Stunning leaps leading to deserted expanses of powder snow, or large ski resorts with all modern conveniences. Either way, it all goes downhill from here.
Downhill skiing journalist and alpine authority Thomas Kleiven recommends these slopes:
Family-friendly Trysil is Norway's largest ski destination. Surrounded by unspoilt nature, Trysil was one of the first holiday spots in Europe to achieve the prestigious Sustainable Tourism certification.
If you are craving thrilling adventures, extreme surroundings and Norwegian food specialities, Voss will not let you down.
The mountains at Norefjell, just 90 minutes from Oslo, offer peaceful hikes with a huge view. In winter, this is where to go for skiing and snowboarding – for families and daredevils alike.
In the small village of Hemsedal you are greeted by alpine mountain surroundings and some of Norway’s best skiing and fly-fishing.
In Stryn you can join a rope team walking up on a glacier, go summer skiing, and enjoy white sandy beaches on the very same day.
The Røldal ski centre in the Hordadalen valley is known for receiving the most snowfall of any area in Norway. It is also one of the best free skiing resorts in the country.
Hafjell, Norway's third largest ski resort, welcomes you to endless slopes, internationally known parks, and up-to-date ski adventures for all ages. In summer, Hafjell turns into a natural playground for both mountain and downhill biking.
Lofoten is known for excellent fishing, spectacular nature attractions such as the northern lights and the midnight sun, and small villages off the beaten track. Kayak between the islands or go fishing for the catch of your life.
It’s wild, it’s dramatic – and it’s most certainly unique. If you are searching for genuine nature experiences or an active holiday, Narvik is definitely waiting for you.
Geilo is the perfect ski destination for the whole family, with several ski areas and slopes varying from beginner to expert level.
The chairlift to the summit Nos has been in operation since 1968. Today, the Hovden Alpine Centre is a modern and well-adapted facility for the whole family. The children's area "Tusseland" has become an eldorado for our youngest guests; and the terrain park "Bukkerittet" is more spectacular than ever.
Located between the two mountain regions of Dovrefjell and Trollheimen, and with more than 55 percent of the area declared national park or protected landscape, Oppdal is a natural choice for an active holiday.
The mountains at Skeikampen have been a popular recreation area for generations. Cruise down a slope, hike a mountain or simply lean back and enjoy the inviting surroundings.
If you thought that springtime signals the end of the skiing season, remember that there are high-altitude resorts in Norway where you can have fun on snow all summer long.
However, getting an early start is essential. The glaciers can be icy at first, but will soften with the first rays of sun to provide hours of good skiing. By about midday, the slopes might turn to slush – a perfect time for a cold beer, a swim and some sunbathing.
When these summer ski centres open and close depends on the snow and weather conditions, so check the snow report before you go.
You can easily spot them as they dance their way down the slopes. Telemark skiing is practised by a small group of dedicated enthusiasts all over the world – committed to this ultimate combination of elegance and raging speed.
Telemark skiing differs from regular alpine skiing in style and equipment and has been described as the most rhythmic and flowing way to descend a snow covered mountain.
With the commercialization of recreational skiing and the growth of ski resorts, the Telemark skiing technique failed to catch on. By the 1950s, the Telemark turn was close to becoming a forgotten treasure.
However, the 1980s saw a revival of the style, and today Telemark skiing is often practiced in the many ski resorts in Norway.
Skiing and snowboarding can be fun, but also a bit frustrating if you don’t quite master the art forms. Luckily, there are a bunch of ski schools in Norway, for complete novices as well as for the more advanced skier.
Here are some of them:
Skiing like a Norwegian can be deeply rooted in traditions and rituals. Or you can forget all about that, and just focus on the adrenalinesurging drops and big jumps.
Up, down, all around. During winter, you will find groomed trails for cross-country skiing crisscrossing the entire country.
Stay safe by following these simple rules of thumb:
Norwegian philosophy is very much that conservation is everyone's responsibility. Enjoying nature and the outdoors is considered a national pastime, and this is reflected in our attitude towards the preservation and use of the wilderness.
Whether it's hiking in the mountains or biking an idyllic forest road, Norwegians try to leave as small a footprint as possible. Leave it as you would like to find it is the mantra, regardless of whether you are a guest in the landscape or a small fishing village.
Quality of life is what it is all about, not only now, but for the time to come as well. It's about recognizing that everybody else are just as important as ourselves, and taking steps to implement that thought in all aspects of life. It's not easy, nor is it quickly done. But it is definitely worth it.
Norway is a country of outstanding natural beauty, with dramatic waterfalls, crystal clear fjords, majestic mountains, and spectacular glaciers. Preserving this landscape, its communities, and their way of life is essential for locals and visitors alike.
You are in Norway, therefore no reason to stay indoors. Here are some fun things to do, whether you're visiting the coast, the mountains or somewhere in between.
In the Viking sagas wintertime is often summed up as “that winter he stayed at home at the farm”. It was a time to stay indoors and rest up and spend time with the family, but in this day and age, you might as well spend your winter days enjoying the snow under your feet and the northern lights overhead.