With stunning scenery, twisting mountainous routes, and nearly faultless asphalt, Norway is a destination for riders looking to push themselves past the (relative) comfort of being closer to home on the continent.
The best time to visit is from mid-June to mid-August. I visited at the mid of July, the weather hot, really hot. More than 30 degrees of Celsius when riding over the high plains. The colder it becomes the further north you go, so expect temperatures closer to early Spring/Autumn, with a little more rain… Make sure your gear is properly waterproof; you’ll be putting it through its paces like never before!
WHICH PLACES SHOULD I VISIT AND WHICH SHOULD I AVOID?
In a nutshell, if you had endless time, travel wherever you want. Unfortunately, it’s more than probable that you aren’t, which makes vacation preparation all the more important, especially with so many places to visit. Norway is a huge country, and it’s easy to miss it on a map that doesn’t take into account the planet’s curvature at its apex.
While there are a few major motorways that can get you up or across in a decent period of time, it makes little sense to ride to Norway and then race to the top on a freeway. You made it to Nordkapp, but your tyres are bald…
FV 17. As you wound your way in and out of Fjords and proceed north, the road hugs the coast (and, at times, island hops with the help of numerous small ferries). You’ll cross the Arctic Circle by ferry on this route, which officially qualifies you as an arctic explorer (kind of…), which is pretty exciting.
Taking a ferry to the southernmost point of the Lofoten Islands and then biking the way back to the mainland. A spectacular rocky protrusion of islands connected by bridges and tunnels to allow uninterrupted riding. After a few days of being surrounded by stunning scenery at every turn, you might become tired of stopping every 5 minutes to take photos… maybe. Once more, it’s breathtaking. It’s a must-see and see-and-visit place.
E69 is the road that leads to Nordkapp. A fairly long road that leads all the way to the North Cape, as far north as Mainland Europe allows. In comparison to the rest of Norway, it is substantially flatter and more barren this far up, letting you to concentrate solely on riding. If you’re prone to speed (which I’m not, no way), the lack of features, combined with long sweeping bends and open straights, has its advantages, since you’re less likely to miss a police speed trap or traffic congestion on the road ahead.
The North Cape is in the northwest corner of Norway. All the excitement of going as far north as possible and the need to get off the road before having to sell a kidney to pay the admission fee. The centre isn’t particularly interesting, but it’s worth a visit, and the gift shop is where you’ll find the pannier stickers.
Another approach that comes highly recommended by many who have done it: a buddy of mine arrived early, cycled through the gates, and even rode his bike up to the Globe for a wonderful photo. Despite my protests, I paid, and if you have the time to travel up there, you will as well.
WHICH HOTELS SHOULD I CONSIDER BOOKING?
So you’ve determined how to go to Norway and which route to take. But now comes the most important question: where will I sleep? I’ve included three options below that will keep you out of hotels, stretch your euro farther, and push you out of your comfort zone as much as possible.
Camping in the woods and motorcycles are two of my favourite hobbies to do together. And there’s no better location to do that than in Norway, where you may travel and camp wherever you like. Simply pitch your tent far enough away from private property and enjoy the surroundings.
If you’re worried about public restrooms, the nation has some of the most beautiful ones I’ve ever seen. Take advantage of the fact that you’re in one of the safest countries on the globe! Despite the fact that I brought a summer sleeping bag to save space, Norway tested me on a few occasions even as a seasoned camper… Above the Arctic Circle, it’s usually rainy and cold, especially at night. Showering will be difficult if you don’t want to smell like sweaty riding gear. Budget travellers, on the other hand, will save a significant amount of money.
Airbnb is a service that allows you to rent a room, and it has come in handy on numerous occasions.
Bunk-a-biker. Norway’s riding community is excellent. Add yourself to Norway’s ‘bunk a biker’ Facebook group, describe yourself and your desired route, and ask for recommendations for off-the-beaten-path sites to explore. It’s possible that you’ll be able to stay in motorcycle clubs’ bunks.
Let’s talk about campsites for a moment. On the campgrounds, there will be cooking amenities as well as great bathing facilities. As I moved farther north, I grew to like them, even if it was only for a hot shower in the evening and another in the morning when the weather changed.