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Norway

The North Cape’s midnight sun is rightly famous here, far above the Arctic Circle, lies the spectacularly situated town of Tromsø, where the sun never rises in winter, nor sets in midsummer. And each of Norway’s three major cities offers distinct appeal Oslo as present-day capital, Bergen as major trading port and Trondheim as long-established centre of Christian pilgrimage. In the wilderness that lies between the main urban centres are such delights as Jostedalsbreen, Europe’s largest glacier. There are opportunities to indulge in outdoor activities including skiing, hunting, fishing and rock-climbing.

Practical Information

Area: 323 759 km² (125 004 miles²)

Capital: Oslo. Population: 795 000

Population: 4.6 million

Currency: Norwegian Krone (NOK) = 100 øre

Government: Constitutional monarchy. Declared independence from Sweden in 1905.

Tipping: Waiters expect a tip of no more than 5% of the bill.

Time zone: Norway Mainland: GMT + 1 (GMT + 2 from last Sunday in March to last Sunday in October), Jan Mayen Islands, Svalbard: GMT + 1

Languages: Norwegian (Bokmål and Nynorsk)

Additional descriptions

Norway: Social customs

Normal courtesies should be observed. It is customary for the guest to refrain from drinking until the host toasts their health. Casual dress is normal. Lunch generally takes place between 1200 and 1300Read more and dinner usually takes place at 1700. It is customary for an invited guest to offer gifts to the host/hostess of a meal. Punctuality is expected if invited out for dinner. Smoking is prohibited in all public places.

Norway: Food and local specialties

Breakfasts are often enormous with a variety of fish, meat, cheese and bread served from a cold buffet with coffee and boiled or fried eggs. Open sandwiches are topped with meat, fish, cheese and salads.Read more Alcohol tends to be limited and expensive, although beer and wine are generally served in restaurants. Things to know: Bars have table and counter service. Licensing laws are strict and alcohol is sold only by the state through special monopoly. Licensing hours are also enforced. The national specialties are: Koldtbord (cold table), with smoked salmon, fresh lobster, shrimp and hot dishes. Roast venison. Ptarmigan in cream sauce. Wild cranberries. Multer (a berry with a unique flavour). Aquavit (schnapps).

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