The Bondhus area in Maruanger has been a magnet for tourists ever since the stream of tourists to Norway's west coast began in the middle of the 1800s. The magnificent landscape with the "ice trail" up to Bondhusvatnet Lake, the ice falls from Bondhusbreen glacier and Keisarstigen trail up to Folgefonna are still popular tourist attractions.
Some mountains have rounded shapes, while others have steep slopes and sharp edges. Ulvanosa (1246 mos.) has both. The forms reflect the type of bedrock below, and the forces that were in effect when they were formed.
In 1266 “brann hallin i Biorgyn” (the hall in Biorgyn burned down) the Icelandic annals recount. The building we call Håkonshallen must be one of the “two good stone halls” built on the initiative of king Håkon Håkonsson, identical to the “stone hall” in which the most prominent male guests sat during the wedding and crowning celebrations of the successor to the throne, Magnus, in September 1261. At the crowning of the Håkon himself a long boatshed had to serve as venue. The hall is built on the pattern of European imperial halls, while the details point to English models. Håkon had close contacts with king Edward, who had recently built Westminster Hall.
Alrekstad (later Årstad) is the birthplace of Bergen. The estate was an estate for Harald Hårfagre and several of his descendants: Eirik Blodøks, Håkon den gode og Olav Tryggvason. These first kings moved with their courts and guardsmen from estate to estate. From these estates the king ruled the country.
Most associate Åsane with ridges, naturally enough (the Norwegian word for "ridge" is "Ås"). A lesser noticed trait in the landscape are the unusual flat areas that lie between the ridges. The Dalselva River, which was channeled at the end of the 1950s, runs down only 2.5 metres from Lake Langavatnet by Vågsbotn to Flatevad, where it goes over into rapids by Fossekleiva. The layers of gneiss stand nearly vertically, and the mountain surface is so even that one might think it had been planed with a planer.
When bishop J.Neumann was on a visitation in Hardanger in 1825 he also visited Torsnes, the seat of the Galtung family. They were then in the process of pulling down the old dwelling house on the farm. As the committed observer of ancient monuments and antiquarian buildings that he was, bishop Neumann has provided us with interesting details: