What’s special about March?

Usually during the first half of March, parts of the fjord are still frozen over.  It is then possible to walk, ski or (if not covered by snow) skate on the fjord – although always important to follow the safe marked paths.

If and when the fjord freezes over, the Oslo ferry boat to and from Vollen cannot sail.  So during these weeks traveling to Oslo means taking the bus or driving.

The ice-skating rink at Risenga is kept in excellent condition.  It’s only a few minutes drive from Vollen.  Some of the local Vollen lakes may have parts swept clear of snow and are good for skating or a game of bandy.

For more information about skating, visit the page in “Sports and other Activities”

 

For those who don’t skate, it is also possible to walk on the ice, using “brodder” – the spiked fitment for boot-soles.  You can buy these in Vollen apotek – the local chemist shop. We usually have a couple of pairs which you can borrow in the apartment.  Brodder come in two varieties – for walking or for training.  Those pictured are for putting on shoes or boots for walking and cost about NOK 280,-

Skiskyting i Kollen (Biathlon at the Holmenkollen ski centre in Oslo)
The biathlon races are held on 21st – 24th March 2019. The world’s best skiers will be competing in sprint, hunting start and relay at one of the most famous ski arenas in the world. 

RAW AIR – super final
At Vikersund the super final of the  ski jumping on the world’s highest ski jumping hill will be held on the 15th – 17 March.
Spectators enjoy amazing feats of ski-flying and quite possibly world records!   You can buy tickets and see the programme for 2019 by clicking here

Easter holidays can fall either in March or April and for school children this means 10 days free with return to school on the Tuesday after Easter Sunday.

In Norway, Påskeferie (Easter school holiday) begins on Friday afternoon before Palme Søndag (Palm Sunday). In 2019 Palm Sunday is on April 14th. Maundy Thursday, Good Friday and Easter Monday (in 2019 on 18th, 19th and 22nd April) are public holidays in Norway.  On Saturday, 20th April, which in Norway is called Påskeaften (Easter Eve), shops close early and many families gather for a special dinner.  Many people, and especially families with school age children, leave for their mountain chalets to enjoy hytteliv (chalet holiday life) and hopefully get the first tan of the season when outdoors for winter sports.

 

Children in Norway look forward to receiving decorated cardboard Easter eggs on Påskeaften (the afternoon before Easter Sunday). The eggs are filled with small toys, candies or chocolate.

Life in Norway slows down during these 10 days and it is important to check opening times for shops, museums etc.  In general shops are only closed on Thursday and Friday, with a short day on Saturday and again closed on Monday.
All alcoholic drinks, except low strength beer, is sold in the State owned Vinmonopol shops.The closest wine monopoly shop (vinmonopol) is in Slemmestad, 3 km south of Vollen. This is closed on national holidays & Sundays and early on Saturdays.

Some of the small specialty shops and cafés in Vollen village remain open throughout Easter.

Places especially worth going to in March

Drammen Spiral tunnel (Spiralen Drammen)

Drammen Spiral tunnel (Spiralen Drammen)

The spiral tunnel in the city of Drammen is a unique experience and in fact has been ranged by CNN Travel as one of the world's most special tunnels.  You enter from the town and drive up 1650 meters in six and a half spirals , to emerge at Skansen. Here,...

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Children’s playgrounds

Children’s playgrounds

Every school and kindergarten in Norway has an outdoor playground.  During school hours these are for the use of the children attending that place.  However after 17:00 on weekdays, at weekends and during national or school holidays, most of these may be...

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Munchmuseet – The Munch Museum

Munchmuseet – The Munch Museum

Edvard Munch was one of Modernism's most significant artists. He was active throughout more than sixty years; from the time he made his debut in the 1880s, right up to his death in 1944. Munch was part of the Symbolist movement in the 1890s, and...

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Drive to the End of the World (Verdens Ende)

Drive to the End of the World (Verdens Ende)

The name is perhaps a little dramatic, but that what the southernmost point of the island of Tjøme is called.  Two of our guests from the Netherlands drove down one windy afternoon in March and thoroughly recommended making the trip.  Verdens Ende is reached by...

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Hiking in Asker (with maps and well marked routes)

Hiking in Asker (with maps and well marked routes)

Asker Turlag (Asker Municipality's hiking group) has made a website where a number of hiking trips of varying types are described in detail, with duration, length, elevation profile and map.  You can use the automatic translation service on the site and giggle at some...

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Astrup Fearnley Museum at Tjuvholmen

Astrup Fearnley Museum at Tjuvholmen

    Astrup Fearnley Museet is a private museum of contemporary art, and has since its opening in 1993 been one of the most important art institutions in Oslo. The museum moved to Tjuvholmen in 2012, beautifully located in Oslo centre by the Oslo Fjord in a building...

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Henie Onstad Kunstsenter / Art Exhibition Centre

Henie Onstad Kunstsenter / Art Exhibition Centre

The Henie Onstad Kunstsenter (HOK) is located in the beautiful park and recreation area of Høvikodden on the Oslo fjord peninsula, surrounded by public trails, wharfs and shorelines.  The statues outdoors in the park are well worth looking at.  The exhibitions change...

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SPA at Holmen Fjordhotell

SPA at Holmen Fjordhotell

A few minutes bus-ride from Vollen is Holmen Fjordhotell which has a lovely swimming pool and training centre, with sauna, steam-bath, cold pool, pool and big whirlpool.  There are lockers available.  In the Fitness centre there is a large variety of training...

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