The white beaches of Norway
When daylight never ends, Norwegian beaches turn into a 24/7 mingling spot. Here are my top 10 favourites beaches.
– So you didn`t know we swim in the sea up there?
I don`t know how many times during my travels abroad I`ve had to tell people that we actually have beaches in Norway. As a matter of fact, we also do visit them. And yeah; We even swim in the sea!
Well, long sandy beaches, with crowds of people swimming and sunbathing, is not what most people associate with Norway.
Many visitors will certainly be surprised to learn how important the beaches and beach life to most of the people during the summer holiday. Thanks to the Golf Stream, the temperatures are surprisingly high, and temperatures above 20 are quite common on the East and South coast.
If you ask an average Norwegian, he will surely hold «going to the beach» among the top 3 most important activities during summer.
Remote is beautiful- and chilly
We do have some great beaches, even though the main rule is that the most beautiful ones are also the most remote ones with the lowest temperatures.
The most eye catching spots are the turquoise waters and white sands of the north and west. For a warmer swim, the Oslofjord offers several small sand spots along the coast.
The beauty of the turquoise waters, steep mountains and white sand of the long Atlantic coast catch your eyes immediately.
The only thing that pulls down the total top score for the beaches of Northern Norway is the temperature. With the North Atlantic waves coming straight in, the temperature seldom rises above 15 Celcius. But this doesn´t prevent Norwegians and other outdoor enthusiasts form taking a dip in the sea during the bright summer nights.
On the west coast, the golden Solastranden beach outside Stavanger is world famous for its superb surfing and kiting conditions year round. Ironically, the cold offshore beaches are gladly used by surfers and kayakers even in winter, while the cozier and much warmer eastern beaches are only used during the summer season. The reason for these is though quite natural; the water freezes in eastern fjords, but not on the Atlantic coast.
Imported white sand
The white shell sand doesn`t come natural east of the southern tip of Norway, but during the last years several of the local hot spots along the Oslofjord has been adorned with new and pale sand. White sand is often synonymous with «beautiful» and excotic, even though the most frequented beaches are the many smaller golden sand spots around Oslo fjord.
While the temperature on the Atlantic coast seldom rises above 15 degrees, the calm waters of the Oslofjords is a holday haven for beachbums during summer. At least when the weather is good. Sea temperture above 20 is normal from Kristiansand to the Swedish border from the beginning of July to the beginning of September.
These are my favourite beaches in Norway up to today. This summer I will hopefully explore some more of the white salt sand dunes up north, on my northobound roadtrip from the Polar Circle town of Bodø via lofoten and Island Andøya to Tromsø.
(Unfortunatley the links are in Norwegian language, but with photos showing the sites )
Solastranden, Sola, Rogaland
Sandvesanden, Karmøy, Rogaland
Grotlesanden, Bremanger, Sogn og Fjordane.
Sandviksanden, Gildeskål Nordland
Sørfugløya, Gildeskål, Nordland
Sommarøy, Tromø, Troms
Sandfjordstranden, Berlevåg, Finnmark
Listastrendene, Lista, Vest-Agder
Sjøsanden, Mandal, Vest-Agder
Åros strand, Søgne, Vest-Agder