Best time to travel to Norway

Brown Bears in Norway

Better not to come across a hungry predator just after the end of hibernation season

Best time: June–mid-August

Brown Bears
Brown Bears

Being common inhabitants of Finnland and Russia, brown bears turn out to be a true rarity in Norway. The only area they might be found in Norway is a narrow piece of land south of Kirkness bordering Finnish and Russian territories. Another potential place to encounter a brown bear is Øvre Dividal National Park.

Brown bears start waking up after winter hibernation in mid-April, but at that time it is better to avoid the hungry mammals. The best and safest time for brown bear safari is from June to mid-August, when eating is no longer the priority. At this time, tour operators offer multi-day wild nature watching experience.

In the 19th century, Norwegian hunters were killing 200-300 bears every year which put them on the brink of extinction. As of 2017, 125 brown bears were tracked in Norway. The country's target is to revive its bear population, and this will be possible if 13 bear litters are born each year. However, currently, Norway has been able to reach just half of that number. The majority of the population is located along the border with Sweden, Finland, and Russia, but some bears roam through the forests and can be seen anywhere in mainland Norway.

Practical info

When is the best time to visit Norway for a brown bear watching safari?

The peak season for brown bear watching safaris in Norway is from June to mid-August when these animals have already completed their hibernation period and feeding is not their priority. During these months, tour operators provide visitors with multi-day excursions for experiencing nature and seeing brown bears. Show more

Where is the only area in Norway where brown bears can be found?

Brown bears are exclusive to a skinny strip of land south of Kirkness, which stretches across the border of Finnish and Russian territories. It is also possible to spot brown bears in Øvre Dividal National Park. These two regions are the sole habitats of brown bears in Norway. Show more

How many brown bears are currently tracked in Norway?

The tracking records of 2017 show that there are 125 brown bears accounted for in Norway, which is a vast improvement from the time when Norwegian hunters were slaughtering 200-300 bears annually. Bearing in mind the goal of 13 bear litters being born each year, Norway is yet to get there. Even though most of the bears reside along the borders with Finland, Sweden and Russia, there are still some that can be found in mainland Norway. Show more

When did Norwegian hunters put brown bears on the verge of extinction?

In the 19th century, Norwegian hunters were responsible for almost driving the brown bear species into extinction when they were killing between 200-300 of them each year. As a result of excessive attacks, brown bears were pushed into limited territories and nearly became extinct in Norway. However, the brown bear population in Norway has recuperated remarkably as the country's authorities enshrined laws that aim to safeguard bear habitats and limit hunting activities. Show more

Where in Norway do most of the brown bear populations reside?

Most of the brown bear population is located along the borders of Russia, Sweden, and Finland, but there are also brown bears that roam around mainland Norway. Reviving and increasing the bear populations in the country is a target of the Norwegian authorities. At the moment, they are aiming for the birth of 13 bear litters each year, which they have only been able to achieve 50% of so far; hence, they continue to work towards that goal. Show more

Ask a question

Find hotels and airbnbs near Brown Bears (Map)

Last updated: