What to Read Next

Walking Tour of Bergen Norway: Come for the Views, Stay for the Leprosy Museum

Greg Keraghosian
Associate Travel Editor
August 30, 2014

Bergen, Norway, flies further under the radar than many second cities. Considering that many tourists go there just to board a cruise ship for the fjords, I can’t help but liken the city to a family member you visit once a year just for their swimming pool.

Old, fire-plagued Bergen has half the population (about 260,000) of the more modern Oslo, and it actually feels smaller than that. But it’s no cultural pushover, and it packs a compact sightseeing punch — within a few hours, you can walk around the city center and take the funicular for a dynamite view of the harbor.

Bergen is home to Bryggen, a historical harbor district and a UNESCO World Heritage Site, which is bursting with fresh seafood, classic wooden houses, and a surreal vertical landscape with seven green mountains surrounding the city. But what I’ll remember more about the city are the 300-year-old McDonald’s building, the A-Ha sculpture, and The Leprosy Museum.

Yes, a Leprosy Museum. And it’s bizarrely rad. I’ll discuss this later.

Here’s a walking tour of Bergen's best sights that shouldn’t take you more than three hours: