Travelling to Banzaicon
Travelling to unfamiliar places and seeing new things can be quite the glorious adventure, but the fun and games end when the goal isn’t to explore and rather to get to the base camp for the weekend with EVERYTHING in one piece. Also not getting lost on the way to the Real Fun and Games is a major plus as well. It doesn’t really help that we’ve changed venue for the first time since our very beginning.
This is why we figured it was a good idea to make an easy to follow travel guide so that everyone will guaranteed find their way to the right places to the right time, and prevent some travel related nightmares. At least locally, if nothing else. So, here’s the Beginner’s Guide to not getting lost when going to Banzaicon.
First off: Getting to Larvik
The four major methods of travelling to Larvik is by plane, ferry, train, and various express busses.
By taking the plane the two most likely airports you’ll land at are Sandefjord Airport Torp. For our international guests, this particular airport is often referred to as Oslo Airport Torp, and often labeled OSL TORP on the tickets, but you are not in fact landing in Oslo. With regards to Banzai you’re landing about one and a half hours worth of travel closer to the convention. The next alternative is Oslo Airport Gardermoen which is one and a half hour further away. Regardless which airport you land at, your best method of getting to the convention from there is by bus or train.
From arrival at Torp (http://www.torp.no/transport/buss/) you can either order a taxi to Fokserød bus stop which is cirka 5 minutes away. From there the bus TIMEkspressen (http://www.nettbuss.no/) goes once every two hours and stops at Larvik train station, this trip takes cirka 40 minutes. If you’d rather not take the bus, you could take the train (http://www.nsb.no/), for which you jump on the shuttle bus right at the airport’s doorstep which’ll take you to the nearest train station, and then the train takes you from there and straight to Larvik. The bus ride is included in the train ticket, making everything easier.
From arrival at Gardermoen the train (http://www.nsb.no/) is the easiest option, as it goes straight from the basement of the airport and directly to Larvik. No headaches, no hassle. Bus is also a possibility. The Flybussen goes from the outside of the airport to Oslo Bus Terminal, and from there TIMEkspressen should be ready for you to fling yourself on and head on its way down to Larvik within 10 minutes of your arrival at the bus terminal. Tickets for both Flybussen and TIMEkspressen can be found here (http://www.nettbuss.no/).
The ferries most relevant with regards to Banzaicon are the Larvik (Norway) – Hirsthals (Denmark) and Sandefjord (Norway) – Strömstad (Sweden) ferries.
If you get to land at the Sandefjord port without a car, your best option for getting to Larvik will be either the 01 bus or the 03 bus. The 03 has the closest stop to the harbour, and both busses stop right by both Farris Bad and Quality Hotel Grand Farris. Time wise, the 03 bus might take a bit longer time. Train is an option too, but that requires quite a bit more walking, which isn’t the most fun thing to do when lugging around huge luggage cases full of all the necessities to cover the whole weekend.
If you touch land at the Larvik port without a car, we’ve drawn up a route to the convention area for you to walk in the map below. For those of you who find walking abhorrent and would prefer a bit more comfortable travelling method, the local taxi service can be reached at +47 334 20 200. Be sure to talk as clearly as you can as not all Norwegians are the quickest at picking up English even though we all like to pretend we are.
Both the train and the express busses will stop at their respective stations in central Larvik. Locations have all been marked in the map below.
Finally! Arrived in Larvik! What now?
Now, this should cover most of it, but one can’t be expected to walk everywhere while here! Getting familiar with the bus times and stops can be quite a hassle, which is why we have marked up the most relevant bus stops on the map for your convenience. To make things even easier we recommend that you either get an app named VKT for Android or iPhone, or check out http://www.vkt.no for bus times. They also offer an easy-to-use and very handy search function to find departure and arrival times for the various buses and stops.
Staying at Farris Bad? Then the 01 and 208 busses are going to be your best friends. The bus stops labeled 1, 2, 3, 6, and 7 are the ones most relevant for your interests.
Staying at Quality Grand Hotel Farris? 01, 208, and 210 will be your best buds. The bus stops labeled 4, 5, 6, and 7 are the ones most relevant for yours.
These busses will get you smoothly from practically right outside your hotels to about a 2 minute walk from the convention area. To get from the 6 and 7 bus stops and to the convention area, just follow the green/orange route on the map. Don’t mind the slightly sketchy surroundings, it’s all pretty safe.
We hope this little guide is going to be of help, and we wish you all an amazing weekend at Banzaicon! And of course, if you have any questions at all feel free to send us an e-mail.