A UNESCO World Heritage city since 1979, Bergen is on Norway’s west coast and acts as the gateway to the western fjords. Steeped in 900 years of history, the city was a member of the Hanseatic League, and its legacy lives on in the atmospheric Bryggen old wharf district whose painted former merchant houses are Bergen’s most famous sight.
Discover Bergen City and the fjords of Hordaland CountyToday Bergen is best known as a cruise port and as a base for visiting the incredible surrounding fjords of Hordaland. It’s also a major centre for various industries, including petroleum, shipping, marine technology and aquafarming.
You’ll find a range of attractions and things to do in downtown Bergen. Along with the Hanseatic Museum, Bergen Aquarium and the Bergenhus Fortress, if you’re interested in medical history, you can visit the Leprosy Museum and learn about the important role Bergen played in the disease’s discovery.
Music fans have the chance to visit the homes of several Norwegian composers, including Edvard Grieg’s summer villa, just a short and rather pretty bus ride away from the centre.
For some pretty amazing views out across Bergen, make your way up two of the seven surrounding peaks. The Fløibanen funicular travels to the summit of Mount Fløyen in around eight minutes – and when you’re up there, you’ll find a restaurant, hiking trails and a children’s playground at the top.
From Mount Fløyen, you can hop on the cable car to the top of Mount Ulriken. You could, like many, make a day of it by going up one mountain, hiking to the other, and travelling back down on the cable car or funicular.
Beyond the Streets of Bergen City CentreBergen’s core central area is compact and easily walkable, so it’s possible to fit in multiple sights and attractions in one or two days. Then, if time allows, head to the fjords and mountains of Hordaland County, for a taste of what makes this region one of the most popular tourist destinations in Europe.
The obvious place to start is Hardangerfjord, the second longest fjord in Norway and the fourth longest in the world. It’s easy to fit it all in on a day trip from the city, but you might prefer to combine your stay in Bergen with a hotel at one of the villages along Hardangerfjord’s shore for a chance to really soak up the scenery and relax.
Along with gentle sightseeing boat trips, you can also get more involved and try your hand at kayaking, rafting, hiking or glacier climbing, or head slightly further afield for a chance to ride the famous Flåm Railway, one of the most beautiful train journeys in the world.
A holiday in Bergen gives you a wonderful chance to experience Norway at its best. From wandering Bryggen wharf and enjoying some raw oysters or trying whale sausage at the fish market to cruising down the fjords, you’ll enjoy a trip unlike any you’ve had before.