Updated: May 8, 2020
Bergen is a calm and pretty city on the west coast of Norway. Surrounded by seven hills and fjords, it's a beautiful little city and much easier to access nearby nature than Oslo.
What to see
The most picturesque part of Bergen and a UNESCO world heritage site. A line of colourful buildings by the harbor dating back to 1702. Inside the buildings and behind them are many small shops, hidden passages and art galleries and studios. It's a charming place to lose yourself during the daytime.
There are seven hills surrounding Bergen, and Fløyen is one of the most popular to visit. You can hike up via several routes or take the Fløibanen (the funicular) if you're short on time or not up for hike. There are some great views from the top and plenty to do up here. There are various hikes you can undertake, like mountain biking or take a canoe across lake Skomakerdiket. There are playgrounds for kids and a troll forest where you can spot various trolls hiding in the woodland. There are also lots and lots of goats freely walking around, most are accustomed to the various tourists that visit each day and are therefore very friendly and approachable. Ulriken
The tallest of the seven hills at 643 meteres above sea level. Again, you can hike up this mountain via several different routes or take the Ulriksbanen, an arial tramway. Not only does Ulriken offer beautiful views, but there are a plethora of activities here too. There are plenty of hiking trails once at the top, paragliding and Norway's fastest zipline.
Julehuset Christmas Shop
Many cities have a one of these and Bergen is no exception. An all year round Christmas shop. Great if you're looking for something a little different to decorate your home during the festive season. Pick yourself up a Nisse - a traditional Norwegian Christmas spirit which is often mistaken by tourists as Santa.
There are so many varied types of decorations and ornaments spread over two floors, you'll find something that captures you. You should also notice some very old and wonky stairs leading to the upper level of the store.
I really enjoyed spending time around the harbour. From here you can see boats and ferries sailing through the fjords in the distance and you get some nice views of Bryggen. There were several market stalls here, a lot of which sold food, and it's here I tried whale. Now don't all scream at me at once. Minke whales sold and eaten here are not endangered, in fact there are apparently too many of them and they have to be culled. It much more humane how they kill and eat these free roaming sea creatures compared to how we keep animals on farms in the UK. You're also likely to find meat such as moose or reindeer sold here as street food.