Sightseeing in Norway: One day in Bergen - Vikingess Voyages

Wednesday, September 11, 2013

Sightseeing in Norway: One day in Bergen

Bergen has a long history as the former capital of Norway, and currently as the second largest city in Norway. The city was founded in 1070, and back then it was known under the name Bjørgvin. It was also a central city in the old Hanseatic League, and the Hanseatic heritage still remains strong, for instance through the old Hanseatic Warf “Bryggen” (“the Harbor”), and the local Hansa Brewery. Citizens of Bergen are very proud and found of their city, which can be reflected in their patriotism towards the local soccer team Brann and the general statement that “Eg e'kje fra Norge, eg é fra Bergen” (“I’m not from Norway, I’m from Bergen”; of course exclaimed in the local Bergen dialect).
The old food court Kjøttbasaren from 1874 by the harbor.
From the new food court located underneath the tourist information center.
You can among other things see huge lobsters at the harbor's fish market
While I was born in Bergen and have all my relatives here, I actually grew up mostly in other parts of the country, so you can't really tell my dialect. Still, Bergen is still one of my home towns, which made it particularly nice to be back here. I took my bachelor degrees in Pedagogy and Japanese at the University in Bergen, and it was the last place I lived before I moved to Japan. It is a beautiful city; at least when the weather is nice..

The beautiful Music Pavilion has a history going back to 1888
Students enjoying their introduction week in Bergen

Bergen is actually known for its good student environment, as the city is home to both the University of Bergen (UiB), the Norwegian School of Economics (NHH) and the Bergen University College (HiB). Despite being a small city (after 3 years in Asia felt like visiting a small village) the city has a young population and exchange students visiting from all over the world. This summer when I visited Bergen a lot of the students were enjoying their introduction week at school and many students spend this week participating in a wide variety of activities. Recent years it has become a popular group activity to decide on a costume theme, and typically all student in one area of study then dress up in the same type of costumes.

Bergen is also famous among tourists as the gateway to the fjords, and both the Sandefjord, Hardangerfjord and Geirangerfjord are places within reach from the former capital. But Bergen is also a great tourist destination in itself. Norwegians often refer to Bergen as “the city between the seven mountains”, and the mountainous terrain surrounding the city makes it an ideal destination for tourists looking for short or long hiking adventures. 
View of Bergen from the small streets above the harbor area
The funicular in Bergen
For those who don’t like to do the exercise, Mt. Fløyen or Ulriken are good options to see the spectacular view of Bergen as they are accessible by respectively funicular and cable car. However, while the mountains surrounding Bergen make it look like an idyllic place to live they certainly also help making it one of Norway’s wettest cities, especially during the autumn.
Above: The entrance to the funicular
There is a lot I can write about Bergen, as it is the city I was born in and where most of my relatives live. I have decided to write a couple of more blog posts about Bergen so that it will be easier for my readers to find information about possible topics of interest. Hope some of these also can be of help to anybody thinking about visiting Bergen in the future. And as always, I'm always very happy when I receive questions and/or comments, so please don't hesitate if you have something on your mind! 

The lake "Lille Lungårdsvann" in the center of Bergen
Small streets in Bergen
Such streets are known as "smau" 

Related blogposts

Recommended Hotels in Bergen

Radisson Blu Royal Hotel Bergen

Thon Hotel Bristol Bergen

Det Hanseatiske Hotel


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About Anette
Anette came to Japan as an exchange student in 2010, met the love of her life and got stuck. From her base in Tokyo she writes about her experiences as a full-time worker in Tokyo and about her travels in Japan and abroad. She's a free-spirited adventurer who enjoys both the great outdoors and her urban lifestyle.

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About Me

Adventures ofAnette

A modern day shield-maiden who loves to explore the unbeaten paths of the world. From her base in Tokyo, Anette takes on both rural and urban challenges, and goes by the motto "No challenge too big, no adventure too small"!
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