Norway

 

If you’ve ever dreamt of seeing the Northern Lights then more than likely Norway will have popped up on your radar. Northern Norway in particular, is one of the topmost places to see the spectacular swirling Northern Lights, as it’s located inside the ‘hotspot’ of the auroral oval. The ever-changing waves of green, pink and violet light are best observed during cloudless long nights of the Arctic winter from November to March. But, there are many other fantastic reasons to visit Norway.

Norway has some insanely beautiful and dramatic scenery sculpted by glacial movement in the last ice age. The Scandinavian Mountains are a prominent feature of the landscape and run the length of the country like a backbone. Where these rugged green mountains run towards the Norwegian Sea in the west they meet deep blue fjords – steep U-shaped valleys created as the glaciers retreated and sea extended its reach inland. The fjords are often described as “nature’s own work of art” and their beauty has earned them a place on UNESCO’s World Heritage List. Some of the most well-known examples are located on Norway’s west coast and include the Nærøyfjord, the Sognefjord, the Lysefjord, and the Geirangerfjord.

 

With its wild, untamed and sparsely inhabited landscapes Norway is a refuge for some of Europe’s most captivating wildlife. The icy boreal forest and weather-beaten coastline of northern Norway make it a great place to spot elk, reindeer, humpback whales and orcas, and a slew of sea birds such as puffins, petrels, gannets, shearwaters and sea eagles.  The larger predators like bears, wolves and lynx can be trickier to find in their own habitats, but you will find them in national parks in northern Norway. The magnificent polar bear is only found in the vast and remote Svalbard Archipelago and the easiest way to see them is on boat tours to the northern coast of the islands between May and September.

Norway is also an excellent destination for outdoor activities and there’s something for everyone. For active types there’s an impressive range of sporting activities, such as climbing, kayaking, canoeing, snowboarding and even skiing in summer, as well as some more unusual things to do like dog or reindeer sledding and ice fishing. For the less energetic, there are a good selection of walking tours and plenty of culture and history to immerse oneself in, from the fabulous selection of museums and art galleries in the bustling capital Oslo, to the picturesque waterfront of Bryggen or Bergen with its colourful wooden fisherman’s cabins.

There is no bad time of year to visit Norway and this delightful country is easy to get to from the UK with direct flights to both Oslo and Tromsø.

You can read about our next Norway departure here.

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