Report by BestHike editor Rick McCharles
I hiked and bikepacked Norway for many weeks summers of 2018 and 2022.
Norway IS expen$ive. The best way to lower your holiday costs is to sleep FREE in your tent.
A longstanding law called allemannsretten (loosely translated as ‘the right to roam’) allows everyone to wild camp virtually anywhere in open country, for free.
Langøyene island, a 15-minute ferry ride away from Oslo, has grassy glades to pitch up in, right next to the fjord. Sognsvann lake, north of Oslo, is another good spot. …
That sounds GREAT.
However — it’s a small percentage of Norway that is both flat enough and dry enough to pitch a tent. I was happy I carried a foam sleeping pad as well as my air mattress. I put it UNDER the tent to keep everything a little drier.
If you can’t find a good free spot, it’s easy to locate one of the 1,000 or so paid campsites.
Protection from the wind is another problem. I did hear of wind breaking tent poles. It’s often gusty.
A hiker had recommended this free spot in Sommarøy. Ideal. Wooden tent pad with protection from the ocean wind.
I like having a picnic table to organize gear and sit down for meals.
This was the closest free site I could find near Svolvær. No picnic table.
Here are a few more typical sites.
Last night tenting, I found my MSR Hubba NX Easton Syclone tentpole had broken … somehow. It’s the most unreliable part of MSR tents, along with their lightweight zippers.
My favourite campsite was Uttakleiv Beach, Lofoten. But this cost $20 / night. It’s the trailhead for the Veggen and the more popular Mannen climbs.