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Go on a guided walk on the Briksdalsbreen Glacier, Norway - Photo: Marte Kopperud/Innovation Norway
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Go on a guided walk on the Briksdalsbreen Glacier, Norway Photo: Marte Kopperud/Innovation Norway

Glaciers in Norway

Norway still shows traces of the Ice Age, when the entire country was covered by ice. Jostedalsbreen is the largest glacier in Norway.

More than 2,600 square kilometres of Norway’s land area is covered by glaciers. 60 per cent of Svalbard is covered by glaciers.

Guided glacier walking

Glacier walking is an incredible experience, but it also demands alertness, knowledge and equipment.

The ice mass is in constant movement and can present unexpected dangers from deep crevasses (often covered in snow), avalanches or from large blocks of ice breaking off (calving). There is always danger of ice collapsing even in front of the glacier.

Guarantee your safety by using authorised guides, and never venture out onto or near a glacier on your own. During the summer period there are guided tours on most glaciers. Remember to bring warm clothing, headwear, suitable footwear, gloves and sunglasses.

Why not try a Blue ice trip on the Folgefonna Glacier or go hiking on the Nigardsbreen Glacier?

Nature laboratories

Glaciers are not only scenic attractions; they are also important nature laboratories, especially for climate change, geology and vegetation. These slow moving rivers of ice are sensitive to any changes in the climate, and global warming can seriously influence their extent.

The glaciers grow and shrink, change direction and change shape and colour. Even several hundred metres thick ice is in constant motion and the arms of the glacier can grow several hundred meters in only a few years. Melt water from the glaciers accumulates and turns into rivers and waterfalls.

And so the story continues - the movements of the glaciers still influence the landscape as they have done for thousands of years, as they did when forming the famous Norwegian fjords.

Norway’s largest glaciers

Austfonna
Located on Svalbard, Austfonna is the world's third-largest icecap after Antarctic and Greenland with a glacier front of 200 kilometres. This makes it the largest glacier in Europe.

Jostedalsbreen
This is the largest glacier on mainland Europe, covering an area of 487 square kilometres. It has more than 50 glacier branches, for example the famous Briksdalsbreen and Nigardsbreen Glaciers. The glacier is a part of the Jostedalsbreen National Park  in Sogn og Fjordane. Fjærland hosts the Norwegian Glacier Museum where you can find information about the glaciers and how they form the landscape, the climate and how it effects us.

Svartisen
In reality Svartisen consists of two glaciers – Vestre Svartisen andØstre Svartisen. The glacier is part of Saltfjellet-Svartisen National Park in Nordland.

Folgefonna
Home to the Fonna Glacier Ski Resort and part of the Folgefonna National Park  which lies in the county of Hordaland.

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Last updated:  2014-08-05
Crampons are a must when walking on a glacier such as Briksdalsbreen Glacier - Photo: Terje Rakke/Nordic Life/Fjord Norway
Crampons are a must when walking on a glacier such as Briksdalsbreen Glacier
Safe glacier walking on the Nigardsbreen Glacier, Norway - Photo: Terje Rakke/Nordic Life/Fjord Norway
Safe glacier walking on the Nigardsbreen Glacier, Norway

Interest:  Nature attractions, Glacier, Mountains

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Briksdalsbreen Glacier, an arm of the Jostedalsbreen Glacier, Norway - Photo: Marte Kopperud/Innovation Norway

Glaciers in Norway

Norway still shows traces of the Ice Age, when the entire country was covered by ice. Jostedalsbreen is the largest glacier in Norway.

Glaciers in Norway

Source: Visitnorway

Nature attractions in Norway

There are mountains plunging into the sea from hundreds of metres, there are fjords, tall mountain peaks, northern lights and midnight sun.

Mountain Guide

Find detailed information on the main mountain regions in Norway. Galdhøpiggen in Jotunheimen is the tallest mountain at 8,100 feet above sea level.

Skiing

More fun, more snow, more choice. The Norwegian ski season typically lasts for six months and usually offers good snow conditions throughout.

Experience mountains and wilderness

The Norwegian mountain wilderness is easily accessible. Go skiing, hiking or biking, or join a musk ox safari.

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Nature attractions

Glacier

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