Going to Norway at any time of the year is always so exciting. But visiting Norway in summer provides more opportunities to see nature and explore some of the most beautiful places there.
Before setting off on a journey to this gorgeous country, it is smart to prepare financially, but also to organize a lot of things and answer the main question of where to go in Norway and what to see. Especially, if you are visiting for the first time.
Thus to make it easier, here is a list of Norway’s best places to go to help you get inspired. They are best to visit in summer or from late spring to early fall. Some of them delight with their abundance and diversity while others amaze with their grandeur!
What Is Summer in Norway Like
Summer in Norway is truly one of the best seasons to travel. However, keep in mind that Norway is a fairly large country with a very long rugged coastline, plateaus, and mountain ranges. Each region has its own unique factors that determine the weather conditions.
Therefore, it is necessary to take into account the climatic zones and your specific destination when visiting Norway from June to August.
Overall, summer is characterized by cool days when 20°C above zero is already the height of the summer heat. Even though the air temperature stays low throughout the entire season, the sun shines brightly all summer long. July in Norway is the warmest month when the temperature reaches its peak and swimming is possible in shallow water.
When planning your travel, note that central regions of Norway are warmer than southern and western regions by the coast are usually cooler a few degrees due to constant winds.
Mountainous areas during the day see the temperature between +9°C and +13°C. In the Arctic in summer, the air temperature does not rise above -5°C.
In Tromsø, the light period lasts from May 17 to June 25, in Finnmark from the beginning of June to the end of July, and in Svalbard from April 20 to August 26. At night in summer, the air cools down to +6+10°C in almost any region.
My favorite part about traveling to Norway in summer is the length of the day. Thanks to short nights (especially in June and July), it is possible to squeeze more in a day and cover longer distances. Another advantage is the constancy of weather conditions because they are pretty stable throughout the entire season.
How to Visit All Beautiful Places in Norway
The fastest and most convenient way to travel around Norway and see all the beautiful places in less time is by car. Gas prices are higher these days than before but having a rented vehicle will still cost less than paying for the train and bus together, particularly if you are traveling with two or more people.
The best company where to rent a car in Norway is DiscoverCars. It offers some of the best prices, big variety of cars, and different benefits.
Alternative to a car, for budget travelers, is to use a train or bus and hitchhike. Hitchhiking is a popular way to get places, although in many remote areas it takes a lot of time to meet someone who is ready to give a ride.
Most Beautiful Places to Visit in Norway in Summer
Nærøyfjord in Western Norway
I want to start my list with Nærøyfjord because it is an exceptionally beautiful place which you absolutely must see when traveling to the Flam area in summer.
We visited it by accident while trying to find a secluded place for a picnic. On our way from Bergen to Aurlandsfjord, we decided to take a random turn in Gudvangen towards Tuftefossen. There, we got so blown away by the beauty of this place.
Only later we learned that it was Nærøyfjord, the smallest and narrowest fjord in the world, listed as a UNESCO World Heritage Site.
On the banks of the fjord, you can find a tiny village with farmers’ houses and a few tables to have a picnic at. The entire area around the village and along the fjord is so photogenic with the cleanest air and amazing scenery.
To best way to get here is from Bergen to Flam or vice versa. In the summer season besides a car, you can hop on a ferry from Bergen to Gudvangen. Also, some cruises that depart from Flam go this way too.
Geiranger Fjord Not Far From Alesund
Chance are you’ve already heard about Geiranger fjord since it is one of the most touristic and famous places in Norway.
Every season more than 100 cruise ships come to the Geiranger village even though there are only a few hundred people who live there.
It is impossible not to get excited after seeing all the grandness of this fjord with your own eyes. The fjord is rather small with a length of about 20 km but the landscape is absolutely magnificent.
The most convenient way to visit is on the way from Bergen to Alesund. The road goes right by the fjord, so it is easy to stop and walk around.
If you get more time and crave some activities, there are options to fish, go kayaking, or rafting. In summer, you can also horse ride and even go skiing.
I recommend spending some time in the area since besides the fjord there are numerous waterfalls to see. For the best view of the fjord go to the mountain Dalsnibba. You can get there by car or better rent a bike in the village and go all the way up the road to the viewpoint. It is such an unbelievable experience!!
The Hardangerfjord, the fourth longest fjord in the world, offers so many sights and natural wonders. If you decide to come and spend time only in this part of Norway in summer, you’ll have plenty of things to see and experience during one long trip.
Among all the breathtaking places in the area, the famous waterfall deserves special attention. It is located in the county of Hordaland and its height is 182 m.
The flowing waters reach the river Bjoreio, which flows between forests. There is a viewing platform nearby, from which you can clearly see the waterfall and often a rainbow.
On one of our road trips from Bergen to Hardangerfjord we almost missed this waterfall, although the parking and viewpoint were right by the highway. If you are going to drive this road, make to sure to add a checkmark on your map and see this waterfall with your own eyes. It looks like computer animation. Such a surreal place!
North Cape (or Nordkapp)
If you want to get to the edge of the world (literally,) and witness how the sun doesn’t set at all then you need to travel to the Northernmost point of Norway (and Europe) called North Cape.
You’ll be surprised to see how well-developed the infrastructure is, how easy it is to get here and how magnificent local landscapes are.
Every tour guide in Norway considers it his duty to acquaint visitors with this magnificent place.
Located on the Magero peninsula, Cape Nordkapp is a large ledge of granite rock, completely covered with cracks. There is a convenient viewing platform from where you can contemplate a majestic view of the Barents Sea. For the overnight stay, look into the nearby Skarsvag town and check Airbnb.
North Cape is definitely an interesting destination for any season but the easiest way to get there is in the summer.
Viking Ship Museum
I know, going to a museum is not only a summer activity. You can visit it at any season. But if you love history or when traveling to Norway with kids, Viking Ship Museum is one of the most interesting museums to visit in Oslo.
On the Bygdoy peninsula, in the building from the 20th century, you can find real ships of Vikings.
Scientific studies show that all of them were built in the 9th century but stayed on the clay bottom for 1000 years. And only at the end of the 19th century they were discovered in the waters of Oslo and raised from the seabed.
All objects from ships also make up part of the museum collection. Today, anyone can see old wooden sleds and carts, dishes, household belongings, and tissue fragments.
Stegastein Lookout in Flam Area
In Norway, the process of admiring nature is a serious matter. And no wonder why. With so much beauty around it becomes part of a routine.
In many spots around the country, you can find viewing platforms that look like pieces of art. The view from each of them is simply mind-blowing.
The Stegastein Lookout is made with laminated wood and steel and is located at an altitude of 650 meters above sea level and protrudes 30 meters out of a cliff.
From the top, there is a view of the Aurland Fjord. The site is located on the Bjorgavegen road connecting the cities of Laerdalsoyri and Aurlandsvangen.
If you have a car and visit Norway in summer, make a quick detour and head to the lookout. Oh, how dramatic the fjord views are! The town of Aurlandsvangen is very cute too, it is worth spending a little bit of time and walking on a boardwalk along the water.
Flam Railway (Flamsbana)
The twenty-kilometer Flam’s railway, part of the Bergen Mainline, was built 65 years ago and operates until this day. But today it is mainly used for tourism purposes.
During the entire ride, you’ll be glued to the window since the landscape outside reminds of a fairytale. The railway route goes through the picturesque Flam valley, teeming with steep mountains, tunnels, and waterfalls.
The main part of the path passes under a slope of five and a half degrees. The entire ride lasts around one hour.
The starting point is in Flam and the final one is Myrdal. From Myrdal, you can go on a gorgeous hike and/or grab a snack at the Rallaren cafe.
Preikestolen in Southern Part of Norway
Hiking Preikestolen in Southern Norway is definitely one in a lifetime experience. If you don’t know yet, let me tell ya. Preikestolen is a giant stone cliff, from where you get to see a Lisefjord, translated as “Pulpit Rock”.
It is one of the most famous places in Norway and definitely should be visited from late spring to early autumn when the weather is nice and pleasant.
The easiest way to get here is from the city of Stavanger, where you can catch a ferry to Tau. From Tau in the summer season, there are organized buses to the beginning of the trail where you start the ascent. You’ll need to walk 4 kilometers, but the view at the end is worth your effort.
The place is very popular, so keep in mind you won’t be alone. On average, about 1,000 people climb this rock every day. Usually, the climb takes 1.5-2 hours.
Another way to see the rock is from the cruise ship as well as a car ferry.
Holmenkollbakken Near Oslo
Holmenkollbakken is a popular Norwegian resort, located in the suburbs of Oslo. It consists of five hundred kilometers of ski, biathlon, and slalom trails. The observation deck at the top level offers a stunning view of the country’s capital.
Not only ski fans love this place. People who want to get closer to nature and see Oslo from above will enjoy it too. There is a large number of competitions throughout the year and all of them, without exception, are accompanied by a festive atmosphere and fun.
This ski resort is suitable for both lovers of peace and quiet and those who seek some action. It is open year-round.
If you are visiting Oslo for the first time and having only a day or two, it’s probably not the best idea to come here. But if you are having more than two days or driving nearby, pay a quick visit to zip line, go to a museum or get a panoramic view of Oslo and its fjord. There is a fee to get in.
One of the largest European glaciers covers an area of four hundred eighty-seven square kilometers and has about fifty independent glaciers diverging from it. The glacier is so huge that it covers the territory of several municipalities. Wow.
Summer is the only season when you can get close and see the unbelievable grandeur of the glacier and amazing wildlife around it.
Since 1991, Jostedalsbreen has been a part of the national park and today shares the same name. It is located between Bergen and Alesund and is easily accessible. The glacier accumulates snow due to abundant snowfalls each year. The best time to visit this part of Norway is in summer.
A horizontal cliff jutting out of the mountain has been a point of interest for many thrill-seekers over the years. It rises at an altitude of 350 m above the level of Ringedalsvatnet lake. I am sure you have already seen lots of photos on the Internet with people sitting or standing on the edge of this rock formation. It does look like a person is on the edge of the world.
This place deserves the title of the most spectacular cliffs in Norway. More than that, Trolltunga is on the list of the most beautiful places in the world.
It does look awe-inspiring from the distance but to conquer the rock you must have a lot of strength and physical stamina.
The most convenient way to get to the city of Odda and start the hike is from Bergen. Then expect a challenging ascent.
Most people spend from 4 to 9 hours climbing to the top. The timing depends on the type of weather and physical readiness. That’s why it is highly advisable to pay a visit to this part of Norway in summer.
On the top expect to spend at least a few hours, so do not forget to pack food and water.
The most difficult part of the journey is the ascent along the funicular, which has not been operating for 10 years. There is an alternative way, but then the ascent time will increase.
Visiting the Trolltunga top is more suitable for those who enjoy challenging hikes. The total distance is 12 km.
One of the most visited waterfalls in Norway is located in the west of the country, near the town of Norheimsund. This is also one of the most photographed places in the country which makes a great stop on the way from Bergen to Ulvik or Odda.
The 20 m water stream is part of the Fosselva River. A unique feature of this landmark is a narrow path in the form of a bridge that passes right under the rapidly falling water from the hill. Walking on it brings so much joy.
Mysterious, and somewhere even a fabulous atmosphere is created by searchlights illuminating the falling water.
The surroundings of Steinsdalsfossen such as emerald grass and lush forests are no less beautiful than the waterfall itself.
Bryggen in Bergen
Not everyone knows that the formation of the city of Bergen started with Bryggen. It has been a central part of the city since the time of the Vikings.
Contemporary Bryggen represents a colorful series of houses dating back to the 14th century. Additionally, it serves as a meeting place for artists working in their workshops and tourists visiting local souvenir shops. This landmark of Norway is also included in the UNESCO list.
You’ll remember a trip here because of the large number of wooden houses, statues on their facades, narrow streets with wooden pavements. Craft shops, small restaurants, and art galleries will keep you busy.
If you come to Bryggen, it means you’ll spend some time in Bergen. I have a detailed guide on must-do things in Bergen, do not skip this gorgeous city.
Atlantic Road Between Alesund and Trondheim
The road between Elde and Kristiansund is considered to be one of the most scenic in the world. If you plan to drive from Alesund to Trondheim, make a detour and take a ferry to Molde. From there, you’ll be able to go all the way to Kristiansund, and from Kristiansund all the way to Trondheim.
The two-lane automobile highway is 8.5 km long and runs along the northern coast of the Atlantic Ocean. Twelve bridges over the water connect small islands with the mainland.
For the best experience, it is advisable to drive on this road in Norway in summer when the weather is good and roads are clean from the snow. Also, on a sunny summer day, you can see seals and whales from the window of the car.
Juvet Landscape Hotel
If you are flying to Alesund and planning to be in the surrounding area, book at least one night at the Juvet Landscape Hotel.
Eight laconic buildings that resemble boxes and are made of glass and wood are masterfully inscribed in the landscape of the Valldal valley. Here, you will sleep on the most comfortable bed and get the best view this world can offer.
Because of the glass walls from the floor to the ceiling, the houses completely merge with the landscape, becoming almost invisible.
The interior is very minimalistic. In a room, you’ll find just a bed, a floor lamp, and an armchair. The hotel’s owners believe that nothing should distract guests from the contemplation of nature. But the place will feel upscale.
Drammen is a city not far from Oslo which is located on the coast and on the fjord at the same time. The Drammen fjord is one of the smaller fjords in the Oslo area.
So if you can’t make it farther than the capital of Norway, visit at least this landmark.
The best way to admire the beauty of the fjord and the city is from the observation deck on Mount Bragernes. To reach the top, you need to have a car and drive through an interesting tunnel in the form of a spiral.
Norwegian Petroleum Museum in Stavanger
If you are visiting the southern part of Norway and looking for the best things to do in Stavanger, definitely add the Norwegian Petroleum Museum to your itinerary.
The place is interesting for everyone, not only for kids. The expositions are built in such a way that both children and adults will find lots of value.
Here you can learn how oil and gas were formed millions of years ago, and how they are produced along the Norwegian coast. You will get an idea of technologies, volumes, difficulties, and tensions during the process.
In the museum, you can also “visit the Northern Sea” and see what type of advanced underwater technologies are used. Interactive stations and texts explain all the difficulties of the work of divers. The main element of the exhibition is a film that takes you to 1978 when divers had to dive to a depth of 72 meters.
The Petroleum Museum is recognized as not only one of the most interesting places to visit in Norway but also as one of the most beautiful museums in the entire world.