36 Hours in Bergen, Norway

Before setting off for nearby fjords and waterfalls, explore the cultural scene and Nordic cuisine of this beguiling coastal city.

Comments: 21

  1. Lovely city...went last year. If you're there be sure to catch a boat through the fjords to the town of Balestrand! Majestic...mellow...and full of cloudberries.

  2. Balestrand is a particularly lovely town and an ideal place to use as a base to explore the area. The surrounding fjords, namely the naeroyfjord, are awe inspiring. Some of the most stunning scenery imaginable.

  3. Lovely article and wonderful info. One quibble. About Grieg, the Norwegian composer, you wrote, "...the Romantic-era composer and Bergen native revered for his classical concertos and soulful piano compositions." Actually, he's best know for his single concerto (not multiples), written for piano and orchestra, and his famous "Peer Gynt Suite," for orchestra. Those soulful piano solo compositions, while beautiful, are somewhat less known and certainly less performed.

  4. J, sad news. This isn't about travel via a tweet. It is about being a "wise-gal," viz. the DACA meeting. Here's the Haiti item -- https://www.nytimes.com/2017/12/04/travel/in-haiti-tourism-economy-carib...

  5. As a Norwegian-American immigrant, native of Bergen, Norway, imagine my pleasure at seeing my home town featured on the front page of NYT. Thank you!

  6. Just recently back, a truly lovely city. I would recommend avoiding the dreadful Baltic cruises & fly to Oslo, take the train to Bergen, come back via the delightful fiord cruise/Flan Railway (packages from Norway in a Nutshell). That way, you can spend a few days in Bergen and several in Oslo, one of the most lovely, safe (albeit expensive) cities in the world.

  7. On my small group tours to Norway, we always travel to Bergen via scenic train from Flam. From my experiences, please allow me to share some tips. Buy the Bergen Card - it gives free local transportation throughout the Bergen area as well as free/discounted admission to nearly all the attractions listed in this article (and more) including the trip out to Troldhaugen. I also recommend a guided walking tour by a licensed guide (ask for Kees Kroon of "Bergen by Experts" - not only is he the best, he is the tallest guide you will ever meet) to not only learn about the city itself, but of the Norwegian way of life in this Hanseatic League city. Eat like a Viking and try a reindeer "pølser" (Norwegian for hot dog) somehow strangely associated with Norman Rockwell. Get one at the renowned Trekroneren stand, close to the Floibanen funicular. Lastly, the whisky bar at the Grand Terminus hotel (next to the train station) makes the best drink in town and always serves as our comfortable base for exploration in and around Bergen.

    Steve Solosky

  8. Leaves me longing for a society with gender equality,
    civil discourse, courtesy, and even temperaments with
    an appreciation for others.

    As we say "Everyone has their own ways.".

  9. Nice review, thank you! I am not sure how long aho the writer has been to Bergen but I think it's missing the fact that KODE 1 is the latest cultural addition to the city following its recent re-opened after a refurbishment project by 3RW arkitekter, and also hosts one of the hottest spots for eating, which is BIEN pizzeria. Also strange not to mention USF (United Sardine Factory) the heart and pulse of contemporary culture and music scene in Bergen, also one of the only spaces where you can enjoy the sea-side uninterruptedly. I thought I should mention these at they seem unmissable in Bergen today! Thank you for the article.

  10. You're online. This is a travel article, so show us the sights. Adding pictures is cheap.

  11. Norway is great...until you're confronted with a bill that is twice that of London or New York.

  12. Sorry Caezar I believe you are quite wrong. Most nice (really nice) hotels New York start at $350 to $400 a night and rise from there, Bergen is no worse. Public transportation is cheap and walking is free, maybe the beer is more and perhaps wine as well, alcohol is heavily taxed there.....and nature in Norway is beyond amazing.

  13. My mother grew up in Bergen under the Nazi occupation in her later teen age years before she moved to the U.S. in the late 1940s / early 1950s. A lovely very livable city with excellent culture and history (Haakens Hallen, Bryggen), and a great city from which to begin a tour of the fjords and coastal towns of Vestlandet by slow ferry to the North Cape. It is also an excellent base from which to hike into the mountains from the tops of Fløyen or Ulriken. The walk down from each provides an outstanding panoramic view of Bergen as well.
    Of course the weather can be problematic: A short term tourist asks a young child of Bergen when it may stop raining, to which the reply "I don't know, I'm only 5 years old"! However, the rain along Norway's west coast is known to give the inhabitants most excellent complexions!

  14. That joke (I don't know I'm only 5) is probably at least 100 years old, perhaps 500.

  15. Spent a solid week in Oslo recently. Can not recommend it enough. So much to do and see there. You don't have to leave the city to experience what Norway has to offer culturally. We're planning to go back but to Bergen next trip where we'll soak in some of the nearby natural wonders.
    Norway is so progressive and modern. Be prepared to be awed, (and envious).
    Beautiful people and delightful country to experience. I can truly understand why it is considered the world's happiest place.

  16. Just viewing the photo of Bergen makes my heart smile, and thoughts about when I can go again. You cannot ask for a more beautiful place to visit.

  17. We are in Bergen this week enjoying the classical overcast weather and rain. Bergen is a walkers city. Having a raincoat, an umbrella and good walking shoes are must haves. Make sure that your rain coat has an inside pocket system to carry all your must haves. Recommend that you get a rain trench coat. You will really appreciate the extra coverage compared to the traditional jacket.
    Walking to the top of the Floibanen get's you away from the throngs of tourist qued up to take the funicular.
    As the write of the article points out there are a host of places to stop and have coffee and a bite to eat. We most enjoyed Cyclo spisebar for the most amazing sushi.
    We stayed at the Hotel Park Bergen. A couple blocks from the city center in a quiet neighborhood.

  18. There are a couple of different ways to enjoy the city, depending on how physically fit you are ( surrounding area ) and at a couple of different price points. I will try and give you a bit of a local flavor.

    Certainly if you are fit, then you can walk around the city ( especially walking up the steep hill of Fløyen ) There are extensive views ( for kms ) and paths ( there 7 actually mountains ) you can traverse above the city and around in a loop to bring you back down. Stop into your local RIMI ( grocery store ) and pick up fresh produce, bread, meats, cheese and make your own picnic to bring along with you on your walk around.

    Go from cafe to cafe and museum to museum to get a real sense of history as you are caffeinated up. ( everything is centralized and within a short walk. Take a ferry from the main inner harbor fr a short boat ride to various points and then come back at the end of the day. ( the best way to get out on the water cheap ) Also, you can plan to stay at cabins ( hytte ) that are at a fraction of the price than in the inner city. Nightlife for Bergenser is relegated to the late eve' of Friday\Saturday because øl ( beer ) costs like $15 each.

    If money is not of real concern, then stay at an old hotel ( several in the downtown core ). Dine out ( top of Fløyen ) often and order wine. Take a trip on the train to Voss for the day\return. ( magnificent views of the surrounding are ) Rent a car and get out of the city.


  19. - and when you are at Litteraturhuset, you may well take you coffee with you and pop into the book store, Boksalongen, and Fosse-stova. Boksalongen is an independent book store, well curated with books in English! Fosse-stova is a room dedicated to the playwright and author Jon Fosse, our times' Ibsen. All his books are on display, you can see an interview in English with Fosse (fun fact: his rewards assembled on shelves and walls in his bathroom...) and you can also see him reading his own poems in Norwegian. Check out: www.litthusbergen.no, and Litteraturhuset i Bergen and Boksalongen at facebook and Instagram.

  20. The tourist information center sells tickets to concerts at Troldhaugen and even provides bus transportation to ticket holders.

  21. May I suggest a coastal cruise from Bergen, North or South, Norway has some beautiful coastal cities with a long and rich history.