Norway is undoubtedly one of the countries on the “must see” list. Although it still seemed unattainable to many Poles especially because of its high prices, today it is literally within reach. And why is that? That’s because the Norwegian krone currently has reached such a low level as has never been seen before. So this is the perfect opportunity to finally visit this amazing land of fjords! Trips to Norway are something you can’t miss.
Table of Contents:
- Weather in Norway
- What to pack for a vacation in Norway?
- A country where you pay everywhere by card
- City break in Oslo
- By plane to Stavanger
- Trekking to Preikestolen
- Cruise between the Seven Sisters Waterfalls
- A walk among the maskonurs
- Bike trip around Lofoten
- Kitesurfing and surfing in the land of the fjords
- A little winter in the middle of summer
- Travel by camper along the coast
- Pack your bags and head to Norway for tours!
Weather in Norway
Browsing through various online forums, one can still come across the reproduction of hurtful stereotypes about Norway. Many people repeat texts like a mantra about how dark and cold it is, which can scare off many tourists who want to travel to the land of fjords right from the start. The truth, however, is quite different. Keep in mind that Norway is not only extremely picturesque, but also the longest European country, with a length of about 1,750 kilometers, almost 3 times the length of Poland. In such a situation, the first thing to start with is that each Norwegian region has completely different weather conditions.
In general, summer in Norway starts much earlier and it is already quite warm in May. The average temperature then is about 20 degrees. In June, July and August, it reaches about 30. Sun and tanning enthusiasts will have nothing to complain about here, as the sun in the north heats up really hard, so it’s worth remembering to wear sunscreen. In the north of the country, even in summer, the temperature rarely exceeds 15 degrees Celsius, so be sure to bring warmer clothes when taking trips to Norway.
What to pack for a vacation in Norway
Speaking of closet, raincoats are also sure to come in handy, especially if you’re going to the Bergen area, where the weather is truly English. It has even been hailed as the rainiest city in Europe. There’s something about that, because even in January it’s not hard to get rain there.
It is certainly worth taking with you also the aforementioned sunscreen and something for mosquitoes, which can really annoy especially around lakes, and there is no shortage of them in Norway. A camera and a drone are also sure to come in handy, as the beautiful landscapes in Norway are breathtaking. Unfortunately, many places known from the Internet, such as the Troll Road look impressive unfortunately only in photos. In person, it is shielded by railings or obstructed from view by high-voltage cables. In this situation, a drone is definitely the best solution. That’s why, instead of running aimlessly, it’s a good idea to think beforehand about what you want to see to make your trip as attractive as possible.
A country where you pay everywhere by card
If we already know what is worth taking with us, we should also know what is not useful. Cash. In Norway, you can easily pay everywhere with a card: on the highway, at a gas station or in a souvenir store. In the near future, Norway plans to abandon cash altogether, in favor of virtual currency.
Because of the sudden drop in the koruna, it is also becoming increasingly difficult to exchange it in Polish banks and exchange offices, so it is best to find out from your bank about the possibility of paying in koruna or use the increasingly popular Revolut app. Payment for highway gates or parking lots is also done through a special app, so a trip to Norway can be completely cashless.
City break in Oslo
Many people who are planning trips to Norway for the first time wonder what to choose first: Oslo or Bergen? For a short weekend trip, however, it’s worth going to Oslo. The Norwegian capital is sure to provide us with attractions for a full three days. The fact that you can get there quickly and easily from as many as two airports, Gardermoen and Torp, is also an unquestionable plus. Airline tickets from Warsaw range in price from PLN 50 to PLN 500 one way, depending on which airline you choose (Wizzair, Norwegian, LOT). The flight itself takes about 2 hours, so with good organization you can get on a plane right after work.
The city itself impresses with its perfect blend of contemporary art, empire style and nature. Glazed, modern skyscrapers perfectly reflect the sun on a hot summer day, and when we are too hot we can relax by the fjord or sit on the roof of the Opera House.
While in the area, it is also worth taking a stroll through Aker Brygge, one of the most expensive neighborhoods in the city. There is a small harbor and dozens of restaurants serving Scandinavian cuisine. Here you can also board a water ferry and take a short cruise around Oslofjorden.
Oslo is also the capital of Norwegian art, thanks to Queen Sonja Haraldsen of Norway. There are many museums here, including the recently opened Munch Museum. A ticket for an adult costs 160 kr. Finally, you can enjoy a coffee or drink in the restaurant on the top floor overlooking the city. Norway is a country where museums of all kinds are almost everywhere, so there really is something for everyone.
By plane to Stavanger
Another Norwegian city, Stavanger, also awaits lovers of short vacation getaways. We can also easily get there by plane from major Polish cities. It is a typical port city where cruise ships from all over the world arrive from April to October. It’s pretty crowded for Norway in the summer season, but it’s really worth the trip. You can start your tour with the most colorful street in Stavanger, Øvre Holmengate. Coffee at one of the cafes there is a must!
It’s also ideal to take a stroll through the old town called Gamle Stavanger, where you’ll find the typical white houses from the 19th century. A 5-minute walk from there is also Norway’s oldest cathedral, which perfectly captures the Gothic style.
Trekking to Preikestolen
Stavanger is also an ideal starting point if you want to see Lysefjord or go trekking around Preikestolen and Kjeragbolten. Both of these points are probably familiar to all adrenaline lovers. Preikestolen, otherwise known as Ambona or Pulpit Rock, is a distinctive rock shelf suspended above the fjord at an altitude of about 600 meters. This is where the most famous Norwegian photos we can find in guidebooks about this beautiful country come from. The road to Preikestolen is not very demanding, it is marked as medium difficulty. To get there you need to travel less than 4 kilometers one way.
Kjeragbolten (a.k.a. Kjerag) is already a harder place to reach. The route is a tad longer and much steeper. Certainly, to go there you will need good shoes and… a little courage. Especially if you want to climb the famous stone wedged between two rocks at 1,000 meters above sea level.
Cruise between the Seven Sisters Waterfalls
If we are not mountain climbers, we can choose to take a ferry ride between the fjords. The most famous of these leads along the Geirangerfjord. It is there that we will see one of the world’s most famous waterfalls listed as a UNESCO World Heritage Site – the Seven Sisters Falls. It consists of seven separate streams, with which an unusual legend is associated. It proclaims that long ago a Viking set out to find a wife and then met seven sisters. He could not choose the one among them and turned into a waterfall on the other side of the fjord, called “Competitor.” The sisters were also transformed into springs and have been looking at each other flirtatiously ever since.
The cruise ship departs from the town of Geiranger and costs about 600 kroner per person, and the cruise lasts 1.5 hours. If we feel unsatisfied, we can later go hiking on the surrounding trails to see the fjord from above, or quite close to there we can set off on a hike in the area and see the Jostedalsbreen glacier.
A walk among the maskonurs
Few people know that Norway is also home to a tiny island inhabited by many species of birds, including puffins or maskonurs. We are talking about Runde located south of Ålesund. It is the arrival of the maskonur in April that is the unwritten harbinger of summer in Norway.
Runde is called the bird island by locals. This is where thousands of species of birds come during the breeding season, and we can see them in their natural habitat. The island can be accessed via a bridge leading from the neighboring island. A local bus goes there, but it will be best to rent a car at the airport, which will be easier to use to get around the area. You don’t have to be a fan of ornithology to find something to your liking on the island. It also delights with its views. It is surrounded by cliffs against which high waves crash, and when the tide comes in, it is also easier to spot animals there: seals or otters. You can easily rent a hytte on the island or use the campgrounds and stay longer.
Bike trip around Lofoten
For fans of physical activities, Norway is undoubtedly a paradise. This is because Norwegians love playing sports and spending time outdoors. And the perfect place to combine the two is… a bicycle trip around Lofoten. Lofoten is undoubtedly one of the country’s most famous and beautiful landmarks. This archipelago in the Norwegian Sea attracts thousands of tourists from all over the world every year. There are some of the most beautiful beaches in the world, turquoise, incredibly clear water and breathtaking views.
In summer, the Lofoten Islands are best explored by bicycle. The entire route is slightly over 100 kilometers, so less skilled cyclists can spread it out even over several days. The plus side of cycling is that you can stop or deviate from the route every now and then, as there are really a lot of viewpoints that everyone associates with Google.
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Kitesurfing and surfing in the land of the fjords
And if biking isn’t enough, there are also many kite and surf spots in Lofoten. Although the water temperature between June and August rarely exceeds 12 degrees Celsius, there is no shortage of enthusiasts of these water sports there at all. You can also find nurseries that operate… all year round! The famous kitesurfing champion Kari Schibevaag comes to the archipelago regularly to take advantage of the ideal conditions found there.
But Lofoten is not the only place to enjoy water sports in Norway. A spot in the south of the country, in Larvik, awaits fans of slightly warmer water. Hvittensand, or the so-called “white beach,” tempts not only with its incredibly clear water, but also with its beautiful beach. After swimming, you can take a trip to the center, where delicious Norwegian cinnamon rolls await tourists.
A little winter in the middle of summer
For those who are not fond of the heat even in summer, Norway also has something to offer. In the very north of the country in the municipality of Nordcapp on the island of Magerøya, the North Cape awaits us. You can only get there by car by driving through a tunnel built under the water. The island is also home to Knivskjellodden, Europe’s northernmost cape.
Those willing to go there must remember to bring warmer clothing. Although it is vain to look for snow there in July, the temperature rarely exceeds 10 degrees. A trip to Norway’s far north can thus be counted among those famous tales of how cold it is there all the time. While in the North Cape area, it is also worth seeing the farthest European town of Hammerfest and Tromsø, called the Gateway to the Arctic. And although it is in vain to look for the aurora borealis in summer, a polar day is certainly waiting there. This may be the only chance to view the solar disk 24 hours a day.
Travel by camper along the coast
One more idea to spend your vacation in Norway is to travel by camper van. However, it is important to keep in mind that it is really a huge country with many places worth seeing. Therefore, with 2-3 weeks of vacation planned, it makes sense to focus on a specific area. Especially for novice campers, a trip along the coast is ideal. You can then hook up with typical seaside towns, where you can eat delicious fish or bathe in the sea.
It is also a country ideally suited for RV travel, and as a result, exploring Norway on your own is really trivial. In many places there are services where we top up water or drain sewage free of charge. In addition, Norway is a country where we can sleep in the wild without paying for camping. According to Allemannsretten law, every person has free access to enjoy nature. As a result, we can actually spend the night wherever we freeze.
Pack your bags and head to Norway for tours!
If you already know what to pack, what to pay attention to and, most importantly, what to see, don’t delay any longer and get going. It doesn’t matter how much time you plan to spend in this amazing country, because one thing is for sure – a vacation in Norway is sure to be unforgettable!
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