6 Ways to Experience Bergen, Norway
If we were to make a list of all the great things you could do in Bergen, Norway – it could list over 100 things. After all, Bergen is Norway’s second biggest city and is known as being the “city of seven mountains”. So whether you’re a resident of Bergen and need some new ideas to explore your city; or you’re on a short trip to see one of Norway’s must see cities, then this short but sweet list will satisfy your craving.
Bryggen in Bergen during summer.
1. Admire the art at the KODE museums, including a collection of works by Edvard Munch
KODE is a collection of five previously independent museums that were merged in 2006 and today, stands as a single entity. The individual museums however, maintain their own name and include the: Edvard Grieg Museum Troldhaugen, Harald Sæverud Museum Siljustøl, Ole Bull Museum Lysøen, old institutions Bergen Art Museum and the West Norway Museum of Decorative Art. According to their website, the KODE museum has a unified goal of collecting, preserving, documenting, researching and displaying art and art objects.
Art buff? Then you can just plant yourself in this area for the rest of the day. There are over 43,000 art objects, ranging from paintings and drawings, sculptures, installations and videos, to objects, furniture, artisanal handcraft and design.
Photo: Dag Fosse, KODE
2. Ride the Fløibanen funicular railway for breathtaking views of the city
The Fløibanen funicular (what sounds more fun than that) can be found in the heart of Bergen, 150 m from Fisketorget (the fish market) and Bryggen wharf. The journey up to Fløyen takes 5–8 minutes and takes you 320 m above sea level – that’s a nice view!
You can even have a live preview of it with the help of this fantastic webcam. The funicular runs daily all year round from early morning to late evening. So after you’ve enjoyed your dinner, go for a walk on Fløyen and finish the day off with a coffee to go at the café on the way.
3. Explore the Norwegian fjords by taking a boat trip
So you have your shot of the fjords from your hotel. Now its time to vary the shot and take one from sea level. Take a boat trip and pass through some of the country’s most beautiful landscapes. A few companies like FjordTours do package tours like “Norway in a nutshell” that include trips to see the Bergen Railway and Flåm Railway – so choose the one that’s right for your schedule and your must sees!
4. Experience the great outdoors – hiking, fishing and kayaking are essential
Did we mention that Bergen is perfect for action filled outdoor adventures? There’s a lot of nice hiking trails up the mountain surrounding the city. If you take the Fløibanen funicular, you’ll be on your way in just seven minutes!
Marsteinen and Fedje are two destinations close to Bergen you can go if you want to go deep-sea fishing. In these places, fishing is particularly good. Njord AS offers daily kajaking tours and is only a 2,5-hour drive east of Bergen. The area is unique for kayaking – a lot of small islands and sounds, but also closeness to the roughness of open waters.
This is only a taste of outdoor activities in Bergen, you’ll find lots more like; rafting trips, family rafting, sports rafting, river boarding, waterfall abseiling, paragliding or hang-gliding – all equally thrilling!
5. Visit Voss
Photo: Nils-Erik Bjørholt via visitnorway.com
Voss is an area full of experiences and things to do. During winter Voss offers a lot of nice skiing opportunities, both alpine and cross-country. When spring and summer arrives, you’ll need to bring your swimwear as some of the greatest adventures include rafting and kayaking.
We recommend bringing a lunch pack from your hotel along for a picnic after a hike in the mountain areas. Besides nature, Voss offers a variety of attractions both historical and cultural as well as museums and art galleries.
6. Uncover the city’s fascinating past at Bryggens Museum
Bryggen is an old wharf in Bergen that has a rich history. It is an exceptional example of a medieval district and has been designated a World Heritage site by UNESCO. In 1955, parts of Bryggen were ravaged by a fire and it was during the subsequent excavations that a huge number of objects were found that provide a vivid insight into commerce, shipping, handicrafts and everyday life in the medieval times. The Bryggen museum hosts temporary and themed exhibitions as well as the various finds of medieval times.
Extra: Enjoy a sugary skillingsbolle (cinnamon roll), a local delicacy
If you have a sweet tooth – this is a must!
That’s how to best enjoy this Norwegian pearl! Have a great stay!