Just before I swanned off to a wedding workshop in a beautiful hotel in Eidfjord, we rented a cottage (more like a shack) in the town of Ulvik, Norway.
Ulvik is located on Hardangerfjorden’s north-eastern arm of Ulvikafjorden. It has a grand total of 600 permanent residents and has been around since at least the 1800’s. It’s quite remote and there’s only one road in and out of Ulvik. It is connected by a HUGE tunnel of 8km and the Hardanger Bridge.
Hardanger is a region famous for it’s apple production. If you drive past a field in Hardanger and see something that resembles a large bus shelter, don’t fear! It’s just apple trees protected.
The shack was basic but a step up from actual camping and the kids were SO excited to get a ‘sleep-over’ with Dad upstairs. We spent 3 nights here.
Although the kitchen in the shack is basic, the campsite has a main kitchen with more crockery, cooking utensils as well as sinks, washing machines and ovens.
During the day, Ulvik is picturesque. Lots of contrasting green fields with the clouds, the red of the buildings and of course the blue of the fjord.
Our kids had a brilliant time paddling in the water, sitting by the water’s edge, taking photos of the water and just generally being outside in the fresh air.
During the summer months, even though there’s considerable rain and cloud, Ulvik doesn’t get dark. Throughout the day the clouds roll up and down the mountains and at times visibility is reduced to a fuzz. It can give the town an eery feel but mostly it is very majestic and calming.
At night the temperature drops considerably but it never gets fully dark. We had a few problems getting our kids into bed and asleep before midnight so we taped the upstairs windows with cardboard! I’m sure it didn’t look great from the outside but it did the trick.
Photographing in Ulvik
Photography is no problem here, day or night. I felt really safe all the time even though I was out by myself. In fact, in the whole of the time I spent in Norway not once did I ever feel unsafe. People from Ulvik were really friendly and helpful. They smiled and chatted with us – in English – sorry!!
It is hard work going out at night to photograph when you’re a parent. It’s a conundrum; do you leave the kids alone and risk something going wrong or do you take them with you and risk you wanting to drown them! Yes, of course I say that tongue in cheek however children are not always conducive to a great photographing experience. Luckily for me, the husband was there and I went out alone.
What can you do in Ulvik?
- Canoe and Kayak
- Drive right to the other end of the fjord and find the little eco-cafe
- Chill out
- Read your books
- Visit a cider farm
- Cross the bridge
- Visit the national park