Norwegian nature is pure mindfulness and perfect for a relaxing holiday or total digital detox. Set aside time to stress down and reconnect with yourself, the people around you, and mother nature herself. Here are 10 unforgettable escapes that you probably really, really need.
The beauty of nature has a unique way of making us feel at ease. But when was the last time you felt that way?
Today, we’re always logged on, and thousands of things compete for our attention. You know the feeling. Notifications pop up left and right, the inbox is always full – and then there’s the never-ending list of things to do and stuff to remember. It can be overwhelming, but luckily there’s a cure: escape the stress.
It’s time to clear the schedule and plan not to do anything resembling work or chores. To really clear our heads, we might even have to get a little bored, which philosophy professor Lars Svendsen knows everything about. He started writing “The philosophy of boredom” when he was, well, bored. But it turned into a fun, creative project and a popular book.
“Nowadays, we do all these little things to pass time, like constantly checking our phone instead of using that time to think and destress. Being bored is often associated with being alone, but it can be nice to be in your own company in peaceful surroundings”.
If there is one person who really understands the value of being outdoors, it is Randi Skaug. After climbing the Seven Summits, she bought her own island to escape the pressure of time in the city.
Naustholmen, the island she bought in Northern Norway, is a base for outdoor adventures and welcomes corporate groups or larger groups of friends, as well as individual travellers during summer. People come here to unwind, log off, and connect. She calls it “a peaceful place in a troubled world.”
“I’ve noticed that as soon as my guests set foot on this island, it’s like they take a giant step away from their daily routines, which are often really stressful. They say they think different thoughts up here.”
Sounds amazing, right? It’s time to slow down. Below you’ll find 10 ways to escape the stress.
The tranquil and relaxing vibes of nature don’t have to disappear when you go inside. If you make your accommodation a part of the experience, your trip will be even more memorable.
There are Arctic domes and glamping opportunities scattered all over Norway, popular cabins way up in the mountains, and sea cabins hanging over the water – all making you feel at one with nature, even if you’re seated comfortably in front of the fireplace or lying under a duvet in bed.
Breathe in, breathe out. Let the positive energy from the nature around you travel through your body as you inhale. Exhale and feel your shoulders become more and more relaxed each time.
Mindfulness and yoga have become increasingly popular ways of exercising and help you turn your attention inwards and find balance in a stressful day. The deeply personal experience reaches a new level when you are immersed in nature and connected with something bigger than yourself.
In Norway, there are pilgrim paths all over the country, but you don’t have to be religious to get a personal experience from the journey. The paths are excellent for everyone who want to go long-distance hiking and take time to reflect. Contemplate the small things, the big questions, the future … or just ponder the mysteries of life along the way.
No matter what you hope to achieve, the routes offer a safe and accessible way to clear your head and de-stress. And the best part is that you get to do so while walking through beautiful scenery and quaint villages with a strong cultural heritage and delicious local food.
The soothing sounds of calm waters, the thrill of waves crashing against the rocks, the salty ocean breeze. Many Norwegians travel to the seaside to de-stress, as the ocean has a way of making you feel at ease when you look at and listen to it – even in a storm.
To experience this up close, you can stay in a converted lighthouse. With their long history, charming architecture, and dramatic location, they offer a new and exciting way to spend a night by the ocean.
Nothing says me-time like a day at a spa. And we all know you’ve deserved it. In Norway, relaxing treatments are combined with panoramic views and one of the essential elements of nature – water. Steaming hot or icy cold, it will nevertheless do wonders for both body and soul.
Explore aromatherapy showers, admire the scenery from a floating steaming pool, get warm in a sauna before a refreshing dip in the fjord, or enjoy a large pool where you can start your swim indoors and end up in an outdoor pool. Most importantly, feel the stress float away.
It’s early in the day, but don’t open your eyes just yet. Lie there for a few more minutes. Breathe in the fresh air, listen to the wind that whispers in your ear and the birds that chirp nearby. Can you feel it? That’s what it’s like to wake up in a comfy treetop cabin.
For most of the time, it’s just you and the wilderness – and that’s a good thing. If de-stressing is your goal, then a stay at a treetop cabin is a sure thing.
As the landscape is all dressed up in its winter coat, the sounds of nature are wrapped up in a white, glittering blanket – which adds a totally new dimension to everything. Your footsteps sound different, the air feels fresh and crisp, and you can see your own breath as you exhale. The winter is a magical time of year. Skiing, winter fjord safari, the northern lights – the list goes on.
Winter is also a time for reflection, especially around New Year’s. Think of the snow as a clean canvas and let nature guide you. Enjoy a snug cabin before you dress up in layers and go on an adventure. Then, things will fall into place.
Something special happens when you’re on a journey and actually take the time to enjoy it, instead of rushing to the final destination.
The sights, the sounds, and maybe even the smells – your senses are awakened. You have time to think, to feel. Perhaps you let something go, to make room for something else. If you have company, you have time to enjoy the presence of each other and the good conversations. And you get to really admire the beautiful surroundings.
This was our 10 relaxing spots for your next escape in Norway. Whether you're after a calming yoga session with a view or a remote wilderness experience, Norway has something for you. Still not sure what kind of mindfulness retreat you are after? No worries - here are a few more posts that will help you find your perfect escape.
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