As a UNESCO World Heritage City, Bergen, Norway offers attractions both ancient and modern. With colorful architecture, ancient cobblestone streets, and a medieval fortress, this charming city is a favorite of cruisers visiting the Norwegian fjords.
Plan Your Bergen Excursion
You can easily explore this maritime marvel on your own on foot or using Bergen’s reliable transportation system. However, there are great options if you prefer a guided tour.
The Bergen Card
If you plan on visiting museums, save money by buying a Bergen Card. To purchase, stop by the tourist station by the Fish Market or buy one online at the Visit Bergen website.
Tip: while you’re at the tourist station, pick up a bus and rail schedule if you’re planning to use public transportation, which is both convenient and affordable.
What to See and Do
There are so many things to do and see in Bergen that it’s hard to condense them down into one article. These are some of the most popular activities.
Fløibanen Funicular Station
Your first stop needs to be the Fløibanen funicular station because queues tend to build up. At the top of Mount Fløyen, you have a spectacular of the surrounding islands, bays, and the city below.
A UNESCO’s World Heritage List attraction, Bergen’s ancient wharf hails from the year 1360. This is where you’ll find all the best artists, jewelers, and textile designers.
Fisketorget (Fish Market)
Near the Bryggen Wharf, you can stop in at the Fish Market (Fisketorget) for snacks, fish samples, and shops. The market has been a central meeting place for the townsfolk for hundreds of years as Norwegian diets are heavy in fish. The most authentic thing you can eat in Bergen is smoked salmon baguettes, whale burgers, and prawn. If you’re looking for a gift to bring back, a package of smoked fish is your best bet here!
Don’t miss the chance to wander around the Bergenhus medieval fortress. It’s one of the oldest buildings in Norway and its right at the entrance of Bergen Harbour. Over the years it’s been used to house royalty, hold church services and as a military fortress.
Old Bergen Museum
At this open-air museum, you can experience the atmosphere of 1800s Bergen. The houses are only open for guided tours, so be sure to join one. It’s an interesting look at how people in Norway lived hundreds of years ago.
KODE Art Complex
Stroll through the state of the art four-building KODE museum and view works by Picasso, Edvard Munch, and more. There are multiple galleries so you can spend as much time as you’d like viewing the art.
Shopping in Bergen
At the main shopping malls, buy premium-quality jumpers made from the wool of nearby mountain sheep. Here are some specific shops you can check out.
- Norden og Verden: Scandinavian-made wooding cutting boards, leather bags, wallpaper
- Juhls Silver Gallery: Handmade earrings and necklaces
- Museum of Norwegian Knitting Industry: Gloves, scarves, and sweaters made on-premises
Where to Eat in Bergen
You’ll be hungry after all of that sight-seeing, or you may want to dive into Bergen’s delicious foods straight off the boat.
Bergen Food Tours
We want to point you in the direction of a Bergen Food Tour. These fabulous tours may fulfill all of your Norwegian food fantasies.
Bryggeloftet & Stuene
The food at Bryggeloftet is pricey, but most customers consider it to be Bergen’s finest classic Norwegian cuisine. Favorites include the mussels and duck with beets.
As the main pedestrian mall, Torggaten is surrounded by restaurants, cafes, and shops. Here are some of our favorite Torggaten restaurants and their specialties.
- Pingvinen: Norwegian beers and plukkfisk
- Naboen Pub & Restaurant: Nabo planken (a beer-flight with four select beers)
- Spisekroken: Cloudberry cheesecake
- Zupperia: Rudolph Soup (reindeer with mushrooms)
- Godt Brød: Almond buns and cinnamon buns
Henrik Øl & Vinstove
Fancy a drink in Bergen? Henrik Øl & Vinstove, located in Bergen’s downtown area, has more than 50 Scandinavian beers on tap and is a great spot to relax after a few hours of exploring.
How to Get Around
Your ship will probably dock at the main cruise terminal, which is a 10-minute walk from the start of the city center and the main harbor. Larger vessels may dock at Dokken quay, a 20-minute walk from town.
These attractions are within walking distance of the cruise terminal.
- Fløibanen funicular station
- Bryggen Wharf
- Fish Market
- City center
- Bergenhus fortress
- KODE Museum
Bus, light rail, and taxi
If a walk doesn’t appeal to you, you can hop aboard the shuttle bus that runs from the main cruise terminal. Also, a visit to any of these places necessitates transportation. Try the free light railway, bus, or taxi.
- Old Bergen Museum, which is open-air
- Trips into the countryside
Yes, you really can tour Bergen by segway. Join the tour by the cruise terminal, and you’ll experience this ancient city in a uniquely modern way.
You’re going to love your port call in Bergen, and you’ll hear the word “Velkommen!” (Welcome!) a lot in this charming maritime treasure. Enjoy your visit to Bergen!