Most visitors see just a tiny part of Norway because they tend to stick to the parts they’ve heard about. That’s a shame. By taking relatively cheap flights, you can quickly move to areas with lots to offer, where you can get around without being surrounded by herds of other tourists. Some suggestions?
Fly to Tromsø. In the wintertime, you can just stay there and enjoy the northern lights. In the summer, do yourself a favor and drive around on your own. The large island Senja just south of Tromsø is an excellent candidate. It is similar to the famous Lofoten islands, it’s just quieter.
Spitsbergen! Svalbard! It’s a piece of Norway, although far north of the mainland, within 1000 km of the North Pole. You fly there on pretty much a domestic flight, which often can be gotten at really low prices. The accommodation there might cost you a bit, and there are some expensive activities to participate in. But this does give you a taste of life in the extreme Arctic (similar to the extremely pricey Antarctica), and should easily become one of your most treasured travel memories.
Hiking everywhere. During summer, you can get a direct bus from Oslo to several great starting points for incredible hiking, and back afterward. There’s a bus to Gjendesheim, which is just on the border of Jotunheimen. From there you can walk from cabin to cabin and spend every night indoors, at very moderate prices. You can carry your food, or you can buy it, again at moderate prices, at the cabins. Some cabins have hosts, others may be empty. You can get a universal key for all of them at the Norwegian Trekking Association offices in Oslo before you leave. Just stay wherever you need to, register in the cabin log, and then head by their offices and pay for your stays when you’re back in Norway. Or don’t. (You really should.) It’s an honesty program that has worked well for many, many decades.
Also, remember that in Norway, both citizens and visitors have the right to pitch their tent anywhere for free, for up to three consecutive nights, provided that you’re at least 150 meters away from any building that someone lives in, or their garden. You can get cheap food in supermarkets, and you can safely drink the water from pretty much any moving source of water. And there’s a lot of moving water in Norway, we get more than our share of the world’s rain.
Do travel to Oslo on a cheap ticket, but do not just stay there or do the easy day trips out of there. Instead, check the weather forecast, find out where it’ll be nice for the next 3-4 days, and then head there. You’re likely to find a flight that isn’t too expensive, or you can just get a car and drive. It doesn’t even necessarily cost more than staying put in Oslo, and your reward will be immense.
The world has definitely changed in 2020, we all stopped traveling for a bit. Either by our own choice or by the shutting down of borders and airlines. As we have stayed home and watched the world change, our wanderlust has not […]