Experience Bergen in one day
"I could do this the whole day."
"Oh wow, vinyl records and beers together? That's epic!"
Norwegian cities are compact and very walkable.
Experience city highlights in just 10 000 steps.
Explore the best walks in the city between the seven mountains!
Follow in the footsteps of Naina, who has lived in more countries than most — as many as seven! She loves to dive into the history, architecture, food and culture of the places she visits and has a special interest in (and thirst for) local craft beer.
One of the things Naina likes about Norway is how urban life and nature meet, and the fjord city Bergen is no exception when it comes to this unique combination. The most easily accessible summits by foot are Fløyen and Ulriken. You can also cheat and take the Fløibanen funicular or the Ulriken cable car, and simply admire the panoramic views over the city.
Strolling around lets you see many of the most charming parts of Bergen. Explore cosy, narrow cobblestone alleys and quaint old wooden houses, each with its own story to tell.
Take a pit stop in one of the many unique cafés or shops around town, or spend some time admiring the masterpieces at KODE art museum and visiting the homes of famous composers Grieg and Sæverud.
Don't wear out your legs until you've visited Bergen's most famous attraction Bryggen, the Hanseatic wharf. This UNESCO World Heritage listed site was once a bustling centre of trade between Norway and the rest of Europe.
Strolling around the medieval settlement, you can still smell a faint trace of the stockfish that was shipped out from Bergen for centuries. Stroll on to today's fish market for some fresh, local seafood!
Route: URBAN SUNDAY WALK
Length: 7 km
Norwegians have a tradition of going for a walk on Sundays, taking a “søndagstur”. Usually, this means taking a hike in nature, but why not make it an urban Sunday walk instead? Enjoy a relaxing morning with breakfast at your hotel before heading out.
The Lille Lungegårdsvann pond in the middle of the city centre is a good place to start your stroll. Drop by one of the KODE art museums beside the pond for some cultural input from both national and international artists, including works by Edvard Munch, Nikolai Astrup, and Picasso, to name a few.
Once you've feasted your eyes on enough art, it's time to for an audial and culinary treat. Hotel Opus XVI serves afternoon tea with live jazz every Sunday. After your delicious meal, head up the hairpin turns from Vetrlidsallmenningen square to the old fire station at Skansen. Here, you have a great view of the city in leafy surroundings.
Heading back down, get a bit lost walking through narrow zigzagging streets between the old wooden houses. Cross the fish market, and carry on through pedestrian Gågaten (part of Strandgaten street) in the Nordnes neighbourhood. Take a left by the end of pedestrian section and head up the steep Cort Piil-smauet alleyway to experience another charming narrow street.
Arriving at Klosteret, the old monastery at the top, take a well-deserved waffle break at Klosterhagen Hotel. Just across the street, you'll see a statue of Amalie Skram, one of Norway's most prominent naturalist writers. Follow the tree-lined street all the way to Nordnesparken, an urban park with views of the fjord. The park is home to a Totem pole, which was a gift from our friendship city of Seattle on the occasion of the 900-year anniversary of Bergen's founding.
Choose a different route on your way back from Nordnes, and head over to Bryggen. Stroll the wooden alleys and soak in the historic feel of this UNESCO-listed medieval settlement. End the day with a traditional Norwegian meal at Bryggeloftet restaurant.
Route: MARITIME WALK
Length: 6.5 km
Start the day at the Tourist information office. Here, you will find lots of inspiration on what to do in Bergen and the region, and you can also buy a Bergen Card, which gives you free or discounted access to most of the activities on this route.
Stroll past Bryggen and continue along the waterfront to the Storeblå Aquaculture Visitor Centre where you can explore a living exhibition about one of our biggest industries, aquaculture.
Head back to the city centre. The Bergen Card entitles you to travel free on local buses, should you want to cut your walk short and ride back to the city centre.
Bergen Maritime Museum presents Norwegian maritime history and the evolution of seafaring from the earliest times until the present day. The exhibitions showcase items related to seafaring and life at sea, including intricately detailed ship models, paintings, and marine-archaeological finds. Stop by the fish market for a quick lunch to go. Order some fish cakes, a favourite local snack, and continue to the sailboat “First Player” to experience the city from the seaside. Enjoy a few hours at sea, while the captain tells you about Bergen's history as a trading and shipping city, and points out its historical fortifications, Old Bergen Museum, and shipyards.
End the day at Nordnes Sjøbad where you can go swimming in the open air, either in the fjord or in the heated outdoor seawater pool, and warm up in one of its saunas.
Route: FROM HISTORIC TO MODERN BERGEN
Length: 3.6 km
Start the day at Bergenhus Fortress, one of the oldest and best-preserved stone fortifications in Norway. Soak in the historic atmosphere at what was once the main seat of the rulers of Norway, when Bergen was its capital. Both Haakons Hall and the Rosenkrantz Tower are open to visitors.
After climbing the tower and peeking into the jail cell, head over to St. Mary's church. This is the oldest building in Bergen still in existence and was probably built between 1130 and 1170. Stroll down to Bryggen. These unique wooden buildings are one of the most well-preserved and well-known settlements from the Middle Ages in Norway. Here you will also find small niche shops, galleries, and eateries.
Head towards the Bergen Cathedral. Walking through Lille Øvregate, you can see some of the street art that Bergen has become known for around the world. The Cathedral rises up at the end of the street.
If you look closely, you will spot a cannonball in one of its walls. It dates back to the Battle of Vågen between the English and Dutch fleet in 1665.
It's now time for some art. Choose one (or more) of the KODE art museums situated along Lille Lungegårdsvannet pond. Here you will find both Norwegian and international art on display, including works from Edvard Munch, Nikolai Astrup and Pablo Picasso, to name a few. Walk up Sydneshaugen hill, or, if you are up for a walk in the park, detour through idyllic Nygårdsparken.
Cross the pedestrian bridge which the locals call “Småpudden” to get to the other side of the water. This area was traditionally dominated by industry, but has recently been developed to include new offices, residential buildings, and restaurants. End the day with a pre-dinner drink and watch the sun go down (Bergen weather permitting) at Colonialen Kranen.
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