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21 posts categorized "Travel"

August 01, 2013

Our Scandinavia: Sun over Gudhjem (Denmark)


This week, we're all about the beautiful island of Bornholm. Our Rebekka is part-Bornholmer and is currently holidaying on the sunny island with her family. 

Gudhjem is a lovely village on the Northern side of the island. Population 782, getting to Gudhjem means flying to Copenhagen, then getting yourself on the bus to Ystad then the ferry overnight to the island. Once there, you need to get across Bornholm to the Northern side.


Gudhjem is a quaint fishing village. Head to the harbour and enjoy the famous open sandwich ‘Sol over Gudhjem’ which means Sun over Gudhjem. Dark rye bread with freshly smoked herring, raw onion, radish and a raw egg.

Here’s where to stay if you decide to pop by - a lovely sweet small place by the sea. Here's a handy village map.

Bornholm is Danish, even if it is closer to Poland and Sweden.

Why? At the peace agreement of Roskilde in 1658, Sweden got given Bornholm. The Bornholm people were not happy so they revolted in 1660, killed the Commander and went back to the Danish King and asked him to take them back (It probably had something to do with the price of beer in Sweden. Maybe).

In other news: someone found a poo on Bornholm dating back 140 million years and the local nature guide’s surname is Mr Sillehoved, which means Mr Herringhead.

Bornholm is well worth the long trip to get there. 



July 18, 2013

Secret Scandinavia: Bronte's favourite Danish summer hideaway

A while back Bronte was asked to recommend a super secret local spot in Denmark that you’d only know about if you were a local. She remembered this amazing place where she is from called Reersø (population 511).

It’s a teeny penunsular (attached only slightly to the main island of Zealand - and in fact it used to be an island back in the day). Famous for centuries for its fishing and local fish dishes (in particular, smoked mackerel and eel), this little secret spot is hard to find but possibly as Danish as you’ll ever get. It's a really old village full of wonderful Danish farming and fishing heritage.

To get to Reersø you need to take a plane to Copenhagen, then a train to Slagelse. From there bus 432 (it doesn’t go very often and it takes quite a while: be patient). 

We recommend trying the local ‘Reersø Kro’ which is a 300 year old pub: they serve amazing local fish and seafood. Stay at the campsite or at the Inn. Great beaches, lovely sailing opportunities, wind surfing, lots of fishing and hunting (if you’re into that). There are no bars, no nightlife, no shops except a little grocery market. Just the smell of the sea and cats with no tails (yes, this is a place full of Manx Cats - thought to be introduced here centuries ago from an Isle of Man ship wreck).

Got dosh to spare? This is what £500,000 will buy you on Reersø Peace and quiet here

Got only £80K to spare? Get this nifty little summer house

But it doesn’t really matter because unless you’re Danish, you can’t buy a summer house in Denmark. Oh, didn’t you know? Indeed, that is the law. Cheeky Danes. Wonder how they got away with that one .

Next week: Jonas’ secret summer place in Göteborg.



                      Danish Habour Porpoise in Reersoø - Photo by Ole Agerbæk Sørensen

May 03, 2012

17 Mai 2012 - Norwegian National Day London


Think St Patrick’s Day is cool?  Then you’ll also enjoy Norwegian National Day, except everything is blue, red and white instead.  Oh, and less Guinness.  Possibly a bit more aquavit instead.  And waffles.

Norwegian constitution day is celebrated on 17th May every year and Norwegians across the world come out of the wood work, adorn their national costumes and get together to celebrate.

In London, these celebrations take place all over – but start in Southwark Park at 9:00 with the hoisting of the Norwegian flag.  There’s dancing, there’s music, there’s hotdogs and there are sure to be an abundance of waffles with or without brown cheese.

You can find the whole programme for 17th May (17. Mai i London 2012) right here

At our Great Titchfield Store we’ll be celebrating Norway too – with flags, cakes and tasters – so pop on down to see us.

We’re expecting our full Norway National Day delivery on 10th May so that is when you need to get ordering via our online shop www.scandikitchen.co.uk/shop to ensure your stash in time for the celebrations.


March 13, 2012

A different hotel room in Sweden? E.T.phone.home...

We love this company - they have different tree houses you can book and spend your holiday in. Serious cool factor.




The Tree Sauna



The birds nest



See more amazing hotel rooms right here

February 22, 2012

Stuff that is nice about Iceland


Many things are nice about Iceland (except when they bring out the fermented shark).

The photographer James Appleton spent time photographing an Icelandic volcano erupting - set in the backdrop of the Northern Lights.


You can view the whole slide show right here 


February 07, 2012

Two Swedish girls went to Uganda...

We heard about these two Swedish girls the other month and have been following their progress.  

In short, two Swedish students went to Uganda.  There, they helped set up a home and secure six street kids a school place.  They went back to Sweden, confident that the orphanage was safe and secure and a good environment for the boys to grow up.

Not so.  Soon, Emma and Therese learnt that the boys were being abused.  Severely so.  Physically, mentally.  The environment, under the leadership of a not-at-all-nice man they call Director.  Beatings, punishments, being locked in rooms for days on end.  Not to mention going without food.  Horrific.

Most people would feel pretty powerless being back in Sweden.  What do you do?

Emma and Therese went back to Uganda.  Went to the orphanage.  Collected the boys - all 13 of them.  Then they rented their own house and now live in Uganda, with their 13 boys whom they call "their brats". 

Emma and Theresa work around the clock to provide a safe and secure environment for their kids.  They work, tirelessly, to be supportive, understanding and more grown up than they should be at this age - to have to deal with issues far beyond what most of us could handle.

They have a blog in which they write about their life there.  They talk about the kids, their successes (and sometimes when things go wrong).  The blog is in Swedish, but if you use Google Translate, just right-click and hit "translate to English" and you wil get a pretty good picture of what is happening.

Emma and Theresa fund raise, tirelessly, to cover the monthly running costs of the home for their boys. They are just trying to keep their promise;  to give the boys a home, food, love, schooling - and thus, a future.  They don't need much to keep it going.  But they need it, continuously, and it is getting harder and harder to keep asking.

We've been in touch with Emma lately and asked her to set up a "donate" button for non-Swedish donations.  You will find this on the right hand side of the page.

Even if you don't fancy donating, we are certain you will find their blog an inspiring and worthwhile read.


March 04, 2010

Around the world with a coffee cup

We always ask you about your holiday and we're glad you get to go away to exotic places and have fun in the sun.  But rarely do you send us your holiday snaps - and we really do want to see them.

So, for the next while, we're asking you to go away to nice places and bring one of our take-away cups, take a picture and e-mail it to us.  Oh, imagine you standing in front of the pyramids, SK coffee cup in hand?  We'll feel truly loved then.  Or by the eiffel tower.  Or by the great chip shop in Blackpool... The world is your Oyster, as they say.

In return, you get some free coffee and your face on our soon to be gallery of holiday snaps, sent to us by the people we love.  Be inventive and we'll reward you further.

Send your snaps to: iloveherring@scandikitchen.co.uk


Is it leaning or am I drunk?


too much nose picking is dangerous

Berit from Bergen is not from Bergen (sorry, Mum)

We've been writing about Berit from Bergen.  Except she is not from Bergen, she is from Mosjøen which is a lovely place in the North of Norway where the Salmon leaps out of the river and directly onto your dinner plate (Berit says).

For some reason, we thought she was from Bergen.  But her Mum wrote to us to set the record straight, which is a good thing because now we have learnt about the delights of Mosjøen and we do think more people should go visit - it is really pretty.

Mosjøen has 13400 inhabitants and is the oldest town in Helgeland region.  You can read the daily news from the region here .  At the point of writing, it was minus 7 degrees, so maybe wait a few weeks before you go or you'll be a bit cold.

Berit says about her home town: it is so small that you meet everyone you know by going to one cafe.  We also have a very very large red chair (see below) to sit on if you are ever tired while walking through north norway's longest attached wooden housing, and that a 818m high mountain is the towns closest neighbour (http://www.helgeland-arbeiderblad.no/nyheter/article4782189.ece)

So, sorry, Berit's Mum.  We'll never call your daughter Bergen Berit again. 



we can just imagine our Berit skipping merrily down the street on her way to school...


January 15, 2010

Simon says... Oh no, eh Simonseeks

Simon Seeks is a nice new travel website where a community of travellers, journalists and celebrities can share their advice and their holiday reviews - giving you the inside story on their favourite destinations – and get paid for it (which is always nice).

We have been recommended by Helen Parkins, a travel enthusiast who has written a guide called “Eat your way around Europe in London: five of the best”.  In her guide Helen describes Scandi Kitchen as “the place in which to satisfy all your Scandinavian food cravings, from meatballs, through crayfish and herrings, to punschrulle (or ‘vacuum cleaners’, as they’re more colloquially known – a wonderful confection of marzipan, rum, and chocolate) – not forgetting the famous lingonberries. Bright, light, and cheery, with staff to match, it’s a bold venture which has already proved itself as one that’s here to stay, having had the misfortune to open for business at the start of the recession. Ever popular with locals, visiting and resident Scandinavians, and other tourists alike, you can fill up healthily and inexpensively here, and then spend your remaining pennies on treats from their deli!”

Well, that’s very nice of her to say, thank you Helen.  Tuut tuut, that’s our trumpet blowing a bit. 

Add your own reviews on www.simonseeks.com.  If you add one about us, don’t forget to mention Sebastian’s fancy haircut or Henrik’s shiny new shoes.

November 19, 2008

Little places in Scandinavia - Jonas' Sarö

By Jonas

Sarö, on the west coast of Sweden some 30km south of Gothenburg, is home to 3,000 people and a disused railway line.  The name – Peculiar island (extremely loosely translated) – doesn’t do it all that many favours, although when considering Sarö is an island only in a technical sense (jumping across the ditch that separates it from the mainland is quite achievable - for a six year old) we can suppose the name bears right in a sense.

Home to the Ghost Hill- which must have been the steepest hill in the world for at least five years at the end of the seventies - and The Love Cave’s diving spot which surely rivalled any 10m platform at the Olympics, it is strange for anyone having grown up there that the place is best renowned for having a couple of kings cajoling with the locals around the turn of the 19th century. Well, the place can possibly be said to have a strong royal connection as the first king is rumoured to have left enough of a legacy to ensure his son should never have had to worry about finding a suitable blood donor should he cut himself on a rock while following a guy down the cliffs around the Love Cave.

Arguably some of the above items could be dismissed as pure speculation so here are some other facts about the place: it is the home of one-quarter of Ace of Base; it is the first spot in Sweden where a woman was caught for speeding (go grandma!); and, of course home to Pappa Leif’s Janssons Temptation. Other reports have it that the football team isn’t all that prolific at the moment, the tennis club hasn’t produced any major stars yet and the best golfers coming out of the place all played for neighbouring clubs. But then, who said life on a little island was easy?


November 11, 2008

A little place in Scandinavia - Sebastian's Karlskrona



This post refers back to Henrik's Rydsgard, Elisabeth's Drammen  and Bronte's Hong


By Sebastian


Karlskrona is a gem of a city nestled in the south-eastern Swedish archipelago. Founded in 1680 by the then Swedish king Karl XI with the purpose as to serve as a naval base to protect Sweden from the aggressive Danes. Something must have gone right as it is still Swedish today.  Karlskrona is home to 62.589 people and is still Sweden’s most pub dense city and the one with the most dangerous street, Ronnebygatan.


Karlskrona has always been heavily influenced by its maritime heritage and still is today. Every year there’s a big regatta held called “Sailet” (swenglish for the word sail) with ships coming in from all corners of the globe. You may also have heard  of Karlskrona watching the news back in 1981 when a Soviet submarine stranded there.


The city is built on a number of islands, the largest of which is Trossö. This island was owned by a stubborn farmer called Wittus Andersson back in the day of Karl XI and he was forced to sell the island so that the city could be built. Wittus was so enraged that he cast a curse on the city, he vowed that it would burn to the ground, be ravished by pestilence and sink to the bottom of the sea. Karlskrona  was ravished by pestilence between 1710-1711 and burnt to the ground in 1790, all that remains is for it to sink to the sea.


The best bar in Karlskrona is “Schlager-baren” where you can sing all of your favourite Schlager anthems every Friday and Saturday. After a long night out you might want to enjoy some fabulous pizza or kebab at “Bernes”, where everything comes drenched in garlic sauce whether you want it to or not.


Karlskrona is also home to many famous people - even Kofi Annan has a summer cottage here.   Karlskrona’s Janne Lindello, who you often bump into when you roam the streets of the city. writes poetry and played a minor role in SVT’s (Sweden’s BBC) movie “Det grovmaskiga nätet” as a police officer. 

Karlskrona1  Karlskrona2

October 28, 2008

A nice little place in Scandinavian #2


The "tourist" photo of Drammen

This post refers back to this one

Our Elisabeth is a true Norwegian – and indeed, she does not come from Oslo and she is not into Morten Harkett.  No no, she is from a lovely little town called Drammen, located about 50 km from the capital, totally A-Ha free.  Drammen has rock carvings dating back 7000 years – one of them depicts a moose.  Originally, in Norse times, Drammen was actually called Drafn, deriving from the Drammensfjord.  You can read more about Drammen’s history here http://www.drammens.museum.no/

Drammen has a bout 60,000 inhabitants and life in centred around the town square and something called Drammen Beach (basically, tonnes of sand dumped near a big road – but it’s really lovely, apparently ).  One time, several years ago, Bryan Adams came to Drammen and people still talk about that.  Katie Melua also popped by, but that was not as exciting.  If you go to Drammen, bring your skis or board:  there are two great places to go practise just on the outskirts of the town

Elisabeth says that if you go to Drammen, you have to go get a kebab at “Snappys” – people drive from miles away to get one of these.  And if you’re ever in the area, pop by and say hello to Kristin, Elisabeth’s Mum, she’s really nice


This photo is called "summer in Drammen 2007" and is by John Tollefsen

September 21, 2008

Want low carbon footprint? Move to Samso in Denmark...

Samso We love Samso - a little island just west of Sealand in Denmark.  They have, thanks to a Danish energy project, got zero carbon footprint - and on top of that they produce the finest potatoes in the land (at least according to Bronte's mum).

You can read more about the project here

August 19, 2008

Postcard from Heather & Jo #5

_MG_1927 Stockholm Culture Festival "Carnival"

All good things come to an end and so it was time for us to leave. Following the grand finale of the Culture Festival on Saturday night, we awoke to the pouring rain (being British I believe it is my duty to always talk about the weather) and the knowledge that team GB were third in the Olympic medals table. Go team GB!

On reflection, we think Sweden has the answer to London's knife crime problem - Swedish female police officers; that is if the two we saw are a good representation. Gone would be the thoughts of knifes, in the hope of being searched thoroughly by a female police officer!

Our final day took us to Stockholm's City Museum where we learnt about the city's "filth" and "prohibition" - even chocolate was banned and servants could be jailed for wearing silk! The horror!

As we stocked up on choolate with Daim (no longer prohibited), Stimorol chewing gum and Swedish literature, the call came for us to reluctantly catch our flight. I did try to take SK to new heights of the mile high club (not that one!) and serve tea in my SK t-shirt, but was not successful. I think I lacked the lucky SK mug, so will try again next time. In retaliation I ripped a page out of SAS's 'Scanorama' magazine, to help plan my next holiday to Sweden. If I were to only travel to Sweden for my annual holiday every year, I would be very happy.

Until next time....

August 17, 2008

Postcard from Heather and Jo #4


Enjoying my Polkadrom ice cream

As we discovered on our final morning in Göteborg, where we thought we were getting away without paying for things, everything during the culture festival is in fact put on for free! An excellent idea we thought, especially for all the travelling families we saw. We opted to explore the city museum in our final hours and what a fantastic place this is! Most reccommended thing to do in Göteborg after the "Hagabulle". The viking exhibition with the only viking boat on display in Sweden was excellent, as was the history of family life in the city.

As the rain comes down on our last day in Stockholm, we are greatful for the better weather that this wonderful city has given us over the last two days - warmth and sunshine.

Our train journey from Göteborg was swift and we arrived at our hostel to find ourselves in a strange room with no windows or ventilation, however, it did have a proper matress and not a slice of foam to sleep on! That said I at least, have slept better here despite these factors. Although it's very disconcerting every morning waking up in pitch black!

Since arriving in Stockholm, we have spent our hard earned money in Gamla Stan, on Drottingholm and in it's vicinity. We have solved the mystery of the cover of the new Stig Larsson books (why does the first English translation have the cover of the second Swedish book in the trilogy - the clue is in the direct translation of the Swedish title!) and thoroughly enjoyed ourselves. Although sadly the chance to eat some crayfish has not presented itself, I'll have to tuck in back at SK. Any chance you can put some aside for me?!

Like Göteborg, Stockholm has it's Culture Festival this week, which we have been able to enjoy in Gustav Adolfs Torg seeing a concert by Che Sud Aka, that had us dancing on the streets and last nights finale of Opera selections, which was to be followed by a carnival featuring three different themes; Brazilian, Latino and Caribbean. Whilst the opera was great, sadly the carnival was billed to be more than it turned out to be, no carnival costumes except on the three lorries and just a mass of Stockholmers, mostly the young following each lorry in normal clothes, as the Ung08 festival had just finished. Most disappointing of all, no fireworks! Ah well, we can't have everything.

A trip to Sweden is never complete without an escape to the archipelago and we took the boat to Fjäderholmen, with it's craft shops, Swedish whisky and restaurants. What has, after 2 pieces of Princess Torta, 2 vanilla buns and half a hagabulle each, become a "cake tour" of Sweden, was in Fjäderholmen, supplemented with a "Polkadröm" ice cream (picture to be added tomorrow). Whilst expensive, it was a sight to be seen and very delicious. Perhaps it could be used as a template for SK ice cream? - Flavours to include blueberry and elderflower, we suggest.

We have been looking out for words that read funny in English, but have failed to come up with anything new. What does make us smile is the sight of young Swedes in groups looking "hard and cool" (gosh I sound like my mother!) which they do well, until they start speaking Swedish! It's too nice a language to listen to and just doesn't have the right effect!

Time to enjoy our final hours in Stockholm. Last postcard tomorrow.

August 13, 2008

Postcard from Heather and Jo #3

Heather, SK t-shirt and the elusive "Hagabulle" - Can I have a semla this big please?!

We awoke to sunshine and a new day, although by the end of breakfast it had already clouded over again. Nevertheless, off we headed Jo, SK t-shirt and I in search of the elusive 'Hagabulle'. So much had been promised by the information book in the hostel and thankfully we were not disappointed. It was huge (see photo above) and we had to share it (although we were not prepared to share it with the wasps, who were stalking us yet again!), too much for one person after breakfast! I challenge Tobias to make a giant semla for my birthday in February!

Our stomachs very full we headed off to the guided city walk, which was part of the Göteborg Culture Festival (previously the Göteborg Festival, but too many Swede's used it as an excuse for getting very drunk and so the word 'Culture' was added!). Our guide from the Stadsmuseet was very funny and in summary, we learned that all you need to know about the history of Göteborg is that there was a fat man, a man who brought potatoes, it burnt down several times (although they were told to re-build in brick the Swedes did not, hence multiple burnings!) and that it was built around the same time as Cape Town, New York and Jacarta, by the Dutch and so the streets are on a grid pattern in the centre at least!

Our swift history of Göteborg complete and having escaped with only a spitting of rain so far, we went in search of willow weaving only to find not only was it not on, but that it cost SEK100 entry fee.....we think not, cheap skates that we are we are saving our hard earned pennies to spend in SK! Mildly disappointed we headed off to the Konstmuseet to look at Scandinavian art and were mightily impressed, especially when we got away without paying the SEK60 entry fee to the special exhibition that was on!  We do not endorse such activity of course, but hey, no one asked for tickets, who could blame us and that's 3 pieces and a drink in SK! We left into the glorious sunshine we had not seen since Copenhagen, but this soon set and we were left cold again and still being hassled by the damn wasps and we didn't have any food or drink this time. Time for dinner. As the rain pours down outside, I don't think we will be heading out again!

Postcard from Heather and Jo #2

00003 Chelsea Flower Show Gold Medal Winning Garden 2007 - Linneas Garden at the Botanic Garden's in Göteborg

It seems that unlike Bronte and Jonas who enjoyed some of Sweden's best summer weather this year, we are enjoying some of it's worst! Plagued by rain, wind and wasps, we are making the mot of things and have been lucky. Now in Göteborg after a coach journey up the coast, we are staying in a very nice hostel. Although rain threatened, we ventured to the infamous Botanic Gardens yesterday, which we enjoyed apart from the damn wasps, again! There is a fantastic waterfall at the end of the gardens, but all illusions of the lovely natural wonder were destroyed when I climbed to the top and saw the big pipe fueling the waterfall. We were impressed with how realistic it was nonetheless. In the evening, although rain threatened yet again, we went to explore the delights of the Gö teborg Cultural Festival and were justly rewarded in Götaplatsen, with a performance by Swedish group Money Brother www.myspace.com/moneybrother  that had us all dancing to this energy filled 10 piece band, although with that many members, the money ain't gonna go far brother!
We followed this up with watching 'Abba the Movie' - with the bag full of sweets we had brought from what was adult heaven, let and child paradise - on a giant screen in the square until just before midnight, when we crawled back to the hostel, taking only one wrong turn!

Having had our fill of Swedish music and with slightly better weather for now, we are off to take a Scandi Kitchen t-shirt for a tour of Göteborg, find out next time what it got up to!

August 11, 2008

Postcard from Heather and Jo #1

_MG_1791 Jazz band in Malmo

Hello from Sweden, SK regular Heather and her friend Jo here, on holiday in Sweden via Copenhagen, sending you a few postcards over the coming week (sadly no photo today as can't attach camera to PC).

On arrival at Copenhagen airport, I found it rather funny to see a little sardine tin like pod full of smokers squashed in, smoking that cigarette they have not had for a few hours. You could barely see them for all the smoke!! The joys of the smoking ban, maybe these will start popping up at London airports too!!

We wondered through the large shopping street without spending a single ore, past shops with names we found funny such as a shoe shop called 'Dope' and a ladies clothes shop called 'Kinky Bitch', who know's what those shoes were made from or who the clothes were for, but we didn't hang around to find out. We would like to come back to Denmark and don't want a Danish criminal record! I'll leave the criminal record to my borther who is at Climate Camp in the UK!

Our boat tour of Copenhagen's canals in the glorious sunshine would have left us very sunburnt had we not found some free suncream at a basketball event by the town hall. That however may have covered up our blushes at seeing the Little Mermaid's behind!! An ice cream later and we were off to Malmö.

Described by some as being the Copacabana of Sweden we were looking forward to sunning ourselves on Malmö's long strech of beach. Frankly if that is what the Copacabana looks like, we don't want to go!! Admittedly the pouring rain and driving wind did not help!

A lovely outdoor performance by a jazz saxophonist did end our visit in a memorable way and as we leave we have seen a poster on the back of a bus saying "Live in the Grand Canyon of Malmö"! Clearly the city is not satisfied with having the tallest building in Sweden and has designs on being much grander. I love it! I look forward to the "Las Vegas of Malmö", the "Big Ben of Malmö" and the "Ayres Rock of Malmö"!

Off to Göteborg........

July 21, 2008

Tesco versus Denmark clip

We know this is an oldie but we still love it.

Postcards from the edge #1

This blog entry refers to this one here about winning free lunch

Thanks to Sam who wrote to us from London:

Postcard Postcard2

And thanks to the lovely Heather:



July 15, 2008

Send us a card from your holiday and win lunch

We simply love postcards and think it is such a shame that nobody sends them anymore.  Therefore, our summer competition is simple:  send us a funny/retro/silly card from your holiday and we'll be publishing entries on our blog throughout the summer months. There'll be a fab prize for the winner (a specially made lunch for 4 at SK, ed.) - the winner will be chosen by us and our decision is final.  Terms and conditions apply*

Our address is:

Scandinavian Kitchen, 61 Gt Titchfield St, London W1W 7PP

We like this one from a Danish ferry port a la 1970 - it really shows the true side of Scandinavia. 


*Meaning there's no cash alternative to the prize, we chose the winner based on what makes us laugh and you don't have to buy any herring to enter our competition.


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