Norway is the longest country in Europe, with approximately one third of the country sitting north of the Arctic Circle.
You might think of Norway as somewhere with only snow and ice and while this is correct in winter, the summer opens up the country to green meadows, rocky mountains that cascade into the crashing ocean beneath.
Adventurer and outdoor writer Ash Routen says
Given it’s latitude and terrain you can pack a whole lot in across the seasons in Norway. In February you can be cross country skiing in arctic wilderness, and by May you could be mountain biking, hiking or climbing in the same area.
So lets look into this in some more detail.
– Outdoor Sport –
Obviously this is one of my favorite parts of any destination. Norway is home to around 300 summits that are above 2000m and countless peaks below 2000m. This means one thing; sport with a view!
Do you like being the only group on a mountain? Ski touring in Norway gives you the opportunity to skin up a peak and never see anyone all day. That said, the conditions can vary quite a lot and sometimes require more mountaineering rather than basic ski touring. There can be conditions from the freshest powder you’ve experienced to wind blasted slopes that you need to pack up your skis and use crampons on your boots. Either way, it is amazing.
Norway is home to several ski resorts. The largest is located on Trysilfjellet which is around 3 hours north east of Oslo.
In Norway, you have the potential to hike peaks both on the coast and inland, plus in the forests. Hiking along the coast will give you views of fjords, sea eagles and if you’re lucky, whales! Be sure to be prepared for any weather!
For a multi day tour, there are various huts that you can stay at all year round. These huts are generally basic with no running water or toilets, but a fire place and fire wood so you can keep warm in winter.
Norway is home to rocky and rooty single track trails that flow down mountains or through forests. In addition, there are several resorts such as Hafjell and Trysil that open their lifts in summer to mountain bikers who are in search of a downhill thrill.
Climbing & Ice Climbing
During the summer and autumn months, Norway’s mountains are a haven of climbing routes. In early winter, they are a prime location for a spot of ice climbing.
– Norway’s Ocean –
With Over 13500 miles of coastline, Norway is famous for its water sports.
Along the coast of Norway you have the chance to kayak in fjords with mountain cliffs as a backdrop. In the north you could be lucky enough to experience kayaking with whales and seals. Be sure to take a local guide as the weather and tides can be rather unpredictable.
According to Deeper Blue, some of Norway’s best diving sites include WW2 ship wrecks at Narvik and the worlds strongest current at Salstraumen. Here you’ll have the chance to see cod and coalfish swiming above you.
With a vast coastline and hundreds of fjords, Norway is one of Europe’s little sailing secrets. This is something you won’t get me doing. There will be most likely vomit episodes and for this reason, I stay away from sailing.
Ok, this might seem like an odd suggestion, but Norway is renowned for its waves. Additionally it is one of the most northerly places that you can surf. In winter you could arrive at a snow covered beach on the Lofoten Islands, with a back drop of snowy mountains and awesome surf. Obviously you’ll need a thick suit, booties and hood!
– Seasons –
Norway is home to 4 seasons, albeit they are cooler than the 4 seasons that you experience in the central alps.
This break in the seasons makes it perfect for lots of sports all year round.
Summer makes way for 24 hours of daylight in the north which is perfect for longer hikes, climbing and kayaking.
Although winter witnesses the famous polar nights and then shorter days, winter is perfect for snow and ice sports such as ski touring and ice climbing, but you still have the option to do all year round sports such as kayaking and surfing.
In from September – April, you could also be lucky to see the northern lights, which is a perfect addition to your sport holiday.
If this all sounds great, but you are worried that Norway is too expensive, here are some tips for making Norway an affordable holiday.