One city – endless opportunities. What has really made Bergen famous the world over is its unique charm and atmosphere. The city was voted one of the best cities in Europe in 2017 by Condé Nast Traveler’s readers, which proves just how attractive and exciting this city between 7 mountains really is.
Bergen is today the second-largest city in the country.
By far the most iconic sight to greet any visitor to Bergen is the colorful facade of Bryggen, the old Hanseatic wharf first established in the 14th century. It has been, and still is, a place of both cultural and economic significance. The picturesque wooden structures, rebuilt following a fire in 1702, later became recognized as a vital part of Bergen’s cultural heritage, and also the world’s, as a UNESCO World Heritage site. The wharf today houses a small museum, shops, restaurants and cafés and is an emblematic and natural focal point for locals and visitors alike.
Bryggen is one of Bergen’s and Norway’s main attractions. Bryggen was built after the great fire in 1702 and is included on UNESCO’s World Heritage List.
The very first buildings in Bergen were situated at Bryggen, which has been a vibrant and important area of the city for many centuries.
Bryggen has been ravaged by many fires, the great fire of 1702 in particular.
The area was rebuilt on the foundations that had been there since the 12th century, which means that Bryggen is basically unchanged despite the passing centuries.
Hidden behind the iconic Bryggen front lies a hidden world of passages, small shops, galleries and artist studios, ready for you to explore! What you don’t see from the street, is that jewelers, artists, and textile designers dot the narrow passages between the rows of historic houses.
Strolling around old streets and alleyways where people have lived for centuries is like a fairy-tale. You will see higgledy-piggledy small wooden houses, cobbled streets with stone steps in the steepest parts and flowers everywhere.
Stop off at the Fish Market to mingle with the crowds. Visit the Aquarium and see the fish, penguins and seals in their natural element, as well as crocodiles, snakes and spiders. Stroll along the UNESCO-listed wooden buildings at Bryggen to the old fortress at Bergenhus.
The old Hanseatic wharf is architecturally unique and is perhaps one of the most familiar images in all of Norway.
With Bergen known in Norway as the city of the seven mountains, it is only natural that you would want to visit one of them. By far the most easily accessible is Fløyen, which is close to the city center. It’s connected to the town by a funicular, Fløibanen, that will take you to the top in less than eight minutes. The panoramic view of the city, the fjord and the ocean is breathtaking.
Take a trip to the outdoor Fish Market in the middle of the city center to experience the lively atmosphere and the colorful selection of treasures of the sea. Is one of Norway’s most-visited outdoor attractions, and the Fish Market offers an abundance of fish, shellfish, fruit, vegetables and hand-made crafts for you to buy, see and taste.
The Hanseatic Museum and Schøtstuene Museum Vest tells the story of how the Hanseatic merchants lived and traded in Bergen for 400 years. Visit the museum to find out about this important period in the city’s history and the stories of some of the people who lived here.
As Bergen is very much connected to the fjords surrounding it, there are several cruise companies stationed in the city, eager to show you the wonders of the famous Norwegian landscape or to offer you simple transportation to nearby towns and cities. One of the most spectacular offers for people interested in a more extensive voyage is Hurtigruten. This cruise sets off from Bergen daily and travels all the way along the Norwegian coast to its northernmost point. There are also simpler day trips, like those connecting Bergen to the nearby Sognefjorden, the longest of fjord in Norway; to Baroniet Rosendal, the smallest castle in the country; or to the surrounding fjords and mountains for a sightseeing trip.
Bryggens Museum display findings of the archaeological excavations of Bryggen from 1955 and contains the foundations of the oldest buildings in Bergen
Bergen’s small wooden houses add to the city’s charm and uniqueness. Many of these old wooden buildings date back to the 18th and 19th centuries and have been respectfully restored and refurbished in recent years.