Geography of Norway

Where is the country of Norway located on world map? According to COUNTRYAAH.COM, Norway is an independent nation located in Northern Europe. The independence day of Norway is celebrated on May 17th, and is known as ‘Syttende Mai’ or ‘Constitution Day’. This marks the day in 1814 when Norway declared its independence from Denmark. The formal name of the country is ‘Kingdom of Norway’, and the symbols associated with it are the Flag, Coat of Arms, and National Anthem. The Flag of Norway consists of a red background with a blue Scandinavian cross that extends to all four corners. At the centre of this flag is a white-fimbriated blue cross which represents Christianity. The Coat of Arms displays a crowned lion rampant holding an axe in its right front paw on a shield surrounded by two lions passant guardant holding royal banners. Finally, the national anthem is called ‘Ja, Vi Elsker Dette Landet’, which translates to ‘Yes We Love This Country’. See historyaah for Norway history.


Terrain Types

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.

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 the country.

  • AbbreviationFinder: Offer a full list of commonly used abbreviations, acronyms, and initialisms related to the state of Norway.


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 striking tomb.

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 intrusions.

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 orogenesis.

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 Sognefjord.

Plant-and animal life

Norway Wildlife

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 forestry.

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 Hardangervidda.

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 Sweden.

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 white dolphin.

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.

National Parks

National park Based Area
Blåfjella-Skjækerfjella 2004 1 924 North Trøndelag
Breheimen 2009 1 749 Sogn og Fjordane
Børgefjell 1963 1 447 Nordland, Nord-Trøndelag
Dovre 2003 289 Hedmark, Oppland
Dovrefjell –Sunndalsfjella 2002 1 693 Møre og Romsdal, Sør-Trøndelag, Oppland
Faerder 2013 340 Vestfold
Femundsmarka 1971 573 Hedmark, Sør-Trøndelag
Folgefonna 2005 545 Hordaland
Forlandet 1973 4 647 Svalbard
Forollhogna 2001 1 062 Hedmark, Sør-Trøndelag
Fulufjellet 2012 82 Hedmark
Gutulia 1968 23 Hedmark
Hallingskarvet 2006 450 Buskerud, Hordaland, Sogn og Fjordane
Hardangervidda 1981 3 422 Buskerud, Hordaland, Telemark
Inner Wijdefjord 2005 1 127 Svalbard
Jostedalsbreen 1991 1 310 Sogn og Fjordane
Jotunheimen 1980 1 151 Oppland, Sogn og Fjordane
Junkerdal 2004 682 Nordland
lahko 2012 188 Nordland
Langsua 2011 537 Oppland
Lierne 2004 333 North Trøndelag
Lomsdal-Visten 2009 1 102 Nordland
Møysalen 2003 51 Nordland
Nordenskiöld Land 2003 1 362 Svalbard
Nordre Isfjorden 2003 2 954 Svalbard
Nordvest-Spitsbergen 1973 9 914 Svalbard
Rago 1971 171 Nordland
Reinheimen 2006 1 969 Oppland, Møre og Romsdal
Reisa 1986 803 Troms
Rohkonborri 2011 571 Troms
Rondane 1962 963 Hedmark, Oppland
Saltfjellet-Svartisen 1989 2 102 Nordland
Sassen-Bünsow Land 2003 1 231 Svalbard
Seiland 2006 316 Finnmark
sink Hatten 2010 417 Nordland
Skarvan and Roltdalen 2002 414 Nord-Trøndelag, Sør-Trøndelag
Stabbursdalen 1970 747 Finnmark
Sor-Spitsbergen 1973 13 286 Svalbard
Varangerhalvøya 2006 1 804 Finnmark
Outer Whales 2009 354 Østfold
Ånderdalen 1970 125 Troms
Upper Anarchia 1975 1 390 Finnmark
Upper Dividal 1971 770 Troms
Upper Pasvik 1970 119 Finnmark