Norway is truly the Cradle of Skiing. What we today know as a sport, skiing developed in Norway as a means of getting around. Furthermore, Norwegians invented ski waxing, the modern binding, and the laminated ski.
Norway has long been famous for cross country skiing, but more recently, skiers eager for new challenges and adventures have turned their attention to our many fine alpine resorts.
As the 1994 Winter Olympic Games so clearly showed, Norway offers great facilities for all winter sports; good snow conditions, clean fresh air, a healthy lifestyle, inexpensive accommodation and lots of after-ski activities.
There are numerous other ways of having an exciting winter holiday in Norway if skiing is not for you. What about a snowmobile trip to the North Cape? Or reindeer safari and a dog sled race overthe plane of Finnmarksvidda? Perhaps a horse-drawn sleigh ride, with burning torches in your hand and warm toddy under the sheep skin rug will tempt you.
Why not try ice-fishing, paragliding, snowboarding, or the ice rink while you are here? And when the bracing outdoor air has made you ready for a rest, take a train journey through winter Norway, or gain a memory for life with a coastal express trip over seas as black as ink, and under snow-covered peaks.
THE 26 BEST ALPINESLOPES
The newspaper DN have ranked the 26 best alpineslopes in Norway.
No 1: Hemsedal No 2: Trysil No 3: Oppdal No 4: Geilo No 5: Hafjell No 6: Voss No 7: Hovden No 8: Kvitfjell No 9: Stranda No 10: Gaustablikk No 11: Myrkdalen No 12: Beitostølen No 13: Rauland No 14: Skeikampen No 15: Norefjell No 16: Oslo vinterpark No 17: Narvik No 18: Røldal No 19: Haukelifjell No 20: Eikedalen No 21: Kongsberg No 22: Bjorli No 23: Sauda No 24: Meråker No 25: Tyin-Filefjell No 26: Hallingskarvet.
THE 10 BEST SKIHOTELS
No 1: Quality Spa & Resort Norefjell No 2: Dr. Holms Hotel No 3: Fleischer´s Hotel No 4: Park Inn Trysil Mountain Resort No 5: Radisson Blu Resort Trysil No 6: Radisson Blue Lillehammer Hotel No 7: Thon Hotel Skeikampen No 8: Scandic Narvik Hotel No 9: Storefjell Resort Hotel No 10: Quality Hotel & Resort Hafjell.
If a winter holiday is inconvenient for you, do not despair. The Norwegian summer skiing season lasts - as a general rule - from June to September. The sight of people swooping down the slopes in bikinis or trunks is not uncommon. Contact the tour operators - the three largest centres are:
N-2687 Bøverdalen (June-October)
Tel: +47 61 21 17 50
Mobile: +47 94 36 89 58
Fax +47 61 21 21 72
SOGN & FJORDANE:
Tel: +47 57 87 23 33
Tel: +47 94 55 61 09 (May-Sept)
Tel: +47 61 21 29 34
Mobile: +47 91 53 41 80
FONNA Glacier Ski Resort
N-5627 Jondal (June-Sept)
Tel/Fax: +47 53 66 80 28
Mobile: +47 94 67 99 70
Norefjell, Geilo, Gol and Hemsedal are 4 of the finest and longest established winter sports resorts in Norway, and the pleasures of skiing entice the whole family. There are enormous plateaux and peaks for cross-country skiing, alpine-skiing as well: you can enjoy slalom, Telemark skiing, monoskiing, halfpipe snowboarding and regular snowboarding, moguls and to boggan runs. There are also first class ski centres at Kongsberg, Uvdal and elsewhere. When the evening draws in you can settle down snugly under the sheepskin rugs for a sleigh ride under the starry sky
. . . If you are looking for a peaceful winter landscape with perfect snow conditions and magnificent scenery, you could find no better place than Uvdal, the gateway to the Hardangervidda plateau. But we should add that you will find miles and miles of marked and prepared cross country ski trails wherever you go in Buskerud, the county of magnificent forests and mountains. Vikersund has the only "Ski-flying" slope in all of northern Europe. The record jump here is World Record 246,5 metres!
The ski happy young people of Morgedal developed a new binding that fastened around the heel, making skis much easier to steer. Such heel-bindings, a Norwegian invention, have since won worldwide recognition. Skis were also improved by being made narrower in the middle - a model that has set trends in ski making to this day.
Telemarks-skis, the Telemark swing (or "christie") and slalom are all elements native to Telemark. These show that Morgedal in Telemark can indeed call itself The cradle of modern ski sports. And that again is why Morgedal was chosen as the site for lighting the Olympic Flame for the Winter Games in Oslo 1952, (Stein Eriksen was the big winner), in Squaw Valley 1960 and in Lillehammer 1994.
Sondre Norheim from Morgedal and Snowshoe Thompson from Rjukan became the legendary pioneers of ski sports in 19th-century North America. Olav Bjaaland and Hjalmar Johansen were both excellent skiers from Telemark who accompanied the Norwegian Polar explorers Roald Amundsen and Fridtjof Nansen on daring expeditions. And in our day Telemark continues to foster talented, world-class skiers who complete in sports and entertainment. The best places are Mount Gausta in Rjukan, Blefjell and Bolkesjø.
Lillehammer was the arena for the 1994 Winter Olympics. Lillehammer is the gateway to Gudbrandsdalen Valley. A charming small town on the shores of Lake Mjøsa. Due to the XVII Olympic Winter Games in 1994, the town now can offer a number of unique facilities spanning from sports facilities, cultural institutions, restaurants etc. and accommodation. In addition to the many cultural activities, you can visit the Olympic arenas, take walks, boat trips, shop and attend a number of local events.
Hafjell Alpine Centre Olympic arena during the 1994 Winter Olympics, are situated here. Hafjell was the site of the men´s and women´s slalom and giant slalom events. The speed events were held at Kvitfjell. Øyerfjellet mountain offers many touring opportunities on foot, by car or by bike on a number of charming country roads.
Beitostølen is primarily a perfect resort for the whole family. The slopes are just right to learn the basics as well as the new techniques. The high altitude and the proximity of the great Jotunheimen mountain range ensures early snow to Beitostølen. The skiing season starts on silky natural snow mid November and lasts until the end of April. The varied skiing installations at Beitostølen offer you opportunities for snowboard, telemark, alpine and even for our new activity, luge.
The varied mountain terrain around Voss could have been made for winter sports. It is not without reason that Voss has fostered more Olympic participants than aqy other place in the world. Voss offers excellent nursery slopes as well as demanding terrain for the most experienced. Voss has also excellent facilities for powdersnow sports. The alpine slopes as Voss lie between Hanguren and Bavallen, with a fantastic view. The area is easily accessible with a cable car running from Voss centre and excellent parking facilities in Bavallen. Voss has more than 40 km prepared slopes, divided among 14 runs from green to black. A total of 10 lifts carry you safely up to almost 1.000 metres above sea-level.
On Slettafjellet you will find snow board park with Big Jump, Fun Box, Half Pipe and Boardcross. An eldorado for snow board users. A children´s play area with a separate children´s lift. When the ski lifts close for the day it´s after ski time and you can choose between many 100 shops, and cafés, pubs, piano bars and nightclubs ensure a great afterski. At the restaurants you can try exotic local specialties. Voss can offer accommodation for all the visitors. In front of Voss Railway station there is a memorial stone. Knute Rockne revolutionised American football with his expertise in tactics and strategy.
Waterslide down a river gorge 40 km south of Odda is Røldal. Røldal Skicentre can offer untouched powder, downhill trails and off-piste riding for all abilities. Røldal can accomodate all your alpine needs, from first-timers to the adventure-seeker and hardcore racer. Breathtaking views of the valley, steep mountains and the rest of the ski resort, you will find a cafe, a beginners lift and a great area for picnics and snow play. More experienced riders have four more draglifts to explore. The upper lift and offers a spectacular view of the Røldal Lake and the nearby mountain ranges.
MØRE & ROMSDAL COUNTY
It is a great pleasure for us to welcome you to our "kingdom" - in the centre of Northern Europe´s fjord and alpine country. The region is spectacular, stretching from deep-blue fjords, via verdant valleys with emerald-green slopes way up to the highest wild peaks with their white glaciers. Stranda is also known for tourist attractions like the Geirangefjord with its Seven Sisters waterfalls. The alpine fields at Strandafjell mountains are bound to be a pleasant surprise on your first visit! The sight of fjord scenery combined with mighty alpine mountains is enough to take anyones breath away. Incredibly beatiful and challenge, say people who have seen alpine complexes around the world. "Action to the extreme", is one comment, "Paradise on Earth", is another, "with the fjord glistening far below you, it gives skiing pleasure a totally new dimension". This is not just a picture, but reality, a landscape which you can become fond of.
The Sunnmørs Alps stretch from Nordfjord in the south to Storfjord in the north. The variety of scenery between peak and fjord reflects a Norway in miniatyre, and has something to offer at every season!
Majestic peaks and a rugged alpine massif distinguish the Sunnmørs Alps from other mountain areas. Mountains plunge vertically into the fjord from a height of 1.500 - 1.600 metres and from the summit of Jakta at 1.588 metres, ther is a perpendicular fall of 1.821 metres to the bottom of the fjord. This will give you some idea of the enormous dimensions between the summits and the seabed below the waters of the fjords. Ørsta Ski Center have excellent "off-piste" opportunities, halfpipe plant and equipment to run on trick skis. Ørsta SkiCentere is an important facility for hangglider and paraglider environment in the region.
Trollveggen and Romsdalshorn attract climbers from all over the world. The rest of us can content ourselves with watching them, adventure enough for ordinary mortals! Besides, there are plenty of other excursions to choose from in the area.
SOGN & FJORDANE COUNTY
The fjords, the glaciers, the mountains and the coastal landscape; Sogn and Fjordane is a unique source for really discovering the rich contrasts in nature, a "cornucopia" that never runs empty! Olden in Nordfjord is a popular tourist destination, with Northern Europe´s largest glacier, the Jostedalsbre glacier, as its neighbour. Pure smelt water from the glacier is bottled and sold as natural mineral water; evidence of the interplay between the region´s natural resources and modern industrial development.
If you run the slalom, telemark or snowboard, you Stryn Winter Ski offer something for every taste. The trail network is well developed and with Steindalsheisen (lift) you can reach nearly 1000 meters. Overall, we have 12 km of groomed slopes. At the bottom you will find a child friendly area with two rope.
Try Norway´s number one summer skiing facility, Stryn Sommarskisenter. Access is by the old Strynefjell road (RV 258) from Grotli or Videseter. Excellent skiing conditions in summer, with lifts and tracks for all types of skiing, including cross country, alpine and Telemark, plus snowboard. Special skiing facility for children, "Fantaski". Ski rental, skiing shop and cafeteria.
Sogn Skisenter at Haslo the longest escalators from 320 meters to 900 meters and enjoy panoramic views of the beautiful scenery. There are more than 10 km freshly groomed ski slopes and beautiful hiking trails in the mountains.
Many tourists come to Nordland to cross the Arctic Circle. Visitors from all over the world have been photographed by the monument that marks this magic line at the Arctic Circle Centre at Saltfjellet. The Arctic Circle crosses the large glacier, Svartisen, and is also marked for Hurtigruta passengers to see.
The skiing season is a long one in Narvik. It starts in October / November with floodlit runs during the dark winter months, and lasts until May. Just over the border into Sweden, the ski season lasts even longer until Midsummer Day.
From the top, you can follow precipitous slopes almost down to the water´s edge you can sit down and eat with a spectacular view freom the Fjellheisen restaurant. It takes only 7 minutes to climb 670 metres up to the on Fagernesfjellet mountain, 5 ski lifts take you up to heights of 1003 metres above sea level.
Over recent years, Narvik has become increasingly popular with snowboarders from all over the world. You´ll also see a growing number of Telemark skiers on the slopes. Narvik´s high mountains and fjord make it the perfect skiing destination, with plenty of downhill excitement. The cross-country runs are also excellent, even during the summer.
The city of Mosjøen is situated at the end of Vefsnafjord surrounded of great nature, and just outside the town you can find a slalomslope.
Stamsund Sports Club runs the best alpine skiing resort in the Lofoten Islands. Every year the norwegian´s Terje Håkonsen and Daniel Franck inviting some friends to a competition in Lofoten. Their friends happened to be the best in the world. The have built the worlds biggest Quarter-Pipe and the worlds biggest Half-Pipe.
Skarslia Ski og Akesenter
Storefjell Resort Hotel
Uvdal Alpin Park
Lillehammer Olympia Park
Rælingen Skiklubb Marikollen
MØRE & ROMSDAL
Sunndal Alpin Center
SOGN & FJORDANE
Nye Junkerdal Turistsenter
Alta Ski-og Alpinsenter