Å Camp is situated on the banks of the Tessungåe, a sheltered, pristine river in Norway. Staying in the off-grid unique cabins in this unspoiled piece of nature is definitely an experience in itself. There is little tourism there and therefore not very many people - instead you can enjoy a lot of peace and nature.
The camp opened in 2014 and since then owner Isaac Kolbein and his father, who is an architect and builder, have built the cabins at the camp. The camp is on a forest farm that has been run by his family for generations. With the exceptional cabins, regenerative agriculture and forestry, this has been breathed new life.
The camp was born out of a desire to show people the beauty of the region. Isaac moved there a few years ago, becoming the first full-time employee in 80 years. He and his family run the camp and farm. His father, Peter Manning, is currently building the latest addition to the camp.
In general, the architecture of the camp is kept simple and has Nordic and Japanese influences. The plateau on which it stands is virtually untouched and offers plenty of hiking, fishing and peaceful walks in the woods.
|Tree house||from150 €|
ArchitectureAll cabins were and are designed and built by Peter Manning, who is very committed to sustainable building and building with wood. A large part of the wood for the constructions comes from our own forest. They try not to use large machines and to cut the wood themselves. In addition, the camp received a local building award for its tree house, which underlines sustainability and the treatment of nature.
EnvironmentAt Å Camp we try to only use natural building materials. The toilets are composting toilets, the compost is used to improve the soil in the yard. The owners also take great care to minimize water consumption. Guests are required to carry water to the cabins. Soaps and cleaning products are kept as eco-friendly as possible. The property is also off-grid and guests are made aware that going off-grid is a good idea (at least on holiday). Isaac and his family are also actively trying to sequester more carbon in the forests and meadows.
Well-BeingAlong the river there are bush baths that you can heat yourself with wood. A sauna is already being planned.
Norwegians are believers in living the friluftsliv lifestyle – being outdoors and in nature, regardless of the weather. To get a dose or yourself, head to Å Auge (“RiverEye”) camp. Set on the banks of the rushing Tessungåe river, the complex of tents and cabins – deep in forest backcountry and off the grid – was built so people can experience nature in an “authentic, simple and inexpensive way”. Stay in the handcrafted treehouse that sits 20ft off the ground; its large windows face the river, and skylights open to the stars. A covered front deck looks out on to the river and its banks of tall spruce and pine. The complex uses no electricity, only candles and solar lamps. It has no running water, either, but that’s just an opportunity to take a bush bath in one of the big tubs along the river. You simply fill the tub with buckets of pristine river water, light a fire (wood is provided), and wait for your bath to heat up. You can go cross-country skiing in nearby Hardangervidda National Park or forage for mushrooms or wild blueberries in the woods.
|Tree house||from150 €|
Unfortunately, Å Camp cannot be reached by public transport. From Oslo it is a good 2.5 hour drive to the camp (175 km), from Bergen it is a good 5 hour drive (319 km). The exact address can be found on the website.
There is a bus connection to Austbygde with the Rjukanexpress. Pick up is available from there, or you can hike or bike 15km up the road.
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