Gripen Gard: Take a holiday back in time
By Hanna Margrethe Enger | Photos: Gripen Gard
A 40 minutes’ drive from Bergen, lies Gripen Gard; coming here is like stepping back in time. The farm is run roughly as it would have been in the 1950s, so do not be surprised when the road ends around 100 meters from the farm.
At Gripen gard everything is centred around sustainability and forgotten crafts. When Helene Olli Sollid bought the farm, there was a 70-year backlog of work. She restored the farmland and the houses and built a new barn on the old foundations. Much of the materials needed, came from her own forest. Two new guest cabins and parts of the barn were built from recycled materials.
Alongside the cabins, Gripen gard also has a small private island with a lavvo, a sturdy type of tent. When renting a cabin or lavvo, use of a boat and life jackets are included in the price. Sollid is not alone on the farm. “Gripen is a host farm for WWOOF, and has many volunteers from around the world, visiting for learning experiences and cultural exchange,” Sollid says. Also living on the farm are 50 winterfed old Norwegian sheep and 20 breeding rams.
The forest on the property is protected, and guests are encouraged to pick berries and mushrooms. Of course, not all mushrooms are edible, but Sollid is happy to share her extensive knowledge.
Sollid is a certified provider of Norwegian ecotourism through the Hanen brand scheme. This means that tourism must benefit both nature and the local population as much as possible. Any activity at the farm should not have negative consequences.
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