Many of us prefers to travel all by ourselves, and Norway is a great destination to visit if you want to experience all the beautiful nature we got here. Most people visit Norway as a family, a group of friends or as a couple, but there are also some solo travelers who visit Norway.
But what is it like to visit Norway as a solo traveler, and is it considered safe for a solo female traveler to visit Norway alone?
Norway is regarded as one of the safest countries to visit for solo female travelers or LGBTQ+ travelers. The entire country is very safe with one of the world’s lowest crime rates, but some solo travelers find it to be a bit unsocial to visit since most Norwegians are very introverted.
So there’s no need to fear if you want to visit Norway as a solo female traveler – it’s very safe and absolutely incredible! Both cities and hiking in nature is considered very safe.
Let’s take a closer look at what it’s like to visit Norway as a solo traveler, and the pros and cons of it.
Hiking and camping as a solo female traveler
Hiking as a solo female traveler is considered very safe in Norway, and there are virtually zero crimes committed against hikers in Norway. You are pretty much 100 % safe when setting up a tent when wild camping, or when hiking on the popular trails.
While you are safe against crimes, it’s considered a bit of a risk hiking the difficult hikes alone, no matter what your gender is. Norway has weather that can change in a heartbeat, so make sure you are prepared for any hikes you attempt, and have a plan in case of emergencies.
Some rainfall can quickly lead to slippery trails, which can outright make it dangerous to keep hiking if you don’t have good hiking shoes. If the wind picks up in combination with rain, you will get hypothermia very quickly if you don’t pack some waterproof and windproof clothes with you. So make sure to prepare before going on a hike by yourself!
You are free to set up your tent pretty much anywhere in the wilderness in Norway (here’s a detailed article about where and how to set up a wild camp), and you will usually be completely alone if you decide to do this a bit away from the most popular hikes. Just go at least 100 meters away from the main trail, and chances are that no one will know you are there.
Some travelers might find it a bit scary to be camping all alone, but there are actually no dangerous animals in Norway, so it’s something that is considered safe. You will probably hear a lot of different noises at night, but just be aware that there’s nothing that can really do any damage to you out there in the wild.
Visiting the big cities in Norway as a female solo traveler
Norway doesn’t really have any big cities, and the biggest one is Oslo with its one million inhabitants, followed by Bergen with 250,000 and Stavanger with 230,000. These are big by Norwegian standards, but pretty small if you compare them to other European cities.
So how safe is it to visit the big cities in Norway as a female traveler who travels alone?
While the crime rate in the cities are higher than in towns, it’s still among the lowest in the world, and it’s generally very safe to visit the cities in Norway as a solo female traveler. However, you will want to take some precautions when traveling outside at night, especially if you are drinking or visiting bars.
As with most cities, many of the crimes that do happen against women happen at nighttime after the bars and nightclubs close. The victim is often very intoxicated.
Females who go alone to bars and nightclubs should take precautions like:
- Not leaving your drink out of sight.
- Don’t walk home alone.
- Not walking in dark alleyways when going home.
- Avoid sketchy areas.
- Don’t get too drunk.
- Be wary of joining strangers for an afterparty.
A good rule of thumb is to ride a taxi to get home to your hotel or wherever you are staying, and not walk alone. You might consider finding other females to walk along with you.
The risk of getting assaulted on your way home from a nightclub or bar is still very low in Norway, but it does happen from time to time. So take precautions, and the risk will be a lot lower.
You might feel a bit lonely as a solo traveler in Norway
The stereotype about Norwegians being a bit introverted or cold is kind of true, and it’s definitely more difficult to get to know Norwegians than people from most other countries in the world. This will make it much more difficult to be social in Norway, especially if you are a bit introvert yourself.
Here’s a guide for making new friends in Norway. It’s mainly aimed towards people who are moving to Norway, but tourists can pick up a few good tricks from it as well. The thing about getting social in Norway is that you need to really be proactive, and not wait around for anyone to get in touch with you (because that will not happen).
There are few hostels and places where tourists and backpackers can hang out, and hikes in general are pretty sparsely populated. This all leads to many people finding Norway to be a bit unsocial to visit, and some tourists who travel by themselves will even find it to be lonely.
While this might not be a problem to everyone, be aware that you will not automatically end up being social in Norway, and you will need to actively seek out people if you want to chat with someone. No one’s going to come and bother you if you just stay by yourself in Norway.
There are Facebook groups such as “Expats in Oslo” and groups like that which can be used to organize meet-ups with other travelers.
Pros and cons of visiting Norway as a solo traveler
Pros of visiting Norway as a solo traveler:
- You get to do exactly what you want without having to worry about anyone else.
- It’s pretty common for people to be out and about alone in Norway.
- You can go on hikes and use nature alone.
- It’s considered very safe.
The cons of visiting Norway as a solo traveler:
- It is difficult to get social.
- It can be a bit difficult to drive the rental cars if you are doing all the driving yourself (some drives in Norway can be pretty challenging and demanding).