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The Gateway to the Fjords

Aug 17, 2007
The second largest city in Norway is Bergen. The city is divided into 8 boroughs Bergenhus, Arna, Laksevag, Ytrebygda, Asane, Arstrad, Fana and Fyllingsdalen. It is called The Gateway to the Fjords.

Bergen is the main base for the Royal Norwegian Navy at Haakonsvern and the international airport Flesland is the main heliport for the huge Norwegian North Sea gas and oil industry, from where thousands of off shore workers commute to their work places onboard the many oil and gas rigs and platforms. It is nowadays still a centre for oil exploration, shipping and fishing but it has grown as a centre for environmental and oceanographic research in Norway.

Bergen is a university town, and the thousands of students who live and study here all year round contribute to making the citys nightlife livelier than you might expect of a small town. Most night spots centre around Ole Bulls plass and the plaza at one end of Torgallmenningen. Just off the plaza you can find dozens of relaxing bars, lively pubs, dancing, live music, and trendy cafes.

There are several cobble stoned pedestrian shopping streets, including Gamle Strandgaten, Torgallmenningen, Hollendergaten, and Marken. Stores selling Norwegian handicrafts are concentrated along the Bryggen boardwalk. Near the cathedral, the tiny Skostredet has become popular with young shoppers. The small, independent speciality stores here sell everything from army surplus gear to tailored suits and designer trinkets.

It is the Norwegian version of the American enclosed shopping mall. Stores generally close early except for malls like Galleriet, Bystasjonen, Oasen and Lagunen. The opening hours therefore for most stores in the centre of town are Monday to Saturday and shops do not open on a Sunday.

The region to the north of Bergen, the fylke of Sogn og Fjordane, contains some of the most breathtaking natural views that this beautiful land can offer you.

Bergens Tourist Information Centre is in The Fresco Hall situated in Vagsallmenning Square opposite the Fish Market. The building itself is one of the citys art treasures. In these beautiful and spacious surroundings, information is available about what to do in Bergen and all of Fjord Norway.

Visitors should not miss the ride with the funicular up to Mount Floyen, where one is rewarded with a splendid view over the city and the fabled seven mountains. From here, it is also possible to hike in a huge area of spectacular and largely untouched scenery.
About the Author
Douglas Scott writes for The Cheap Car Hire Specialist. and is a free lance writer for The Villa Rental Site
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