Top 6 Beaches in Norway for Swimming

A sunny beach in Norway.
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While it's better known for its fjords, the beautiful beaches of Norway draw thousands of visitors every year. There are about three months out of the year when the water at Norway's beaches is warm enough for swimming, as its climate is fairly temperate despite its northerly location. 

There are quite a few beaches in Norway where clothing is optional. If that is your preference, look for nude beaches in Norway close to your travel destination.

Here are some of the best beaches Norway has to offer.

01 of 06

Southwestern Norway: Beaches Around Stavanger

Godalen beach
 satrevik/Flickr/CC BY-SA 2.0

Countless top-rated Norwegian beaches are in and around the city of Stavanger in the southern parts of Norway. Hellesto Beach features swimming, sunbathing and an annual kite festival. Godalen Beach, only minutes from the city center of Stavanger has barbecue facilities and a playground and is part of the hiking area near Gandsfjorden. And Orrestranda beach, Norway's longest at 3.1 miles (5 kilometers) long, has fine-grained sand and offers ideal swimming and surfing conditions. 

Solastrand, Vigdel, and Vaulen are also popular beaches within a short drive from Stavanger. ​​

02 of 06

Oslo City Area: Beaches in Oslo

Paradisbukta Beach
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In the Oslo metropolitan area, try Oslo's Bygdoy peninsula to find a nice beach spot. The best beaches in Oslo are Huk beach and Paradisbukta (Norwegian for Paradise Bay).

Note that Huk beach is one of Norway's clothing-optional beaches. It also offers recreational opportunities like bicycling, running and beach volleyball. 

Paradisbukta is a top tourist attraction near Oslo, and its beaches are a bit sandier than Huk's. It has many amenities to appeal to visitors, including a swimming pool, barbecue pits, and toilets. It's also convenient to walking and bicycling trails that traverse the entire Bygdoy peninsula. ​

03 of 06

Western Norway: Beach in Selje

Along the western coastline of Norway in the district of Nordfjord, you'll find the romantic town of Selje. Still, something of a best-kept travel secret, the center of this town follows a nice sandy beach area called Seljesanden which includes a small harbor. There's a daily boat service to and from Bergen. 

Hoddevik Beach attracts surfers from all over the world and has a sandy beach between the mountains of western Norway. West Cape provides panoramic views of the Stadhavet Ocean, the Sunnmore Alps, the Hornelen Peak and the Alfotbreen glacier. 

04 of 06

Mjelle's Red Sand Beach

Mjelle Beach Norway
 Aslak Raanes/Flickr/CC BY 2.0

 About a 15-minute drive from the city, Mjelle Beach is a popular swimming spot in the summer, but its colors are what make it a real attraction. The beach is made up of both red and white sand, so the hues along the shore vary depending on how recent winds and tides have changed the ratio of the grains.

The red sands seem to be heavier, so it’s likely that they will be more exposed after a strong storm. On some days, the beach becomes such a deep red that it is almost purple.

Continue to 5 of 6 below.
05 of 06

Strandskog Nude Beach (Near Oslo)

Strandskog nude beach is one of Norway's many official nude beaches and is a short trip south of Oslo. It's considered "clothing optional," so if you're not ready to bare it all, that's OK too.

Strandskog is one of the smaller nude beaches in Norway, but it's earned a reputation as a nice, partially sandy beach with privacy.

Since this is one of the country's official clothing optional/nude beaches, there are public beach facilities including toilets and drinking water. 

06 of 06

Kvalvika Beach in Moskenesoy

Kvalvika Beach, Norway
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For hiking trails and other outdoor activities, the beach at Kvalvika on the northern side of the island of Moskenesoya provides challenging climbs and breathtaking views. The beach faces the open sea and is surrounded on all sides by mountains, giving a feeling of isolation and natural beauty. 

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