The port town of Alesund may not be as well known as Oslo, Bergen, or Trondheim, but it’s a lively town in an attractive coastal setting and home to some of Norway’s finest examples of art nouveau architecture. With just one day in town, you’ll want to see as much as possible. Here’s how to do it.
Morning: Take in the City Sights
Begin your day by getting acquainted with Alesund’s most important sights—many of which are in the city center easy walking distance from one another. Private or group walking tours cover such attractions as the art nouveau town center, St. Olavs Plass, and Kongens gate. Hop-on-hop-off-bus tours include additional stops at far-flung attractions such as the Aksla Viewpoint and Norwegian Aquarium and have the added benefit of allowing you to set your own itinerary and pace. Some sightseeing bus tours also provide passengers with a discount booklet for local businesses.
Afternoon: Take to the Water
Get a different perspective on the city and admire the art nouveau architecture from the water on an afternoon architecture-themed kayaking trip. You’ll get a little exercise and enjoy the views as you learn more about the buildings and their history. An even more energetic alternative is to combine a kayaking excursion with a hiking trip. Tours typically include kayaking through Brosundet before crossing Aspevagen, south of the city toward the island of Hessa, where you begin your hike up Mount Sukkertoppen. From the top, enjoy views of the Atlantic, the Sunnmøre alps, and Alesund.
Night: Soak Up the Scene
By evening time, you’ll likely have worked up a good appetite. As Alesund is home base for Norway’s largest cod-fishing fleet, you won’t have trouble finding excellent seafood for dinner here. Most of Alesund’s best restaurants are clustered along the waterfront, so just wander the main streets and pick one that takes your fancy. If you want to continue your evening afterward, have a nightcap at one of the city’s watering holes, from chic wine bars to a lively Irish pub.