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Learning Journey in Nordhordland

Experiencing the Wool Route in Nordhordland


Nordhordland UNESCO Biosphere, Norway

The Learning Journey Group at the Heathland Center. Photo: Kari Evensen Natland

We have been working, together with stakeholders and Visit Bergen (our Regional Destination Company),
to develope this Wool Heritage route. Our cultural landscape are “made” by the sheep and we have a long
and strong history connected to the textile industry.
We are very proud of the fact that this is not only found in museums, but we have a very much alive
and modern textile industry today! When we invited to the learning journey we were really looking
forward to show some of all the gems of this rich cultural heritage spread all over Nordhordland!


Aims of Learning Journey

We wanted to get feedback from the participants of different aspects of the Wool Heritage Route, how did they experience:

  • The stops we had, were they relevant, informing, visitor-friendly and were they seen as a good contributor to the wool heritage route as a whole? The Heathland Center, the Hillesvåg
    Spinn and Mill factory, the Ikeland farm, the school class and Gripen Farm.
  • The wool heritage route as a whole and suggestions of improvement that we ca do in next step

An other aim we also wanted to network and make future collaborations between the Stakeholders in Nordhordland and the participants.

And finally it was very interesting for us to get feedback and discuss the common challenges related to develope sustainable ecotourism


Hillesvåg Wool Factory Photo: Kari Evensen Natland

Gripen Farm Photo: Kari Evensen Natland

Local food from Ikeland farm Photo: Kari Evensen Natland




We were 18 people attanding the Learning Journey from 3rd to 5th of June. We did a small version of the Wool Heritage Route visiting some of the main partners in our Region:

The Heathland Center – here we presented the cultural landscape in Nordhordland ‘made by’ our sheep. We saw the Norwegian sheep breed ‘Villsau’

The Hillesvåg Wool Factory – Our living tradition of woolspinning in our region, the 4th generation of Family Myhr are running the factory where some of the machines are over 100 years old.  The factory is also a EconoMuseum.

Ikeland Farm – Mrs Kjersti Bakken produces local food based on sheep meat from her farm.

The pupils of 5th grade at Grasdal Public School – They showed their schoolproject of washing, spinning and make products of the local wool.

Gripen Farm – Mrs Helene Sollid lives at a quite typical farm (sizewise) at the western part of Norway. She is running her farm all by herself, looking after her anmals and has restored most of the builidings at the farm. She want to run the farm in a holistic approach, like they did in the fifties.


Some stakeholders Quotes

 – I have reaaly enjoyed my experience. I will pass on my new knowledge and ideas to crofters and farmers at home. It is very inpiering to see Norwegians so passionate about sheep, wool, production, keeping the traditions, heritage and culture, Gemma UK.

I found it very useful to learn about the preparation-work & details of designing the Wool Heritage Route, Bjørg, Iceland.

– I enjoyed the wool factory, but the school visit was most useful for my work, Laura UK.


Gemma Urquhart at Gripen Farm Photo: Kari Evensen Natland


Our experience

The Nordhordland Team were very greateful to be able to invite som many knowledgable people to experience the woolroute. They kindly gave us their feedback of how it was, and how they thought it can be developed further. Also our local stakeholders got feedback on their products, which they appriciated and found very useful. The Learning Journey in Nordhordland gave us so many tips and great inspiration to continue develop the Nordhordland Wool Heritage Route!

Would you like to know more?

If you are a registered user, you can contact the organisers and participants in this learning journey and ask them about their experiences in the Forums.