With a coastline longer than the equator and waters brimming with record-sized cod, salmon, and halibut, Norway is a sea fishing paradise.
Safety on the water
Follow the rules of the sea, and make sure you know what they are. Think safety at all times. Respect the sea and the weather. Always wear a life jacket or other flotation device.
Make sure you are rested and sober. Be considerate, and remember that safety, the environment, and the well-being of everybody is a shared responsibility.
Norwegians are said to have seawater in their veins. As a nation, Norway has always lived off the sea. From Southern Norway through Fjord Norway and all along the coast to Kirkenes in Northern Norway, the entire coastline is dotted with fishing villages where fishing remains a key part of local life. For a more authentic holiday experience, many visitors stay in a cosy rorbu (traditional fisherman’s cabin) available for rent along the coast.
Catch fish all year round
Contrary to what you may think, you can enjoy sea fishing all year round. The summer months are the prime season, when both locals and visitors make the most of warmer temperatures and light evenings. Many head to the areas close to the Arctic Circle to get the ultimate outdoors adventure under the midnight sun.
However, fishing in winter, spring, and autumn means fewer crowds and cheaper accommodation and services. Winter might bring in some rough seas, so the safest bet is to go with an experienced guide.
The winter months offer fishing opportunities of a different kind. The cold, dark climate is compensated by frequent sightings of the northern lights, and, most importantly, by outstanding opportunities for cod fishing. Between January and March, vast amounts of skrei (migrating cod) appear along the coast to spawn. This may be your chance to set a new personal record!
Please note that it is forbidden to fish cod in the Oslofjord all year round. In addition, cod fishing is prohibited from 1 January to 30 April in 14 defined areas where the cod spawn, from Lindesnes to the Swedish border in the south. In addition, some species in Norwegian waters are endangered and must be released back into the water if caught.
The World Championship in Cod Fishing, which takes place in Lofoten each March, attracts both experienced anglers and amateurs who come to soak up the lively atmosphere.
Endangered fish in Norway
The following species found in Norwegian waters are endangered and must be released back into the water if caught:
- Shagreen ray
- Common skate
- European eel
- Basking shark
- Polar cod
- Blue ling
- Golden redfish
- Pacific herring
- Black skate
- Arctic lamprey
- Spiny dogfish
- Atlantic salmon
- Sea lamprey
- Alaska pollock
- Greenland shark
- Arctic lumpsucker
You can find fishing camps across the country that provide you with everything you need for your fishing trip, including robust boats, fishing gear, filleting rooms, clothing, and much more. If you are born after 1980 and want to rent a motorboat longer than 8 metres or with an engine over 25 horsepower, you need a boating licence.
If you don't have a licence, you can join a day trip with bigger fishing boats and learn from the best! It's safe and comfortable, and local fishing guides know the best fishing spots!
The catch of a lifetime
Even if cod is one of the most common species in Norwegian waters, it’s far from the only one. At the end of a day of fishing, we bet you will be posting proud selfies with your freshly caught sea trout, halibut, or salmon, or perhaps a haddock, plaice, mackerel, monkfish, ling, tusk … we could go on, but you get the point.
If big game fishing is what you are looking for, then Northern Norway is the place to be! There, you can find several places that specialise in halibut fishing, especially in Finnmark! Catching halibut might be tricky, but you're almost guaranteed to catch other types of fish! Don't forget to go on a king crab safari when you are up north.
If you want to up your chances of a catch, sex before fishing might be the surprising answer! At least according to many local fishermen in Northern Norway, good haill will help you catch more and bigger fish!
Norway is blessed with an exceptionally long coastline, where a vast number of species thrive and grow large. The secret is the warm currents of the Gulf Stream, as they lead to a high production of plankton, which attracts vast shoals of hungry sea creatures. In combination with rigorously enforced fishing regulations, populations of many species are in fact on the rise.
In these times, when fighting pollution is a major global issue, Norway stands out with its clean sea waters.
Sleep well, rise early
If you want to get that dream catch on your fishing holiday, you’d better sleep well and rise early. The many accommodation options along the Norwegian coast include hotels, campsites, and traditional fishermen’s cabins, called rorbuer.
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