Photo: Bergen - Jan M. Lillebø - visitbergen
Fjord Tours Articles / 13 May 2020

City Guide - A Closer Look at Bergen

As Norway’s biggest city, Oslo gets a lot of attention from tourists. However, Bergen has a lot to offer as a vacation destination as well. In fact, there are countless reasons why you should make Bergen a part of your next Norway trip, many of which revolve around the incredible activities to do in Bergen and the luxurious hotels it offers. Here is an in-depth look at the second-largest city in Norway to help convince you why Bergen is a special place to visit.

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Photo: Bergen Tourist Board / Girish Chouhan - visitBergen.com

A Community Built on Fishing

With many of Norway’s biggest cities and towns being located on the coast, it is no surprise that fishing is an activity that is a big part of Norwegian culture. However, Bergen takes this to another level by making fishing an integral part of their city through things like Bryggen Harbour.

This lively wharf is on the UNESCO World Heritage List and offers a fantastic look at what life used to be like hundreds of years ago in this now bustling city. The commercial buildings in this area are a unique mix of both new and old architecture, with some of the buildings dating back to before the 15th century.

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Photo: Bergen Reiselivslag - Cornelius - visitBergen.com

Among these buildings are various workshops, museums, and eateries, including the meeting place for the Cornelius Seafood Restaurant. This unique restaurant is located on an island, making transportation by ferry essential. The restaurant includes a menu listing many delicious types of fish and other seafood that changes daily based on the weather forecast for the day. This meteorological menu, in addition to the restaurant’s unusual location, is what makes it such a unique and impressive dining experience.

But it is not just the seafood cuisine that demonstrates how intertwined this city is with the fishing industry. There is also the Bergen fish market, which is one of the most well-known spots in the entire city. You can take a stroll through the market and find a massive amount of fresh fish, fruit, vegetables, and various handmade decorative items for sale. During the summer months, this food market is especially busy and is a great place to get outdoors.

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Photo: Bergen Reiselivslag / Robin Strand - visitBergen.com

Great Hiking and Sightseeing Opportunities

The sights in any Norwegian city are going to be excellent, but Bergen is especially great for this thanks to the seven mountains surrounding the city. While these mountains range in size, from about 1,200 feet to 2,100 feet, they are all able to provide exceptional views of the city below. If you head out on one of the hiking trails on the Fløyen mountain or any other of the seven mountains, then you will be able to experience the Norwegian wilderness and be rewarded with amazing views of Bergen.

You can also decide to skip the hiking part altogether by choosing to ride the Fløibanen, which is a funicular railway that leisurely takes people to the top of Fløyen and back down so that they can comfortably enjoy the spectacular views. 

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Photo: © Sverre Hjørnevik

An Abundance of History

When a city has been around for nearly a millennium, it is bound to have accumulated some impressive historical items and stories. It almost doesn’t even matter what area you go to in Bergen, there is going to be something historical to see and learn about, like the Norwegian Fisheries Museum. That is why there are so many tours offering to take you throughout the city to learn about the historical importance of each area.

Perhaps the best example of this is the Bergen city cruise, which passes by Bryggen, comes close to Håkonshallen and Rosenkrantztårnet, and goes right over the infamous U.S. submarine Nautilus, which gives you the opportunity to learn about the historic naval battles, successes, and struggles that took place throughout these various areas.

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Photo: Girish Chouchan - visitbergen

With all of this to offer, it proves that Bergen is a very versatile city that has something for everyone to enjoy, whether you enjoy sightseeing, learning about a place’s history, or experiencing a cider tasting tour. If you are ready to visit Bergen as part of your next Norway trip, then contact our team today.