The island of Tautra, in the Trondheimsfjord, has a lot of history to unfold. Here you find the ruins of a convent dating back to 1207, the new Maria Convent built in 2006 and the Klostergården, offering rooms, restaurant and a farm shop.

Garden and convent ruins at the island Tautra in the Trondheimfjord, Trøndelag, Photo: Runa Eggen

There are large farms on both sides of the road, an impressive view of the fjord and fields, the ever narrowing road – and then the bridge that leads us over to Tautra.

An automatic barrier opens as we approach in the car, and closes behind us. It is as though we are being ceremoniously allowed to cross over to Tautra. However, the barrier is there for practical reasons. It is intended to protect the native fauna from predators. The fact is that Tautra is a nature reserve and a bird conservation area.

I start to loosen up as I arrive on the island. I’d like to be staying here for at least a week! Tautra has its own kind of peace and quiet. Perhaps I feel this way because I know we will be visiting the ruins of the convent from 1207?

Locally brewed beer at Klostergården at the island Tautra, Trøndelag, Photo: Runa Eggen

The Ruins at Klostergården

“On Sundays in particular there are lots of people here in Tautra,” says Ståle Anderssen.  He owns and runs the Klostergården. Many people have their Sunday walk here. They bring their families and friends on a little sightseeing tour, or for coffee or a dinner.

“Of course the ruins are an attraction,” says Anderssen. “And they are used for both weddings and Christenings.”We can catch a glimpse of the old convent ruins  behind the house, like a beautiful theatre backdrop.

Klostergården at the island Tautra in Trondheimfjord, Trøndelag, Photo: Runa EggenI have a little look around Klostergården, walk through the perennial nursery, through and past the ruins, across the yard to the farm shop – where I stay for a while. There’s lots of fun stuff to see at the shop. Amongst other things they sell farm fare, lotions and soaps from the Maria Convent, ceramics and beer. “Brewery” it says on a sign above one of the doors, and in front of the shelves of home-brewed beer, quite a crowd has formed.

“We began brewing beer four years ago. The brewery manager is my oldest son. We want to make it a hit. We now brew nine different types of ale here,” says a delighted Ståle Anderssen.

Convent at the island Tautra in the Trondheimfjord, Trøndelag, Photo: Runa EggenThe Maria Convent

From the Klostergården, I proceed to today’s convent, the Maria Convent – a modern building built in 2006, with stylish, award-winning architecture. Everyone is welcome here, and the visitor’s centre also welcomes all visitors. We are met by a delightful aroma as we approach the entrance. The nuns at the Maria Convent make a living from the manufacture of skin cream and herb soaps. A visit here is literally heavenly.

My hours in Tautra pass quickly, and as we approach the bridge once again I can’t help thinking: I wish I could have stayed a little longer.

Runa Eggen, 28082012

Read more about what to see and do in the Innherred Region.

Read about how to get to Trøndelag.