As last year I attended a seminar at Vatnahalsen in November. We arrived the place with Flåmsbanen (Flåm Railway) after a scenic trip up in the mountains. It was snowing a little bit at Vatnahalsen this Saturday afternoon, and the temperature was around minus 6 degrees Celsius. Exactly what I hoped for; a feeling of the upcoming winter, nice.
As before we received a warm welcome form the people running the hotel, and coffee and waffles was standing there ready for us in the living room.
I got a room in the ground floor, or actually it is in the basement, in the end of the hallway. This was a larger and nicer room than last year, even though still very basic. Two single beds, a desk with a chair, an armchair with a small round table and a wardrobe.
The bathroom contained a wc (off course), a sink and a bath with a shower. In this room the floor in the bathroom had heating.
The room and the bathroom was both very clean. I must also say that I slept very well, so the bed was good.
After various activities during the afternoon it was about time to start the Christmas party at 7 pm. First reception with coctails (actually a local cider; very good). After that on to the fantastic buffet in the restaurant. Wow, exactly as last year; so many things to choose from and everything perfectly prepared. And the waiters are so friendly and effective that you really don’t want to leave the table, but just sit there and eat for many hours.
Anyway, it is not possible to try everything so you have to take some difficult choices. I started with some local cured meat, went on with some seafood and finished with some traditional Norwegian Christmas food; Pinnekjøtt (google it if you want to find out more) which is basically smoked meat of sheep. But I did not try the smoked sheep head this year.
I finished with some dessert but did not manage a lot of it, hence just a small portion of caramel pudding.
I had many different drinks along with the food, started with a Ægir beer, type Rallar, than had some really good white wine, then some good red wine and finished with more Rallar beer and a couple of glasses of aquavit; type Bergen Aquavit.
The party went on for many hours and my favourite beer is now officially the Ægir Rallar beer, period.
After a good night of sleep it was time for breakfast at 9 am. Breakfast is good as well and you have this wonderful view from the table which makes it a nicer experience than the one you normally have in hotels while having breakfast.
We went back to Bergen by train in the afternoon.
Conclusion; The food, the beer! And the service at Vatnahalsen is second to none. I have stayed in about 25 different hotels in 2013 and I would choose a breakaway at Vatnahalsen prior to all the other hotels even though many of them have given me nice experiences as well.
In addition to the fantastic food and services you are, as a bonus, given the most amazing nature surrounding the hotel. Take some time for a little hike on the Rallarveien or elsewhere and enjoy the fresh air and the nice views. It is like nature’s own medicine.
Would I like to recommend this place? YES!
Will I come back and stay here again? MOST DEFINITELY!
- Official Description (provided by the hotel):
- Are you on the lookout for a recreational place in the mountains? Then you are welcome to visit us here at Vatnahalsen Høyfjellshotell, 820 metres above sea level. We are doing our outmost to ensure you will have only the best experiences during your stay here with us. Vatnahalsen is a family owned and run hotel; the Aksnes family have more than 25 years experinece in running the hotel at the top of the Flam Railway. We have created a relaxing and pleasant atmosphere. Everyone is welcome as they are, no matter if you come in your biking shorts or your best suit, you’re still welcome. Here you can feel as if you’re at home, and we very much hope you do so. You will always be greeted with a smile from the hosts and staff, and they may tell a story or two…Welcome to Vatnahalsen – your mountain retreat – all year round. ... more less
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- Also Known As:
- Vatnahalsen Hoyfjellshotell Hotel Myrdal
- Vatnahalsen Hoyfjellshotell Norway/Myrdal