Top 5 hidden gems in Bergen
If you are a new student in Bergen, then you can look forward to a semester filled with exploration. With a collection of museums and mountains to popular tourist attractions, Bergen offers you education, exercise and entertainment within walking distance of the city centre. Here we have compiled a list of activities and locations that may appear hidden if you are new to the city but worth checking out.
1. Nordnes peninsula
Get lost in the small streets between the colourful, old wooden houses at Nordnes. The traditional neighbourhood is a short-walk from the city centre and a nice getaway during busy days. A good place to start is close to Klostergarasjen. On your way, you will pass many popular activity spots, including the concert hall USF Verftet and Bergen Aquarium, the largest aquarium in Norway. If the weather is good, you can bring a packed lunch with you and relax at Nordnesparken. The park is located at the tip of the peninsula, and here you can take a dive into the fjord or in the Nordnes sjøbad, an outdoor swimming facility with a heated pool. Nordnes sjøbad is open from May 18th to September 1st (opening hours can vary depending on the weather) and also has limited open hours in the winter.
2. Beffen mini ferry
Does the smell of the ocean entice you? Eager for a nautical experience in the famous wharf of Bergen? Experience a tourist attraction, a cultural treasure and the quickest way of getting across Vågen (the bay) by going on a little excursion aboard the oldest running ferry in town. For over 100 years, sturdy little Beffen has been part of Bergen city’s local soul, carrying passengers back and forth between the wharf and Nordnes every ten minutes. As of 2016, it is Norway’s first and only zero-emission vessel classified as a passenger ferry. The ticket price? Only 30 NOK (one-way).
3. Arboretum and Botanical Garden Milde
In Milde, a 50-minute bus ride from Bergen bus station (nr 525), you’ll find the Arboretum and Botanical Garden. Owned by the University of Bergen, the garden contains a diverse collection of plants over an area of 7 hectares. Some of their exhibitions include Norway’s largest collection of roses, a Japanese Garden and 5000 plants from all over the world. After visiting the arboretum, you can take a stroll to the nearby recreational areas, Grønevika and Sandholna, where you can enjoy a swim.
Itching for an outdoor run, trampoline jumping, or some volleyball smashing in the sand? Look no longer than half a walk up (or half a furnicular trip up) Fløyen. At Skansemyren, you can find a soccer field, trampolines, volleyball courts and a track field. A great place to unleash your inner athlete and take a break from sedentary student life.
5. Det Lille Kaffekompaniet (The Little Coffee Company)
The Little Coffee Company is indeed little, but appeals to a large audience with its variety of coffee and lovely history. It is located in the cramped backstreets of Nedre Fjellsmauet close to the funicular station and is a perfect place to swing by for a coffee break after a tiring hike or during a sunny day. This cozy place opened in 1996 by four students from the local university who longed to have a coffee shop in Bergen: They pooled their savings into establishing the company and since then, it has been kept alive by students, tourists and coffee enthusiasts who wish to take a sip of the charming local history.