Interesting facts

Norwegian Roald Amundsen was the first person to reach the South Pole in the Antarctic. Amundsen and four companions reached the South Pole on 14th December 1911.

Norway has topped the United Nation’s Human Development Index nine out of 11 times from 2001 to 2011. The other two years (2007 and 2008), it came second to Iceland.

Hornindalsvatnet in Norway is Europe’s deepest lake. It reaches a maximum depth of 514m (1,686ft).

Roald Amundsen was also was the first to conquer the Northwest Passage solely by ship. With a crew of six, Amundsen traversed the passage in a three-year journey from 1903 to 1906. The ships Amundsen used on his expeditions, the Fram and the Gjøa, can be seen at the Fram Museum in Oslo.

Norway is the birthplace of skiing, predating the sport in Switzerland and Austria. The word ‘ski’ is a Norse word, skith, meaning ‘piece of wood.’

Wild camping in Norway is enshrined in the Allemannsretten (the right to roam) – and thus it is my favourite interesting fact about Norway! The traditional right of access has been maintained from ancient times and, from 1957, has also been part of the Outdoor Recreation Act. I love it!

Norway is suspected to have the world’s largest sovereign wealth fund, estimated to be worth $1 trillion by 2020. It is the world’s seventh largest oil exporter and has resisted the temptation to splurge its fortune, choosing instead to deposit the excess wealth into its oil fund.

To encourage Norwegian men to take care of their children, a 10-week paternity leave quota is reserved for them. As such, in Norway, 90% of fathers take at least 12 weeks’ paternity leave, known as pappapermisjon.

The Nobel Peace Prize has been awarded in Oslo annually since 1901. It is one of the five Nobel Prizes, the others awarded in recognition of academic successes in Chemistry, Physics, Medicine and Literature.

Around 98-99% of Norway’s electricity comes from hydroelectric power stations. In 1991, it was one of the first countries to adopt a carbon tax in an attempt to slow global warming.

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