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Travel Directory / Europe / Norway

Norway Travel Guide

Norway is located in the western part of Scandinavia in Northern Europe. Its coastline is made up of massive fjords and about 50,000 islands which stretch for more than 2,500 kilometers. Perhaps Norway's magnificent fjords are its main and most dramatic features. In fact, two of Norway's fjords topped National Geographic's survey on the most popular World Heritage site, edging out the Great Wall of China, the Machu Picchu in Peru, the Great Pyramids of Egypt and the Angkor Wat.

This sparsely populated country is also known to tourists as the Land of the Midnight Sun. This is because the northern part of Norway lies north of the Arctic Circle, where the sun does not set in midsummer and the sun is never seen during winter. Possibly the most popular town in which to experience this natural occurrence is in Tromsø, located in the North Cape far above the Arctic Circle.

Aside from the fjords, there are many other destinations you can visit in Norway. It is perhaps a good idea to prepare for backpacking adventure and hiking trips if you want to have a great time in Norway and experience what nature has to offer. Let's begin our quest through this Land of the Midnight Sun.

Oslo is the country's capital and is Norway's most populous city with around 700,000 inhabitants. The city has very strong cultural arts with a good number of museums and galleries to choose from. There is the Munch Museum, the National Gallery, Norwegian Folk Museum and the Viking Ships Museum to name a few. Then there's the Holmenkollen ski jumping complex just outside the city center and is a very popular destination. Many buildings in Oslo draw tourists as well, such as the Kongelige Slott or the Royal Palace, Stortinget and the Akershus Castle.

During the medieval times Bergen was the capital of Norway. Now it is a major trading port which offers a vast selection of boat excursions to tourist and locals alike. The Hanseatic-Bryggen district is a UNESCO World Heritage Site because of its various 17th century and earlier architectures. You can also take a cable car to the summit of Mount Ulriken where you can get a spectacular view of the city and the coastline.

Lillehammer is the country's biggest winter sports and skiing resort and stands near Norway's largest lake, the Mjøsa which is reportedly where a ‘Loch Ness' monster is hiding away. It played host to the 1994 Winter Olympics where local skiers Tomba and Ulvang were cheered on by the spectators.

Trondheim, founded in 997 AD as Kaupangr then later called Nidaros, was Norway's old capital. It houses the Nidarosdomen Cathedral which was built over St. Olav's grave and is now a famous pilgrimage site. There is also the Ringve Museum which showcases rare and historical musical instruments. Stiftsgården is the Royal Family's palace in Trondheim, was built around the 18th century and is made of wood and found in the center of the city.