Bergen Travel Guide

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Bergen sentrum

Bergen sentrum

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Bergen was founded in 1070 by King Olav Kyrre. It's an old hanseatic city situated between 7 mountains. The city has long been Norway 's most important city for trade, shipping and industry. Ships came from the north with fish, and from the south with grain, and it all traded in Bergen . During the Middle Ages, Bergen was virtually (though not officially) the capitol of Norway . For a period it was also the largest city in the Nordic countries. Bergen 's trade and shipping also made it one of the significant cities of Europe . The citizens of Bergen have never forgotten this. The home of composer Edvard Grieg still shows pride in its past. Bergen has been named European City of Culture for 2000.

If you arrive by sea, Bryggen, the city's famous hanseatic wharf, will meet you. Fires have always plagued the city, but Bryggen has been rebuilt in the same likeness each time. That is why this old merchant quarter still looks the same as it did when the city was young. The Hanse had its huge offices on the Bryggen for several hundred years; and it was a city within a city. Bryggen is not just Bergen 's profile, it is a part of our common heritage and has been placed on UNESCO's list of cultural places worthy of preservation and is as such a World Heritage City .

It is easy to get to the top of Bergen 's highest mountain Ulriken by cable car. Or you can settle for taking the popular funicular railway to the top of Fløien from where you will enjoy a spectacular view of the city. Edvard Grieg's splendid home Troldhaugen is certainly worth a visit, and our first internationally famous violinist, Ole Bull, once built a strange and wonderful home - Lysøen - that is now a museum. Take a walk along Bryggen to the old fortress called Bergenshus, where Håkon Håkonsson made Bergen Norway 's first capital. He had the beautiful Håkonshallen built in honour or his son Magnus Lagabøter's wedding and coronation.

Bergen is also the gateway to the fjords. These deep, sometimes narrow, sometimes wide fjords with snow-peaked mountains towering in the water's reflection and waterfalls cascading down their craggy sides, are attractions for foreign tourists and Norwegians alike. Boats that are both rapid and comfortable are available for trips to Hardangerfjorden, Sognefjorden and Geirangerfjorden and among the fascinating skerries along the coast. Many say that Bergen is the most beautiful city in the world... and I agree...

Indeed, Bergen is the town of all towns in Norway.

Contributors

May 26, 2005 change by reen

December 11, 2005 change by heimabrent

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