"Edvard Grieg has always been on our bucket list"

Sandra and Maurice Craze have travelled all the way from England to experience the home of one of Norway's most famous artists: "Edvard Grieg has always been on our bucket list."

  • Sandra and Maurice Craze are greeted by glorious April sunshine in Bergen at the former home of composer Edvard Grieg, Troldhaugen, which is now a museum.

  • The couple are on their first trip to the capital of Western Norway and hail from the picturesque region of Devon in southwest England. The trip is a birthday gift from their daughters, and much of the reason for their visit to Bergen is Grieg himself.

  • "We always listen to classical music on the radio and adore Grieg's music. Whenever his music comes on the radio, we turn up the volume."

  • "We're particularly fond of the piece Wedding Day at Troldhaugen, so it's absolutely wonderful to experience the place in person," smiles Sandra. Her husband, who is himself a musician, nods in eager agreement.

  • "It's been on our bucket list for a long time, so it's an incredible experience for us to finally be here," says Maurice.

"Clarion Collection® Hotel Havnekontoret has the perfect location"

The couple is staying with their two adult daughters at the Clarion Collection® Hotel Havnekontoret on the iconic UNECO-listed wharf, Bryggen. One of their daughters has spent much time in Bergen and the Nordic region for work and says that she always stays at one of our hotels.

Before the trip, she had highly praised the Clarion Collection® Hotel Havnekontoret to her parents, and they both agree that the stay has lived up to their expectations – and more.

"Very friendly staff, great service, excellent breakfast, and fantastic beds. Plus, the perfect location," says Maurice.

"It's a very homely and cosy hotel with everything we need nearby," adds his wife, Sandra.

  • Bergen is truly unique 

    Apart from Troldhaugen and the sunny weather, they both agree that one thing has been most impressive about their stay so far.

  • "The landscape is absolutely unique. It simply takes your breath away," says Sandra.

  • "We think we're very lucky with the scenery where we live in England, especially being close to Dartmoor National Park, but it's nowhere near as beautiful as Bergen.

  • Just the flight in with views over the fjord and snow-capped mountains was incredible," adds her husband.

Museums you must experience in Bergen

Troldhaugen is part of KODE in Bergen, one of the largest museums in the Nordic region for art, design, and music. KODE encompasses seven unique attractions, including the former homes of three of Norway's most famous composers, Edvard Grieg, Harald Sæverud, and Ole Bull.

Throughout the year, concerts are held in these homes, and KODE works diligently to convey the culture, music, and history of the composers. Over 400 concerts are held annually at Troldhaugen, including fantastic lunchtime concerts in the summer.

In addition, KODE has several buildings exhibiting art. In the city centre of Bergen, you will find Permanenten, which was completed in 1896. The exhibitions change regularly, so check their website for more information.

Stenersen is the newest addition to KODE. Here, the collection of financier Rolf Stenersen is on display. The focus is on paintings and sculptures, and you can see works by renowned artists including Pablo Picasso, Paul Klee, and Asger Jorn.

Rasmus Meyer was a Bergen businessman with a great love for art. His heirs donated his collection to the city of Bergen on one condition: A public museum must be built to house the collection.

As agreed, the collection is among the finest in Norwegian art from the golden age of 1880 to 1905. Among these is the world's third-largest collection of Edvard Munch's works at Rasmus Meyer's Collections.

Lysverket was originally the administrative building of the municipal power company Bergen Lysverker. The exhibitions change, and the focus is on a wide range of art: From circa the 1400s to the 1900s. In addition to art, you can find one of Bergen's Michelin-starred restaurants in the building: Lysverket.

If you're looking for contemporary art, Bergen Kunsthall, right next door to several of the KODE museums, is well worth a visit. It hosts exhibitions, concerts, and events featuring international artists throughout the year.

Alleyway in Bergen.

Perfect for experiencing Bergen with children

VilVite is a science centre that combines natural science and technology in a fun and interesting way. Through its interactive exhibitions, you can play, learn, and have a great time. It's perfect for entertaining children when the rain arrives in Bergen.

Learn more about Bergen on a city walk

Much of Bergen's history is embedded in its walls, streets, and alleyways. A city walk is a great idea way to learn more about the city's history. Several companies offer this service.

The Bergen City Museum has various branches in Bergen, aiming to convey the city's long history in a fun, informal, and interesting manner. It has several museums around the city and also offers city walks – either with the museum's own actors or guides.

For many foreign visitors to Norway, stave churches are a must-see. Fantoft Stave Church was originally built in Fortun in Sogn in 1170 but moved to Fantoft in 1883. It was set on fire in 1992 but was rebuilt and completed again in 1997. The church is only open for interior visits during the summer but can be seen from the outside all year round.

Bergen during World War II

With Bergen's proximity to the sea, it may be no surprise that the city was strategically important for the Germans during World War II. 
There are several museums in the city that tell the story of the occupation period. At Bergenhus Fortress, you will find the Bergenhus Fortress Museum. The museum is dedicated to the Norwegian resistance during World War II, with a focus on women's contributions to the Armed Forces.

Espeland prisoner of war camp is Norway's only preserved prisoner of war camp, located just 20 minutes by car from the city centre.

The Gestapo Museum is housed in the former Gestapo headquarters in the centre of Bergen. Many Norwegian resistance fighters, both men and women, were held there during the war, as well as those found guilty of treachery after the war. You can learn about the methods used during interrogations, see the cells where the prisoners were held, and hear their stories.

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