52 Reasons to Visit Norway
Norway is ranked as one of the best places to live in the world year after year. It is also one of the most beautiful countries on earth. It’s home to more natural wonders such as such northern lights, the midnight sun, fjords, and national parks. Norway also has stunning cities and a country worth a long visit.
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1. Taking the Fløibanen funicular to the top of Mount Fløyen in Bergen, for stunning views of the harbor and city
2. Spending some time in the Lofoten Islands – ranked as among the most beautiful in the world by National Geographic Magazine
3. Climbing on the top of the new Oslo Opera house’s roof, for great views over the Oslo waterfront
4. Witnessing the awesome spectacle of the northern lights (anywhere above the Arctic Circle in winter… if you’re lucky)
5. Feeling the rhythm at the Notodden Blues Festival in Telemark, taking place every year in late August
6. Spotting whales on a whale safari off the Vesterålen Islands
7. Attending Bergen International Festival, June, one of Scandinavia’s main cultural events, featuring music, literature, theater, dance, opera, and more
8. Joining a giant crab safari in Kirkenes, northern Norway – you get to eat your catch on the beach at the end of it
9. Celebrating 17 May, Norway’s national day, on Karl Johans gate, Oslo’s main thoroughfare
10. Wandering the cobbled-stoned streets of Gamlebyen, Scandinavia’s best preserved fortress town in Fredrikstad
11. Cruising the Norwegian coast from Bergen in the south to Kirkenes in the North with Hurtigruten
12. Fishing in the Namsos River for wild Norwegian salmon
13. Spotting herds of wild reindeer in the Hardangervidda, northern Europe’s largest mountainous plateau
14. Enjoying lunch at Solsiden, Oslo’s best seafood restaurant, right by the harbour, on a sunny summer day
15. Taking the hike to Prekeistolen, near Stavanger, one of Norway’s most popular day walks, attracting thousands every year.
16. Ice-skating on myriad frozen lakes in winter, pretty much anywhere in Norway
17. Cross-country skiing in Rena or Lillehammer, for arguably the most beautiful winter landscapes you’ll ever see
18. Sailing in the Hvaler Archipelago, a summer paradise in the Oslofjord
19. Spotting fine examples of Jugendstil architecture in Ålesund
20. Scrutinizing the horizon from mainland Europe’s most Northernly point, the North Cape
21. Gorging on cherries in the Hardanger Fjord in summer, or seeing the blossoms in spring – the fjord is home to thousands of apple and cherry trees
22. Hiking in the Lyngen Alps just outside Tromsø
23. Exploring the Nærøyfjord, Norway’s smallest fjord, and a Unesco World Heritage site, by kayak
24. Taking the scenic Flåm Railway from Myrdal down to the Sognefjord – it’s the steepest one you’re likely to ever try
25. Picking cloudberries, the queen of berries, and making jam to bring home (or buying the readymade version in a local delicatessen)
26. Learning about the industry that made Norway rich at the Norwegian Petroleum Museum in Stavanger
27. Watching daredevils jump from the brand new Holmenkollen ski jump in Oslo (opened March 2010)
28. Visiting the Munch Museum in Oslo: the most comprehensive collection of the artist’s works anywhere in the world
29. Cycling Rallarvegen, a popular route along the Hardangervidda
30. Spotting polar bears on Svalbard, Norway’s outpost in the Arctic Ocean
31. Being awed by the sheer scale of Nidarosdomen, Norway’s biggest cathedral in Trondheim
32. Learning about the Sami people and culture in Lapland
33. Admiring relics of the Viking era at the Viking Ships Museum in Oslo
34. Shopping at Bergen’s famous fish market right on the harbour
35. Making the most of longest days of the year while the midnight sun lasts in summer
36. Going for a stroll on the Unesco World Heritage site of Bryggen, famed for its Hanseatic building, Bergen
37. Visiting Lysøen, the stunning summer residence of violin virtuoso Ole Bull, on a gorgeous island a few kilometers south of Bergen
38. Admiring the intricate woodwork of stave churches, beautiful wooden churches dating back to the middle ages
39. Wandering the streets of the picturesque mining town of Røros, also the coldest spot in mainland Norway
40. Wondering how Saltstraumen, the world’s most powerful maelstrom, some 30km east of Bodø, works
41. Getting musical at the Ringve Museum, featuring the country’s largest collection of musical instruments
42. Feeling the spray on your face at Vøringfossen, Norway’s most photographed waterfall
43. Going wild at Kristiansand’s Zoo, a must for children of all ages
44. Catching international rock bands and local artists at the Øya Festival in Oslo, August
45. Taking part in the wooden boats festival in Risør, one of many picturesque villages on the Sørlandet coast
46. Camping in some really remote areas, with access to acres of untouched nature all to yourself
47. Sharing a glass (or two) of aquavit, Norway’s most famous tipple, with locals
48. Admiring the panoramic view outside Molde, famous for its 222 mountain peaks
49. Going skiing in the middle of summer at the Stryn Summer Ski Center
50. Taking the kids to see the world’s tallest troll at the Hunderfossen Amusement Park near Lillehammer
51. Marvelling at the beautiful statues in Vigeland Park, Oslo, named after Norway’s most famous sculptor
52. Indulging in a soak, or a massage, at Farris Bad in Larvik, recently voted best spa in Scandinavia.
Inspired to visit Norway? Visit TripAdvisor for Hotel Deals in Norway.
As travel today remains uncertain, please keep your safety and the safety of others in mind at all times. If you are comfortable with traveling, please travel responsibly and within regulation as any travel is at your own risk.
If you do decide to travel at this time, here are a few recommendations:
- Wear a face mask.
- Bring hand sanitizer and wash your hands on a regular basis.
- Check official websites before your trip for the latest updates on policies, closures, and status of local businesses and Los Angeles Travel alerts.
- Book a hotel with free cancellation in case you need to change your plans at the last minute.
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After 15 years based in London, where she worked as a travel journalist and editor, Marie Peyre moved to Norway at the end of 2007. She now works as a freelance travel writer, and covers Scandinavia in general and Norway in particular, for a number of clients in the UK and the US, including Fodor’s, Frommer’s, Virgin, Insight Guides and Columbus Travel Publishing. She has also authored a book on London Restaurants for Globe Pequot. In the past two years Marie has learnt Norwegian and the art of cross-country skiing – two essential skills when living in Norway. In her free time she blogs about Østfold, the region where she’s based in southeastern Norway you can find her on Twitter here: https://twitter.com/elusive_moose