108 Interesting Facts About Norway

Last updated on January 8th, 2019

Norway, officially known as the “Kingdom of Norway”, is a sovereign state and a unitary monarchy. The country has an extensive coastline facing the North Atlantic Ocean. The country lies in Northern Europe in Scandinavia above the Arctic Circle. With these facts about Norway, let us learn more about its history, geography, culture, people, economy and many other interesting facts.

About people and history

1. Harald V is the present King of Norway. He represents the country and plays a ceremonial role.

2. More than 30% of the country has received higher education. Norwegian universities and state university colleges do not charge a tuition fee for international students.

3. Norway introduced Salmon Sushi to Japan in the 80s.

4. In 2017, Norway is ranked no. 1 in prosperity index while it stood second on the list in 2016.

5. Odd and Even are popular names for males in the country.

6. The late King Olav V used public transport and always paid the ticket. He might have done this to encourage people to make use of public transport instead of private vehicles to cut pollution and minimize traffic.

7. Norway was originally called “Nordweg” meaning the “Northern Way.”

8. The first ever ski jumper was a Norwegian. The Vefsn Nordland ski, found in Norway is dated to 5100 BC. Skiing could be by far one of the oldest sports in existence, if not the oldest.

9. Norway topped the list of Human Development Index (a statistical tool used to measure a country’s overall achievement in its social and economic dimensions) 9 times between 2001 and 2011. It stood on the second spot behind Iceland in 2007 and 2008. Lifespan, education level and GDP per capita are the three dimensions based on which the HDI is calculated.

10. Norway, Sweden, and Denmark all have one of the lowest income inequality in the world.

11. In 2017, Norway is the happiest place on Earth followed by Denmark, Iceland, and Switzerland.

12. Norway was ranked fifth out of 168 countries in Transparency International’s 2015 Corruption Perceptions Index. It is one of the world’s least corrupt countries.

13. The country has more English speakers than Canada. 76% of the Canadian population speaks English while 86% of the Norwegians make use of the English language for communication.

14. The country does not have any official religion.

15. Since 2008, same-sex marriage is allowed in Norway.

Flag of Norway

The national flag of Norway. Description: red with a blue cross outlined in white that extends to the edges of the flag; the vertical part of the cross is shifted to the hoist side in the style of the Dannebrog (Danish flag); the colors recall Norway’s past political unions with Denmark (red and white) and Sweden (blue).

16. In Norway, life expectancy rates are one of the highest in the world.

17. Norway has won more winter Olympics than any other country in the world.

18. Vikings originated in Norway.

19. Norwegians enjoy a four week holiday during the summers, thus they have plenty of time to hunt fish and have rest.

20. Sami people are living in the northern region of the country for more than 10,000 years now.

21. Football is the favorite sport in the country.

22. “Allemannsretten” is a term which says that every man and woman in Norway has the right of public access.

23. Between 1380 and 1418, Norway and Denmark were a union. And between 1814 and 1905, Norway and Sweden formed an alliance.

24. Norwegians are avid readers. They spend more time reading than any other country in the world.

About geography and landscape

25. The country is famous for some of its greatest waterfalls.

26. The country is visitor friendly between December and April.

27. Daylight in Norway varies greatly during the year.

28. The world’s sixth tallest and Europes highest waterfalls – Vinnufossen which is 860 m in height is located in Norway.

29. Norway is least likely to be affected by climate change while Chad is most vulnerable to it.

Map of Norway

30. It is a very long country. The total length of its land boundaries is 2566 km (Finland 709 km, Sweden 1,666 km, Russia 191 km. ) Oslo, Bergen, Stavanger, Trondheim, Tromso are its five major cities.

31. The country is popular for fjords. It is one of the three Scandinavian countries. The other two being Denmark and Sweden.

32. One interesting fact about Norway is that the biggest population (4,642,526) of Norwegians outside Norway is in the U.S. Now, they account for 1.5% of the U.S. population.

33. The regions, Rjukan (Norway) and Viganella (Italy) are situated in deep valleys. In these areas, the mountains block sun rays for almost 6 months. And the residents use giant mirrors to reflect the sunlight down.

34. Norway has one of the longest coastlines in the world. Here are the top ten countries with the longest coastlines. 1. Canada – 202,080 km, 2. Indonesia – 54,716 km, 3. Greenland – 44,087 km, 4. Russia – 37,653 km, 5. Philippines – 36,289 km, 6. Japan – 29,751 km, 7. Australia – 25,760 km, 8. Norway – 25,148 km, 9. United States – 19,924 km, 10. Antarctica – 17,968 km.

35. The country also has the largest glacier in mainland Europe – Jostedalsbreen, at 487 square kilometer.

36. Hornindalsvatnet in Central Norway is Norway’s and Europe’s deepest lake – 514 m. Its surface is 53 m above sea level and its bottom is 461 m below sea level.

37. The longest road tunnel in the world is the Laerdal tunnel. It is 24.5 km long and it takes on an average 20 minutes to pass through the tunnel. It succeeds the Swiss Gotthard Road Tunnel which is 16.9 km in length.

38. Eiksund is the deepest undersea tunnel in Norway. It is a 7776 m long subsea tunnel on the north-west coast of Norway.

39. In area, Norway is little less than Sweden.

40. Norway and Svalbard islands have 1190 fjords collectively.

41. The country enjoys four seasons.

42. Sognefjorden is the world’s deepest fjord – 1308 m.

43. During the winter season in Northern Norway, the sun never rises and they have polar nights. While during the summer season in the same region, the sun never sets.

44. There are 25 national parks on Norway mainland.

45. Some of the famous churches of Norway include – Heddal, Borgund, Notodden.

46. Norway has the greatest length of any European country 1752 km (nne – ssw) and its maximum width is 430 km.

47. Only Norway, Austria and Liechtenstein have won more medals in winter Olympics than at summer Olympics.

48. Warm Gulf Stream keeps the climate of the country milder than what one would expect.

49. Norway is famous for reindeers, polar bears, whale meat, waffles, trolls, fish, Vikings etc.

50. More than 2/3rd of Norway is mountainous. There are almost 300 mountain peaks that are above 2,000 meters.

51. Norway shares the Scandinavian peninsula with Sweden and Finland.

52. Nearly 70% of the country is uninhabited.

53. Almost five million Norwegian Americans live in the U.S.

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