Finding 'Kos' by Travelling Slow
Achieving what matters by going slow; a four week journey through Norway; the land of 'Kos'
Best suited for
For those who see (travel) opportunities where others see obstacles
Norway is the land of ‘kos’. Kos is a truly special, yet intangible concept that is uniquely Norwegian. It is the art of consciously appreciating what is happening. Kos is a state of mind, a feeling that can be felt alone or with others.
Long journeys encompass a slow approach to travel. Spellbinding accommodations make perfect home offices, family spaces or launchpads to explore the local areas and their plentiful secrets. Slow travel means fewer travel days and longer stays, being in one place long enough to make meaningful connections and conversations, absorbing and understanding the culture. Slow travel is time for personal awareness: tuning into your own feelings, redefining and setting new goals, feeling peace, clearing brain fog, invigorating the mind and establishing what matters in a new normal. Essentially, slow travel is the perfect way to find 'Kos' and exactly what we need right now.
Insider tips: Our team member Danny has written a wonderful piece on the concept of Kos and why travelling slow is exactly what we need right now. Read it here.
We all strive to find new meaning in the new normal and travelling slow is the perfect way to take stock, be self-aware and blossom again. Slow travel means fewer travel days and longer stays, being in one place long enough to make meaningful connections and conversations, absorbing and understanding the culture. This is in line with UN's Sustainability Goal 11.4, 'facilitate a way to 'Strengthen efforts to protect and safeguard the world’s cultural and natural heritage'.
Itineraries are designed by our travel curators in collaboration with our partners to give you the most rewarding experience possible.
Please note that itineraries can be tailored to your specific wishes, when you make an inquiry.
UNESCO Heritage Fjord Landscape
Achieving 'Kos' by Going Slow
Fresh air, green rolling hills and waterfalls all within a UNESCO heritage fjord landscape make Aurland quite clearly a great choice. However much like the fjords themselves, there is much more to this recommendation below the surface. Aurland is more of a philosophical selection too, with the creation of an eco-lodge created from materials already existing in the area and turned into a better version of itself through careful design. An underlying symmetry we hope that our guests will absorb when spending time here.
After spending the previous day working from your new home you might take the family to stroll down the Kongeveien (The King’s road) with a local guide, uncovering impressive old cottages along the historic path and taking shade under the canopy and enjoying a lunch of locally sourced ingredients. Sundays might see you forge your own path with your loved one(s). Surprise them. Explore a glacier from the inside, visit one of the iconic wooden stave churches or simply head out on the open road and visit the little villages that hang on to the side of the fjord at uneven intervals. We’ll help you get there.
Your home & hosts: Tone & Bjørn at eco-lodge 29/2 Aurland
*Note: This lodge is closed in the winter season.
The Sunnmøre Alps
Practice gratitude and appreciate who and what you have around you
There’s nothing quite like the mountain air and having the freedom to bask in it over a longer period of time that can do wonders for the soul. We Norwegians have been making pilgrimages from the cities to the mountains for decades, the reasons for which will be long apparent before you’ve even arrived. The Sunnmøre Alps are the epitome of spectacular and in our mind perhaps the most beautiful of all the ranges. Making the most of a rather vertical landscape can be traversed by hiking but can also be had by driving along a mountain pass and taking a picnic at a lookout point. Sunnmøre might be challenging terrain but it doesn’t need to be a challenge, we will ensure a local guide accommodates your desired activity level.
Embark on a private boat journey with our favourite captains Terje or Tor. Nothing quite awakens the senses and invokes a feeling of kos like bobbing gently over the fjord under a blue sky and hemmed in by the mountains. A shared experience for your family undiluted by the company of others and a chance to bond. Alight on a self-guided adventure into the local areas rarely found in the guidebooks or explore ‘like a local’ along forest trails, by cooking waffles and coffee on an open fire on the beach where it is flat!
Your home and hosts: Small luxury Hotels’ member Storfjord Hotel and our wonderful partners scattered around the alps.
Western Lofoten - Nature on steroids above the Arctic circle
Where constantly appreciating what is happening comes naturally
From the seldom travelled to the jewel in the crown, Lofoten rarely needs introduction. “Nature on steroids" is a term we have coined before and is entirely justified. The vistas around every corner are epic. The popularity of Lofoten as a destination means having insiders on your team to help you retire to a hidden gem is definitely an asset - we will steer you down the peninsula into the outer and quieter reaches of the archipelago.
Being from an exposed, narrow sliver of land the people here are as rugged as their home, and their ancestors have had to endure hardship, they are however, warm and friendly. From hillside cabins with panoramic glass to a rectory on a tiny island an hour’s ferry ride from the ‘end of Lofoten’ - how hidden you want your accommodation to be is up to you. This hidden gem lends itself perfectly for a workcation and an island escape for those seeking a slower pace of life.
Your home(s) and hosts: Our favourite places to stay in Lofoten are as diverse as its people. Based on our understanding of you, we will recommend just the right place to stay, be it with Kristian at Hattvika Lodge, Holmen Lofoten with mother and son Ingunn and Håvard or in a lighthouse or a rectory on the island of Værøy.
Exotic and rugged Finnmark
Kos under the Northern Lights & the Midnight Sun
The northernmost reaches of the country explode into a bouquet of colours during the summer season making for a wonderful contrast against the battered landscape scarred from long, enduring winters. Finnmark as a destination is on few travellers' radar and it really should be - home to the Sami people and dark pagan history, Finnmark offers a cultural depth to rival any area of our country. The roads here are quiet and many of the villages dotted along the coast are home to fewer than a few hundred people allowing for a type of tranquillity seldom experienced. You really are at the top of the world here, so the arctic sun never sets at the height of summer, meaning evenings spent with new or old loved ones are doused in golden light.
The winter period in the far north is a paradox, long dark days bring a time for contemplation, wood fires and thick knitted sweaters and socks. If you are fortunate enough to be residing for an extended time in Finnmark over the winter, you are going to have one neighbour paying a visit; Lady Aurora. Many trawl the wilderness following cloud patterns and weather reports and some don’t get lucky. Staying in one place for an extended period, on the other hand, seriously increases your chances of witnessing her dance in all her majesty.
The end of one Journey and the start of a new one
Travelling for the benefit of mind and soul can have a lasting impact on you as a person - a steady afterglow, feelings of contentment, an awareness of self and appreciation for life and those around you.
After exposing yourself to a gentler pace, everyday life may take a little adjustment. Like opening your eyes after meditating, it’s always better to wiggle your fingers and toes first and become aware of your surroundings. If you want a few days to readjust we can help you find a perfect place in Oslo or Bergen before you depart.
While 'Kos' is uniquely Norwegian, it is for everyone and we hope you'll take it home with you and tell your friends.
Book and personalize the Finding 'Kos' by Travelling Slow journey
This journey has been curated for you to experience 'kos'. A truly special, yet intangible concept that is uniquely Norwegian. It can be booked as proposed or further personalized to you.
With our flexible terms, we hope to provide you with all the certainty and adaptability you need when booking a well-deserved escape.
Read more about our pricing here.
5 Reasons to Travel Up
Norway is a treasure trove brimming with pristine places to visit, unparalleled adventures to experience, and remarkable people to meet. We know where the gems are hidden and we’re eager to share them with you.
Up Norway’s professional team of insiders, partners and exclusive pathfinder-hosts genuinely care about giving you an unforgettable experience. Our extraordinary staff understands exactly what the modern traveller is looking for.
Our mission is to deliver an experience matching the interests of a singular client. Whether they’re a hardcore explorer into mountain walks and kayaking, an intrepid foodie chasing after the taste of the North, or in need of some serious down-time in tranquil, luxurious surroundings, we always match exactly the right thing for the right traveler.
Not only do we help to find the right ingredients for a dream holiday, but after the trip is booked, we ensure all tickets, reservations, booking information, contacts, and schedules are available on one convenient digital app. We have a 24-hour emergency chat-line and clients can reach us by phone.
Our partners are committed to sustainable services, our nature-based activities support local wildlife and cultural heritage, and our rural destinations provide investment in local economies and communities. Everyone wins, including the planet.
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