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Idyllic outport in Sørlandet, Norway - Photo: Johan Wildhagen/Innovasjon Norge
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Idyllic outport in Sørlandet, Norway Photo: Johan Wildhagen/Innovasjon Norge

Key facts about Southern Norway

Sørlandet is the southernmost region of Norway, with 30 municipalities and approximately 285,000 inhabitants.

Sørlandet ("the south land") is the southernmost part of Norway, and consists of the two counties of Aust- and Vest-Agder. Sørlandet stretches from the coastal areas with its many rocky islands and skerries also known as the Norwegian riviera via an inland belt with forests, lakes and rivers, many of them excellent salmon rivers, to the mountains of Setesdal, the southernmost part of the Hardangervidda and a popular hiking and skiing region.

History

Ever since the great glaciers retreated about 10,000 years ago and left behind a small strip of land, people have lived in southern Norway. There are traces of Stone Age settlements from Kristiansand to Lista, with one of the most famous places being the Penne area at Lista. Here you find rock carvings, as well as ancient ruins and burial mounds from the Iron Age.

One of many characteristic features of the southern coast is the "white string of pearls", the many towns, villages and outposts dotted along the coastline, with their white-painted houses and narrow streets.

The towns had a prosperous period during the sailing ship era in the 1800s. The islands furthest out at sea and along the ship route were popular outposts where the fishermen, the sailors and the harbour pilots lived. The outposts provided safe havens for the ships that sailed to and from Norway with goods. Timber and salmon were the main export articles of the region. Today these outposts are mainly populated with holiday guests during the summer months, and are idyllic reminders of life in the old days.

Economy

Today Sørlandet is Norway's leading exporter of processed goods, with future-oriented businesses based on supplying the oil and gas sector, the solar cell industry, wind turbine industry, car industry, and high-tech processing of metals.

Culture

Along the coast you can find traces of the coastal culture; the many lighthouses, coastal forts, fishing villages and boat wharfs. In the Setesdal Valley the cultural heritage includes folklore, folk music and silverware.

Sørlandet is also home to around 100 festivals each year, most of which take place during the summer months.

Climate

The coast of Sørlandet has a typical coastal climate, with relatively mild climate year round. Sørlandet is the region in Norway with most summer days during the year. In Setesdal and Sirdal the altitude ensures long and stable winters, perfect for winter activities.

Key facts

  • Inhabitants: 285,184 (as of October 2011)
  • Total area: 16,435 square kilometres
  • Main cities: Kristiansand and Arendal
  • Southernmost point: Lindesnes lighthouse, Lindesnes
  • Highest temperature: 92.6°F (Byglandsfjord, June 1986)
  • Lowest temperature: 36.4°F (Hovden, January 1982)

Distances

  • Kristiansand - Oslo: 322 kilometres
  • Kristiansand - Stavanger: 233 kilometres
  • Kristiansand - Hovden: 208 kilometres
  • Kristiansand - Arendal: 67 kilometres
  • Kristiansand - Risør: 111 kilometres
  • Kristiansand - Flekkefjord: 108 kilometres
  • Kristiansand - Lindesnes: 80 kilometres
  • Kristiansand - Lillesand: 30 kilometres
  • Kristiansand - Mandal: 43 kilometres
  • Kristiansand - Grimstad: 48 kilometres
  • Kristiansand - Evje: 61 kilometres
  • Arendal - Evje: 83 kilometres
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Last updated:  2013-11-11
Sørlandet is the oldest operative full-rigged ship in the world - Photo: visitsorlandet.com
Sørlandet is the oldest operative full-rigged ship in the world
A traditional filigree brooch from Hillestad, Norway - Photo: visitsorlandet.com
A traditional filigree brooch from Hillestad, Norway
Traditional folk costume from Sørlandet, Norway - Photo: Terje Rakke/Nordic Life/Innovasjon Norge
Traditional folk costume from Sørlandet, Norway
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Idyllic outport in Sørlandet, Norway - Photo: Johan Wildhagen/Innovasjon Norge

Key facts about Southern Norway

Sørlandet is the southernmost region of Norway, with 30 municipalities and approximately 285,000 inhabitants.

Key facts about Southern Norway

Source: Visitnorway

About Sørlandet

The Arendal Region

Region Arendal offers skerries, saltwater, festivals, arts and culture, tranquillity and activities in nature such as fishing, canoeing and hiking.

Tourist Information in Southern Norway

"Sørlandet" Southern Norway comprises of 7 different regions, and each of the regions has one or more tourist-informations.

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