A Nordic Island Home...

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One of my favorite things about traveling to another country is visiting and staying at the home of someone who lives there. What fun to see the home design, the building materials used, the artwork and decor, and actually get a taste of the way your local host lives. When you couple all that with incredible hospitality, you have an enriching experience that you will never forget!

Such was our experience as guests in the summer home (hytte) of Oddvar and Jofrid, relatives of my cousin, Lyle. Though they live and work in Bergen, they escape via a ferry ride to this beautiful "home away from home" on the island of Austevol as often as they can. You will certainly see why they are drawn here as you scroll through the photos. Their view of the water from almost every angle of the home is breathtaking! 

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Close up images of the same harbor...

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Jofrid has a delightful eye for design and color. In each room, you spy wonderful artwork and whimsical pieces that she has artfully displayed. Ready to see the inside?

The entry...

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Up the stairs to the lofted living and sleeping space...

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Coming back down the stairs, there are 3 bedrooms on the main floor.

 The room I was privileged to stay in for a couple nights...

The room I was privileged to stay in for a couple nights...

 Guest room where Lyle and Lois stayed...

Guest room where Lyle and Lois stayed...

 Our hosts' room...the artwork depicts the sheep you see roaming over the hillsides in Norway.

Our hosts' room...the artwork depicts the sheep you see roaming over the hillsides in Norway.

Moving into the living room...

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The dining area...

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The table laden with frokost (breakfast)...

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And a delicious eplekake baked by Jofrid...

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The kitchen...with Jofrid, our delightful and gracious hostess!

 Photo by Lois...

Photo by Lois...

The exterior elevations of the lovely island home with the sod roof...yes, still used in new construction in this setting.

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The lovely back deck...

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A small shed off one side of the home...

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Lyle and Oddvar about to go fishing...

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Lois and Jofrid enjoying coffee on the front deck...

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We took a little trip to Stolmen Island, where cousin Lyle's paternal grandmother grew up. 

 The local Lutheran church with many familial gravestones...

The local Lutheran church with many familial gravestones...

 Lyle's Grandmother's home...still in the family to this day and enjoyed as a getaway by his cousins.

Lyle's Grandmother's home...still in the family to this day and enjoyed as a getaway by his cousins.

 A beautiful harbor on Stolmen Island...

A beautiful harbor on Stolmen Island...

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Our hosts took us to lunch in Bekkjarvik, on Austevol. This is an indoor mall we toured.

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We ate a lunch at this restaurant, which has become quite famous. The twin brothers who manage the restaurant have made a name for themselves, with Orjan Johannessen winning a gold medal in the world chef championship called Bocuse d'Or held in Lyon, France, and Arnt Johannessen winning the title of "Kitchen Manager of the Year" in Norway. 

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My delicious bowl of fiskesuppe (fish soup)...yum!

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The scenic boat harbor outside the restaurant...

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 Our delightful hosts, Jofrid and Oddvar...

Our delightful hosts, Jofrid and Oddvar...

 Lois, Rachel, and Lyle...

Lois, Rachel, and Lyle...

Though we were sad to have our time come to an end in beautiful Austevol, we were thankful we would see our hosts again in Bergen, the next stop on our adventure in Norway. And as they say in Norwegian, Mange tusen takk (many thousand thanks) to our hosts!

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Farewell to Austevol and on to Bergen! Warmly, Gracia