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    Car hire in Bergen - The Heart of the Fjords

    The second biggest city in Norway, Bergen has the vibe of a small town and plenty of charm and urban character with houses clinging to the hillsides, narrow cobblestone alleys and world-famous attractions. Surrounded by seven mountains, the city lies on a fjord called Byfjorden which simply means ‘the city fjord’. Bergen and its surroundings offer a rich cultural experience with many breathtaking landscapes unique to this part of northern Europe. Pick up a car hire in Bergen and discover this charming gateway to the fjords.

    It is believed that the city was founded in 1070 by King Olav Kyrre four years after the end of the Viking Age in England and was given the name Bjorgvin, which translates as ‘the green meadow among the mountains’. However, modern research suggests that a trading settlement had already been established in the area in the 1020s/30s. It served as Norway’s capital during the 13th century as well as its main trading port, exporting mainly dried cod from the northern Norwegian coast. What remains of the old quays around the Bryggen quarter is now a UNESCO World Heritage Site. The port of Bergen is still Norway’s busiest in terms of freight and passengers and the city is an international centre for shipping, offshore petroleum, subsea technology and aquaculture.

    As one of the leading car hire brokers in the world with over 65 years of experience in the industry, Auto Europe can guarantee the lowest rates on car rental with exceptional customer support available most days of the week throughout the year. Our rental agents are happy to help you with your reservation in Bergen by calling +441233225114. To find out what our customers have thought about renting with us in Bergen, please consult our car hire reviews in Bergen section.

    How is the traffic in Bergen?

    Navigating the city centre by car can be demanding as the streets are narrow, plus there are many one-way streets and lanes reserved for buses and the light railway in order to make the city centre less congested. During the morning and evening rush-hour, there can be a lot of traffic, so keep that in mind when planning your trip.

    Please also keep in mind that Bergen has several toll roads that are paid through automated collection points when you enter the city. Some suppliers will allow you to use the toll roads with an unlimited number of passages included for a daily fee. Please contact our reservations team for more information if you wish to know more about toll fees for your car rental in Bergen.

    Pay attention to speed cameras, and remember that it is not permitted to use a mobile phone while driving. Everyone in the car must wear a seat-belt and you must always carry a valid driving licence with you when using the vehicle. To know more about driving in Norway, please refer to our driving information guide.

    Where can I park my car hire in Bergen?

    In Bergen, there are many parking options, both on-street and in car parks, but many of the former are reserved for residents only. Parking costs are generally high and a fee is required from 8am-11pm Mon-Sat. On Sundays and public holidays, parking in public places is free. You can pay with cash, card or by SMS (through EasyPark). Always pay careful attention to the local parking signs.

    There are many conveniently located car parks (both public and private) in and around Bergen city centre. We would recommend using ByGarasjen, the biggest indoor garage in Bergen or KlosterGarasjen, both located within walking distance of some of Bergens tourist attractions.

    Bergen Airport

    Located 18km from the city, Bergen Flesland Airport is the second-busiest airport in Norway with traffic of over 6 million passengers a year and rising. Opened in 1955, it consists of three terminals, as well as a helicopter terminal. The airport serves 63 regular destinations and 26 seasonal ones, primarily served during the summer months.

    If you wish to rent a car in Bergen, Auto Europe has convenient pick-up points right at the airport with several car hire supplier desks located in the Arrivals Hall just outside the baggage-claim area.

    Bergen Flesland Airport (BGO)
    Telephone: +4767031555
    Address: Flyplassvegen 555, 5258 Bergen, Norway
    Website: https://avinor.no/en/airport/bergen-airport/
    Airlines operating at Bergen Airport: British Airways, Loganair, Scandinavian Airlines and Wideroe.

    What to do in Bergen

    Nestling on a fjord surrounded by seven mountains, Bergen is one of the most visited locations in Norway. A gorgeous city, rich in culture, breathtaking views and a unique history, there really is something for everyone. Below are our top attractions you cannot miss when visiting Bergen;

    • Bryggen: Declared a UNESCO World Heritage site in 1979, Bryggen (also known as Tyskebryggen) is a series of colourful Hanseatic heritage buildings lined up along the east side of Vagen harbour containing museums, pubs, shops and restaurants. The city of Bergen was founded around 1070 and the Bryggen area encompasses all the buildings between the sea and the main streets. These buildings were once used as warehouses, storing cereal from Europe and fish caught in the northern regions of the country. Unfortunately, due to its buildings being made from wood, Bryggen has experienced a few fires throughout history, which means that around a quarter of the buildings were built after 1702 when the older wharf-side warehouses and administrative buildings burned down. Some parts of Bryggen were also destroyed in a fire in 1955. An archaeological excavation followed, revealing some day-to-day runic inscriptions known as the Bryggen Inscriptions.

    • St Mary’s Church: This is the only church remaining from the twelve that were built in Bergen between 1070 and the end of the twelfth century, which makes it the oldest remaining building in the city. It was finished around 1183 and was commissioned by the king and the merchants and citizens of Bergen. Although it was a parish church, St Mary´s was taken over by the city’s large German population, as this part of town was home to the merchants of the Hanseatic League and became known as the ‘the German church’. Richly adorned and mainly in the Romanesque-style, the church is constructed of soapstone, most probably from several different quarries in the region.

    • Hanseatic Museum and Schøtstuene: Opened in 1872 after having been rebuilt in 1704 when a fire destroyed most of the city centre, this museum covers the Hanseatic League period time in Bergen and is located in a well-preserved 18th-century merchant home of Finnegarden. As a former counting-house, it provides a great insight into the lives of the German merchants from the Hanseatic League, who settled in the area for around 400 years between 1350 and 1750. The building has its original interior and includes a display of weapons, equipment and furnishings. With the same ticket, you are also able to visit Schøtstuene next door to St Mary’s Church, for a brief walk to the rear of Bryggen and its assembly halls for the Hanseatic League, with meeting rooms, kitchen banquet halls, courtrooms and additional exhibits relating to the merchant community.

    • Fløyen and the Fløibanen Funicular: Bergen’s most popular visitor attraction is the 844-metre-long funicular railway that started running in 1918 and carries over a million passengers a year. Catch it from Vetrlidsalmenning (a two minute walk from Bryggen) and it will take you to the top of Fløyen Mountain in a matter of minutes. From there you can enjoy amazing views of the city and its surrounding fjords from the top of the 319-metre-high peak. For the best views, try to visit in the early morning or at dusk.

    Best day trips with my car rental in Bergen

    The Bergen area is surrounded by unique views and natural landscapes, as well as mountains and fjords. With your car hire in Bergen you will be able to easily access everything the Bergen area has to offer and make the most of your trip.

    Aurlandsfjellet – National Tourist Route

    Opened in 1967, and also known as ‘the snow road’, this route is often closed during the winter due to its unsafe conditions. However, when it is open it is one of the most breathtaking journeys in the Bergen area, with the contrasting landscapes of the fjords and surrounding mountain regions. The mountain route covers a distance of 47km and at its highest point it rises to an altitude of 1306m.

    Hardangerfjord

    The fifth-longest fjord in the world and the second-longest in Norway, the Hardangerfjord is located in Vestland just under two hours from Bergen and stretches 179km from the Atlantic Ocean to the mountains. The journey to Hardangerfjord along the scenic coast-road makes for a great day trip from Bergen, offering panoramic views with picture postcard photo opportunities. The area is known as Norway’s fruit orchard with picturesque apple orchards and strawberry farms at the base of the rock walls on the waterfront. You can also visit the surrounding villages for a traditional feel of Norway.

    Mount Ulriken

    Standing 643 metres tall, Ulriken is the highest of Bergen’s seven mountains. Hiking up the mountain is one of the most popular things to do for tourists and locals alike. You can drive your car hire to the base of the mountain and choose one of the many trails to the top. It is relatively steep and takes about two hours to reach the summit, but you are rewarded with wonderful views of the city. If hiking is not your thing, you can take the Ulriken Cable car for a 7-minute ride up to the top and with many great photo opportunities along the way. At the top, you will find a restaurant and an amazing zip-wire adventure. In the viewing area, there are free telescopes that you can use to pick out places of interest. If you’re not a fan of heights, the number 12 bus will take you on a 90-minute scenic ride.

    Sognefjord

    Known as the King of the Fjords, Sognefjord is the second-largest in the world and the largest and deepest fjord in Norway, as well as one of the most spectacular natural attractions on the planet. A 3 and a half hour drive from Bergen, the area offers wild fjords and dramatic mountains, as well as unique cultural attractions and a wide range of activities like boating, guided hikes and kayaking.

    How to get around Bergen

    Due to Bergen's compact city centre, it is ideal to explore the city on foot. Bergen also has a good public transport system for getting around outside the city centre. With the Bergen Card, you can travel free with both the bus and the light rail system. If you need a taxi there are several ranks in the city.

    Light Rail

    Bergen Light Rail (operated by Skyss) is the city’s light rail system. It offers 27 different stations all around the city. Tickets can be bought on the Skyss APP, the Skyss Webshop and from ticket machines at the stations, as well as several kiosks and shops scattered around the city or directly with the driver. You can find the rail map on the Skyss website and can use the company’s travel planner tool to plan your trip.

    Taxi

    Bergen Taxi is a local taxi company, the oldest in Bergen. You can hail one of 400 cars throughout the city or reach them by phone or through their APP.

    Useful links

    Bergen Tourist Info