Camping In Norway – The Full Guide

Are you looking for information on camping in Norway? Or maybe you’re considering wild camping in Norway? Or looking for free camping spots in Lofoten, Oslo, Stavanger, or anywhere else in Norway? In this camping guide about Norway, I answer all the questions about Norway camping, with details about the best camping places in Norway and all the camping rules in Norway that you need to follow to have a wonderful time in nature.

camping norway cover

Imagine waking up to the sound of birds chirping above your head. Opening your tent to the vast view of the fjords below and steep mountains rising around. The morning mist hovering in the valley. The rising sun shining on your face. These are the moments that I treasure every time I go camping in Norway (and I go camping a lot!).


Camping in Norway is my favorite option for accommodation in the country. And for a good reason. There is no shortage of stunning places where you can put up your tent and wake up with a mesmerizing view of the fiords, mountains, and waterfalls. And this is why you come to Norway in the first place – for it’s nature.

Wild camping in Norway is free so it helps you to travel to Norway on a budget. It also connects you with the world around you, gives you the opportunity to travel even without much planning (since you don’t need to book hotels in advance), and offers you shelter after a long day of hiking when you realize you cannot walk 60 km in one go. 

We all know we want to do it. But what do you need to know before you go camping in Norway?

Camping in Norway under the starts with a bonfire
Photo of camping in Norway under the stars with a bonfire


Camping and especially wild camping is awesome. And camping in Norway is probably one of the easiest in Europe or even the world (similarly to Scotland!). There are, however, some rules that you want to know before trying free camping in Norway (and camping on the campsites) yourself.

In this guide, I explain all the details of trouble-free Norway camping to you – both camping on prepared sites, as well as the wild one. As a bonus, I will recommend a few of my favorite camping sites. Ready? Let’s camp, hmm, go!

Camping in Lofoten, Norway
My tent when I was camping in Lofoten, Norway

Types of camping in Norway

There are three main options to camp in Norway.

  • Campsite camping – you pitch your tent on the organized campsite with all the facilities such as toilets, running water, and a shared kitchen.
  • Wild camping – you camp in the wilderness (usually for free).
  • Car camping – you could also sleep in a car in Norway if it’s spacious enough, or in a caravan/motorhome.

If you are looking for a higher standard of stay, on the campsites (and out of them), you can find Norwegian cabins (hytte) to stay in. There is also “glamping”, which is basically a fancy way of camping with beds and all amenities. It’s slowly getting more popular in Norway, since people here usually stay in wooden Norwegian cabins if they do not camp in their tents.

All around Norway, you can find around 1,000 prepared campgrounds to choose from. They all have basic facilities like bathrooms, showers, a shared kitchen, electricity in the main building, etc. The standard varies depending on the area and the price you pay.

And then we have free camping, aka camping with the view, aka my favorite type of camping – wild camping in Norway.

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Wild camping in Norway, Rjukan area.
Wild camping in Norway, Rjukan area.
Glamping Norway beach
Glamping in Norway by the beach



I cannot stop raving about how wonderful wild camping in Norway is to anyone who wants to listen. Just imagine hiking to the most beautiful view you can think of, let’s say, turquoise fjords with sharp mountain peaks rising from the water, and pitching your tent just there.

At night you can watch a thousand stars above your head. In the morning you get woken up by the birds chirping above or sheep wandering around. Doesn’t it sound like a paradise?

Sure, it does. But how you can make sure to properly wild camp in Norway, not breaking any laws in the meantime?

Wild camping in Norway during sunset.
Wild camping in Norway during sunset.

Rules for wild camping in Norway

The right to roam – Allemannsretten

The right to roam, also called a right of access (or “Allemannsretten” in Norwegian), provides everyone in Norway with access to nature, even in large private areas.

This traditional right from ancient times has been a part of the Outdoor Recreation Act, which establishes the law of the right to access to nature for everyone. This is the right for everybody to have access to uncultivated land, regardless of who owns it.

The right to free camping is also included in the act.

Wild camping on the way to Kjeragbolten, Norway.
Wild camping on the way to Kjeragbolten, Norway.

Friluftsliv – The Outdoor Life

Another concept, strongly connected to outdoor life and camping in Norway, is “Frilufstliv” (“Open Air Life”). First used in 1859 by a Norwegian writer, it describes the main role of nature in Norwegian culture and life.

Spending time outdoors is an essential part of national identity and Norwegian culture, as well as it’s established by law. This means that you can walk, hike, run, and enjoy the outdoors almost everywhere you want while following a few simple rules. This also relates to wild camping. 

Uncultivated and cultivated land

The right to roam comes with some obligations. Every time you exercise your right to roam, you need to do so with care and consideration. When you decide to use your right to roam for wild camping, it’s worth knowing the difference between cultivated and uncultivated land, as they both have different rules applying to them.

Cultivated land is the land where public access would inconvenience the landowner. That includes farmyards, gardens, industrial estates, residential areas, tilled fields, and similar. It’s sometimes called “Fenced land”, but it doesn’t always need to be actually fenced.

This land is private and includes cultivated land such as fields, meadows, pastures and gardens, industrial areas, and plantations. Some pastures or meadows can be accessed between 15th October to 30th April when the land is frozen.

Uncultivated land is all land that is not cultivated. This includes most woods and forests, mountains, beaches, and marshlands. Uncultivated land is also called “unfenced land”.

The public right to access applies in general to uncultivated land. This allows you to:

  • Freely roam the countryside on foot or skis
  • Camp
  • Picnic
  • Ride a horse on tracks and roads
  • Ride a bike on tracks and roads
  • Go swimming, kayaking, and similar
  • Forage for berries, flowers, and mushroom
  • Fish in the seas

On the cultivated land, you need the landowner’s permission to camp.

Wild camping rules in Norway

You can wild camp with a tent or hammock or sleep under the stars anywhere in nature (uncultivated land) in Norway, providing that you keep at least 150 meters from the nearest inhabited house or cabin.

You are allowed to keep your tent or hammock in the same place for up to two consecutive nights. This applies to uncultivated land in lowland areas. In the mountains and in places where there are long distances between residential properties, you can keep your tent on the same site for more than two nights in a row.

Remember to take care not to pitch your tent in a way that it’s harmful to the young forest.

Wild camping under the stars in Rondane, Norway
Wild camping under the stars in Rondane, Norway

When you are wild camping, make sure to:

  • Use established campsites when possible
  • Do not camp in areas where you may intrude on animals or birds, especially during breeding and nesting season
  • Do not intrude on grazing livestock
  • Always take care when lighting the fire and extinguish it properly
  • Do not damage the trees when gathering wood for the fire
  • Don’t leave a trace
  • Do not litter, and leave the place in the same state as you found it.

You can find more information about the right to roam, wild camping rules, and more on the website of The Norwegian Environment Agency.

Campfire rules in Norway

Lighting campfires is a popular activity in Norway. You can usually light the campfire with no limitations in the wintertime. However, during the summertime, there are rules for campfires, BBQs, and sometimes even cooking equipment, such as gas cookers, if the weather is very dry.

Campfires in or near forests are prohibited from 15 April to 15 September. There are some exceptions and changes to this rule depending on the area. For example near the sea, it’s sometimes possible to use a barbecue, but not in periods of extreme drought. In any case, you need to take responsibility for properly extinguishing the fire and cleaning after it.

Wild camping
Coffee is a must, even on wild camp!

Forbidden camping – No camping signs in Norway

In many very popular areas, wild camping, especially on the side of the road or on private fields, is forbidden. This is due to a high number of tourists that eventually cause a nuisance to the locals.

If you there are no camping signs in the area, remember to respect them. After all, you are just a visitor in somebody’s else home. If you really want to camp, you can find a prepared campsite. And for wild camping, the best idea is to take your tent and go into less-visited places, like deeper into the mountains or forests, and find a place that won’t bother anyone.

Some places where you can find “no camping signs” are the Lofoten, Loen, and Stryn areas, some popular sites in the south of Norway, such as around Trolltunga or Kjergabolten car park, and some beaches.

no camping Norway
No camping sign in Norway

Forbidden wild camping in Lofoten

Recently, the camping rules have been made stricter in Lofoten due to the high number of tourists in the area in the summer. The three main tourist municipalities Moskenes, Vestvågøy, and Vågan introduced a new outdoor regulation including a tent ban at the following destinations: Olenilsøya, Andøya, Vindstad, Tennes, Veines, Bollhaugen, Reinebringen, Sørvågvatnet, Langhaugen, Reine, Haukland, Stranda, and parts of Kalle Rørvika. This can change frequently, so please check the exact areas here.

Lofoten Friluftsråd has made a tourist map that shows infrastructure for visitors as well as information about tent bans. The goal is for the map to contribute to making it easier for visitors to get an overview of which areas have restrictions in camping, so they can comply with current laws and regulations. 

Alternatively, you can find prepared “wild” campsites in Lofoten, where you can pitch your tent for free. They are marked with special signs, as below. There usually is also a toilet and drinking water on site.

I’ve wild camped in Lofoten before the ban and really loved it. But I also understand why the ban was introduced, and I respect that. After I visited Lofoten when the camping ban was already in place, I used some of the prepared wild campsites, as pictured below, and they were also fine.

This reminds me of camping in Iceland, when there were not many regulations, and then after that, when there was a lot.

Camping signs in Lofoten
Camping signs for prepared camp in Lofoten
camping in Lofoten, designated area
Designated wild camping in Lofoten
Beach camping in Lofoten
Beach camping in Lofoten

Wild camping in Norway – how to find the best camping sites?

A question that I often get, is how to find the best places for wild camping in Norway.

First, you need to make sure that it’s legal to wild camp in the place where you are (as I explained above). There might be specific rules for the area, as well.

Then, find a perfect camping spot. The best would be a flat and dry area. If it’s windy or looks like it’s going to rain, make sure that the spot is sheltered (but if it’s stormy, don’t go under the tree), and located on the relatively soft (but not too soft) ground, so you can put the pegs deep in the ground. You don’t want to find yourself among hard rocks, where you can’t stick a thing, or in boggy surroundings.

Wild camping in the mountains in Norway sometimes might be tricky due to steep slopes and many big rocks or bushes. There is also snow in the higher parts most of the year. In other places, you can often find bogs, which you need to avoid. However, after a bit of searching, you should be able to find a suitable place for camping.

For camping in the lowlands, I often use apps such as,, Norgeskart, and park4night. I use the maps to check for suitable camping terrain and to make sure I’m in an undeveloped area and away from houses.

Park4night is useful for finding parking areas and sometimes also camping areas, as well as paid campsites. I also use Google Maps to check for paid campsites in the area I am in.

Wild camping in Trolltunga, Norway.
Wild camping in Trolltunga, Norway.

Read more: Check out wild camping tips and wild camping gear recommendations here!

Camping on Senja, Norway
Camping in Senja, Norway

Camping in Norway in winter

If you’re up for a challenge and have proper Norway winter clothing and winter equipment, you can also camp in Norway in winter. It gets very cold, so this is only for experienced campers, ready for the cold.

I’ve tried it a few times and loved it. It’s challenging but also rewarding and a very different experience from summer camping.

Winter camping in Norway
Winter camping in Norway
Camping in Norway in winter is an experience in itself!
Camping in Norway in winter is an experience in itself!


Below are the best campsites in Norway, grouped by some of the main areas. Of course, there are many more places than these ones. I usually search for campsites on or Google Maps near the area I am going to.

If you are traveling to Norway in the high season (summer), I recommend booking places in some of the most popular tourist areas in advance, especially if you plan to stay in cabins.

Camping in Oslo

There are several places for camping in Oslo. You can also find many wild camping areas, which are located mainly in the forest areas around the city. My favorite ones are by Sognsvann, Nøklevann, and smaller lakes away from people. In some places, you can also camp by the sea, but it’s more limited.

Bogstad campingthis is a proper campsite in a nice area of Oslo, near the Bogstad farm and a lake. Check prices and availability here

Camping near Oslo, Norway
On a camping trip near Oslo, Norway

Camping in Lofoten

Camping in Lofoten is very popular. Tourism has exploded there in recent years, so the local authorities decided to ban wild camping in some Lofoten areas (see above). Instead, you can stay in organized campsites or defined areas for camping. Some of the recommended campsites in Lofoten are:

Camping in Lofoten Bunes Beach
Camping in Lofoten Bunes Beach

Camping in Stavanger

I haven’t stayed at any campsite near Stavanger, as I’ve only wild camped on my way to Preikestolen. However, there are a few campsites around, such as Ølberg Camping, located close to the beach, and Stavanger Camping Mosvangen.

Camping in Bergen

Bergen is a popular choice for travelers arriving in Norway. After all, it’s so close to the fjords, and Flåm, which is located in the UNESCO fjord area! If you are looking for camping in Bergen, here are some of the recommended campsites:

Camping in Norway

Camping in Loen

Loen is a place where the famous Loen Via Ferrata is located, as well as beautiful lakes and mountains. It’s an area worth visiting for at least a few days.

Car camping in Loen with the views
Car camping in Loen with the views

Camping in Norway Essentials

Depending if you are planning to go car camping on designated campsites in Norway, or if you plan on hiking and wild camping, you’d need slightly different equipment. I talk more about wild camping equipment here.

Have you tried camping in Norway before? What else would you like to know about wild camping in Norway? Let me know in the comments!

Read more about Norway:

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Full guide for camping in Norway, including wild camping in Norway, and free camping in Norway, camping in Oslo, camping Stavanger, camping Lofoten, Camping Begren.

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