2019 marked the second time my parents came to Norway to visit my family, but it was the first time they really could manage to travel around some countries in Europe.
During autumn, we travelled to Bergen to visit my father-in-law and his wife living there. It was the first time my parents came and visit them here in Norway also.
A VERY RELATED POST: UNMISSABLE THINGS TO DO IN BERGEN
We took three days to stay in Flesland (close to the airport, where my in-laws are living) and roughly two days (not the full days, though) to travel to Bergen and rock the city. The seniors spent the rest of the time talking and relaxing at home with their little grandchild.
So, to put everything in the right order, it is how you can make the most of your day trip to Bergen! With the seniors. And a kid!
Day trip to Bergen (from Oslo)
En route Oslo to Bergen
There are three ways to travel from Oslo to Bergen:
- The flight: Roughly 1 hour.
- The train: Roughly 8 hours
- The bus or you can drive: Roughly 8 hours
Depends on how much time you have and how much time you want to spend in Bergen/Norway, you can choose your way. The train will, of course, give you the best of Norway as it claims to, but on the other hand, it takes time.
Flight tickets can be found on SAS or Norwegian all year round. Price may differ from time to time, so just head to their website and check it often.
How to travel from Flesland to Bergen
If you take the train, no worry since it’s located in the city centre. But if you take the flight, be prepared to take the Bybanen or Flybussen from Flesland (the airport) to the city centre of Bergen.
- “Light rail” or Bybanen: The entrance is right under the main entrance to Flesland airport. It will take you 45 minutes to get to the city centre. Tickets: 38NOK/adult (about €4) or 19NOK/child (about €2). If you have the Bergen Card, you can travel for free.
- Airport bus or Flybussen: This one is quicker, just 30 minutes, but it costs more: 105NOK/one way if you buy online, or 135NOK if you buy at the airport. A Bergen Card will save you 20%.
Accommodation in Bergen
Well, since I have my in-laws here we actually didn’t have to think about accommodation. But when I first travelled to bergen back in August 2014 with my cousin and his kids, they rented a nice Airbnb somewhere in the old town.
If you haven’t had your Airbnb account yet, register using my referral link will save some up to €50 for your first stay! And here is the link for all the Airbnbs in Bergen, for your convenience.
(Of course, if you are doing a day trip to Bergen, you don’t need any accommodation here!)
What to eat in Bergen
Since Bergen is a tourist city, everything related to travel and tourism is super expensive!
You must have heard about Fisketorget – The fish market, a famous outdoor fish market right next to the harbour of Bergen. Besides fish and seafood, you can also find bread, fruits, traditional Norwegian sausages and cold-cuts, honey and all the other farming produce of Hordaland here.
If you want to try some Norwegian seafood (with Norwegian price), you should prepare to pay from at least 300 – 400NOK per person (around €30 – €40) for a plate of seafood like those in these photos.
Bergen has its own pastry, the skillingsbolle. You can find the best in town at Baker Brun (41 Bryggen). It’s a white house. It looks somehow like the famous Scandinavian cinnamon buns, kanelbolle, but it’s different.
If you plan to stay here for several days and would like to cook your own food, head to the supermarket. The cheapest here starts with REMA 1000 – Kiwi – Coop – and Meny as the most expensive.
How to make the most of your day trip to Bergen
Well well well, here is the main part of this blog post: How to rock Bergen in one day!
Take the earlier flight to Bergen, and you’ll have more time here.
The first stop of the day is Bryggen. THIS is the view you’ll see from 99% of all postcards or whatever about Bergen (no, not with my parents, no no no!).
Since 1979, Bryggen has been on the UNESCO list the World Cultural Heritage sites. From the outside, it’s just like any other Hanseatic commercial buildings in Europe: colourful thin houses with pointed roofs facing the waterfront.
But once you step inside Bryggen, it’s just like another world: very old wooden houses as boutiques, some of them are like the top of Bergen, small restaurants and cafés in such small corners that you can almost ignore them, and more.
Fun fact: Notice the doors. They can be so low that you’ll hit yourself bumping on it. Some shops will make protection with wool carpets. How sweet!
It can take you hours just wandering inside Bryggen, stopping at different shops, and spotting beautiful corners to take photos.
My advice: If you’re searching for water- and windproof jacket, Bergen is the place. Bergen has the name “City of rain” for a reason, and up in the mountains, it can be really windy!
When you finish with Bryggen, it’s almost lunchtime. Now you have two options:
If you’re not a fan of big lunch, head to Baker Brun (mentioned above) for some hot coffee, skillingsbolle, or some light warm dishes.
On a hot summer day, don’t forget to grab your food and sit outside.
If you are, on the other hand, a fan of a big, proper lunch, cross the road and head to the (outdoor) fish market.
Here you can find all kind of seafood-inspired food, ranging from the traditional creamy fish soup to paella, shellfish, and even steamed rice (the Asian one).
You can easily spot fish tanks with living king crabs and other fish. That’s quite popular for kids, too. My daughter just wanted to stand there and look at the fish and crabs all day!
But, it’s not cheap!
In fact, it’s quite costly. Look at the photo below: the four small pieces of king crab legs in front will easily cost you 200NOK (around €20). And look at the full price, 699NOK (€70) for that dish!
You don’t have to buy the whole dish if you think the price is crazy (yes, it’s crazy). They also sell, like, king crabs legs only starting from 100gram.
From the fish market area, head to Bergenhus Fortress (in Norwegian: Bergenhus Festing). It will take you around 20 minutes walking there, so no need to take the bus. Just a nice stroll alongside the harbour is good enough.
The Bergenhus Festning is located at the entrance of Bergen harbour and is one of the oldest and best-preserved stone fortifications in Norway.
In summer, this is a popular spot for the locals to have a light picnic, go for a walk, playground for the kids, etc. During autumn (in Bergen), it can be quite… boring!
Inside the fortress, there’s a medieval stone hall called Haakon’s Hall (in Norwegian: Håkonshallen). The hall was constructed in the middle of the 13th century, during the reign of King Håkon Håkonsson. In medieval times, it was the largest building of the royal palace in Bergen.
It is the largest secular medieval building in Norway and the likely inspiration to similar great halls that were built on the royal estates in Oslo and Avaldsnes.
You will see Håkonshallen on the right-hand side of the photo below. It’s the one with the stairs-alike roof.
From the fortress, now it’s time to head back to the city centre for the Fløibanen funicular to Mt Fløyen.
Fact: Bergen is always referred to the term “De syv fjell”, meaning seven mountains. They are seven mountains that surround the centre of the city of Bergen. The highest one is Ulriken 643 (2,110 ft above sea level).
Fløyen (or Fløyfjekket) is the 3rd highest (just 400m/1,300ft) and is located in the very centre, just a few minutes walk from Bryggen and the fish market. It’s famous for its funicular all the way to the top of the mountain. And the surprise is up there.
You don’t have to prepurchase your tickets, but keep in mind that the price may vary depends on the high season.
From the first of May to the end of August is considered high season in Bergen, so the price may be higher than normal.
From the first of September to the end of the year, the price will fall back to normal.
Remember to ask for a seniors discount if you’re travelling with someone who is above 67 years old.
The person at the ticket booth didn’t ask for my parents’ ID to check their age, but that could be nice to have something like driving licence or something so that people can check if they want to.
For a proper price list, you can visit THEIR WEBSITE.
It will take long until you reach the top of Fløyfjellet. And once you step out of the cabin, this. is. THE VIEW!
Don’t worry if you have acrophobia. I do, too. But it feels totally safe and stable standing here looking over the little Bergen down there. Since it’s not a cliff, like Preikestolen, it makes me feel less scary.
Craving for ice cream? There’s a souvenir shop next to the cabin entrance. There you will find some delicious soft ice cream. I cannot remember how much it costs, but surely not that expensive!
So, now you may think why I put the Fløibanen to late afternoon, right?
Because of this…
… and this!
Great! You have been through a day in Bergen! If you’re going to stay in Bergen, go grab your dinner. You must be starving after the hiking, dude!
If you’re going to travel back to Oslo (or wherever), head to the airport.
Are you looking for more Bergen guides? Don’t worry, more articles about Bergen will come up soon. Hello, I have my in-laws living here, remember?