Let an expert give you an introduction to current fishing trends and common species in Norwegian waters, and find the facts you need about sea fishing rules and regulations.
Some of the first tourists in Norway came here to enjoy fishing along the wild, rugged and utterly unspoilt coastline, several centuries ago. Øyvind Fjeldseth, a special sea angling adviser at the Norwegian association of Hunters and Anglers explains why this classic sport is still going strong:
“Norway has unusually productive sea areas. Visitors benefit from a willingness among professional fishermen and other locals to share knowledge. Many destinations provide all that is needed for most kinds of fishing, and it is possible to go angling almost everywhere. Sea angling in Norway — from shore or boat — is definitely a sport on the rise,” Øyvind concludes.
Here Øyvind provides an overview of the species you can hope to find when you go fishing in Norway, as well as an update on the latest fishing trends.
Before you set off on a Norwegian fishing trip, we hope that you will also have a look at the information about rules and codes of conduct.
The most common of the Norwegian fish species. You can find the biggest cod swim off the coast of Finnmark and Troms during winter. Nordland also has important spawn areas and there are well-known hot spots in Møre and Romsdal.
Mostly found in Southern Norway but also all along the rest of the coast.
Found in Fjord Norway (Sogn and Fjordane, Møre and Romsdal) and Central Norway (Trøndelag).
A popular catch in the Oslofjord and other areas of Southern Norway where cod is less present than it used to be. Can be found all over the coast, but not plentiful in the north.
The season is at the end of May and in June. Mostly present in Troms.
West and northwards.
A popular catch in the Oslofjord and other areas.
May and June. Catching on soft shads at about 50 metres. Exists all along the coast. The best fishing spots are the west coast and northwards.
Especially present in central and Fjord Norway. Found in deep water.
This species lives deep down in the fjords and is therefore especially rewarding to catch..
Light tackle fishing in the autumn. The plaice can be up to 95 cm and 8 kilo.
The Norwegian coast receives numerous visiting species. The total number varies; however, a number of around 150 is often mentioned and adds to the native 200. Among the many interesting species are bonito (stripet pelamide), grey mullet (tykkleppet multe), and less frequently tuna (tunfisk).
Hunting for the biggest specimen of different species.
Fishing from your own pier
Rent a rorbu (a traditional fisherman's cabin) in the Lofoten islands or other places and practice angling right outside your bedroom.
An increasing number of visitors discover the joy of fishing different species. Norway is especially suitable for species fishing thanks to the unusually large variety in the sea.
Rent special equipment employed from the shore, which enables you to make longer castings and catch fish further out.
Catch and release
Live and let live: There is an increasing awareness about the importance of the life in the sea. When the catch is alive and kicking and you don’t need it for your dinner, the best option is to release it. This method enables enthusiasts to perform their favourite sport to a bigger extent.
In order to preserve Norwegian fish stocks we encourage everyone to avoid catching fish that are under the minimum size specified.
If you do catch a fish that is smaller than the minimum size, free it carefully from the hook and release it into the sea. If the fish is dead or is clearly not capable of surviving, you can keep it to eat.
You can read more about Norway's fishing regulations at the Directorate of Fisheries' website.
The Norwegian Association of Hunters and Anglers have compiled a set of guidelines for anyone who wishes to try their luck in the Norwegian seas. These are:
The codes of conduct are available at the Norwegian Association of Hunters and Anglers website (Norwegian only).
As surely as the grey goose travels north every year, the cod swims along the Namdal coast to spawn. In the same way, fishermen from Trøndelag throughout history have sought the mysterious and now abandoned paradise of Sør-Gjæslingan.
Almost immediately after it tosses and turns in the water, it’s ready to be served on your platter. In Northern Norway, they are totally hooked on the fresh delicacies of the sea.
Keep these rules of thumb in mind whenever you are on or by the water:
Fishing in Norway is a way to embrace the local lifestyle. Countless lakes and rivers and an extensive coastline means outstanding opportunities to catch a big one.
With a coastline longer than the equator and opportunities for catching cod of record breaking proportions, chances are you will get hooked on sea fishing in Norway.
The colder the water, the bigger the fish. Join fellow outdoor enthusiasts on a fishing adventure in Norway, with fresh winter air and waters teeming with fish.
If it’s peace and quiet you are after, you can do much worse than exploring the many seemingly endless lakes and streams in Norway with a fishing rod in hand. In many cases, you will have the place all to yourself.