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National parks

Nature’s own museums
To use something is not the same as consuming it, as prominent Norwegian philosopher Arne Næss once said. Norway’s national parks is a perfect example of this.
Two people hiking Mount Kattanakken in Jostedalsbreen national park, Fjord Norway
Mount Kattanakken in Jostedalsbreen national park.
Photo: Mattias Fredriksson / Fjord Norway
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The area you are entering is the kingdom of nature and its creatures. The concern and respect for animals and plants come first. Explore large and rare ecosystems, unspoilt nature, and natural habitats for wild animals.

Where the harmony of nature comes first

The harmony of nature makes its beauty, and its fragility is preserved through the huge national parks. Endangered animals and rare plants have optimal premises for survival.

As the national parks are scattered all over Norway, you will often find one relatively close to where you are.

Nearly 85 percent of Norway’s national parks are mountains, from gently rolling high plateaus to sharp peaks, ravines, and glaciers. In contrast, four of the national parks are defined as marine, which means that 98 percent of the preserved area in these parks are underwater. People have been exploring many of these areas for about 10,000 years, and now it's your turn.

Help preserving by exploring

There are always room for more people to discover the beauty of the national parks. Exploring them helps build awareness of their existence and the importance of preservation. The famous Norwegian right to roam also applies to the national parks, although some areas may have restricted access in the season of nesting and breeding.

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Your contribution to the preservation of the harmony of the national parks is to remember to leave nature as you found it.

Today there are 46 national parks in Norway, seven of them located on Svalbard. Many offer arrangements for outdoor activities with a network of marked paths and trails and overnight accommodation in either staffed lodges or self-service cabins.

Things to do in the national parks

Activities

More than 10% of mainland Norway is covered by national parks.

All of Norway’s 46 national parks are suitable for hiking.

Other popular activities are skiing, kayaking, fishing and hunting.

Find a national park near you

A selection of Norway’s national parks
One of the largest wilderness areas in Norway! The Blåfjella-Skjækerfjella National park is one of the largest national parks in Norway.… Read more
Blåfjella-Skjækerfjella National Park
Interactive exhibition for children and adults with the theme farm life, biodiversity and wild reindeer. Opening Hours Summer Mon-Sat 11-17, Sun… Read more
Forollhogna National Park Information center
Welcome to one of Norway’s most iconic mountain areas! A place which has shaped Norwegian identity for thousands of years. Home of the wild… Read more
Dovrefjell-Sunndalsfjella National Park
Femundsmarka National Park is one of the largest continuous, unspoilt wilderness regions in Southern Scandinavia. A great area for canoeing and… Read more
Femundsmarka National Park
Gutulia was made a national park in 1968. The area, measuring 19 km², is located between the Gutuli Lake and the Swedish border. Due to its… Read more
Gutulia National Park
Rondane National Park is a mountain area between the Gudbrandsdalen and Atndalen valleys. The area stretches from Ringebu in the south to Dovre in the… Read more
Rondane National Park
Almost half of the Jostedalsbreen National Park is covered by the Jostedalsbreen glacier, which is the largest glacier in mainland Europe. The… Read more
Jostedalsbreen National Park
Sotasæter, Breheimen
Breheimen national park
Breheimen national park
Jotunheimen National Park is characterized by high mountains, glaciers and deep lakes. There are more than 200 mountain peaks rising above 2000 m… Read more
Jotunheimen National Park
Langsua National Park – Friendly mountain terrain and marshes The Langsua National Park is Norway’s «youngest». It is located between Valdres… Read more
Langsua National Park
Hallingskarvet is a very distinctive landscape element, with lots of nice paths and trails and versatile hiking, summer and winter. The terrain is… Read more
Hallingskarvet National Park
Uvdal is a wonderful destination for anyone who loves the outdoors, and is a great starting point for excursions. Whether you are going for an hour or… Read more
Hardangervidda national park
Folgefonn Centre In May 2017, the new Folgefonn Centre will open in Rosendal. The centre will be the visitor centre for the national park and, in… Read more
Folgefonna National Park
Færder National Park is one of Norway's most important areas for coastal outdoor recreation, and large areas are secured as publicly owned recreation… Read more
Færder National Park
Ytre Hvaler National Park consists of muddy seabeds and rocky seabottoms with its rich underwater ecosystem containing corals and kelp forest. Land… Read more
Ytre Hvaler National Park
Jomfruland National Park was established on 16 December 2016 and covers an area of 117 km2(45 sq mi), including the islands of Jomfruland and… Read more
Jomfruland National Park
Raet is Southern Norway’s national park. Raet National Park extends from Grimstad, through Arendal and on to Lyngør in Tvedestrand. The… Read more
Raet National Park
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    Statens Kartverk, Geovekst og kommuner - Geodata AS

    Travellers’ own pictures

    Leaving it as you found 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 the way of life is essential for locals and visitors alike.

    Norwegian philosophy is very much that conservation is everyone’s responsibility. Try to leave as small a footprint as possible. Leave it as you would like to find it is the mantra - Take only pictures, keep only memories.

    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 neither easy nor quickly done. But it is definitely worth it.

    The right of access

    As long as you understand and follow a few basic rules and regulations, you are free to walk almost everywhere in the Norwegian countryside. Outdoor recreation is an important part of the national identity, and access to nature is considered a right established by law.

    The so called right of access (“allemannsretten”) has been part of the Outdoor Recreation Act since 1957, it ensures that everybody can experience nature, even on larger privately owned areas.

    The main rules are easy: Be considerate and thoughtful. Make sure you pick up your rubbish and show respect for nature and people – leave the landscape as you would want to find it.

    Safety in the mountain

    Norway is an incredible place to explore, with untamed mythical landscapes, mountains, valleys, and fjords. Before you enter the outdoors, get familiar with the nine simple rules of the Norwegian mountain code to help you stay safe.

    1. Plan your trip and inform others about the route you have selected.
    2. Adapt the planned routes according to ability and conditions.
    3. Pay attention to the weather and the avalanche warnings.
    4. Be prepared for bad weather and frost, even on short trips.
    5. Bring the necessary equipment so you can help yourself and others.
    6. Choose safe routes. Recognize avalanche terrain and unsafe ice.
    7. Use a map and a compass. Always know where you are.
    8. Don’t be ashamed to turn around.
    9. Conserve your energy and seek shelter if necessary.

    Read the mountain code with supplementary comments.

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