It was a beautiful morning in Rosendal, on the second day of our Hardanger Road Trip. After a lovely breakfast at the centrally located, historically rooted Rosendal Turisthotell we sat down on the front porch and enjoyed the perfect view of the Hardanger fjord.
The centre of Rosendal
Rosendal is on the itinerary of many passing tourists, be it in cars or camper-vans. The parking lot for camper-vans is by the way new and looked very well located.
We went for a walk in the small centre. There is not much to do really, but the setting is great and there are some galleries, museums, farms and buildings worth taking a look at. The centre of town has a few shops aimed at the local population and there is an old shipyard too.
We walked up the steep hill to have a look at the church from about 1250, strangely without a spire. Being springtime the visual impressions of the church, green pastures and the great view of the fjord with snow-capped mountains on the other side, combined well with the the baas and meehs of the sheep and lambs around us. All in all, it was a wonderful atmosphere.
We had an agreement with some friends to go visit Rosendal’s prime tourist attraction, the Manor. Or Barony as it is usually called. Historically a poor country, Norway does not have many manors. I would assume the country is the one in Europe with the least manors actually. This one is also a rather modest one. The surrounding park, and the entranceway, makes up for that.
Arriving here in the beginning of May one should not promise anyone a rose garden, of which the manor is very famous. In a month or two we would have been able to enjoy a collection of about 2,000 roses. Instead we enjoyed the herb garden, the light green colour of the tree leaves, the fruit trees in blossom, the blue sky, surrounding high mountains and the warming sun.
The Barony of Rosendal is a splendid place to spend some hours. If you have more time available you should check out the cultural arrangements they have in the summer season. We were now temporarily in a group with a child in our midst, so we even skipped the guided tour of the manor. Instead we went for the small pond with tadpoles.
The Rosendal Barony dates back to the 1650s. The owners were wealthy land-owners and a couple of hundred years later the estate was equipped with the romantic garden we are able to enjoy today. Norwegian artists like author Henrik Ibsen, painter Hans Gude and composer Edvard Gried paid visits to Rosendal. Today, the manor and garden is owned by the University of Oslo.
Map of this road trip
This is the map showing our trip. Zoom in and out and expand to a new tab as you like.
From Rosendal we continued our road trip north on the bank of the Hardanger Fjord, towards the tip of the Folgefonna peninsula. That is described in the next chapter.
This is the story of a road trip in the southern part of the region of Hardanger, in Western Norway. Read the articles: