Surrounded by seven mountains and nestled on the seafront, Bergen is one of Norway’s most romantic, picturesque cities. With a small-town feel, the brightly coloured streets are easily explored on foot, so it’s best to stay central.
With wood-panelled walls, rustic interiors and a quaint charm, the Hanseatiske Hotel provides the perfect spot to rest your head for the night. The 16th Century building is part of the UNESCO World Heritage Bryggen district, and just a few minutes’ walk from the Fløibanen Funicular, which connects visitors to the mountain walks and views across the city.
It’s near impossible to visit one of Bergen’s many eateries without being offered the chance to sup on a hot, warming bowl of fiskesuppe – or fresh fish soup. At Bryggen Tracteursted you’ll find delicate, traditional dishes, as well as the Norwegian version of tapas, “smakfulle småtterier”. If the weather plays ball, take a seat in the outdoor area.
Another way to take a bite out of Bergen is with a foodie tour. The Cornelius Seafood Restaurant, found on Holmen island, can be reached by a 25-minute boat trip from Bergen’s wharf. Try the five-course Meteorological Menu, inspired by that day’s weather.
The Bryggeriet microbrewery offers tasting tours for up to eight people, where you can learn about the history, raw materials and just what goes into the perfect pint. There is also a modern restaurant and a games centre, with Shuffle, billiards, darts and air hockey.
Embrace an afternoon of culture with a trip to Kode, one of the largest museums for art, craft, design and music in the Nordic countries. Housing almost 50,000 objects, there are four buildings to explore, as well as the homes of composers Ole Bull, Harald Sæverud and Edvard Grieg. One ticket covers entry to the first four galleries for two days, while the composers’ exhibits are separate.
Get a little fresh air with a bracing journey to the summit of Mount Ulriken. During the winter months, take a 10-minute bus to the mountain’s cable car, which will carry you 643 metres above the city streets.