime aktivity since the 1400s

Kjerringvik has a rather long and turbulent history. Already in the 1400s, Kjerringvik was a fishing port for the surrounding farms. Under the lumber trade era the town was a famous place to anchor. Mooring rings on the rocks outside Kjerringvik are evidence of this. The first inhabitants settled here in the 1720s. There were fishermen and navigators. In the latter half of the 1700s, Kjerringvik had a shipyard, and from the 1850s to the 1950s, there was a toll station on site.


War drama in Kjerringvik

On May seventh, 1808, nine brave men from Tjølling chased English sailors at sea in Kjerringvik and rescued a vital cargo of grain from falling into enemy hands. Having sunk or captured nearly the entire Danish-Norwegian fleet at the Battle of Copenhagen, the English naval vessels formed an effective blockade around Skagerrak in order to starve Norway. They were effective enough to cause people to starve because of the shortage of grain.


The drama in Kjerringvik started when a Norwegian brig loaded with grain was discovered by the English frigates "Tartarus" and "Daphne". In an attempt to escape, they set course towards Kjerringvik. The crew then jumped ashore and ran into the woods to escape the English. From the frigates came the English, planning to claim land and take the cargo, which they assumed would be easy prey.

Kjerringvik’s chairman of coastal protection, Anders Hovland, realized early what was about to happen. Before the English had reached land, Anders Hovland managed to find eight men (7 from the coast guard and 1 navigator). They posted themselves up in the mountains by the port. When the English tried to enter the grain ship, the small defense opened fire against the English. An English officer shook mockingly with his sword against the small group of defenders, but fell just after being hit in the first skirmishes. Shortly after, enough of the Englishmen dropped to give a Norwegian lead. Then another two soldiers were hit and the English took to flight and rowed hastily back to their frigates, which sat out at sea.


Anders Hovland, who spearheaded the small force that drove back 30 soldiers under military management, was recognized and awarded with the Order of Dannebrog. In the rock wall at the pier in Kjerringvik is an inscription commemorating the event.


Loss in Kjerringvik’s waters


Martaholm, which we referred to as a bathing paradise earlier in the article, is named after a windjammer from Tjøme, "Martha," which was wrecked by Martahølet, the creek to the south, in an accident in 1875 after the rudder jammed in a powerful storm, and "Martha" was thrown into a ravine with a steep rock wall and shattered. Of the crew of ten, five perished on the ship, which was put on the water outside Rauer. The ship remained on the island for a while, but was broken down by the sea.


Another ship, "Hanna", wrecked in the same place in 1891. It encountered Rauer (a group of islands, southeast of Kjerringvik), got a leak, and the crew abandoned ship, which drifted into Martahølet. One of the crew had become entangled in the rope was taken with the ship. The remains of the two vessels still lay at the bottom.


Surrounding Delights

First and foremost, Kjerringvik and the close surrounding areas Karto, Håkavika, Svinvika, and Kjerringfjellet are great holiday and cabin paradise with a beautifully stunning location. The area is like the coastline along Eftang Peninsula - wild and beautiful with massive height differences, with its high mountain that ascends up dramatically from the white sandy beaches. The great hilly terrain alternates between woodlands through open pastures to the archipelago scenery, cliffs, and beaches.


The coastline of Eftang offers perhaps the most spectacular scenery along the coast of Vestfold. Those who have cabins in the area are well acquainted with the natural qualities here, and once you have gotten your cabin here, you’ll find quite extraordinary reasons for a cabin. The relatively pristine, idyllic nature here also provides a peaceful contrast to the teeming human life, which unfolds at campsites and beaches in the area.



Håkavika, located at the very north of the Eftang Peninsula and southwest of the Sandefjord fjord, and is one of the many places you can check out while driving the Eftang Peninsula. In the area around Håkavika there are numerous forest trails and wide gravel roads.

The area is a recreational area that is well protected from traffic in the Sandefjord fjord. You can find a great jetty and some mooring bolts in the bay. Both around the pier facility and in the cove are lovely beaches of golden rocks and fine-grained sand beaches. The rocks to the south are well suited for angling, and the fish bite often. If you love to pick blueberries, then the woodlands at Håkavika are pure paradise at the end of July and the first half of August.


Look out for trolls

To the west of the journey of Håkavika is the small swimming area Skjellsand with a deep bay called Fantebukta. In the area just south of Fantebukta, sits a tall and steep wooded hill. A trail snakes its way up to the top of the hill. From the top, you have a fantastic view over Eftanglandet, Sandefjord Fjord, and Skagerrak. If you continue along the path, you’ll follow the rest of the looped path back down to the starting point. Before you get that far, though, you’ll encounter a warning sign along the trail. The sign pictured with a troll tells you that there is a risk of encountering these creepy creatures. Just by the sign, the path continues into a ravine with three large stones wedged firmly between the walls of the narrow gorge. The trail is a wonderful and exciting experience for the whole family.



The neighboring bay, Svinevika, is just a few hundred meters south of the Fante Bay. Svinevika is a popular, beautiful sandy beach at the head of the bay. Here you’ll find shallow water and good conditions for children. The beach in Svinevika must be one of the bathing places in Vestfold with the most beautiful surroundings because it sits in the bay surrounded by hills and mountains interspersed with some trees and vacation homes here and there.


Kjerringfjell Mountain

A little south of Kjerringvik, about halfway between Ula and Kjerringvik, are the Kjerringfjellet mountains. Along the steep paved road that takes you almost to the top of Kjerringfjellet, you can choose from several roads and trails that run in many directions. If you’re looking for a place to train and work out, you’ve come to the right place. You can choose to ride your bike on bumpy trail down to the pebble beach and visit unknown gems you have all to yourself. If the goal is to pump blood, then a quick run up the steep steps in the mountain side will help with that. If you just exercise normally, a nice gravel road for both running and cycling in varied terrain and landscapes are available. Ifyou’d like a stunning 360 degree view over the Oslofjord and Vestfold, start an ascent on the steep, but paved road up to the site of the old signal station.