Bergen is the Gateway to the Fjords of Norway. It is located in Western Norway
on Vagen Bay and is the second
largest city in Norway, with an urban population of about 400,000.
The city is set among 7 mountains, with the highest being Mount
Ulriken. The city was incorporated in 1070 and was a member of the
Hanseatic League in the 1200s when haddock drove its economy. The harbor
area, called Bryggen, is a
World Heritage site. Bergen suffered from many fires over the year,
typical of many cities in Europe without access to stone building
materials. The locals speak a dialect of Norwegian called Bergensk. The
official web site is visitbergen.com
The weather in Bergen is influenced by the sea and its northern latitude.
The height of summer is July and August, when average highs of 65 F (19 C)
can be expected, while average lows are 52 F (11 C). From
December - February, average high
temperatures are 40 F (5 C) and average lows are around the freezing
point due to the moderating influence of the
Atlantic. The summer months are the most popular for tourism.
June can be an excellent early summer choice.
Bergen Airport - Flesland (BGO) is located in Flesland about
20 minutes from downtown by cab or 40 minutes by bus. There is
currently no rapid transit to the airport, although Bergen Light Rail (Bybanen)
is under construction and currently reaches about 2/3 of the distance to
the airport from downtown. Bergen Station, in the downtown, has
regular connections on Norwegian State Railways to Oslo,
which takes over 7 hours. The train goes through Voss and a transfer
there allows access to Flam. From Bergen
Station it's about a 10 minute walk to the inner harbour. Despite its small size, Bergen
does have an excellent selection of buses, trolleys and trams operated by Skyss. The
cruise ship terminal is located at the beginning of the old harbor beside
Rozenkranzt Tower and Hakon's Hall. It's a 10 minute walk to Bryggen
from the cruise ship terminal. Passenger ferries run from Bergen
south to Hirtshals, Denmark on the Fjord
Line and north to Sognefjord and Nordfjord. Bergen is
also the southern terminus for the Hurtigurten
which visits all the coastal communities to the north. It rounds the
northern tip of Norway and travels beyond the Arctic Circle.
Bergenhus - 13th century fortress
that includes the Rosenkrantz Tower and the adjacent royal
residence of Hakon's
Hall. Bergenhus Fortress, beside the cruise ship terminal,
guarded the entrance to the harbor and wharf. The wharf
(Bryggen) is a UNESCO World Heritage site next to the
fortress. Along the rows of wooden buildings at the wharf are
Museum and the Hanseatisk Museum in an 18th century wooden
building. St Mary's Church (Mariakirken) is a 12th century Romanesque style
church nearby, but it is closed for reconstruction. At the end
of the harbour are the Fish Market (Fisketorget) and adjoining flower and vegetable market.
The Ludvig Holberg statue faces the harbor. Take a local fjord cruise with White
Lady from the Fish Market.
Travel 3 hours to the Vøringsfossen Waterfall,
possibly the most photographed waterfalls in Norway.
Travel 3 hours to Odda and then hike up to the
Troll's Tongue. This is not easily accessible and is more than a
day trip from Bergen or Flam.
Cruise from Bergen on Hurtigruten,
including an option to travel to the most northeasterly port in Norway
at Kirkenes. This route covers the entire coast of Norway, past
Sweden and Finland, to a point near the Russian border.