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Ålesund has a spectacular setting across several islands stretching out into the sea, and is situated at the very entrance to the World Heritage listed Geirangerfjord. Destroyed by a catastrophic fire in 1904, the town was rebuilt in the Art Nouveau style with a myriad of towers, turrets and medieval-romantic ornaments. The town can offer a wide variety of activities, attractions and excursions and is an excellent starting point for round trips to some of Norway’s most spectacular sights, like Geiranger, Trollstigen, Hjørundfjord and Runde Bird Sancturary. Cruise ships of all sizes can dock at the ‘Cruise Terminal’ in the very centre of the town.

A mix of fjords, mountain tops along with a town center built-in so-known as art nouveau-style are the factors that led to Ålesund pinching to begin with inside a survey through the Norwegian daily newspaper Dagbladet. Bigger metropolitan areas like Bergen (second place) and Trondheim (fourth place) - possibly more renowned for their beauty - weren't regarded as as scenic as Ålesund once the Norwegians themselves cast their votes. Alesund is as known for it’s for its spectacular landscape and for its charming culture, and large town center as for its friendly locals, and great seafood.

With a few 43,000 occupants, Ålesund lacks the heart beat that bigger metropolitan areas frequently have. However city pulse may not be the best need to put Ålesund among the list of locations to go to. Couple of locations could be more appropriate to provide its site visitors a varied experience, though. Ålesund boasts fine restaurants, good museums as well as an architecturally interesting city center. And, out of the box frequently the situation in Norwegian, a sensational landscape.
Ålesund stands to testify that the disaster can eventually result in something good. Within the great fire of 1904, 850 from the town’s houses burned down. Some 10,000 everyone was left destitute as only 230 houses continued to be following the fire. Kaiser Wilhelm II of Germany was certainly one of individuals who have been quick to transmit help: He used to visit Ålesund on holiday. By 1907, large areas of the town center have been restored.
Houses built-in the skill nouveau style - popular at that time - changed most of the wooden structures that burned lower within the fire. Ålesund has become certainly one of couple of art nouveau style metropolitan areas on the planet, with an array of turrets, spires and medieval ornaments.
The strong art nouveau influences are among the explanations to Ålesund’s character: Some 400 structures built-in this style remain even today. The city even includes a museum that puts concentrate on art nouveau.
Ålesund can also be an essential fishing harbor. A significant export method is dried, salted cod - so-known as Klippfisk (literally converted as Rock Seafood). In addition to being consumed in your area, this seafood also finds its method to kitchen areas in nations for example Italia, Portugal and The country. For any taste of Klippfisk while in Ålesund, try XL Diner.

Where You're Docked
Cruise ships dock adjacent to the downtown area on the south end of the city. A second pier could also be used on the north side..Cruise passengers disembark a stone’s throw in the city center, in the modern cruise terminal. With 70-80 ship calls each year, Ålesund features five cruise quays. The city center is at easy walking distance. Metered taxis are usually offered at the pier.
A mix of fjords, mountain tops along with a town center built-in art nouveau-style are the factors that led to Ålesund pinching to begin with inside a survey through the Norwegian daily newspaper Dagbladet. Bigger metropolitan areas like Bergen (second place) and Trondheim (4th place) - possibly more renowned for their beauty - weren't regarded as as scenic as Ålesund once the Norwegians themselves cast their votes. Situated in the westernmost reason for mount Aksla, the Fjellstua provides a stunning look at Ålesund from 426 ft/130 meters above ocean level.
Things to see & do
Walk up the stairs to Fjellstua from the city park for a breathtaking view of local fjords and mountains. This can really not be underlined enough. Even if you are not up to climbing all 400 or so stairs, even half way up the view is stunning. Alternatively, you can get a taxi to drive you up there for the view from the top. This is a must-see. At the top of the mountain there are walkways that allow you to walk around in natural surroundings while enjoying the view of the islands and mountains around you. There is also a restaurant at Fjellstua serving basic dishes.
The Atlantic Sea Park (Atlanterhavsparken) at Tueneset is the biggest salt water aquarium in Northern Europe and is built into its stunning environment in the Tueneset conservation area. It offers a range of activities, including diving. After visiting, you can enjoy Tueneset itself which is a nice green area with walkways and a fascinating seemingly endless view of the Atlantic ocean.
In both of the above places you will find bunkers and remnants of the German war machinery from World War 2 for those that might find that interesting.
Brosundet separates the two central islands of Aspøy and Nørvøy, bridged by Hellebroa. The view of Brosundet is quite stunning. By Hellebroa there is an outdoor restaurant area which is very popular among tourists and locals alike. From there you can walk down onto the tourist boat area and further along to Skateflua with further restaurants and outdoors serving areas.
Also, from Skateflua, you can catch various tourist and express boats to popular destinations, buy fish directly from fishermen's boats and go rafting if the weather is nice.
You should also visit the Geirangerfjord, which is a world heritage site and arguably the most fabulous fjord experience there is. During the summer, catch the Hurtigruten to Geiranger and back. This leaves in the morning and returns you just in time for dinner, unless you want to enjoy it onboard, of course. At other times, take a bus to Hellesylt for a fjord cruise into Geiranger and catch a bus back to Ålesund from there.
Ålesund Chapel
The chapel was built-in 1909 in Norman style. It boasts splendid frescoes and delightful stained-glass home windows. The gable home windows behind the organ were an inauguration gift in the German Emperor Wilhelm II.
Atlantic Ocean Park
Situated about two miles west of Ålesund, this excellent Ocean Park is made right into a large stretch of seaside area with fishing stands, trails, bathing sites and outstanding diving venues. It features large aquariums teeming with sea existence from up and lower the Atlantic.
Municipal Park
In your area referred to as Byparken, it provides a statue of Rollo, which was presented to folks of Ålesund in the town of Rouen in 1911. The park also offers a monument devoted to Kaiser Wilhelm II who made major contributions towards the repairing of Ålesund following the Great Fire in 1904.
Don't Miss
Ålesund site visitors who don’t arrive by cruiseship will most most likely have a vacation to the Geirangerfjord on their own listing of things you can do in the area. Should you disembark from the cruiseship in Ålesund, however, chances are that you could focus around town throughout your visit and overlook the world-famous fjord that is incorporated on UNESCO’s World Heritage List.
Atlanterhavsparken is among the biggest salt-water aquariums in Scandinavia. The place, only a few minutes by vehicle from central Ålesund, is gorgeous, and also the aquarium is highly good.
The Hjørungavåg National Monument pays tribute to some fight of some importance towards the nation of Norwegian: Fighting against entering Danish Vikings around 986 performed a job in gathering all Norwegian into one kingdom. Distance from Ålesund: 23 miles/37 kilometers
Situated in the westernmost reason for mount Aksla, the Fjellstua provides a stunning look at Ålesund from 426 ft/130 meters above ocean level. If you choose to make use of the path to obtain up here, you may be grateful to locate a café when your walk is completed.
Ålesund as being a major fishing harbor, why don't you sample a few of the local produce? Two best sea food restaurants would be the Sjøbua and Maki - both located in central Ålesund.
A look at the Geiranger area, including Ålesund. It’s easier to exist personally, without doubt, however these online breathtaking sights count getting a glance at at home.

The Skill Nouveau Center is really a time machine worth traveling on if you are thinking about architecture. This national center for art nouveau style was opened up in 2003. It's located in a classic pharmacy building in downtown Ålesund.
Not far from the Nouveau Center there is an art museum.The museum includes a penchant for local art, but additionally has national and worldwide art displayed. Temporary displays are proven all year round. Home address: Apotekergata 16
Sunnmøre Museum & Borgundkaupangen is definitely an open-air museum composed of 55 old houses. The museum shows how people used to reside in Norwegian in earlier occasions. The museum also features an accumulation of motorboats - including replicas of Viking ships.
The Fisheries Museum puts concentrate on fishing, a trade that continues to be necessary for Ålesund even today. Should you ever wondered how cod liver fish oil is created, this is when you need to mind. The processes of drying out cod and making barrels will also be described.
Aalesunds Museum may be the town museum. Through pictures and displays, site visitors receive a look in to the good reputation for this Norwegian town. Home address: Rasmus Rønnebergsgt. 16
The exhibits only at that museum focus on the good reputation for seal hunting, fishing, shipping, the fireplace of 1904, the German occupation throughout The Second World War and also the town's distinctive Jugendstil architecture. The museum opens at 11:00 a.m.
The Ivar Aasen Center, a cultural center and museum concentrating on Ivar Aasen. Aasen was the mastermind behind Nynorsk - an alternative from the Norwegian language which was developed as from the center of the 1800s. Utilized by some 10 % to fifteen percent of people, Nynorsk is considerably more compact compared to other variant: Bokmål. Situated between your cities of Ørsta and Volda, the length towards the Ivar Aasen Center from Ålesund is: 20.5 miles/33 kilometers
Art Nouveau Ålesund
The picture perfect Art Nouveau heart of Ålesund, with its stunning architecture, towers, turrets and other imaginative ornamentation, really needs to be explored on foot. For a fascinating insight into the city's architecture, tag along with an organized walking tour, pick up an informative guide from a tourist office or bookstore… or visit the interactive Art Nouveau Center (Jugendstilsenteret). Built in 1905 as a pharmacy, the building - the first in Ålesund to be listed - includes the town's best-preserved Art Nouveau interior, as well as multimedia exhibitions and displays. Address: Skateflukaia, N-6002 Ålesund -- Official site: www.visitalesund-geiranger.com/en/

Ålesund Harbor
Ålesund's harbor lies between the islands of Nørvøy and Aspøy, and is sheltered by the Skansen peninsula. As wonderful as it is wandering around and admiring the architecture - the picturesque harbor includes many older buildings once used by fishermen - you'll be tempted to sit awhile and simply watch the boat traffic in this busy port area. Not only is the harbor home to one of Europe's largest fishing fleets, it's also a stop on the Hurtigruten route, the fast coastal service connecting all of Norway.
Address: Skateflukaia, N-6002 Ålesund -- Official site: www.visitalesund-geiranger.com/en/

Ålesund Town Park
When you're done with all that exploring, take a walk up the 418 steps to the top of Mount Aksla for an unforgettable panoramic view of the city below - an awesome sight day or night. Part of beautiful Ålesund Town Park, the stairs and grounds were laid out in 1885 by a local gardener who drew inspiration from the area's topography. The park is also home to two statues of men connected to Ålesund: one portrays Kaiser Wilhelm II and commemorates Germany's assistance after the devastating fire of 1904; the other is of Gange-Rolf, a local Viking hero connected to William the Conqueror and presented to the town by the city of Rouen in 1911. Address: Town Park, 6002 Ålesund -- Official site: www.visitnorway.com/en/Product/?pid=188372

Ålesund Aquarium
A great place to learn about Norway's diverse marine life, the Ålesund Aquarium - one of the largest saltwater-aquariums in northern Europe - is just a short shuttle bus ride form the town center and provides a fascinating look at life under the sea. Built into the coastline and crisscrossed with scenic walking trails, the facility's exhibition area includes 11 large aquariums, as well as open 'touch' pools and activity pools. Time your visit to catch the daily fish feeding in the million-gallon Great Atlantic tank.
Address: Tueneset, N-6006 Ålesund -- Official site: www.atlanterhavsparken.no/english
Stretching 22 miles south from Ålesund, Hjørundfjord is surrounded by the stunning Sunnmøre Alps mountain range, which in places rises dramatically out of the fjord to heights of 5,600ft. This heavily wooded fjord's impressive scenery can best be explored by water. A number of cruise options are available, stopping at places such as Union Øye, an exquisitely preserved hotel in the small village of Øye. A favorite since 1891 amongst Europe's elite, the 27-room hotel has been fully restored and is a great place for a meal or as a base from which to explore attractions such as the Sunnmøre Museum in Borgundgavlen, an open-air collection of historic homes and buildings. Address: Borgundgavlen, 6015 Ålesund -- Official site: www.visitalesund-geiranger.com/en/The-Hjorundfjord--the-Sunnmore-Alps/

Runde Island
Southwest of Ålesund, on the island of Runde, is the most southerly seabird cliff in Norway, and a nesting-place for some 500,000 birds. Included in the tiny island's 220 different species of birds are its most famous inhabitants, the puffins, drawn by the plentiful supply of fish that spawn here each year. The island also operates an Environmental Center with exhibits related to Runde's bird population, as well as the area's many historic shipwrecks.
Address: Runde Miljøsenter, 6096 Runde -- Official site: www.rundecentre.no/english/index.htm

The island of Godøy is a popular excursion from Ålesund, as famous for its 1,631ft mountain, Storhornet, as it is for its old lighthouse. Located near the quaint fishing village from which it takes its name, the Alnes Lighthouse is located on the north side of the island just 30 minutes drive from Ålesund. Built in 1876, the lighthouse's galley and tower are open for tourists May - October, and the old keeper's house has a museum, café and exhibition hall displaying art by local artists. While on the island, visit the Godøy Coastal Museum with its archaeological exhibitions and Viking era displays. Address: Geilevikane, 6055 Godøy -- Official site: www.lighthousesofnorway.com/?p=4408

The Ivar Aasen Center
The Ivar Aasen Center is located on the very farm where the famous poet / playwright / philosopher was born 1813. Revered as the creator of Nynorsk - a language based on Norwegian dialects - Aasen's home is now the country's national Nynorsk documentation and experience center. Designed by architect Sverre Fehn, the building is an attraction in itself, and hosts the annual Festival of New Norwegian Literature, Art and Music held in the last week of June every year.
Shoreline Activities
A number of shoreline activities around Ålesund can be found.  There’s a coach around the city and also the area. These tours will frequently eat the Art Nouveau houses within the town itself, and a trip to Mount Aksla (in which the Fjellstua can be found: see above under Don't Miss). Coach tours may also include appointments with museums like the Sunnmøre open-air museum.
A vacation to the Hjørundfjord - one among Norway’s finest sounds. An excursion for this fjord, situated some 22.4 miles (36 kilometers) southeast of Ålesund, may also incorporate a cruise by local boat. The Trollveggen, or Troll Wall, is really a well-known place to go for mountaineers from around the globe. The mountain side has got the greatest overhang associated with a high cliff in Europe. To be able to arrive here from Ålesund, your coach will drive around the famous Trollstigen (the Troll Path). The street is renowned for the gorgeous scenery - but for the many hairpin bends.
The Viking chieftain Gange Rolf was created around the island of Giske, situated near to Ålesund. Also called Rollo (a brief type of his title), Gange Rolf mastered Normandy in 911 called the ancestor of William the Conqueror. Although Giske is definitely an island, you'll have the ability to pass coach completely - because of the underwater tunnels. Around the island, go to the marble chapel dating from 1135. The attractive fishing village of Alnes is another popular attraction.
Eating Out
Whether the food is good or bad, all of the restaurants in Ålesund share a common bond: The prices are high. For supper ashore, you will find numerous good restaurants. The clear option is fresh seafood. An assortment of seafood and seafood platter is highly popular among tourists in the typical seafood restaurants. For budget food, the town has quite a few pizza, kebab and burger shops. Next to the town square you will find Dolly Dimples pizza, a few meters away you will find Peppes Pizza and the local McDonalds restaurant, as well as a 7-eleven that is open 24/7 and sell hot food. You can usually get food for around NOK 100 in these restaurants.
For more regular restaurants, you have choices such as Hummer og Kanari (Kongens gate) and XL Diner (Skateflukaia). XL Diner is the largest clipfish/bacalao restaurant in Northern Europe. Expect to pay a minimum of NOK 300.

More upmarket restaurants include Sjøbua, a somewhat famous seafood restaurant, where all food is prepared from the local fishermen's catch of the day. The fish is kept in tanks in the restaurant for maximum freshness.In general, if you're out in Ålesund, you should make sure to try the local seafood dishes. It is the centre of fish exports in Norway and has a unique tradition is seafood cuisine. Clip fish is a local speciality, and a dish that locally is known simply as "bacalao" is a favourite not easily found in other parts of the world. Do note that wine is usually quite expensive in Norwegian restaurants, charging 300 NOK or more for a bottle of wine is not uncommon.
Enjoy searching for Norwegian crafts and knitwear using the distinct Norwegian design. Shops across the pedestrian street as well as in the retail center are a maximum of 500 yards in the pier. Opening hrs come from 10:00 a.m. to 5:00 p.m. (departmental stores are open until 8:00pm. Saturday 1000 am to 2:00 pm and malls to 6.00 pm). The neighborhood currency may be the krone.
There's a variety of shops in the town centre, particularly in Kremmergaarden near City hall and Aalesunds Storsenter near the town square. The main shopping centre for the Sunnmøre region is located outside the city centre, 15 minutes away by express bus 628

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