I come from a country where the highest hill is 312 m high, so you can understand my fascination with mountains. And Norway is full of them. There are around 600 mountains in Norway. And they are all around the country in all sizes and shapes. When you travel around in the time when seasons change, you can travel across the country and see snowy mountains, orange Iceland-like mountains (read about my experience in Iceland here), rocky mountains and even some greenish mountains. You can choose a mountain based on your level of hiking experience. Just go and explore.
Norwegians are pretty obsessed with hiking themselves so you wouldn’t have any problems finding a hiking map, some road signs or suggestions from the locals.
Mountains aren’t the only thing Norway has to offer. They have more than 100 waterfalls. And the best part is that you can find them not only by walking around, hiking and hardcore exploring the mainland but also on many sides of the roads. Just traveling by car, minding your own business and BOOM a huge waterfall on your right. Singing along to your favorite travel song BOOM a waterfall to your left. Isn’t it exciting?
What if you are not a big fan of waterfalls, but still wanna have some outdoor experience? Forests take up 37% of the mainland. Here you go. This country not only has a little bit of everything and for everyone, but it has a LOT of it.
3. Outdoors culture
People (locals) love spending time with their families outdoors. Kids learn to ski before they learn to walk. You might think it is a joke, but I have seen a kid, barely standing and already on the skis. I guess, it isn’t so surprising after reading about how many beautiful places Norway has. Logically, their culture has evolved around their beautiful area.
It is somehow amusing because when you hike it is common to meet and greet each other. Everyone is friendly when in nature thus very open to helping you find your way.
4. The Language
Well, I did live in Norway for 2,5 years and did learn the language, but it still amazes me. Because they have so weird words. Storting (which translates to the big thing) is the name of the Norwegian parliament. Jordmor (the earth mother) is the midwife. Fart means speed. And so on and so forth. Even though I use this language on a daily basis, I keep on finding new words that make me smirk.
You would have already figured that being surrounded by so beautiful nature would bring you calm, yes. But not only that. People are so chill. This is one of the wealthiest countries in the world, so people are not used to worrying. They never go over the speed limit. They can sometimes stop their car in the middle of the road just to talk to another driver they know. I remember when I used to live in Norway and someone stole my sisters purse at a bar, the police said: “Calm down, take it easy. Just come to the police office on Monday and write an application for us”. I mean, they did not even think of going after the thief even if it happened 2 minutes ago and probably was still at the bar taking other people’s stuff.
Yes, this can be very frustrating if you are from a country with a fast pace and loud, angry drivers. But it is definitely interesting to experience.
I have been to Norway many times and, yes, I will come back again. You should too.
Here is a video of our trip:
Happy travels, folks!
P.S. Do not rent a car when visiting Bergen – it is a nightmare to park there.
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