Welcome to Bergen Norway, the most colourful city in Scandinavia and a gateway to the Norwegian Fjords. Situated in Hordaland on the west coast of the country, Bergen is frequently overlooked for its big sister Oslo. Whilst I can’t compare the two cities, I can tell you that Bergen offers visitors an abundance of charm as well as nature, culture and gastronomy by the bucket load. So if you’re looking for a Scandinavian break off the beaten track, Bergen is the city to visit.
If you’re docking into the city, you’ll experience first hand the beauty of Bergen’s harbour. It’s the second major harbour in Norway, but aside from the hustle of daily trading, the port is filled with beautiful ships. Some of which are just screaming out for a new captain 😉.
The weather can change quite quickly in Bergen Norway so come prepared. The wharf provides minimal shelter and in one hour alone, we witnessed every type of weather imaginable. By the time we came across The Norwegian Fisheries Museum, the heavens were ready to open. Rain aside, isn’t this the most unique museum ever?!
Bryggen’s Colourful Buildings
If colourful wooden medieval style buildings are your thing, make sure you bring a camera. Not only are the streets Instagram friendly, they’re also incredibly vibrant and uplifting.
Bryggen has been ravished by many fires, the great fire of 1702 in particular. Despite this, its original medieval structure has been preserved and Bryggen even holds UNESCO World Heritage Site status.
One of the main cultural attractions in this part of town is Bryggens museum. This cultural history museum is a great introduction to the city and houses many interesting archaeological finds from the excavations of the 1950s and 1960s.
Bergen’s infamous Fish Market is situated right along the wharf and is open for business every day, even during winter. It’s one of Norway’s most visited outdoor markets and after exploring it for myself, it’s not hard to see why. The seafood selection is impressive and showcases some of the largest catches I’ve witnessed to date. It’s a great lunch time experience, especially if you’re looking for excellent quality seafood at a fraction of restaurant prices.
The Fløibanen Funicular
The best way to capture Bergen in its entirety is by taking the Fløibanen funicular from this suburbia street in the the city centre to the top of Mount Fløyen. The journey lasts six minutes and it’s a wonderful way to take in the views of the city from above.
Shopping is a fun experience, particularly if you venture down the backstreets of Bryggen. Here you’ll find the best buys as the area is full of independent retailers and the products are all handmade.
Bergen is renowned for it’s lively art scene. From big names like Picasso to lesser known local talent, the city is bursting with museums and independent art galleries. Whilst it’s a great problem to have, the one #FirstWorldProblem you might encounter, is running out of time to fit all the museums and art galleries in.
Bergen is a fabulous city for a weekend break. One of the best things about cruising through the Norwegian Fjords, is that every town and city is different. In the same way I fell for Flam, it’s difficult not to fall hook, line and sinker for Bergen Norway, the most colourful city in Scandinavia.
Have you ever visited Bergen before?