Photo: Quino Al/ Unsplash
Fjord Tours Articles / 22 Jan 2020

Norway's Best Marathons

Fitness tends to be top of mind for a lot of people when it comes to deciding on areas of focus for a New Year. Perhaps it is the indulgent holiday season or the promise of a fresh start. Regardless, the New Year certainly offers a good dose of inspiration of motivation to tackle your health goals. One surefire way to put your health front and center this year is by training for a marathon.

Do you love running? If so, a marathon is the ultimate way to put your athletic capabilities to the test. But if a marathon in your hometown doesn’t spark enough inspiration to get you training every day, you might want to consider entering an international marathon. Norway, in particular, has a staggering amount of yearly marathons. These races are unlike any found throughout the rest of the world. Nowhere else can you run a half-marathon under the Aurora Borealis or during the midnight sun.

If those sounds intriguing to you, here are a few of Norway’s best marathons. Once you check out some of the beautiful landscapes you’ll be able to take in along these routes, we bet you’ll be ready to lace up your sneakers and tackle your first training run.

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Photo: Sporlab /Unsplash

Oslo Marathon

If you’re traveling to Norway to run a marathon, The Oslo Marathon is perfect for the runner who is craving a city route. This popular race typically hosts about 20,000 runners every year and weaves through most of the city’s major neighborhoods making it a great way to sightsee and explore Oslo. There are also entertainment stations set up by race sponsors along the route so you’ll have something to take your mind off of your sore legs as you rack up those miles.

If a full marathon isn’t in the cards for you this year, there is also a half marathon and a 10 KM option. This race even hosts a kids’ marathon so your little ones can participate in the day as well!

If you have not seen enough of the city during the race, check all things you can do in Oslo HERE

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Photo: Yngve Olsen

PolarNight Half Marathon, Tromsø

The PolarNight Half Marathon is a smaller and shorter race with about 2000 participants that happens yearly in early January. It is a truly unique trail running experience. Although the race takes place during the middle of the day expect to run in total darkness. This is because the sun does not rise above the horizon in Tromsø at this time of year.

If runners are lucky, they might catch a glimpse of the Aurora Borealis as they race through Tromsø. For those looking for a shorter distance, the PolarNight race also offers a 10 KM and 5 KM race route. To help you fuel up before your race, you can attend the Pastaparty the night before you run. Once the race is completed, if you feel like celebrating your accomplishments, you can sign up for the PolarNight Dinner and after-party!

If you’re visiting Norway and craving the most unique experience possible, this race is your best bet, just be sure to pack some warm clothes. Even though you’ll be running and working up a sweat, you have to remember—it’s still the Arctic.

If you are no too exhausted after the race, Tromsø offer loads of great sights and acitvites you can explore, check all things to do in Tromsø HERE

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Photo: Tobias Seidl/ Unsplash

Midnight Sun Marathon, Tromsø

If you’re looking for a unique arctic race but prefer not to run in the dark, the Midnight Sun Marathon might be a good bet for you. This race also takes place in Tromsø but this time, during the month of June where you can expect sunlight around the clock. This race also has a half marathon, 10 KM and 4.2 KM routes as well as an 800 m route for children. After the race, you can enjoy the golden light of the endless sunset.

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Photo: Stage 7 Photography/ Unsplash

Bergen City Marathon

If you want to join a marahton in an historical atmosphere, Bergen City Marathon is the right one! This race has, in addition to the marathon,  a half marathon, 10 KM & 5 KM routes, a 2 KM route for children as well as a relay (10 legs, 22 km)

Bergen is an international city with a rich history. It is a big city with a small town feel. Runners from all over the world come to Bergen to join in on one of the most beautiful marathon courses in the world!

The start and finish are located at the wooden buildings at UNESCO site “Bryggen” (Wharf). During the run the participants can enjoy the city view from Fjellveien, they will pass the well known Fisketorget (Fish Market) and run through the charming Gamle Bergen (Old Bergen).

After finishing the run, there are pleny of sights and activites to explore in Bergen. A trip with the Fløybanen or the cable car to the top of Ulriken mountain is just some of the things you can see and do, check all things to do in Bergen HERE


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Photo: Bergen - Jan M. Lillebø - visitbergen

If you’re looking to tackle a marathon this year, Norway has some incredible events that are definitely worth considering. With stunning scenery to take in on race day, you’ll find yourself at the end of your route before you know it!