With a wild and craggy coastline that stretches from the Arctic Circle to the North Sea, Norway is home to many breathtakingly beautiful beaches. From secluded coves to long stretches teeming with wildlife, take your pick from the 17 best beaches in Norway.
Olberg Beach, near Stavanger
Norway’s rugged west coast is mostly known for its dramatic fjords, glaciers, and mountains, but this spectacular country also has some outstanding beaches, including the sweeping Olberg Beach, southwest of Stavanger.
This white-sandy strip is fringed with traditional Nordic boathouses and a small harbour lined with fishing boats. Watersports are limited due to Olberg’s protected status in the Jæren conservation area, though you can still take a refreshing dip in the North Sea.
Nearby, there’s a cafe serving coffee, ice cream, and light bites, as well as bathroom facilities available by the beach.
Paradisbukta Beach, Oslo
Located on the Oslofjord, west of the capital, Paradisbukta Beach is nestled on the Bygdoy peninsula and is surrounded by dense pine forests.
Paradisbukta is popular with locals during the summer, so prepare to jostle for beach space if you’re visiting during the weekend. It’s worth it, though, as the glassy water is inviting and invigorating and leaves you fully energized after a swim.
While you’re here, stop by the nearby Viking Ship Museum and explore the remains of the world’s best-preserved Viking-era vessels. Or walk south of Paradisbukta and follow the trail to Huk Park to tick off another of Norway’s best beaches.
Godalen Beach, Stavanger
The serene Godalen Beach lies on the Gandsfjorden coastal hiking trail. It’s a secluded spot with an off-the-beaten-path feel, just south of Stavanger.
Relax on Godalen’s sandy cove or join the locals who happily throw their towels down for sunbathing sessions on the grassy bank in the height of summer. Spot vivid wildflowers in full bloom and deliciously plump blackberries in the brambles along the trail path. There’s also a playground for children and a designated barbecue area for alfresco dining.
Roppesanden Beach, near Alesund
You won’t regret hiring a car from Alesund to make the 90-minute scenic drive to Roppesanden Beach, located on the west shore of Hareidlandet island.
Roppesanden feels like the perfect antidote to an overcrowded summer beach. As one of the best beaches in Norway, it’s unspoiled and contains ample space to soak up the scenic mountain backdrop and ocean waves. There are limited facilities nearby, so make sure to pack some local Norwegian food and drinks to enjoy a beach picnic.
Ingierstrand Beach, Oslo
Located just outside of Oslo, Ingierstrand is famed for its Scandinavian-design diving tower. Masterminded by architects Ole Lind Schistad and Eyvind Moestue, who also designed the beach’s only restaurant, the diving platform has been a landmark of Ingierstrand Beach since 1931.
Take the plunge and dive off one of the tower’s three platforms, the highest located 33 feet up in the air. Alternatively, opt for a more leisurely swim down by the shore.
Ingierstrand Restaurant is a superb summer venue for outdoor dining, with plenty of outside seating. You’ll also find bathroom facilities, a shower, and a designated barbecue area at Ingierstrand Beach.
Orre Beach, near Stavanger
Once you’ve explored the viking heritage of Stavanger, head south on the designated Norwegian Scenic Route to Blue Flag Orre Beach, which curves around the coastline. Though public transportation doesn’t operate to Orre, the beach is an effortless 40-minute drive from the city.
As far as Norway beaches go, Orre is flawless with picturesque seagrass-covered dunes and golden sand. Take a dip in the ocean and relax on the soft-as-powder shore.
The beaches in this region are protected, which means surfing, kite flying, cycling, camping, and flower picking are limited to preserve the local flora and fauna. Visit Orre recreation center to learn about the spectacular beaches and protected wildlife of the area.
Tronvik Beach, near Oslo
Roughly an hour’s drive or a 40-minute train journey south of Oslo lies Tronvik Beach in Moss, on the island of Jeloya in the heart of the Oslofjord.
The north-facing sandy bay draws in-the-know locals because of its coveted Blue Flag status. At one end of the beach is a white tower resembling a modern lighthouse that is a former World War II torpedo station.
Watch sailboats gently bobbing in the bay and ferries crossing the fjord. Look out for the island of Bastoy, which lies southwest of Jeloya, and is used as an island prison.
Take off on a headline hike and spot some of the many species of birdlife, including Green Woodpecker, Hawfinch, Black Woodpecker, Marsh Tit, Lesser Spotted Woodpecker, and Wood Warbler.
Kyrkjetangen Beach, near Bergen
Located 20 minutes south of Bergen, Kyrkjetangen Beach can be reached from the city by a reliably good bus service.
In Bergen, visit the waterfront fish market to stock up on fresh sushi before heading to Kyrkjetangen. (You can catch the bus from outside the City Park.) Relax on the sandy cove and join locals jumping off the timber diving board. This shallow Norway beach is ideal for families, with trees to climb and a swing for children.
While you’re here, visit the former home of Norwegian composer Edvard Grieg, which is now a museum and just a short walk from Kyrkjetangen Beach. Grieg composed many of his famous works at his traditional Nordic villa and its small garden hut. During the summer, you may even catch a lunchtime concert taking place.
Tjuvholmen City Beach, Oslo
This urban beach on Oslo’s attractive waterfront is located in Tjuvholmen, an area made up of a collection of buildings designed by 20 different architects to represent current design trends. The waterfront is dominated by the landmark Astrup Fearnley Museum of Modern Art—a contemporary art gallery designed by Renzo Piano—and a sculpture park dotted with fun and amusing modern pieces.
Once you’ve had your fill of Norwegian culture and art, crash out on Tjuvholmen Beach, a social hub on the shore of the Oslofjord. The pebble bay has a pier that you can jump off and kayaks and paddleboards are available to hire. After, enjoy cocktails and graze over gorgeous Nordic dishes at the uber-chic Thief Rooftop Bar.
Hellesylt Beach, near Geiranger
Norway’s beaches are quintessentially soft and sandy, but Hellesylt is not your typical beach. Located at the inner tip of the Sunnylvsfjorden, this bathing patch is a grassy bank with a traditional wooden boathouse that juts out over the water in the charming village of Hellesylt.
Hellesylt Beach is surrounded by soaring mountains shrouded in rich green forests with waterfalls cascading down the cliff face. Take the ferry from Geiranger to Hellesylt to soak up this extraordinary landscape.
Use the changing facilities at the boathouse and take a plunge into the sapphire-blue water from the diving platform. Admire Hellesylt waterfall and stop by the village’s pizza bar or cafe to refuel.
Vigdel Beach, Stavanger
The golden Vigdel Beach is a crescent-shaped bay south of Stavanger that characterizes Norway’s beaches on this section of the west coast. It’s home to soft-golden sand and wild dunes punctuated with wispy sprouts of beachgrass, making it one of the best beaches in Norway.
Pack your bathing suit as the emerald-green bay is ideal for swimming. Look out for crabs in the rockpools and take off on a coastal hike, stopping by the German-built World War II tower, Vigdel fortress, or climb Vigdelsveten for one of the best views in the region.
Read: Best Hiking in Norway
Hvamodden Beach, near Oslo
Hvamodden Beach is a shining example of Norway’s beaches; a heavenly Blue-Flagged strip that lies in the hamlet of Asker, on Nesoya island, not far from Oslo. Take a taxi or jump on the local bus service to reach this serene Norwegian beach in under 50 minutes.
A row of traditional beach huts line one side of the bay, while the grassy park, play area, and sandpit make Hvamodden Beach ideal for families with young children. Enjoy an energizing dip in the cool water. Take part in a beach yoga class with locals. Hire a kayak or unwind on the soft sand watching the sailboats glide by in the harbor.
Giskesanden Beach, near Alesund
Considered one of the greatest Norway beaches, Giskesanden is a beautiful section of the coastline on Giske island, northwest of Alesund. Cross the striking concrete-beamed Giske Bridge, which connects Giske with Valderoya, to reach Giskesanden on the island’s west coast.
With its turquoise-hued water that appears crystal clear as it laps on the soft shore, Giskesanden often draws similarities with Caribbean beaches.
Take a swim in the North Sea, relax on the sandy beach, and soak up the spectacular scenery. If the water doesn’t tempt you in, there are some incredible coastal hikes to explore. Don’t forget your camera. You’ll want to take photos of the stunning panorama while you’re here.
Bore Beach, near Stavanger
Located 30-minutes south of Stavanger, the almost two-mile-long Bore Beach is frequently labeled one of Norway’s best beaches. Backed by soft dunes with tufts of flyaway grass, Bore Beach lies within the Jærstrendene landscape conservation zone, known for its rich plant and birdlife.
This windswept coast is a surfer’s paradise, though it’s often advised to avoid the water unless you’re a solid and experienced swimmer because of the strong undercurrents.
Take a barefoot stroll on the shore, keeping an eye out for some of the many types of bird species found in the region. Pack a picnic as the facilities here are limited, though bathrooms are available.
Badelaguna Beach, near Flam
Once you’ve taken a ride on the famed railway of Flam and witnessed the breathtaking views, head to Aurlandsvangen on the east shore of Aurlandsfjorden to kick back by the beach.
The horseshoe-shaped Badelaguna Beach creates a lagoon-like cove that is perfect for swimming, though the backdrop is the real reason you’ll want to bathe there. Flanked by thick-green forests and soaring snow-capped mountains, Badelaguna is one of the best beaches in Norway.
Stop by a local cafe in Aurlandsvangen, such as Marianne cafe and bakery, for a warming drink and sweet treat after your dip in the fjord.
Blimsanden Beach, Alesund
Discover the beautiful Blimsanden Beach on Vigra island, home to powder-soft sand and clear blue water. Getting to Vigra is an adventure in itself—albeit a short one as it only takes 20-25 minutes from Alesund—which involves crossing two islands via a network of tunnels and bridges that connect the small archipelago.
The water at Blimsanden Beach is arguably the most inviting in all of Norway, so pack your swimming gear and a beach towel. Head out on an exhilarating kayak tour with a local instructor before drying off on the beach. Horse riding and kitesurfing are also popular on this glorious golden stretch.
Hellesto Beach, near Stavanger
A magnet for kite flyers and surfers, the sun-kissed Hellesto coastline is regarded as one of the best beaches in Norway. A seamless 25-minute car journey from Stavanger, Hellesto offers ample space for beach-goers.
If you’re interested in taking a surf lesson, summer is the best time to try it out when waves tend to be smaller and the water (slightly) warmer. Alternatively, swim in the ocean or enjoy a leisurely ramble on the vast beach. If you’re feeling active, consider hiking the Hellestofjell, which peaks 302 feet above sea level.
Stick around for the golden hour when the horizon is illuminated red as the sun melts into the ocean.
Read: Best Things to Do in Norway
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