Norway's long coast is unique to Europe and offers
impressive scenery where the sides of the fjords rise like
high, almost vertical walls, often adorned with foamy
waterfalls. On the continental shelf outside there are more
than 50,000 islands, of which about 2,100 are inhabited.
These form a scenic archipelago coast, mainly along the
elongated west coast. Lowlands occur only along certain
stretches of coast. The so-called beach surface, a flat
erosion surface of about 100 m in height, basically follows
the entire coastal stretch. It extends from the seabed over
some islands and reaches into the foot of the high cliff.
COUNTRYAAH, Norway has a strong relief, where rock masses and high
plateaus, so-called expanses, occupy two-thirds of
the area. The average height of the country is 500 m above
sea level. and 15% of the surface is higher than 975 m above
sea level. Large valleys form another basic feature of the
natural landscape, and their occurrence and direction are a
consequence of the structure and the dominant fracture
systems in the bedrock. The glacial erosion has also given a
strong impression and richness to the landscape, especially
to the steeper side west of the elevation axis.
You can divide Norway into several landform regions.
Østlandet is permeated by long and deep valleys.
Hallingdal, Gudbrandsdalen, which includes Mjøsa (Norway's
largest lake) and Østerdalen. All have u-shaped cross
sections and hanging side valleys, which is clear evidence
of the significant erosion power of the recent glacial
glaciers (see U-valley). In the north, arctic topography
dominates. To the south, the terrain descends, and hill
topography with relative heights of more than 100 m
prevails. At the far south-east is a smaller area with crack
valley terrain. A special landscape element forms the
Raerna, which are parallel-running border moraines,
particularly evident on both sides of the Oslo Fjord. In
this, Glomma, Norway's longest river, and Dramselva (see the
Dramsvassdraget) flows into the river, while Skienselva and
Numedalslågen have an outlet further west.
The southern part of the country has north-south
valleys. From Lista in the west, with deposits from the most
recent ice age, the landscape rises and reaches more than
1,400 meters above sea level. in the Rjuven.
Vestlandet has many deep valleys that follow the
fracture systems in the bedrock. Many continue beneath the
sea surface as fjords, which are formed by glaciers of the
Ice Age. These therefore have u-shaped transverse profiles
with deepened pelvis in the inner part and an orifice
threshold further out. Among the fjords are the
Boknafjorden, Hardangerfjord and Sognefjord, of which the
latter is Norway's longest and deepest.
The high mountain range runs along the water
divide between East and West Norway as a wide elevation axis
in the north-south direction. Further north it turns to a
north-east-southwest stretch. The high mountain area
contains both mountain plateaus and large mountain masses of
resilient rocks such as gabbro. Jotunheimen is the largest
mountain massif, with the peaks Galdhøpiggen and
Glittertind, 2,469 and 2,452 m respectively. Further north
are Rondane (2 178 m above sea level) and Dovrefjell with
the top Snøhetta (2,286 m above sea level). Of the many
glaciers, Jostedalsbreen is the largest. The alpine relief
is a result of the glaciers of the Ice Age, which here
created deep niches divided by sharp mountain ridges.
The landform region of Trøndelag around the
Trondheim Fjord has valley roads in the north-west-southeast
direction and forms a break in the mountains.
Northern Norway is a long and narrow area, where
the counties of Nordland and Troms and Finnmark have valleys
parallel to the coast and a relief that is largely alpine,
also on the island groups Lofoten and Vesterålen. In the
north, the country is wider and on Finnmarksvidda the
peninsula's pen plane forms plateaus of about 300 m above
sea level. Fjords such as Porsangen, Laksefjorden,
Tanafjoren and Varangerfjorden penetrate farthest north into
Digopaul.com, most of Norway belongs to the Scandinavian mountain
chain, which extends from Stavanger to the Varanger
Peninsula, and is part of the Caledonids. To the southeast
of the mountain chain are extensive urban areas, which
belong to the Baltic Shield. This continues into the
younger, overgrown mountain bedrock. The southern Norwegian
precipice is cleaved by the Oslo field's north-south
In Northern Norway is arkeiskt bedrock (older than 2.5
billion years) usual. Southern Norway's Urberg was founded
1.8–1.5 billion years ago. The core areas are in Viken
county and Vestfold and Telemark county east and west of the
Oslo field respectively. The youngest regional deformations
occurred during the Svekonorvegan orogenesis 1.2–0.85
billion years ago, together with extensive gastric
The Oslo area is world renowned for fossil-rich
Cambrosilurian deposits and for volcanic formations from the
transition between the carbon and perm periods (about 290
million years old). The Cambrosilur deposits were folded
together with the mountain chain during the Caledonian
In Vestland county there are powerful stock sequences
from the Devon period. They were deposited in the final
stage by the formation of the mountain chain and are called
by analogy with corresponding formations in the Scottish
Caledonids for old red sandstone.
The main features of Norway's climate are determined by
its proximity to the sea and the prevailing west and
southwest winds that bring in mild air masses heated by warm
ocean currents. The country has a distinct maritime climate,
which along the coasts is hot-tempered and humid. In the
interior, the climate is cold-tempered except in the
highest-lying parts, which have a tundra climate (see
climate: Earth's climate). The strongly changing topography,
with deep fjords and high mountains, has a strong impact on
the local climate.
Temperature conditions are characterized by large
differences between west and east and small differences
between north and south. Along the south and west coasts,
the annual average temperature is about 7 °C, while in the
mountain headlands of the Norwegian head and in the northern
inland it is below –4 °C. At Lofoten, the average
temperature for January is 24 °C above normal for latitude.
This entails, among other things, ice-free ports in Norway.
Due to blowing winds, high winter temperatures can occur in
some inland regions. Sunnmøre at Ålesund has the highest
February temperature on average and in nearby Sunndalsøra
18.9 °C was measured in February.
The lowest annual temperatures are reached in
Finnmarksvidda and in the lowlands of Østlandet where the
average winter temperatures are –15 °C. Temperatures below
–40 °C are not uncommon in these regions. The lowest
measured temperature in Norway is –51.4 °C, in Karasjok in
Troms and Finnmark county. The highest monthly temperatures
occur in Sørlandet and southern Østlandet. The absolute heat
record is 35.6 °C, measured in Nesbyen in Buskeryd county.
Precipitation amounts are strongly affected by the fact
that the North Atlantic cyclones, due to altitude
differences, provide orographically conditional cloud
formation in the west and thus strong amplification of
precipitation (see orographic effects). The annual rainfall
within the coast is normally 2,000-3,000 mm. In the rain
shade east of Jotunheimen and in several valleys in eastern
Norway, the annual rainfall is below 300 mm. The rainfall
record on an annual basis is 5 730 mm in Brekke on the
Plant-and animal life
Norway is one of Europe's most scenic countries with
fjords, mountains, lakes, forests, glaciers, islands and a
long, dramatic coast. The country is dominated by the
Scandinavian mountain chain (Skandarna) with its outposts
facing the Atlantic in the west and the Northern Arctic
Ocean in the north.
The vegetation varies from noble deciduous forests in the
south to the nearest tundra in the north. Almost a quarter
of the country is located in the northern coniferous forest
region (see tajga) and is mainly covered by coniferous
forests, where pine has a wider distribution towards both
west and north than spruce. At higher levels, birch forests
occur, which turn into alpine rice forests and finally into
pure high mountain vegetation. More than two-thirds of
Norway consists of forestless mountain ranges.
The hilly and fjord-pervaded landscape creates great
local differences. The proximity to the sea with the warm
Gulf Stream is of great importance for the local climate.
The west country in the south-west and western part of
Norway is rainy. In steep slopes and on steep beach areas,
there are rich deciduous forests with oak, forest salmon,
hazel, gray eel and kibbal as well as yew, holly and ivy and
a number of so-called oceanic lichen.
Norway's land fauna has a significant element of Arctic
species (for example, mountain lizard, snow sparrow,
mountain ridge, mountain deer and hunting falcon), many of
which also occur in high mountains far south. Mountain foxes
occur, but are everywhere rare and acutely threatened.
The Norwegian strains of brown bear and wolf are small
and dependent on immigration from Sweden. The populations of
lice and wolverine are common to Norway and Sweden, but the
management of predators in Norway is characterized by great
regard for sheep husbandry, with millions of free-living
animals with limited supervision during the summer months
high up in the mountain areas. This leads to the loss of
sheep due to the predators but also to large, annual shoots
and unregulated hunting of wolves, bears, lions and wolves.
The stock of elk is now very large, deer have spread
north and deer are common in primarily Vestlandet. Norway
still has good populations of both sea eagles and king
eagles. In the high mountain areas there are mountain
beetles, cutting snap and rock larch.
The marine fauna is rich, a large element of Arctic
species occurs as far south as Trøndelag. In coastal waters,
both seals (gray seals and clob seals, as well as furthest
in the northeast Greenland seals, coves, large seals and
blue seals, temporarily also walrus), as well as several
species of whales (for example creek whales, porpoises and
killer whales) are found.
In southwestern Norway is the Folgefonna National Park
(see also table of Norway's national parks) where the
mountain meets the Atlantic with fjords and rich, coastal
forests that house species such as deer and white-backed
woodpecker. In contrast to Sweden, where the white-backed
woodpecker has almost completely disappeared, especially in
Vestlandet in Norway - where Folgefonna is located - there
is a strain of about 1,600 pairs. One of the main causes of
this rich occurrence is the spread of untouched forests
along the steep fjord slopes that are inaccessible for
In the southern part of the country you will find a
number of interesting high mountain areas. Hardangervidda is
the most renowned. Here is Norway's largest national park
with southern outposts of mountain foxes, mountain owl,
mountain pipers, hunting falcon, double beacon and mountain
trout, and Europe's largest tribe of wild animals. Of the
approximately 25,000 wild reindeer, 7,000–8,000 are found in
The wilds are widespread over a relatively large area in
southern Norway with 23 distinct tribes, most within
different national parks (Hallingskarvet, Jostedalsbreen,
Reinheimen, Rondane, Jotunheimen, Dovre and Forollhogna).
The strain is regulated by predominantly hunting, and
annually 4,000–5,000 individuals are pushed to balance the
number of animals with the availability of grazing. As a
result of the hunt, Norwegian wild reindeer are shy and
difficult to get close to the lives of those who are
interested in studying them.
Dovre National Park is probably best known for its
muskoxes that were reintroduced in the 1930s and where the
tribe now numbers between 200 and 300 animals.
In Jotunheimen National Park you will find two of
Scandinavia's highest mountains - Galdhøpiggen and
Glittertind (both over 2,460 m) - and in Jostedalsbreen
National Park one of Europe's largest glaciers.
Further north you will find a number of national parks in
the mountain environment, many of which border with Sweden.
One example is Skarven and Roltdalen National Park west of
Sylarna in Härjedalen with large, untouched mountain
forests. Another is Blåfjella-Skaekerfjella on the border
with Jämtland, one of Norway's largest national parks with
bear, mountain fox, wolf (rare) and the orchid forest lady,
as well as Rog's national park on the border with
Padjelanta, Sarek and Stora Sjöfallet national parks in
In Norwegian Finnmark where Norway meets Finland and
Russia, Øvre Pasvik National Park is located with a western
foothill of the Siberian Taj. Here you will find one of the
country's largest contiguous areas with pine forest and
Norway's densest brown bear strain. Other mammals are
wolverine, forest fungus and patchwork mouse. Birds Siberian
jay, smew, gray owl, gray-headed chickadee, waxwing and the
pine grosbeak belong to the taiga.
A famous birding place is the Varangerfjord with resting
waders from the Siberian tundra (among other things marsh
pov, marsh snap, spovn snap, small snap and narrow-billed
swam snap) as well as overwintering traitors, splendid
snipers and cutting snap.
The nutritious conditions and the many islands with steep
cliffs along large parts of the Norwegian coast create ideal
conditions for nesting seabirds. The total population is
estimated at almost 3 million pairs of 18 different species.
Among the more famous so-called bird mountains, Runde
belongs just west of Ålesund and Röst furthest out in
Lofoten with 100,000-pairs of puffins, three-headed gull,
sea sole, top cormorant, thunderstorm, herringbone and
storm whales. The largest concentration of bird mountains is
found around Tromsø (Nord-Fugløya) and Finnmark (Hjelmsøy,
Gjesværstappan and Syltefjordstauran). Two species of fish
constitute the staple food for the seabirds, but also for
seals, dolphins and other whales: herring in the Norwegian
Sea and herring north of Lofoten and in the Barents Sea.
The rich marine environment along the Norwegian coast
also attracts many dolphins and other whales. The best
opportunities to experience some of the species are around
Lofoten. Andenes on Andøya offers special drum safaris
between May and September with cascade, creek selection and
killer whales as attractions. With a little luck you can
also see porpoises, long-fined gate whale, herring whale and
Tysfjorden southeast of Lofoten is famous for its killer
whale. Since 1987, 700 individuals have been found to
benefit from the concentration of herring during the winter
months. In recent years, however, the herring has changed
habits and is now gathering north and northwest of Lofoten
for its reproduction, which makes it difficult to experience
the killer whales.
Since 1993, there has been a commercial hunt for folding
in Norway. Every year between 200 and 600 animals are
harpooned, which makes up less than one percent of the
estimated Northeast Atlantic tribe of around 100,000
animals. The Norwegian election hunt is controversial and
has faced criticism in many other countries and by
organizations such as Greenpeace and WWF.
||Sogn og Fjordane
||Møre og Romsdal, Sør-Trøndelag, Oppland
||Buskerud, Hordaland, Sogn og Fjordane
||Buskerud, Hordaland, Telemark
||Sogn og Fjordane
||Oppland, Sogn og Fjordane
||Oppland, Møre og Romsdal
|Skarvan and Roltdalen