There are thousands of reasons to visit incredible Norway, but seeing all the natural tourist attractions are among one of the most popular reasons to come to this country. Norway has pristine nature all around, and it will absolutely take your breath away.
One of the great things about Norway is that the freedom to roam principle applies to all natural attractions, meaning that anyone can enter the natural attractions at any time, free of charge! It’s not legal to limit people’s entrance to these attractions, so you are free to enjoy them as you wish.
We are going to be looking closer at the 20 most popular natural tourist attractions in Norway in this article, and give you a short description of why these particular natural attractions are well worth your time!
So let’s get to it, and start the list with #1, the most popular natural tourist attraction in all of Norway!
Vøringsfossen is Norway’s most popular natural tourist attraction, located along the main road between Bergen and Oslo. This incredible waterfall has a 182 meter drop, making the view just breathtaking.
One of the many good things about Vøringsfossen is that it’s very easy to access. It lies just next to one of Norway’s main roads between the east and west of Norway, so thousands of people are passing just by it anyway. And it’s well worth a stop when you are so close.
To add to all this, seeing it is completely free, and parking is cheap. There is a great viewing deck to give you spectacular views of the waterfall, and even a hiking trail to take you down to the bottom of the fall.
All in all, Vøringsfossen is one of Norway’s most beautiful waterfalls, and the great accessibility makes it the most popular natural tourist attraction we have in the country.
There’s a great hotel located just 100 meters from the waterfall, giving you the ability to rent a room with an incredible view if you want to spend the night.
It’s possible to get to Vøringsfossen by car, public bus, or by booking a seat on a guided tour bus from Bergen:
Trollstigen is without a doubt one of the most popular natural attractions in Norway, and people are coming to see it both for the view down the valley, to overlook the cars going up and down the pinhead road, and to just enjoy the amazing nature and the waterfall in the area.
The breathtaking scenery is just something else, both from the viewing deck at the top, or from the road itself.
Over 1 million tourists drive the road every year, and as you might expect, it’s prone to traffic jams and car accidents due to the sheet number of tourists driving up or down the hairpin bends.
While most people chose to drive up or down Trollstigen, others prefer to use the hiking path to get to the top.
Keep in mind that Trollstigen is completely closed during the winter, but opens sometime in May every year. The exact date varies depending on how fast the snow melts from the mountain side.
Kjosfossen is an incredible waterfall with a vertical drop of 93 meters! The entire waterfall is actually just over 225 meters long, so it’s a huge waterfall by all measures.
One of the reasons why Kjosfossen is one of Norway’s most popular natural tourist attractions is because it’s located on the Flåm Railway Line. The train between Myrdal and Flåm stops for 10 to 15 minutes at Kjosfossen to allow the guests to enjoy the incredible view for a short while.
It’s an absolutely amazing experience to get this close to one of Norway’s most beautiful waterfalls! Over 900,000 tourists stop at Kjosfossen yearly, seeing as all Flåm Railway Line passengers get to enjoy it.
Geirangerfjorden, or the Geiranger fjord, is Norway’s most popular scenic fjord, and it’s located right in the heart of the fjord country on the western coast of Norway. This is the fjord you typically see in photos of the Norwegian fjords, and it’s just something special about it.
You can see the Geiranger fjord from one of the local small villages and towns along the fjord, from a fjord cruise ferry, or from a big cruise ship.
No matter what you choose, you are guaranteed to be blown away by the incredible beauty of the Geiranger fjord!
The fjord itself is part of an UNESCO World Heritage Site along with the other fjords in western Norway, which gives it a certain natural protection. About 40 % of the 800,000 annual tourists who visit Geirangerfjorden does so from a cruise ship.
There are currently plans to ban all non-electric cruise ships in the fjord from 2026 and onwards. This has been met by acclaim from many people who believes the cruise ships are an unnecessary source of pollution, but it has also been opposed by the locals who depend on the tourists for income.
Låtefossen is an incredible waterfall outside of Odda in Norway, which has traditionally been one of Norway’s most important tourist destinations. It has records of being visited by international tourists back in the 17th century!
The waterfall itself is located 50 meters away from Rv13 between Odda and Røldal, so it’s very easy and convenient to stop by the waterfall if you’re driving on this road.
You can clearly see the waterfall from the car, and there are parking spots to let you stop for a photoshoot.
PS. while you’re in Odda, make sure to consider hiking up to the famous Trolltunga. This natural attraction didn’t quite make the top 20 list, but it’s definitely worth a visit if you’re up for the challenging hike!
Steinsdalsfossen is yet another waterfall, but this one’s on the incredible region known as Hardanger. The waterfall is located fairly close to the town Norheimsund, which is a popular crossroads for travelers who are going between the west and east of Norway.
What separates a visit to Steinsdalsfossen from other waterfalls is the ability to get up close and personal. There’s a small pathway behind the waterfall, giving you an opportunity to really take an incredible look at the waterfall without getting wet!
Nærøyfjorden is another of western Norway’s breathtaking fjords. This fjord is known as Norway’s narrowest fjord, which makes it more difficult to navigate for large cruise ships.
The Nærøy fjord is very popular among river cruise tourists who get on smaller day cruise ships to experience the incredible fjord with their own eyes, and it really rivals Geirangerfjorden in beauty.
The fjord itself is an offshoot to Sognefjorden, the much larger fjord north of it.
8) Briksdalsbreen glacier
Briksdalsbreen is the first glacier on the list of Norway’s most popular natural attractions, and the reason is actually pretty simple. While the glaciers like Briksdalsbreen are definitely worth a visit, you need proper footwear and a few hours of hiking to get to it.
You can get to Briksdalsbreen from Stryn, and you should expect to hike for roughly 2.5 kilometers from the parking lot to get to the glacier. This makes it one of the most accessible glaciers in Norway, and it’s pretty easy to get to even for children and unfit people.
You can even do the hike in a wheelchair or with a baby stroller, so you have no excuse to not visit it.
I really recommend visiting Briksdalsbreen if you’re in the area. Not only because of the glacier, but also because the hike up to the glacier is truly spectacular!
9) Pulpit Rock (Preikestolen)
Preikestolen, also known as Pulpit Rock, has gradually become one of Norway’s most popular hikes, and I’m not surprised. If you can manage the 8 kilometer hike (which takes roughly 3 hours), then you’re in for an incredible view from the mountain plateau!
It’s estimated that over 300,000 tourists finish the hike up to Pulpit Rock every single summer, and it’s certainly crowded during the joint holiday season.
Some people find the attraction too crowded, and are opting for ways to avoid the crowds at Pulpit Rock to get a better experience.
One of the most attractive things about Pulpit Rock is the incredible 250 meter vertical drop. This gives it a dramatic look, but it can also be a bit dangerous. While it’s rare for people to fall off and die, it does happen from time to time.
But don’t worry, just be careful, and it’s very safe to visit.
Guided tours to Pulpit Rock
It’s possible to book a place in a guided tour group to get to Pulpit Rock. Not only does this give most people a much higher level of safety, but it’s also nice to have someone there to explain the history and ecology of the surrounding area.
10) Atlantic Ocean Road
The Atlantic Ocean Road is one of Norway’s most scenic areas, with the public road taking you from one small island to the next. This gives the entire area a unique look, while also making it incredible accessible for tourists who want to experience the amazing nature of the small islands in the region.
The road has been featured in many movies and TV shows, and was recently seen in an episode of the TV series Succession.
11) The beaches at Jæren
The beaches at Jæren are known to be among the most incredible beaches in Norway, This destination has long been known as a surfer’s paradise, but they are also gradually becoming more and more popular among tourists.
The most famous of all of Jæren’s beaches is Solastranden. This is just a 5 minute walk from Sola airport Stavanger, and are by many considered to be the most beautiful of all of Norway’s beaches.
Besseggen is a personal favorite hike, and it’s one I really recommend if you want to see Norway’s nature at its best. The hiking trail is located in the heart of the incredible Jotunheimen National Park, which is home to multiple of Norway’s tallest mountains.
However, this is not a hike to take lightly. You need to be prepared to spend a full day of between 8 and 12 hours to complete the 13 kilometer hike. The terrain is at times very challenging, and you will need to be in shape for the hiking, as well as having good hiking clothes and equipment.
With that warning out of the way, I’m really urging everyone to do this hike. I guarantee that you will see some of the most beautiful views you’ve ever seen in Norway, and you’re absolutely going to have a great time!
13) Nordkapp (The North Cape)
Nordkapp, sometimes known as The North Cape, is mainland Norway’s northernmost point. This mountain plateau offer a view north out at the cast ocean, and anyone who visits can safely say that they’ve reached Norway’s northernmost point (except for the islands such as Svalbard).
Hundreds of thousands tourists visit Nordkapp every year, and it’s a popular destination for travelers who want to experience the unique nature of northern Norway.
The plateau itself is a unique natural attraction, but many people are also just as interested in seeing the monument at the plateau or visit the Nordkapp Museum.
It’s completely free to enter Nordkapp, seeing as it’s a natural attraction.
There are some people who consider Nordkapp to be a tourist trap (it’s just a plateau very far north after all), while others find it to be an incredible experience.
Torghatten is an incredible mountain with a big hole right in the middle of it. It’s one of Norway’s most famous mountains, and the hole also acts as a 35 meter tall cave that you can explore.
You can get to Torghatten by traveling to the nearest city called Brønnøysund. This is right in the UNESCO World Heritage Site of Helgelandskysten, and the entire island ecosystem next to the mountain is just as amazing as the mountain itself.
If you want to hike Torghatten by passing in the hole, expect to spend roughly 30 minutes each way. The hike is suitable for all ages, including children.
15) Lindesnes Lighthouse
We’ve already got Norway’s mainland northernmost point on the list, so of course Norway’s southernmost point is also one of the most popular natural tourist attractions.
Lindesnes Lighthouse is one of Norway’s most recognizable buildings, and it has been standing here in one form or another all the way since 1656.
It’s now a popular tourist attraction for people who want to experience southern Norway, and the entire area is absolutely packed with pristine coastal nature all around.
If you’re at Lindesnes Lighthouse and are interested in fine dining, make sure to check out the 1 Michelin Star restaurant Under.
16) Nigardsbreen glacier
Nigardsbreen glacier is a glacial arm of Jostedalsbreen glacier, and by far the most accessible of them all. This glacial arm is a very popular tourist attraction, and you can reach it from a casual 3 kilometer hike from the parking lot and visitor center.
Nigardsbreen is very popular among tourists who want to go glacial hiking, but I only recommend this with a guide. Glacial hikes are very dangerous without proper guides, equipment and experience, but well worth the money if you hire a good glacier guide.
You can get very close to the glacier even without a guide, and Nigardsbreen is deemed as very accessible compared to most glaciers.
Galdhøpiggen is Norway’s highest mountain, and the peak is at incredible 2,469 meters above sea level. The mountain is located in the amazing Jotunheimen National Park, which is by itself a hiker’s paradise.
Despite being a very high peak, getting there is not as challenging as you might imagine. You need to be prepared for a 5 kilometer hike that takes between 6 and 8 hours in total (both ways).
You will need to cross a glacier to get to Galdhøpiggen if you’re going by the most popular route, but glacier crossing guide are available all summer long, and are actually fairly cheap.
I recommend checking out the Galdhøpiggen travel guide if you’re interested in hiking to Norway’s highest point, and we’ve got multiple hiking option, details on recommended accommodations and all you need to know there.
Kjerag is a mountain range next to the beautiful Lyse fjord, and it has recently become a very popular natural tourist attraction. The area is known to have lots of different hiking options, including some very popular ones such as Kjeragbolten.
Kjeragbolten itself is a rock that is wedged between two mountain slopes, and it makes for some very amazing photos like the one below. It’s actually considered pretty safe to visit, but you should take care to not slip!
The rest of the Kjerag area is also incredible itself, and includes one of Norway’s most popular BASE jump locations.
But don’t worry if you’re not comfortable throwing yourself off the mountain cliff. There are plenty of perfectly safe hikes, and the views from them are absolutely breathtaking.
It’s a bit of a hassle to get to Kjerag to start your hiking adventure, and your first order of business is to get to Lysebotn where the hiking begins. Lysebotn itself is a small tourist town that’s bustling with life in the summer, and is filled by hikers from all over the world who are coming to Kjerag to go on amazing hikes.
19) Verdens Ende, Tjøme
Verdens Ende can be translated to “The World’s End”, and it’s a popular recreational area with pristine coastal nature. This is heaven on earth on warm summer days!
While the area itself is on the list of Norway’s most popular natural tourist attractions, it’s the unique lighthouse that gets featured most prominently on Instagram. The lighthouse is built entirely by rocks from the surrounding area, and the actual light needs to be tilted down to be lit.
20) Laksforsen, Grane
Laksforsen in Grane is a popular waterfall right next to E6. The waterfall is only 17 meters high, but the unique thing about it is that salmon will jump up the waterfall to get to their breeding grounds above.
This is a truly spectacular sight, and without a doubt one of the best places in the region to sit down and relax with a picnic.
Many people claim it to be one of Norway’s most beautiful waterfalls, because it’s absolutely breathtaking. The “flying” salmon only adds to the experience!
All numbers are rough estimates
One of the big problems with researching for a list like this is that it’s just impossible to find exact numbers. Some attractions like Kjosfossen are easy because it’s next to impossible to visit without a ticket to the Flåm Railway line, so the number of tickets sold at the railway is the same as people who have visited the waterfall.
It gets much more difficult for hikes like Preikestolen or natural attractions like Vøringsfossen. Neither of these have any tickets, and it’s absolutely possible to visit these places without checking in anywhere or even interacting with anybody when you arrive.
This has lead to some of the official numbers being estimates based on counting visitors on random days, or by estimating the numbers of visitors from telemetry data (looking at number of active phones in the area).
To actually rank the natural tourist attractions in Norway against each other I needed to put a number to each attraction. The method used to extrapolate the expected number of visitors on a given year is done by calculating the number of visitors in a known year, and adjusting for the overall number of tourists in Norway that year.
This gives us a good indicator as to how many people visit a certain attraction compared to the other ones, but it’s far from bulletproof.
That said, the list itself is a fairly accurate list of the top 20 most popular natural attractions in Norway.
Nicklas is the owner and editor of The Norway Guide, and is responsible for most of the content on the website.
He lives in Skien, Norway with his wife and two children. Nicklas is specialized in Norwegian ecology (including Norway’s geology, wildlife and flora) from his degree in Ecology And Nature Management at University of South-Eastern Norway, but has a particular interest in tourism and content creation.
His biggest hobbies are fishkeeping, going on hikes with his dog, and rooting for the local football team.