Backpacking Norway

For your next holiday, are you drawn to an unspoiled country with captivating, wild nature? Do you want to see the fjords that cut deep into rugged mountains and enjoy the spectacle of the Northern Lights? If so, you should visit Norway, the westernmost country in Scandinavia, which borders Russia, Sweden and Finland.

Have fun exploring our ideal backpacking route for Norway.


Important Basics

Official Language

Norwegian

Basic Vocabulary
YesJa
NoNei
Thank youTakk
HelloHallo; Hei
GoodbyeHei! Ha det!
Capital City

Oslo

Form of Government

Parliamentary Constitutional Monarchy

Phone Country Code

+47

Currency

Norwegian Krone

Climate

ø Maximum daytime temperature (depending on season): -1 to 20°C

Ø Maximum night temperature: -6 to 11°C

Summer: June to September, Winter: November to February

Fun Fact

On Spitsbergen, a Norweigian island, it’s illegal to die.

Cities

Lillehammer

Lillehammer is a small town in the south of Norway, located directly on the shore of Lake Mjøsa. In 1994, the Winter Olympics were held here, making the city quite well-known. Lillehammer has some great wooden houses to admire, some of which date back to the 18th century.

Many of the sights you should visit, such as the ski jump, are located in the Olympic Park. If you want to integrate some exercise into your day, we recommended climbing the 954 steps which give you a beautiful view of Lillehammer and Lake Mjøsa. If not, you can always take the lift!

Another great attraction is Maihaugen, the largest open-air museum in Europe. It consists of 185 traditional buildings in miniature form. The Lillehammer Art Museum should also not be missed when visiting the city.

In the winter, Lillehammer is a great place for winter sports, such as skiing and cross-country skiing. In the summer, you can go hiking or mountain-biking. This means that no matter when you visit, there’s always the opportunity to be active in a beautiful natural setting.

You can go shopping in the so-called Storgata, a place surrounded by boutiques, restaurants and wooden houses.

You can stay in a local hostel. For €34 a night, you can sleep in a 4-bed dorm.

Trondheim

Luckily for you, there’s another great city up next! From Lillehammer, you can take a rental car to Trondheim.

Trondheim is a beautiful city situated in the province of Sør-Trøndelag, on the banks of the Nidelva River. The city has around 190,000 inhabitants and is one of the oldest cities in the country. The main sight to see is the Nidaros Cathedral, which is the second largest church in Northern Europe.

In Trondheim, you’ll not only find a lot of cultural heritage, but also a large city centre. Although the city isn’t huge, there’s always a lot going on. There are many music and art events, lots of students live there and there’s an active nightlife. One prominent festival is the St. Olav Festival, which is at the end of July. In March, there’s the so-called Minimal Short Film Festival, where you can watch great Norwegian and Scandinavian short films. There are many other charming events all year round, so be sure to inform yourself when planning your trip.

Since Trondheim is located on the Nidelva River, you should definitely watch a sunset by the river. Especially in summer, the view is spectacular. In the city centre and a bit outside, there are many great wooden houses that you can visit as well.

The so-called Stiftsgården, also located in the city, is the local residence of the king. You can also visit the old fortress on the island of Munkholmen, which can be reached by boat.

In Trondheim, you can stay in one of the local hostels. It’s €32 per night for a bed in a dorm.

Alesund

After you’ve enjoyed Trondheim to the fullest, it’s time for you to drive to Alesund.

Alesund is in a wonderful location; the city centre was influenced by the Art Nouveau and is definitely a place you want to visit!

You can go to the aquarium and admire the local fish species. Alesund also has a great museum, the Atlantic Sea Park, as well as the so-called Art Nouveau Centre. The Atlantic Sea Park is the largest saltwater aquarium in northern Europe and offers many different activities, such as diving.

Brosundet divides the two main islands: Aspøy and Hellebroa. Here, you can enjoy a great view and eat outside in one of the many restaurants.

You should also climb the steps to Fjellstua for a breathtaking view over the fjords and the surrounding mountains. You can grab a bite in a nearby restaurant offering simple yet tasty dishes.

In the winter, you can take a bus and go skiing just outside the little town.

Not only is Alesund very scenic, but there’s also lots to do there. You can stay in one of the local accomodations, where a night in a 3-bed dorm would cost you €47.

Geirangerfjord

From Alesund, you’ll take your rental car to Geirangerfjord. The fjord is close nearby, and once you’re there you can go hiking or have a picnic with an extraordinary view.

The Geirangerfjord is one of the most famous fjords in Norway and has been a UNESCO World Heritage Site since 2006. It’s approximately 15 kilometres long and between 600 metres and 1.3 kilometres wide.

The Geirangerfjord is the continuation of the Sunnylvsfjord, which is a branch of the Storfjord. Geiranger is a village located right at the end of the Geirangerfjord.

During your stay in Geirangerfjord, you can sleep in one of the local hostels. A single room costs €44 per night.

Flam

Flam is a little village with about 450 inhabitants. It’s located in the province of Sogn og Fjordane and situated in the so-called Flamsdalen, which is a narrow, elongated valley flanked by high mountains. The mountain range to the west is part of the Nærøyfjord World Heritage Site.

The main attraction here is the breathtaking nature. But if you feel like sightseeing, there’s a railway museum in the city, as well as the Otternes Bygdetun open-air Museum, where you can get an insight into the region's agriculture and life in the 18th century.

You can sleep in one of the local hostels. For €21 per night, you can get a bed in a dorm.

Bergen

Bergen is located in the province of Vestland and is the second largest city in Norway after Oslo. It’s situated directly by the sea, towards the south of Fjordland.

The fish market, located directly at the harbour, is worth the visit. There are vendors of various nationalities here, which makes the fish market something very special.

When you’re in Bergen, you should definitely visit the Bryggen district, which used to be the district of the German merchants in the city. There’s a Hanseatic museum you can visit and lots of wooden houses and warehouses to admire. Bryggen is a UNESCO World Heritage Site and one of the country’s best-known relics from the Middle Ages. There are wonderful wooden houses all over the city, which often date back to the 18th or 19th century: Bryggen in particular is world-famous for this.

During your time in Bergen, you should also take the Fløibanen funicular to Mount Fløien, which is located 300 metres above the city. From there, you have a great view of the harbours. The base station is in the centre of the town.

Hostels in Bergen can be found for as little as €25 a night in a 4-bed dorm.

Oslo

Oslo, your last stop, will complete your perfect backpacking trip through Norway. You’ll have visited the most beautiful sights and the most important cities in the country. You’ll drive your rental car from Bergen to Oslo.

Oslo is the capital of Norway and has over 650,000 inhabitants. There’s a lot to do here and many great spots to see.

The Royal Castle and Askerhus Castle are definitely worth seeing. There are also many other great buildings in the city, such as the Oslo Opera House, the Parliament, the City Hall and the Nobel Peace Centre. The opera house was built in 2008 and is made of white marble and glass; it’s located right next to the fjord and near the main railway station.

Of course, there are also great museums in the capital, such as the Munch Museum, the National Gallery, the Viking Ship House, the Fram Museum, the Folklore Museum and the Kon-Tiki Museum.

When in Oslo, you should also pay a visit to Vigelandsparken. This vast, beautiful park is located in the western part of the city and has over 200 sculptures, made by the sculptor Gustav Vigeland. The main sculpture is an obelisk in the middle of the park.

Before you return home, you’ll spend the night in the country’s capital. Accommodation in a hostel in Oslo costs €24 per night in a dorm.


Lillehammer

Lillehammer

Lillehammer is a small town in the south of Norway, located directly on the shore of Lake Mjøsa. In 1994, the Winter Olympics were held here, making the city quite well-known. Lillehammer has some great wooden houses to admire, some of which date back to the 18th century.

Many of the sights you should visit, such as the ski jump, are located in the Olympic Park. If you want to integrate some exercise into your day, we recommended climbing the 954 steps which give you a beautiful view of Lillehammer and Lake Mjøsa. If not, you can always take the lift!

Another great attraction is Maihaugen, the largest open-air museum in Europe. It consists of 185 traditional buildings in miniature form. The Lillehammer Art Museum should also not be missed when visiting the city.

In the winter, Lillehammer is a great place for winter sports, such as skiing and cross-country skiing. In the summer, you can go hiking or mountain-biking. This means that no matter when you visit, there’s always the opportunity to be active in a beautiful natural setting.

You can go shopping in the so-called Storgata, a place surrounded by boutiques, restaurants and wooden houses.

You can stay in a local hostel. For €34 a night, you can sleep in a 4-bed dorm.

Trondheim

Trondheim

Luckily for you, there’s another great city up next! From Lillehammer, you can take a rental car to Trondheim.

Trondheim is a beautiful city situated in the province of Sør-Trøndelag, on the banks of the Nidelva River. The city has around 190,000 inhabitants and is one of the oldest cities in the country. The main sight to see is the Nidaros Cathedral, which is the second largest church in Northern Europe.

In Trondheim, you’ll not only find a lot of cultural heritage, but also a large city centre. Although the city isn’t huge, there’s always a lot going on. There are many music and art events, lots of students live there and there’s an active nightlife. One prominent festival is the St. Olav Festival, which is at the end of July. In March, there’s the so-called Minimal Short Film Festival, where you can watch great Norwegian and Scandinavian short films. There are many other charming events all year round, so be sure to inform yourself when planning your trip.

Since Trondheim is located on the Nidelva River, you should definitely watch a sunset by the river. Especially in summer, the view is spectacular. In the city centre and a bit outside, there are many great wooden houses that you can visit as well.

The so-called Stiftsgården, also located in the city, is the local residence of the king. You can also visit the old fortress on the island of Munkholmen, which can be reached by boat.

In Trondheim, you can stay in one of the local hostels. It’s €32 per night for a bed in a dorm.

Alesund

Alesund

After you’ve enjoyed Trondheim to the fullest, it’s time for you to drive to Alesund.

Alesund is in a wonderful location; the city centre was influenced by the Art Nouveau and is definitely a place you want to visit!

You can go to the aquarium and admire the local fish species. Alesund also has a great museum, the Atlantic Sea Park, as well as the so-called Art Nouveau Centre. The Atlantic Sea Park is the largest saltwater aquarium in northern Europe and offers many different activities, such as diving.

Brosundet divides the two main islands: Aspøy and Hellebroa. Here, you can enjoy a great view and eat outside in one of the many restaurants.

You should also climb the steps to Fjellstua for a breathtaking view over the fjords and the surrounding mountains. You can grab a bite in a nearby restaurant offering simple yet tasty dishes.

In the winter, you can take a bus and go skiing just outside the little town.

Not only is Alesund very scenic, but there’s also lots to do there. You can stay in one of the local accomodations, where a night in a 3-bed dorm would cost you €47.

Geirangerfjord

Geirangerfjord

From Alesund, you’ll take your rental car to Geirangerfjord. The fjord is close nearby, and once you’re there you can go hiking or have a picnic with an extraordinary view.

The Geirangerfjord is one of the most famous fjords in Norway and has been a UNESCO World Heritage Site since 2006. It’s approximately 15 kilometres long and between 600 metres and 1.3 kilometres wide.

The Geirangerfjord is the continuation of the Sunnylvsfjord, which is a branch of the Storfjord. Geiranger is a village located right at the end of the Geirangerfjord.

During your stay in Geirangerfjord, you can sleep in one of the local hostels. A single room costs €44 per night.

Flam

Flam

Flam is a little village with about 450 inhabitants. It’s located in the province of Sogn og Fjordane and situated in the so-called Flamsdalen, which is a narrow, elongated valley flanked by high mountains. The mountain range to the west is part of the Nærøyfjord World Heritage Site.

The main attraction here is the breathtaking nature. But if you feel like sightseeing, there’s a railway museum in the city, as well as the Otternes Bygdetun open-air Museum, where you can get an insight into the region's agriculture and life in the 18th century.

You can sleep in one of the local hostels. For €21 per night, you can get a bed in a dorm.

Bergen

Bergen

Bergen is located in the province of Vestland and is the second largest city in Norway after Oslo. It’s situated directly by the sea, towards the south of Fjordland.

The fish market, located directly at the harbour, is worth the visit. There are vendors of various nationalities here, which makes the fish market something very special.

When you’re in Bergen, you should definitely visit the Bryggen district, which used to be the district of the German merchants in the city. There’s a Hanseatic museum you can visit and lots of wooden houses and warehouses to admire. Bryggen is a UNESCO World Heritage Site and one of the country’s best-known relics from the Middle Ages. There are wonderful wooden houses all over the city, which often date back to the 18th or 19th century: Bryggen in particular is world-famous for this.

During your time in Bergen, you should also take the Fløibanen funicular to Mount Fløien, which is located 300 metres above the city. From there, you have a great view of the harbours. The base station is in the centre of the town.

Hostels in Bergen can be found for as little as €25 a night in a 4-bed dorm.

Oslo

Oslo

Oslo, your last stop, will complete your perfect backpacking trip through Norway. You’ll have visited the most beautiful sights and the most important cities in the country. You’ll drive your rental car from Bergen to Oslo.

Oslo is the capital of Norway and has over 650,000 inhabitants. There’s a lot to do here and many great spots to see.

The Royal Castle and Askerhus Castle are definitely worth seeing. There are also many other great buildings in the city, such as the Oslo Opera House, the Parliament, the City Hall and the Nobel Peace Centre. The opera house was built in 2008 and is made of white marble and glass; it’s located right next to the fjord and near the main railway station.

Of course, there are also great museums in the capital, such as the Munch Museum, the National Gallery, the Viking Ship House, the Fram Museum, the Folklore Museum and the Kon-Tiki Museum.

When in Oslo, you should also pay a visit to Vigelandsparken. This vast, beautiful park is located in the western part of the city and has over 200 sculptures, made by the sculptor Gustav Vigeland. The main sculpture is an obelisk in the middle of the park.

Before you return home, you’ll spend the night in the country’s capital. Accommodation in a hostel in Oslo costs €24 per night in a dorm.

Norway Route Map

Itinerary and Stops.

Tag
Route/Station
Transport
Unterkunft
1. Home – Oslo – Lillehammer
Home – Oslo – Lillehammer
Flight + Rental Car
50
4-bed dorm
34
2. Lillehammer
Lillehammer
-
4-bed dorm
34
3. Lillehammer - Trondheim
Lillehammer - Trondheim
Rental Car
Dorm
32
4. Trondheim
Trondheim
-
Dorm
32
5. Trondheim - Alesund
Trondheim - Alesund
Rental Car
3-bed dorm
47
6. Alesund
Alesund
-
3-bed dorm
47
7. Alesund – Geirangerfjord
Alesund – Geirangerfjord
Rental Car
Private room
44
8. Geirangerfjord
Geirangerfjord
-
Private room
44
9. Geirangerfjord - Flam
Geirangerfjord - Flam
Rental Car
Dorm
21
10. Flam
Flam
-
Dorm
21
11. Flam - Bergen
Flam - Bergen
Rental Car
4-bed dorm
25
12. Bergen
Bergen
-
4-bed dorm
25
13. Bergen - Oslo
Bergen - Oslo
Rental Car
Dorm
24
14. Oslo – Home
Oslo – Home
Flight
50

Total price.

Flights 100,00
Transportation 350,00
Tours 0,00
Accommodation 430,00
Total880,00

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Dos and Donts, Food & Drinks, Costs.

Breakfast

Rommegrot: breakfast often consists of this porridge prepared with syrup or honey. Cinnamon and sugar make great toppings.

Soups

Fish soup: for this soup, different kinds of fish are mixed and boiled, and also often dried. The soup is creamy and seasoned with dill.

Main courses

Gravlaks: this dish consists of smoked salmon in a spicy dill sauce. Alternatively, you can order it with cod.

Fenalar: this is a braised lamb leg, which is a holiday specialty in Norway.

Sild: pickled herring often prepared with potatoes and a creamy sauce. On the coast, this dish is a real speciality.

Farikal: this dish consists of roasted mutton, which is served together with cabbage as a side dish.

Pinnekjott: this dish comes from the north of Norway and consists of cured lamb. It’s usually served with mashed potatoes. The special part is that the meat is soaked in salt water.

Stockfish: another speciality of the country is stockfish. The fish is dried and smoked and then served with various side dishes.

Drinks & Snacks

Aquavit: the national schnapps from Norway is distilled from potatoes and caraway seeds. It has a very special taste.

Glogg: Norwegian mulled wine is often drunk during the year and is traditionally very spicy.

Coffee: Norwegians love coffee and often drink several cups a day.

Norway

The exchange rate for 10 Norwegian Kroner is around €0.83 (as of March 2020). See prices for certain products and the cost of living below:

Cost of Living

Food

Free time

Personal Hygiene

Dos

Respect the monarchy: Norway still has a king - you should respect this and never criticise the monarchy in public!

Learn Norwegian: A few basic words will help you, since not everybody speaks English.

Travelling at any time of the year: in Norway, you can travel at any time of the year. Whether it’s winter paradise or nature in summer, this country has lots to offer.

Rain jacket: don’t forget to pack one!

Don'ts

Alcohol: in Norway, you’ll find it difficult to buy strong alcohol beverages, as there are strict regulations.

Compare with Sweden: they’re neighbouring countries, but making comparisons between the countries is highly inappropriate.

Visa, Visa, Passport & Vaccinations

Passport

Yes

Temporary passport

Yes

National ID

Yes

Temporary national ID

Yes

Child’s pass

Yes

Visa

(Not necessary)

Vaccine

Robert Koch Instituts

Additional Remarks.

Travel documents must be valid for the entire duration of your stay. Please also inform yourself on the current entry regulations regarding the Corona virus. Current information about this can be found at your country’s Foreign Office.

The team at Backpacker Trail wishes you lots of fun and an unforgettable trip!

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