I walked 16,000 steps a day on this Norwegian metropolis and it was simpler than you may assume

I like strolling. Residing in London, the place you simply sit in site visitors in a automotive, my toes are my important mode of transport.

So once I go overseas, it is all the time a nice shock to find a metropolis that may be explored solely on foot. That’s precisely what I discovered once I visited Bergen in Norway earlier this yr.

The second largest metropolis within the nation, Bergen is surprisingly compact. “Expertise metropolis highlights in simply 10,000 steps,” the Go to Norway web site proclaims.

However simply why is it really easy to get round this Norwegian metropolis with out utilizing a automotive or public transport?

Bergen: Clear and straightforward to navigate streets

Quite a few pedestrian-only zones will be discovered all through Bergen. From important procuring streets to central squares, you will get fairly far with out having to share area with a automotive.

It is usually one among three Norwegian cities with a low emissions zone to maintain air air pollution down in central areas. Which means that automobiles must pay a payment to enter, with extra polluting automobiles paying extra

Not an issue in a metropolis the place 30 per cent of automobiles are electrical or hybrid, one of many largest shares on this planet. Even when on the lookout for a taxi as a vacationer, it isn’t onerous to seek out one which doesn’t use fossil fuels.

In 2023, town is hoping to take this a step additional by piloting its first zero emissions zone in hopes of creating town centre fully emissions-free. By 2030, the objective is for no fossil fuels for use for transport, metropolis companies or heating.

The streets are additionally exceptionally clear in comparison with my house metropolis of London. That is, partly, due to an progressive underground waste administration system referred to as ‘Bossnet.’ It sucks round 4 tonnes of trash away from town centre on daily basis, sending it to sorting crops on the outskirts. It reduces the necessity for garbage assortment vehicles to enter town centre, conserving the streets safer and cleaner.

Altogether, these measures to scale back air air pollution and create protected areas for pedestrians make Bergen one of many best cities I’ve ever explored on foot. In contrast to in lots of different European cities I’ve been to, strolling didn’t really feel like a second thought in its city planning.

I walked 60,000 steps over 4 days in Bergen

You may be pondering that strolling is a straightforward mode of transport in case you solely go to a number of of the highest sights a metropolis has to supply.

This can be true however I wasn’t simply in Bergen for pleasure. Between work, discovering meals and seeing the sights, I racked up practically 60,000 steps. That’s a mean of 15,000 on daily basis I used to be there.

In my downtime, I visited the World Heritage website of Bryggen, town’s historic harbour district, and rode the Fløibanen funicular. These are a few of the most visited sights in Norway – all simply accessible by foot from my metropolis centre lodge.

Ultimately, my journeys to and from the airport on public transport had been the one instances I wasn’t pounding the pavement throughout my four-day journey.

However even this, largely run by an company referred to as Skyss, is reasonable and straightforward to make use of even for somebody with minimal Norwegian language abilities. Gentle railway methods and fossil gasoline free bus routes cowl a lot of the metropolis and surrounding space.

The inexperienced transportation community stretches even additional than the bounds of town too. I didn’t get an opportunity throughout my quick time in Bergen, however there are quite a few electrical cruises and ferries operating via this area’s waterways.

Western Norway, the place town is situated, has the biggest share of electrified vessels on this planet.

Climbing mountain paths constructed by Sherpas from Nepal

One among Bergen’s highlights is Mount Ulriken which overlooks town with unimaginable views of the encircling panorama. Although there’s a cable automotive to the highest, even right here strolling is an possibility for guests. 1,300 steps on a effectively maintained pathway imply it isn’t a determined scramble to climb the 290 metres to the height.

It’s one among a sequence of lately renovated strolling routes up Norway’s mountains – lots of which make use of superbly crafted stone staircases like Mount Ulriken. Practically 300 have been constructed over the past 20 years by a workforce of Sherpas from communities within the foothills of the Himalayas. They constructed these trails by hand in a lot the identical approach as they do in Nepal.

The longest stone staircase within the nation will be discovered within the city of Mosjøen. Often called the Helgelandstrappa, this route takes guests up 3,000 steps to the 818 metre excessive peak of the Øyfjellet mountain.

Whereas they make it safer and simpler to hike up Norway’s mountains, in addition they serve a twin objective in defending weak pure websites from the footfall of vacationers. Erosion is usually a massive drawback for these Norwegian mountainsides, making it treacherous to stroll on uncertain paths and destroying the ecosystems that encompass them. 

However the Sherpa stairs assist information guests alongside routes which are strong and received’t collapse – conserving nature, and people out to get pleasure from it by foot, protected.