Bergen is a really stunning city with old, wooden houses surrounded by seven mountain, though it is little unclear which are those exactly. It is perfect city to visit and go for a hike. And let’s not forget, Bergen is a UNESCO World Heritage City!
The fact that it also has an airport with cheap airlines makes it a perfect place for a weekend escape.
Well, maybe except for the fact that most of the time it rains there .. Rain or not rain, it is still a great place!
We visited Bergen as part of our trip to Trolltunga. The day after the hike we had a plane waiting for us in the evening in Bergen so we decided to drive there in the morning and enjoy a whole day in this beautiful city.
What you have to see and do, while staying in Bergen:
Everyone will recognise this place from all the photos of Bergen and Norway everywhere. It is THE place, when talking about Bergen.
What is it, you ask? It is an old wooden wharf, one of the oldest large trading ports of Northern Europe. Because of that the place, with 61 buildings and the surrounding area, has been added to UNESCO’s World Heritage List. Even though it burned many times (yeah, that what happens when everything is wooden) and it is pretty new, every time after the fire it has been rebuilt exactly the same fashion.
Go visit the place, walk through narrow streets between the buildings, experience how the city looked like in Middle Ages.
You have two choices: hike or ride up. Hiking is really fun and nice activity if you are not painfully aware that you actually have legs;) We, after climbing Trollunga, felt like two old ladies and even the slightest thought of having to walk for ~45 minutes up the hill made our legs hurt more 😀 Therefore, we chose option number two – Fløibanen funicular. The laziness cost us 90 NOK but our legs were really grateful!
Whatever means you use to get on top, you should do it! It is totally worth it, as you can see the view of the whole town, which was surprisingly huge! There are also many hiking routes around if you would like to spend a nice day in the nature.
As a bonus, we saw cute cashmere goats , which were standing on the steep hill-side.
The Fish Market
If you never tasted whale, you have to check it out! It is really famous place to buy some “cheap” fish (“cheap” by Norwegian standards – super expensive for the rest of the world). Anyway, if you travel with cheap airline you probably will not have enough space to hide a fish there anyway 🙂 That should not stop you though, from trying out different things! Go around and ask different vendors for a small sample. Additionally, next to fish stalls there are many stalls with sausages, where you can try out reindeer, moose and whale sausages.
Bergen’s fortress is located close to Bryggen and is one of the oldest and best preserved castles in Norway. It was built around 1240s.
- Inside the fortress you can find Rosenkrantz Tower, which you can climb to see nice views of the city and learn more about the history of the place.
- While exploring the fortress you should also not miss Haakon’s Hall, a medieval stone hall from 13th century, that is the largest secular medieval building in Norway. Unfortunately, most of it has been destroyed during IIWW. However, it is still used for special occasions.
The whole city is really nice with many wooden, cute houses. It was actually in Bergen that I saw the cutest McDonald ever!!
I usually don’t walk too much through those shops as they are expensive, but those were just amazing! First of all, they are full of trolls! Apart from normal souvenir shops, there were also many Christmas shops around with nice decorations! Feeling the spirit of Christmas in September sure feels weird:D
Bergen’s Royal Residence. It is located a little bit further from the city center, so we were glad we had a car and didn’t have to worry how to get there. It is a really nice building looking like a Scottish castle. It is the place, where the King stays when he visits Bergen. Most of the grounds are open to the public and you are welcome to take a stroll through nice garden and enjoy the views.
It is Edvard Grieg’s house that now has been converted to a museum about him and his work. This place is also a little bit further from the city center so it is best to take a car.
Who is Edvard Grieg? He is one of the most well-known composers and pianists in Norway. Before going there I had no idea who he was, but my friend was really ecstatic about him and his house. Only after she played me his music I realised that I do know it!! So for all those like me, here is a link to one of his song that I am sure you know 😉
Those were all the sights I managed to see during my short stay there, I will definiatly be back as I fell in love with the fjords and all the sights! So I hope I will come back to Bergen at some point 🙂
As a side note: It is REALLY expensive there. And I do live in Denmark… Those prices are just insane!!