Wednesday, 2 February 2011

my Bergen tips

In October 2008 I wrote this small Bergen guide. Since then several people have asked me for Bergen tips. Today I got a Flickr mail from Laura, asking me for advice for her and her husband's upcoming trip to Bergen. Thanks to her I was reminded that it is finally time to update my Bergen guide.

Some of my recommendations are exactly the same as in that 2008 post, some of them are new. I've lived in Bergen since August 1999, and despite the very wet weather, I love it here!

Bring raingear or at least an umbrella. Even in summer, but especially in autumn. And remember sensible shoes. Bergen is a perfect city to explore by foot.

Get a city map so you can find your way around the city. The city centre is not big and it's nice to walk around and explore all the idyllic cobblestone streets and wooden houses. Take a walk from Torgallmenningen to Nordnesparken via Klosteret. Have lunch or a drink at USF (that's where my office is) whilst looking at the sea. If the weather allows it, it's the best spot in the city for al fresco drinks.

Have breakfast or lunch at Godt Brød. They serve the best organic sandwiches in town. The brownies and sommerbolle (sweet bun with vanilla custard) are yummy too. Find Godt Brød in Korskirken, Vestre Torvgate and Vetrlidsallmenning. Smakverket (Rasmus Meyers Allé 3) is another excellent choice for lunch and really good coffee.

For really great coffee I highly recommend Kaffemisjonen in Øvre Korskirkeallmenning 5. Dromedar (Strandgaten 81), Det Lille Kaffekompaniet (Nedre Fjellsmauet 2), and BarBarista (Stølegaten 8a) are also great.

A visit to Bryggen is a must. Amongst all the souvenir shops Ting stands out; a great spot for good design.

Another must: Catch the funicular to mount Fløyen and get a nice view of the city. Well, depending on the weather, of course... Or take the cable car to the highest of the seven mountain tops surrounding Bergen, Mount Ulriken. There are lots of great walking trails up there which I highly recommend.

Some of my favorite clothing shops are Vrimmel (Olav Kyrres gate 11), Retro (Olav Kyrres gate 7), Lot 333 (Strandgaten 72), Nova (Strandgaten 73), Filippa K (Håkonsgaten 33), Acne + Pepper (Christies gate 9) and Twisted (Nygårdsgaten 1). Skostredet is a sharming street with nice cafés and shopping, for example T Michael, Håkki, Kleskapet and Kamelone. There are several shops around Torgallmenningen and there are several shopping malls in the city centre: Galleriet, Xhibition, Sundt, Kløverhuset and Bergen Storsenter. Here you find high street brands like H&M, Cubus, Lindex, Kappahl, Vero Moda, Bik Bok.

I must admit that we don't eat dinner out a lot, so I'm not really into what's hot or not. But I do have a hand full of places I like and recommend (in no particular order): Bølgen & Moi (Rasmus Meyers Allé 9), Café Opera (Engen 18), Pingvinen (Vaskerelven 14), Potetkjelleren (Kong Oscars gate 1), Soho Kitchen & Lounge (Håkonsgaten 27), Søtt + Salt (they did the catering in our wedding), Colonialen (Engen 8), Lucullus (Valkendorfsgate 8), Hanne på Høyden (Fosswinckelsgate 18), Kroathai (Nygårdsgaten 29), Escalon (Vestrlidsallmenning 21), Jacobs Bar & Kjøkken (Kong Oscars gate 44).

For beer and rock visit Legal and the legendary Garage in Christiesgate 11 and 14.

Unfortunately I don't have any good tips for accommodation, since I always sleep at home ;-) But I'm sure you will find something nice by Googling it.

Here is my Bergen set on Flickr and here are all my Bergen related blog posts. You should also check out my friend Ingvild's Bergen guide brilliant Bergen guide (in Norwegian - use Google Translate). Also:

PS: All the addresses and names mentioned here can be found on Google Maps.

Feel free to add your own personal Bergen favorites in the comments!


  1. Hei Astid! Artig å lese Bergens-tipsene dine, ikke så ulike de jeg selv ville anbefale. En definitiv favoritt hvis en liker sushi er Red Sun i Kong Oscars gate.

  2. Hei Astrid,

    I will be visiting Bergen later in the year from Australia... I have been reading all the travel books, but it's lovely to get local recommendations!

    Ps. I loooove your blog:)

  3. Tusen takk for this Astrid!
    I will do as you say when I visit Bergen one day!

  4. This place looks awesome! One of my 2011 resolutions is to visit scandinavia, so I'll have to consider it!

  5. I've been wanting to come to Bergen for a long time. We visited friends in Stavanger a few years ago and they said Bergen is one of their favourite places in Norway.

  6. Tusen takk for supre tips! Gleder meg til bergenstur om to uker, har sydvesten klar :P

  7. Hei!

    Thank you so much! So sweet of you to do a whole blog post of tips - we will be using them all!

    And yes, we arrived today and have already had hail, sleet and snow. Luckily we love this weather, and remembered an umbrella :)

    Thanks so much again,
    Laura x

    PS. Your blog really is gorgeous.

  8. This certainly better than reading from travel books! Thanks and will remember to add Bergen on the list.

  9. I will visit Norway one day. Bergen will be absolutely a "must point" in my list.
    You've given very useful tips, Astrid.

  10. thanks astrid! these are awesome recommendations :) i'm headed to denmark and norway in a couple of months and bergen is most definitely on my itinerary!

  11. Hi,
    I will be in Bergen from the 11th to 16th August 2012: any ideas about cheap accommodation? I had a look at several websites but everything seems really expensive. I am travelling with my girlfriend and we would like to stay in a room with a private bathroom.

    Any suggestions would be very welcomed

    Thanks to you all



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