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Experience the tranquil scenery of the Telemark Canal in Norway - Photo: Kåre S Pedersen
Experience the tranquil scenery of the Telemark Canal in Norway Photo: Kåre S Pedersen

Top attractions in Telemark

Enjoy a cruise on the Telemark Canal, visit Norway's largest stave church, or hike to the top of Telemark's highest mountain, Gaustatoppen.

The Telemark Canal

Finished in 1892, the canal links upper and lower Telemark between Skien and Dalen. Experience the wonders of Telemark's nature when travelling from sea to mountains through the 18 locks of the The Telemark Canal.  

Heddal Stave Church - A Masterpiece in Wood

One of the best preserved and largest stave churches in Norway, situated right outside Notodden. The Heddal Stave Church was built in the 1200s, and can be visited in the summer season from May to September. 

Jomfruland, Kragerø

The island of Jomfruland outside Kragerø is a part of a glacial moraine stretching from the Baltic Sea through Sweden and along the Norwegian coast. A favourable climate and lush vegetation have attracted a great variety of birds: some 60 to 70 species nest here. A bird-watching station is also located here. Jomfruland is known for its long boulder beach. The island is free of traffic and is popular with cyclists and campers. One of the islands in Norway with the most sunny days is Jomfruland. It can be reached by ferry from the idyllic seaside town of Kragerø.


A popular hiking trail runs up to Telemark's highest mountainGaustatoppen, towering 1,883 metres above sea level. It takes about two hours to ascend. On a clear day you can see one sixth of Norway from the summit. There are nice views over Rjukan and the Hardangervidda mountain plateau. You can choose wether to hike to the summit or travel inside the mountain using the The Gausta Line.

The Gausta Line

A cable railway built inside Gaustatoppen, consisting of a battery-powered carriage on rails which transports passengers to the top of Telemark's highest mountain, from where impressive views can be enjoyed. Now anyone can get to the top of a mountain.

Henrik Ibsen Museum, Venstøp, Skien

The world famous dramatist Henrik Ibsen lived from the ages of 7 to 15 on the small farm of Venstøp. His childhood home is today a modern museum devoted to the writer of "The Wild Duck" and many other plays. An inspiration for many of his dramatic works, experience Skien.

Norwegian Industrial Workers Museum, Vemork, Rjukan

The site of one of the most important sabotage operations by the Norwegian resistance during World War II, which prevented the Germans from developing a nuclear bomb from the heavy water processed at Vemork. Here you will also find an exhibition about the saboteurs and another one about Rjukan as an industrial center.

Morgedal and the Norwegian Ski Museum

This area is called "The cradle of skiing", as it was here ski as we know it started in the 1850s at Morgedal. Sondre Norheim and his revolutionary ski models that could twist and turn are shown at the visitor centre which includes a multimedia journey through skiing's history, and a ski-making workshop at the Norwegian Ski Museum.

West-Telemark Museum, Eidsborg

Situated in Eidsborg and consisting of more than 30 houses and buildings is the West-Telemark Museum. Dating from the 1200s, there is also the intimate Eidsborg Stave Church. There is also Stålekleivloftet, Norway's oldest non-religious building. A new modern museum building opened in 2012, housing a number of new exhibitions.

Nissedal Potholes

Since the last Ice Age, rocks and gravel have been swirling around on the riverbanks and formed big potholes. Today the river is dammed and the potholes and river make out a natural waterpark suitable for all ages. On hot days the potholes become almost like hot pools, heated by the rocks and surrounding mountains. 

Krossobanen Cable Car

The first cable car to be built in northern Europe, back in 1928, a gift from Norsk Hydro to Rjukan's townspeople so that they could get up high enough on the mountain to see the sun in winter. The view over Rjukan from the upper station is fantastic, with mountains to the south and west. A great starting point for hiking or cycling the Hardangervidda National Park is the upper station of Krossobanen.

Bø Sommarland

Situated just ouside the village of Bø Sommerland is Scandinavia's largest aqua park, with one of the world's largest artificial waves for surfing and Norway's biggest water roller coaster.

Last updated:  2013-09-20
 - Photo: Berit Lindheim
 - Photo: Espen Halvorsen
 - Photo: Terje Rakke/Nordic Life
 - Photo: Håkon Nordby

Interest:  Nature attractions, Buildings & Monuments, Museums & Galleries, Theme parks

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Experience the tranquil scenery of the Telemark Canal in Norway - Photo: Kåre S Pedersen

Top attractions in Telemark

Enjoy a cruise on the Telemark Canal, visit Norway's largest stave church, or hike to the top of Telemark's highest mountain, Gaustatoppen.

Top attractions in Telemark

Source: Visitnorway

Top summer activities in Telemark

Join a boat trip on the Telemark Canal, visit Norway's largest waterpark in Bø, or go cycling, hiking or paddling in Telemark's varied landscape.

Telemark 360 panorama SkyCam

Get a bird's eye view of the highlights of Telemark, including the Telemark Canal, Kragerø, Rauland and Dalen, with these amazing 360 panorama photos.

Attractions in Grenland

Visit Henrik Ibsen's childhood home in Skien, find out how porcelain is made at Porsgrunds Porselænsfabrik or take a trip along the Telemark Canal.

Scenic attractions in and around Rauland

Top scenic attractions are the Hardangervidda National Park and Nupsfonn Glacier.

About Telemark


The county of Telemark is known for its canal, old farms, the mountain region around Gaustatoppen and the friendly coastline outside Kragerø.

Key facts about Telemark

Telemark is a county offering costal towns and archipelago, waving hills, fjord country and mountain plateaus.

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