July 08

Uncovering the Traditions and Customs You Can Experience During Christmas Holidays in Norway

This article looks at the traditions and customs you can experience during a festive Norway holiday

Uncovering the Traditions and Customs You Can Experience During Christmas Holidays in Norway
Uncovering the Traditions and Customs You Can Experience During Christmas Holidays in Norway


Visiting Norway over the Christmas period is a great way to embrace the festive spirit. The beauty and charm of the markets and stalls packed with gifts and crafts, the scents of ginger from baking kakemenn cookies, the sparkle of frost and snow adorning the rooftops, and the sounds of carol singing and dancing in the town squares are just some of the many reasons to visit.

Christmas really begins during the last weekend of November, when a huge array of biscuits and delicacies start to appear in shop windows and when visitors have the opportunity to attend concerts and performances.

Today’s guide, created with help from the travel specialists at the Baltic Travel Company, looks at the diverse traditions you can experience during a festive Norway holiday and sheds light on the local customs that differ from our own.

Celebrating Christmas in Norway: What to Expect

When we think about Norway in the winter, the first things that spring to mind are the expanses of snowy landscapes, roaring fires in every grate, and the amazing dishes being served in restaurants, cafes, and bars across the country. Our favourites include ribbe (pork ribs) and pinnekjøtt (lamb ribs).

There are more traditional cookie varieties than you could possibly count, with gingerbread house-building kits in all the shops, and goro, krumkaker, and berlinerkranser sweet biscuits, as well as the kakemenn cookies we've mentioned.

Norwegians call Christmas Jul, and the main family meal is held on Christmas Eve. Friends and relatives exchange presents, and if the kids have been good, Father Christmas will come to call. The bells in churches around Iceland ring out at 5 p.m, signalling the start of dinner.

You might also hear the day before Christmas Eve referred to as ‘little Christmas'—this is a time for family, eating the incredible risengrynsgrøt rice pudding made with cinnamon and butter, and looking for the elusive almond. The winner is presented with a marzipan pig.

Between Christmas and New Year, the restaurants, bars and attractions usually reopen, and cities like Oslo are bustling with activity, whether you’d like to try ice-skating on the local rink, attend the Christmas markets for some last-minute treats, or head to Tromso, the Christmas Capital, ready to celebrate New Years Eve.

Travelling to Oslo During the Festive Season

Oslo becomes decked with lights in December, and with great chances of a white Christmas, it feels like a fairytale city. If there is a good dusting of snow, you can head out of the city centre and experience the Korketrekkeren toboggan run, about a 20-minute journey away, which is brilliant fun for all the family.

The Winter Wonderland Christmas Market on Karl Johan Street is a must-visit, and we suggest having a cup of gløgg, enjoying a ride on the traditional Ferris wheel, and renting some ice skates to build up an appetite for dinner.

The Norwegian Museum of Cultural History, located at Bygdøy, is a hidden gem that hosts a quirky Christmas fair during the first two weeks of December. We highly recommend a visit to watch the entertainment, participate in decorating workshops, and browse the stalls.

Christmas Holidays to Tromso, Norway

We’ve mentioned the Christmas capital, and there’s a good reason Tromso has earned this nickname. While the town is small, it’s also incredibly festive, with Christmas lights embellishing every shop in the centre and the chance to try dog sledding or a reindeer sleigh ride with guided tours available to and from the city.

If you’re in Norway during December and looking for more outdoor adventures, you can also head out into the snowy landscapes to enjoy skiing down the slopes, snowshoeing over the powdery snow, or snowmobiling through the forests with an experienced guide.

Reindeer safaris are very popular. Guests can learn all about the ancient Sami culture, the importance of these herds to local people, and how it feels to steer their very own sleigh.

While you're in Tromso, it's also a perfect opportunity to book an overnight excursion out of the city and away from the light pollution since this part of the world is one of the best places to see the Northern Lights.

Festive Trips to Bergen, Norway

Our final featured destination for Norwegian holidays is Bergen, a historic city that makes the most of Christmas. There is a brilliant Christmas market at Festplassen, and you can visit the largest gingerbread town in the world – something children are sure to love.

The lights are turned on during a family-friendly ceremony from the top of Mount Fløien. This is followed by a Christmas concert featuring singing, dancing, and performances, including local traditional shows.

If you're in Bergen and have tired of Christmas shopping, the numerous attractions such as the aquarium and Kode Art Museum are well worth a visit. You can also hop onto the Flåm Line or organise a sightseeing cruise over the fjords, keeping an eye out for rare Arctic wildlife along the way!

Choosing the Best Holiday Packages to Enjoy Norway at Christmas

We hope this glimpse into Norwegian Christmas has inspired you to start planning your next trip and shown you the huge variety of things to see, do, experience, and taste during your festive holiday.

Our travel planners are experts in personalised holidays for families and visitors of all ages and can provide recommendations and advice to ensure your holiday is truly memorable.

Read more about Baltic Travel Company - New Range of Balkan Holiday Packages Introduced by Travel Specialists, Baltic Travel Company 

About Baltic Travel Company:

We specialise in crafting unique, tailor-made travel experiences that showcase the diverse wonders of Europe and the Baltic region. With over 15 years of experience, our dedicated travel experts are committed to providing exceptional service and unparalleled expertise to ensure your Baltic adventure exceeds your expectations. From cultural city breaks to the inspiring northern lights and breathtaking natural landscapes, our carefully curated itineraries highlight the very best of the Nordic Region, Scandinavia, The Baltic Region, Poland, Slovakia and more. Whether you're a solo traveler, couple, or group, embark on a journey of discovery with Baltic Travel Company – your ultimate travel partner in exploring the hidden gems of the Baltics.

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Source Company: https://www.baltictravelcompany.com/





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