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WorldNorth SeaNorthern EuropeNorway
60°55.826'N, 008°47.344'E Chart icon.png
lat=60.93043 | lon=8.78906 | zoom=3 | y
Capital Oslo
Language Norwegian (Bokmål and Nynorsk). English is widely spoken.
Currency Kroner (NOK)
Time zone CET (UTC+1) , DST: CEST (UTC+2)
Calling code +47
Map does not show Jan Mayen, Bear Island or Svalbard

The Kingdom of Norway is one of the Scandinavian Countries going back into history a very long time, it's got a reputation through the famous Viking explorers who sailed to the Shetland Isles, Faroe Islands, Iceland, Greenland and N. America (Vinland). Though the world might look at Scandinavia as a number of very similar countries the Norwegians are very proud of their present independence (upon the Dissolution of the Union with Sweden in 1905), after having spent literally hundreds of years in unions, first with Denmark and later Sweden. There are about 4.5 million Norwegians who share presently not only what might be described as the best scenery in the world (the Kiwi's might stand a chance here, all others are definitely out) and an enormous oil and gas reserve in the North Sea, the proceeds of which are invested by the State in a national reserve fund to be able to cope when the oil has run out. It has close ties with the EU without actually being a member.

There are heavy investments still being made in the infrastructure but the fact remains that the few bigger cities count for most of the population and the remainder is rather sparsely populated. Norway consists of mainland Norway, the archipelago of Svalbard (Spitsbergen), Bear Island between those latter two, Jan Mayen, north of Iceland and Bouvet(in the Southern Ocean and thus beyond the scope of this article).

Round the turn into the 20th century in many Norwegian towns cooperating entrepreneurs bought older sailing ships, these partnerships forming the foundation of numerous shipping lines, tanker operators and tramp operators. These international contacts mean that Norway has developed a very international and down to earth outlook on the rest of the world and -as rumor has it - the main reason that only a non-coastal-minority conforms to the tall blond blue eyed Viking image.

The country has two main flavours of Norwegian, Bokmal an Ny-Norsk, the latter a product of a lot of research into the history of the language spoken in Norway and basically a reconstructed language based on this research. The whole thing as a reaction to the fact that many people in Norway thought the official language (Bokmal) as used by the authorities was far too close to Danish and did not befit a proudly independent country. It is up to the local county authorities to decide which flavour is to be used, next to the local dialect to complicate matters further.


Norway issues its own very elaborate full size chart series covering the whole coast. There are special yachting editions of sequential coastal sections (presently from the S to Halfway up the country) which take up less space but are sometimes a little confusing if you need a more complete picture. All towns on the coast have at least one bookseller that's an agent for the Norwegian Charts, they will stock the latest charts of surrounding areas. If you sail to Norway a good strategy is to obtain a coastal chart of the general area (300 series) where you want to make your landfall plus some of the more detailed series (nrs 1 into the 100 plus series) and just buy the most up to date charts when coming ashore.


The Norwegian Meteorological Office is the source and very elaborate on the local climate.

Lots of water, snow, ice and rain but there are frequent and ofen long spells of amazingly good weather (in T shirts N of the Polar Circle has been experienced..) Most of he Fjords do not freeze up in winter because of the Gulf stream influence. There is a lot of permanent ice cap on the mountains. In summer the nights are short or non existent, a very special experience

Weather links

  • Norwegian Weather Service Both on the climate and forecasting (offshore,coastal ice conditions) the relevant pages are available in Norwegian and English.
  • Navtex on 518 kHz several times every day with spesial iceberg warnings. List over Navtex transmitions
  • While coasting the VHF coastal stations (yes they still have coastal radio and very extensively) are issuing weatherforcast (in English during summer months and Norwegian only the rest of the year) and traffic lists (in english for foreign vessels) on their WORKING Channels (most can receive channel 16 and or MDSS. But you have to call them on a working channel preferably (see coastal radio frequency plan). They will give you the latest forecast in English on request, and you can get phone calls over the working channels.


List popular passages/routes, timing, etc.


Norway administers a few off-shore islands. These are:

  • Spitsbergen (Svalbard). Spitzbergen or Svalbard is a group of Arctic islands which have been mandated to Norway by the United Nations. The Norwegian presence is concentrated to the university (the world's northernmost) town of Longyearbyn whilst Russia maintains a presence at the coal mining town of Barrentsberg. A metreological reporting station is located on the Hopen Island in the eastern part of the group. If anchoring off the island beware of kelp beds and be advised of the rocky nature of the sea bed.
  • Bear Island. Norwegian territory in the Barents Sea. A metreological station is located on the island which lacks safe harbours and anchorages
  • Jan Mayen. A small island north of Iceland, also Norwegian territory. A metreological station is established on the island which lacks safe harbours and anchorages
  • Bouvet Island. An unpopulated Antarctic Island without safe natural harbours or anchorages

Warning: Be aware of the possible presence of polar bears on all the above mentioned islands with the exception of Bouvet (no polar bears in the Antarctic)


Add here VHF channel for coastguard, harbor masters. etc.

  • VHF is little used in harbours. Ask locals in marinas about guest berths. Navigational aids and information is given by the coastal radio stations. Cll them on there working channel or on channel 16. (see coastal radio frequency plan).

Also see World Cruiser's Nets


Be aware there are a lot of overhead high tension cables (luftspenn) plus an ever increasing amount of fixed bridges and that for route planning in this respect you need adequate up to date info (which is available on the 100 series charts).

There are a lot of books with pilotage information.

  • The best is without doubt the 'Norske Los' issued by he Norwegian Hydrographic Service also available through the local booksellers, or free download PDF files The Norwegian Pilot Guide – Sailing Directions. This is meant both for commercial ships and yachts carries charts and pictures with a wealth of information it comes in coastwise volumes but unfortunately is only in Norwegian, with an extensive glossary though.
  • Norway Oslo to North Cape and Svalbard is an exelent pilot book by Judy Lomax from Imray. They have sailed the whole Norwegian coast up and down and documented a lot of extra information.

Remember there is a lot of Norway, there is an enormous coastline with a lot of submerged rocks , small outlying islands etc. Do not skimp on your info as especially in the N of the country help might be hours away if needed !

As far as the anti collision regulations come, Norway has it's own inshore rules. Basically if it is or looks commercial it has the right of way so behave clearly an keep your eyes open and hurtigbater (speed feries) can and do appear out of narrow channels with 25-30 knots. There is a lot of inshore coastal traffic. AIS is a very handy thing especially in bad visibility. At narrow passages they would send a warning on channel 16 when arriving.






Customs and Immigration


  • VAT (at 25%) will be refunded on goods taken out of Norway on a non Norwegian yacht, though you better ask for it beforehand if you want work done or need equipment to see if your chosen supplier is familiar with the procedure.


For ships larger than 24 metres there are established procedures. By Norwegian Law non-military vessels from all flags can pass throuh the inland waterways when proceeding on a voyage. For smaller yachts it appears that you just present yourself to available police upon landing in the country. This sounds pretty slack compared to a number of other countries but be aware that here a relatively very few foreign yachts in the country a any time, that there are a lot of local boats/ferries while a number of Kystvakt (Coastguard) patrolvessels are on constant beat. The country is very well surveillanced by modern means. Norwegians love their own privacy though and will respect yours unless they have reason to believe differently.

If you want he latest regulations, go to the Official Website

Health & Security

Submit any health warnings/information. Remove any of these sections do not apply to this particular country.




Key to symbols: |Port of entry icon – port of entry |Marina icon – marina |Anchorage icon – anchorage |Needs data icon – needs data ||
  • Spitsbergen:
    • Longyearbyen Longyearbyen /wiki/Longyearbyen Port of entry icon – port of entry |Needs data icon – needs data |
    • Ny Alesund Ny Alesund/wiki/Ny_Alesund Needs data icon – needs data |
  • Alesund Alesund/wiki/Alesund Port of entry icon – port of entry |Needs data icon – needs data |
  • Bergen Bergen /wiki/Bergen Port of entry icon – port of entry |Needs data icon – needs data |
  • Egersund Egersund /wiki/Egersund Port of entry icon – port of entry |Needs data icon – needs data |
  • Farsund Farsund /wiki/Farsund Needs data icon – needs data |
  • Fredrikstad Fredrikstad /wiki/Fredrikstad Port of entry icon – port of entry |Needs data icon – needs data |
  • Haugesund Haugesund /wiki/Haugesund Port of entry icon – port of entry |Needs data icon – needs data |
  • Kristiansand Kristiansand /wiki/Kristiansand Port of entry icon – port of entry |Needs data icon – needs data |
  • Lillesand Lillesand /wiki/Lillesand Port of entry icon – port of entry |Needs data icon – needs data |
  • Mandal Mandal /wiki/Mandal Needs data icon – needs data |
  • Moss Moss /wiki/Moss Port of entry icon – port of entry |Needs data icon – needs data |
  • Oslo Oslo /wiki/Oslo Port of entry icon – port of entry |Needs data icon – needs data |
  • Stavanger Stavanger /wiki/Stavanger Port of entry icon – port of entry |Needs data icon – needs data |
  • Tonsberg Tonsberg /wiki/Tonsberg Port of entry icon – port of entry |Needs data icon – needs data |
  • Trondheim Trondheim /wiki/Trondheim Port of entry icon – port of entry |Needs data icon – needs data |
South Coast (Swedish Border to Flekkefjord)

Relatively densely populated with numerous towns and villages at relatively short distances with good facilities.

JF's 2023 compiled list of Berthing and Anchorages/Moorings from the South (Mandal) up the west coast to Stavanger. (See references abbreviations below)

  • Mandal Mandal /wiki/Mandal Port of entry icon – port of entry |Marina icon – marina |Needs data icon – needs data |
    , (Ref.:CA)
  • Åvik Åvik /wiki/%C3%85vik Marina icon – marina |Needs data icon – needs data |
    , (Ref.:NCG p.146) - no real guest space for a cruising vessel (JF, 2023)
  • Korshamn Korshamn /wiki/Korshamn Marina icon – marina |Needs data icon – needs data |
    , (Ref.:NCG p.143)
  • Farsund Farsund /wiki/Farsund Port of entry icon – port of entry |Marina icon – marina |Needs data icon – needs data |
    , (Ref.:CA, NCG p.142)
  • Haugestranda Haugestranda /wiki/Haugestranda Marina icon – marina |Needs data icon – needs data |
    , (Ref.:NCG p.142)
  • Listahamn/Listahavn Listahamn/Listahavn /wiki/Listahamn/Listahavn Marina icon – marina |Needs data icon – needs data |
    , (Ref.:CA, NCG p.142)
  • Kjerkehavn Kjerkehavn /wiki/Kjerkehavn Marina icon – marina |Needs data icon – needs data |
    , (Ref.:NCG p.142)
  • Egersund Egersund /wiki/Egersund Marina icon – marina |Needs data icon – needs data |
    , (Ref.:CA, NCG p.140)
  • Sirevå/Sirevåg Sirevå/Sirevåg /wiki/Sirev%C3%A5/Sirev%C3%A5g Marina icon – marina |Needs data icon – needs data |
    , (Ref.:CA, NCG p.140)
  • Tananger Tananger /wiki/Tananger Marina icon – marina |Needs data icon – needs data |
    , (Ref.:CA, NCG P.140)
  • Uskjo Island Uskjo Island /wiki/Uskjo_Island Anchorage icon – anchorage |Needs data icon – needs data |
    , (Ref.:CA)
  • Stavanger Stavanger /wiki/Stavanger Marina icon – marina |Needs data icon – needs data |
    , (Ref.:CA)
  • Egersund, a well sheltered harbour with good facilities, bunkering and a railway connection to Stavanger, be sure to have a proper chart if you are unfamiliair especially at night (this applies to the country as a whole really).

Between Egersund and Tananger there are no really useful sheltered harbours in S to SW winds

On the Sly West coast and upwards'

Coming from ports to the S while aiming for the West Coast, the village of Tananger (a Western suburb) of Stavanger is highly recommended it has refuelling facilities (at tax free -avgifts fri- tariff) at the Hummern Hotel, there are shops in town and it's very close to Stavanger Inernational Airport.

Further North you'll find places like Haugesund and Bergen with as a recommended winter stopover place I would like to recommend the Norheimsund Gjestehamn in the Hardangerfjord (abt 70 km E of Bergen) which has excellent shower and laundry facilities full shopping and banking, good shorepower adequate shops and is on the bus route to Bergen, It is also Home to the Hardanger Fartoyvernsenter museum shipyard. Winter mooring 15 Kr /feet/month in 2008. Webcams and info

On the way up the Hardanger Fjord you can see the waterfall at the mouth of the Mauranger Fjord.

North of Bergen population density decreases rapidly so does the size of towns and villages and the number of harbours; though Floro, Alesund, Trondheim, Bodo, Narvik, Tromso and Hammerfest are places with all facilities.

A good winterstop place is Levanger on the Trondheim Fjord. Levanger also has a slip ( operated by Persoy) that will take heavier and larger yachts (which have far less beam than the average fishing boat. If your boat is to heavy for a boatlift hat's the place to go, though there are many fishing boat slips they won't allways be able to accomodate a yacht for the reason mentioned earlier.

Lofoten and Vesteralen are very beautiful and so is the glacier at Svartisen

Be aware hat there are few trains in this country but both bus air transport is very frequent and covers most larger towns. ALl coastal towns are linked by hurtigbater (express boats 30 knots) which are a major part of he transport infrastructure.

GSM phone coverage is very extensive on the coast.


List transportation (local and/or international.)


Submit details/contacts of cruiser's "friends" that can be contacted in advance or on arrival - who can offer information and assistance to our cruising "family".


List links to discussion threads on partnering forums. (see link for requirements)



Websites that List Available Guides & Books

  • RCC Pilotage Foundation, Passage Planning Map based index to RCC Crusing Guide Books & Passage Planning Guides.
  • Imray produce many Cruising Guides for Many areas of the world, [1]
  • Conference of Yacht Cruising Clubs (UK), Sailing Directions published by CYCC members
  • Ocean Cruising Club, Cruising Areas This website contains information for a large number of cruing areas including brief information about each area and a list of guide books as well as a Google map of the locations in the reports.

Books, Guides, etc

  • John Armitage & Mark Brackenbury, Norwegian Cruising Guide, Adlard Coles Nautical, ISBN 0-7136-4115-0 , Secongd Edition 1996 (as NCG in JF's notes)
  • Ray Glaiser & Roger Saunders, Cruising in Norway , Cruising Association (CA), UK [2], ISBN - , Last Update 2004 (as CA in JF's notes)
  • Judy Lomax, RCC Pilotage Foundation, Norway, ISBN 978 184623 284 8, Last Update 2010 (as RCC in JF's notes)
  • Phyllis Nickel and John Harries Norwegian Cruising Guide 2010 Attainable Adventure Cruising Ltd, ISBN 978-9769520431. eBook (downloadable) & printed.
  • Jon Amtrup Sail to Svalbard, ISBN 978-82-92284-58-2, eBook (downloadable) & printed, Last Update 2011
  • The Norwegian Pilot Guide – Sailing Directions, 8 volumes for Norwegian coast, Svalbard and Jan Mayen (PDF-files downloadable available free of charge) [3]
  • Author, Title, Publisher [4], ISBN 0...0 , Last Update 20xx

See also Baltic Sea References & Publications.


We welcome users' contributions to the Wiki. Please click on Comments to view other users' comments, add your own personal experiences or recommend any changes to this page following your visit.

Verified by

Date of member's last visit to Norway and this page's details validated:

  • JeanF73 2022 06->10, 2023 05->? - Only verified for the area and information I have needed; updated this page with a compilation of information I needed / experienced

This is a usable page of the cruising guide. However, please contribute if you can to help it grow further. Click on Comments to add your personal notes on this page or to discuss its contents. Alternatively, if you feel confident to edit the page, click on the edit tab at the top and enter your changes directly.

SailorSmiley.gifContributors to this page

Names: Lighthouse, JeanF73 as JF

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