Ryflyke, Norway

One of many narrow tunnels in Norway
Suldalslågen river and the hosebridge.
Waterfalls were everywhere we looked.

Ryfylke National Tourist Highway stretches from Tau to Roldal, through Norway’s fjord country and past waterfalls, zinc mines, and wooden churches. Every few kilometers there are brown signs with a white-knotted squares, indicating tourist stops. They pop up and quickly disappear, though nothing in this country is truly quick, the roads weaving and narrow with tunnels that go on and on until you wonder if the end is ever going to come until, finally, a tiny dot of light can be seen far ahead.

For us, the Ryfylke Highway meant one thing more than all the others – salmon. Read More »

Rogaland, Norway

Sverd i fjell near Stavanger, commemorating the 872 battle of Hafrsfjord when Norway first joined under one ruler
Mmmm escargot
All loaded up on the car ferry from Stavanger to Tau

Rogaland was one of my favorite areas of Norway and a place I’d like to return to in better weather to see where the ocean meets the fjords. At its heart lies Stavanger, Europe’s oil center with charming wooden houses clustered together in a quiet downtown.Read More »

Lysefjord, Norway

The tiny town of Lysebotn at the end of the Lysefjord is reachable only by boat and the treacherous Lysevegen

The Lysefjord is a perfect example of our time in Norway – lots of driving, sunshine-turned-to-snow-turned-to-sunshine, and inaccessible hiking trails. We started out from Telemark, where we had stopped the night before in the tiny village of Valle at a no-name hotel where we ate our fill of meats, potatoes, and jams for dinner. Leaving Valle, we soon turned off the main road onto the Suleskar Pass, a mountain pass from Setesdal through Sirdal to Ådneram and Suleskar on the Lysefjord. In normal conditions, the pass opens around the first week of May, but, this year, due to seven feet of snow falling the weekend before our roadtrip the pass had been open fewer than 24 hours when we turned off the highway onto the narrow road. Read More »

Telemark, Norway


One of the things that is great about longer trips is the ability to have some flexibility in which road you choose. As we headed out of Oslo towards the Lysefjord our initial plan took us along a southernly route before turning north to the fjord. Sitting in the passenger seat I entertained my father with the history of the area before coming to the guidebook’s must-see, the Heddal Stave Church, which our current route – the GPS’ shortest distance between Point A and Point B – would have us completely miss. So we backtracked, more than a little bit, before heading into the country’s interior-lying national park in search of the 13th century wooden church.Read More »

Tankenburg, The Netherlands

Lunchtime view from the patio of Landgoed de Wilmersberg over the Twente landscape

This weekend a near hurricane has descended on the Netherlands with inches of sideways rain. As I write this my little potted plant from Albert Hein has just blown off the windowsill, and the wind is howling. Needless to say we did not get out for a Sunday bike or hike. Instead, we watched a lot of “Black Sails” and planned our own sailing adventure around the Caribbean this summer though Read More »


Spring (lente) has arrived in the Netherlands. Though not the spring of our friends in Atlanta whose legs are already peeking out under skirts and shorts into weather in the mid-70s or of our friends and family in the Northeast who only now are beginning to thaw. Rather, here, the daylight hours have already drastically increased – the time change much more  prominent at these higher latitudes – and the sun has begun to shine once again. At 60 degrees (*F) we throw off our winter woolens, allowing the Dutch sun to touch our skin for the first time for nearly half a year. In the park near our home spring flowers have begun to peek up through the earth, seeking the sunlight, and, before long, the wild rabbits will appear again at dusk.

Read More »

Der Plansee, Germany


I have a tendency to over plan trips when it comes to the weather, resulting in us lugging around umbrellas and boots and layering sweaters. For our Bavarian winter wonderland roadtrip I was taking no precautions, loading our car up with furry boots, warm winter coats, and blankets. We quizzed the rental agency on whether we had snow tires and if we needed snow chains as we planned to drive through Germany’s highest Read More »