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Epic Tours In Norway

Norway is a wonderful country for road trips, train journeys, and epic cruise adventures along the rugged polar coast. The further north you go, the wilder nature becomes as well, and the roads are slightly more rugged and narrow.

However, there are some adventures in Norway that are best experienced along with a seasoned tour guide, boat captain, or alpine guide.

Both to make sure you are safe on your adventures and also because they can tell you all the stories, the history, and the half-truths and fairytales that often come along with the most mythical destinations.

Let us start with the best tours in Oslo and work our way via the mountains to the west and further north all the way to the North Cape.

Map of Norway at the bottom of the article.

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Best Tours Around Oslo

The Oslo Opera hours seen from the fjord, with a pale sky in the background, and the winter sun setting leaving a greenish light in the large glass facade, and a pink shine on the blank water
Oslo Opera House

Well, you don’t need to join a tour to survive in the capital of Norway, so why should you?

There are a lot of great sites to visit on your own in the city center, without danger from nature, weather, or anything else (and Oslo is a really safe city). However, if you want to get a little extra out of your Oslo sightseeing, you might consider one or two tours anyway.

Oslo has a rich history and so-called “hidden gems,” and of course, an Oslo guide will know all about the best sights, bars, restaurants, paths, parks, stories, and myths (from medieval times in the Kingdom of Norway).

So here are a handful of really great tours in Oslo that get great reviews across the board.

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10 Top-Rated Oslo Tours

Tours Around The Majestic Hardangervidda

Scenic photo from the western part of Hardangervidda with incredible views of a long narrow fjord below the mountain plains.

Hardangervidda is the name for the mountainous plains that stretch out over a vast area between Oslo and Bergen in the west. Norwegians love to hike in these plains in all four seasons of the year, including me!

The train between Oslo and Bergen passes here, and in both summer and winter, you will have spectacular views from your train window (or car window if you opt for a road trip – the road also passes across here).

Mind you, during winter, the view might be obstructed by meters and meters of snow along the railway (or road), which is a different but still spectacular sight.

On the edge of Hardangervidda is also where you find the famous Trolltunga, a piece of the mountain sticking out over the vast fjords below, which is a selfie you can not take anywhere else.

Your chance of getting lost hiking the “vidda” is that there are not a lot of landmarks here, so unless you are a master of maps and compasses, bring your GPS.

If you would like some assistance in finding the best places to visit around here, these are the best options.

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Best Tours In Hardangervidda

Best Tours Around Bergen

Vøringsfossen Waterfalls outside Bergen, wild whitewater waterfall in a green gorge with amazing views
Vøringsfossen Waterfalls outside Bergen

I have no idea how many times I have visited Bergen from Oslo, and I have also been based there for long periods of time in connection to my previous work – and I LOVE Bergen!

The only downside to this picturesque town on the wild west coast of Norway is that it by far has the record for the number of annual rainy days (200 to be exact).

Despite this, people from Bergen tend to say, “I’m not from Norway; I am from Bergen, which should give you an idea of to what extent a “bergenser” loves their city.

The reason for this is also one of the wonderful things about Bergen, a mountain range called The 7 Sisters, which are responsible for all the clouds getting rid of the rain before they travel further over the mountains and into the fjords, mountains and plains of Norway.

Apart from strolling around the famous Bryggen (the jetty) in Bergen or taking the Fløybanen up the steep hillside, there are also a number of amazing places to visit just a short distance from the city.

Here are some of the best tours in and around Bergen.

10 Top-Rated Tours In And Around Bergen

Tours In The Jotunheimen Mountains

Jotunheimen mountains in Norway, with green grass where the photo is taken along a small river, while in the distant mountains, there is snow and a blue glacier

Jotunheimen is a vast, beautiful, and wild mountain area in Norway. It is also home to the country’s highest peak, the Galdhøpiggen.

This is an area where you should only embark on a trek by yourself if you are an avid and experienced hiker. Although there is a wide network of marked trails and paths in Norwegian nature, once you get into the mountains, finding your way is not your only challenge.

Every year, the Norwegian Rescue Service embarks on rescue missions on foot and by helicopter to help tourists who have underestimated the Norwegian weather and terrain. You need to be aware that, even in summer, you can experience all four seasons in the Norwegian mountains.

If you do choose to trek on your own, make sure you pack clothes (preferably wool) that will protect you from rain and wind, take you through a cold night (if the thick fog comes), as well as water and food for 24 hours.

Tell someone where you are going and when you will be back, and bring a GPS.

If you prefer to meet the Norwegian mountains with a guide or even on a more comfortable tour (like with a boat, there are fjords and lakes), here are your best options.

6 Top-Rated Tours In The Jotunheimen Mountains

Best Tours In The Dovre National Park

The majestic muskox in the snowy mountains
The majestic muskox

Dovre is one of my favorite national parks for hiking in Norway. I have made several treks here, including multi-day treks as a “solo female trekker,” as I really enjoy hiking in the mountains on my own!

One of the differences between Rondane and Jotunheimen is that the latter is vast, wild, and pointy, and the former is more mellow, with rounder mountain peaks that are easier to hike and climb. In fact, there is not a lot of climbing in Dovre, more trekking.

The scenery is magnificent, and the colors (especially in September) are incredible.

You can choose to hike during the day and stay at a mountain cottage at night if you don’t want to spend the night in a tent you have carried with you.

2 Top-Rated Tours In The Dovre Mountains

Best tours in Norway, photo from northern norway with the dark polar waters in front of a quaint village, and in the background are wild dark mountains where the peaks are covered in snow!
Best tours to Norway south to north - nature photos of mountains, fjords, and the north cape globe.

Best Tours In Trondheim

The majestic grey stone cathedral in Trondheim with pointy speers amidst a green large park with big grees in the middle of the city scape
Nidarosdomen Cathedral in Trondheim

Trondheim is the former capital of Norway. When I say former, it is really former, as in around 1000 years ago. This includes the famous cathedral in Trondheim, Nidarosdomen, which was built in around 1070 BC. So you may have gathered that there is a lot of history here.

Today, Trondheim is the third largest city in Norway, which does not really say that much, as Norwegian cities generally are very small. The former capital has around 180.000 inhabitants, so many would consider it more of a small town.

In addition to the charming city (or town), there is also wonderful nature around Trondheim, which is practically only minutes from the city center.

There are plenty of fun things to do in summer and winter, and perhaps the most spectacular adventures can be found here in the coldest months of the year.

7 Best Tours In Trondheim

Best Tours In Bodø

Bodø in winter, you can barely see the cityscape across the water across the cold blue sea, and the hilly mountains benind the city are covered in snow under a pale sky.

Bodø (Bodo in English) is the first Norwegian town you will reach on the other side of the Polar Circle, the gate to the Arctic Region. After driving (or taking the train) along the narrowest part of Norway’s long, thin country, you will cross the gate to the Arctic just a couple of hours before you reach Bodø.

Known as the Windy City, the locals claim that there is always wind here, and mostly fierce winds, too. It is not so strange, as the town is sitting unprotected right on the edge of the North Sea.

I have visited Bode several times, and I probably have been a bit lucky as I can only remember calm, sunny summer days!

From here, you can reach the famous and beautiful Lofoten Islands with a “fast ferry” (hurtigbåt) across the water. It will take you a few hours, though, and you should prepare yourself, as there might be “weather” (a term Norwegians use to describe what most others would call a storm).

You can also travel to the glacier Svartisen, experience the Saltstraumen (the strongest current in Norway), or visit some of the islands in the sea outside the town.

9 Top-Rated Tours in Bodø

Best Tours In Lofoten

Beautiful fjord in Lofoten with a tiny village with scattered wooden houses under the majestic mountains bathed in golden sun in front of the rugged mountains where the peaks are covered in snow

The Lofoten Islands are among the most popular destinations in Norway. They are above the Arctic Circle and have a unique location, nature, and culture—even particularly beautiful for the north.

Lofoten stretches from north to south, shaped like a pointy peninsula that is actually an untidy chain of islands connected by bridges. Starting from the Ofotfjorden Fjord, which is home to Narvik town, it reaches out into the North Sea before it tips southwards.

I have spent a number of weekends here over the years while I lived in Tromsø and attended the Arctic University, going hiking, canoeing, and rock climbing, to mention a few really cool Lofoten activities.

The exceptional scenery consists of a chain of steep mountains that never get completely clear of snow, falling straight down into the sea on all sides. It is super popular among adventure travelers for its myriad of exceptional adventures, both summer and winter.

You can also get here by taking the speed ferry from Bodø on the mainland and arriving in the beautiful Svolvær village, home to the famous Svolværgeita peak (The Svolvær Goat).

10 Top-Rated Tours In Lofoten

Best Tours In Tromsø

Spectacular Northern Lights outside Tromsø, over the snow covered night mountains is the flowing Aurora in a variety of green colors against the dark starry sky
Northern Lights outside Tromsø

Tromsø (Tromso in English) is often referred to as the Paris of the North, apparently because travelers centuries ago were impressed with the chicness of the city; Tromsøs “women, fashion, food, and culture.”

Today, Tromsø is mostly known as the home of the Ishavskatedralen Cathedral, and it is actually an island community, although a very small island.

I lived here for three years while completing my bachelor’s degree at Arctic University.

I am pretty sure you, too, will love the blue winter light when the days never quite reach daylight, the fierce weather, and the mellow golden summer nights with the midnight sun.

In Tromsø (or right outside Tromsø), you will have great chances of spectacular sightings of the Aurora, the Northern Lights, in the winter. Also, the sun never sets in Tromsø between the 21st of May and the 21st of July, which is when you can experience the Midnight Sun.

So if you go out clubbing in Tromsø in July, you will probably need your sunglasses when you come out of the club sometime after midnight!

There are a variety of amazing tours to join in Tromsø if you want some assistance in creating incredible polar experiences, and here are some of the best ones.

11 Top-Rated Tours In Tromsø And The Region

Best Tours In Alta

One of the most popular activities in Alta, Norway, is winter dog sledding, Here a crew of dogs pulling a sled and a sled driver in a completely white snowy environment.

Alta is the first town you reach in the northernmost county of Norway, Finnmark. This small town is mostly famous for its salmon fishing paradise, the Alta River. Apart from this, as this is far above the Arctic Circle, you also find incredible polar nature experiences in Alta.

The further north you get, the longer the midnight sun stays in the summer, and on the flip side, the longer and darker the polar winter gets.

For each latitude, the Aurora has a better chance of showing up with spectacular shows in the sky that tend to bring tears to the eyes of even the most stoic among us.

Alta is also less than a two-hour drive from Kautokeino, which is close to the Finnish border.

Kautokeino is considered the cultural capital of the northern Sami (indigenous people) area in Norway, and around 90% of its inhabitants speak the Sami language.

8 Top-Rated Tours In Alta

Best Tours In The North Cape

My first visit to the North Cape, standing next to the black iron globe under a deep and clear blue sky, with nothing but sea outside the majestic cliff that steeps hundreds of meters into the fjord behind me.
My first visit to the North Cape

For many people worldwide, a visit to the majestic North Cape, the northernmost mainland point in Europe (which is in Norway), is on their travel bucket list—and it is easy to understand why.

At the time of writing, I am, in fact, based in Honningsvåg, the northernmost town in Norway (with only 2500 inhabitants!) for the summer season, and I am surrounded by breathtaking beauty every day!

Honningsvåg is called the Gateway to the North Cape, only 35 kilometers south of this epic cliff where adventurers have traveled for centuries.

The Arctic landscape and wildlife here is spectacular; the air is different, and the light changes with the seasons – there is something about Northern Norway you just have to experience for yourself!

Top-Rated Tours In The North Cape Area

Activities And Sights Around The North Cape

View from the summit above the Sherpa Stairs in Honningsvåg, spectacular views of the fjords and the vast snow covered mountains that have steep sides straight into the fjord on a bright sunny day with incredible reflections of the sun in the deep blue water.
My view from the Storfjellet summit on top of the Sherpa Stairs

There are also a lot of activities you can do that do not require a tour from Honningsvåg, especially in the summer.

In the winter, unless you are used to Arctic conditions, you might want an experienced guide to assist you when you visit. The weather and temperatures up here in the winter are no joke – and it is dark.

From May to September, here are a few summer adventures you can do on your own!

  • Hike The Sherpa Stairs from the Center of Honningsvåg to Storfjellet Mountain Summit
  • Hike to Kirkeporten (The Church Gate)
  • Visit Skarsvåg Fishing Village (start point to hike to Kirkeporten)
  • Hike to Knivskjellodden Northernmost Point (17 kilometers return hike)
  • Visit Kamøyvær Fishing Village
  • Frozen Summer Arctic Jewelry
  • Art Gallery East Of The Sun EvArt
  • North Cape Museum
  • Have almond croissants at Honny Bakes Bakery in Honningsvåg
  • Fine dining at Havly Restaurant

Best Tours In Kirkenes

A white raindeer on the snow in the sun in Kirkenes, looking at the photographer

You may or may not know that Norway shares a border with Russia?

All the way up in the northeast, in the forests of the north, the border between Norway and Russia stretches for 197 kilometers (122 miles) and is patrolled by guards on both sides.

From Kirkenes, the Russian border is just 16 kilometers (10 miles) away, and the border to Finland is 54 kilometers (33 miles) away.

In this frozen part of Norway, Kirkenes is a small community of 3500 people, and this is where you come for wilderness, reindeer, the King Crab, and also a dramatic World War II history lesson.

Kirkenes also has a spectacular snow hotel that is super popular and quite unique to visit or stay at. Each room has its own unique masterpiece of ice art, perfectly crafted by skilled artisans, and there is, of course, an ice bar where you can enjoy a chilled drink!

Top-Rated Tours In Kirkenes

Best Tours In Svalbard

Hansbreen Glacier Svalbard Island Group Norway, the glacier vast plains in the foreground, and the wild Svalbard mountains in the background in pinkish colors from the low sun under blue skies with a veil of transparent clouds
Hansbreen Glacier in Svalbard

758 kilometers north of the North Cape, unprotected from storms, the fierce Barents Sea, and the Arctic elements, is Svalbard, an Island Group that is (mostly) Norwegian territory.

We actually share Svalbard with Russia; we have our “island capital,” Longyearbyen, up here, and they have theirs, Barentsburg.

When I visited Svalbard a few years ago, my favorite experience was dog sledding in silence into the spectacular arctic landscape and descending into a regal ice cave in the middle of nowhere!

Despite some urban myths, you will not meet polar bears in the cities and towns in Norway – except for in Svalbard. Inhabitants here never leave their houses without a weapon, as the white bears sometimes wander into the populated areas.

On this last stop before the North Pole, the polar night lasts almost four months of the year, and the midnight sun is up just as long in the summer.

There are two ways to get to this enigmatic island: you can either fly up (direct flights from Oslo and Tromsø) or you can join an Arctic Cruise that will take you across the vast Arctic Barents Sea.

Top-Rated Tours In Svalbard

Wrap-Up Best Tours In Norway

You should have a rough overview of the most spectacular destinations when you travel to Norway for your holiday now, whether you are planning to explore towns, culture, history, or some of the more adventurous and epic destinations this small country on the top of the world has to offer.

What time of year you travel will matter, as some destinations have more fun things to do in the summer, while others shine in winter.

Be it the Northern Lights, Polar Nights, or incredible adventures like snowmobile tours, dog sledding, or skiing to a summit (and racing down).

If you do your research beforehand about the time of year, the destinations you choose, and what you want to spend your time doing, Norway might well be a destination you will remember forever!

Related blog posts:

113+ Incredible Things To Do In Norway By Destination!

23 Best Things To Do In Oslo In Summer

Best Things To Do In the Majestic Western Bergen Norway


  1. I’ve been considering Norway for this year’s end!! Definitely taking this as a sign 😍😍😍

  2. Tromsø sounds like visiting the Yukon territory of Canada. The midnight sun is an experience that our northern territories also experience. Norway sounds beautiful.

  3. The scenery in Norway looks so spectacular, I’d love to visit and explore. I’m interested in doing a multi-day trek and it looks like there are many great options 🙂

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