Old Bergen Museum

A breath of nostalgia!

In the 1800s Bergen was Europe’s biggest wooden city, a distinctive city environment with closely spaced wooden buildings, busy streets, markets and alleys. How did it look? What did people talk about?

At old Bergen open air museum you can experience some of this atmosphere, with houses from the eighteenth, nineteenth and twentieth centuries. Actors makes history come alive.
What did it look like? What did people talk about?

In the cobbled streets of the Old Bergen Museum, you are welcome to come into the houses and explore on your own, or maybe have a chat with one of the people who “live” here? In close proximity to the city center and scenic surroundings, you can meet both lords and servants from times gone by. You can peek in through the windows, enter the houses to look at exhibitions and historic interiors. Inside the house you will find information with brief information about the history of the houses.

In beautiful natural surroundings you can meet both masters and servants from the past. You can peek in windows, open doors, and walk into exhibitions and historical interiors. The museum’s role players help to bring the site to life and provide answers to some of the questions on how life could have been lived in Bergen one or two hundred years ago.

Several times a day you can experience short plays performed in the square by actors; alias Bergen citizens from specific historical years.

Old Bergen becomes a museum

The museum was opened in 1949 and is built around the summer house “Elsesro” which shipbuilder Rasmus Rolfsen built for his wife Elsebe. The property was owned by the Rolfsen family from 1784 to 1903. Here, the family built a shipyard and a summerhouse, and later a park in the style of a formal English garden. Old Bergen foundation succeeded in establishing the museum as a safe haven for Bergen’s old buildings, which were threatened with being torn down. The houses which you will find at the museum arrived between 1945 and 1981. The open air Museum has today 55 wooden houses, most of which originally stood in the centre of Bergen.

The park

Take a stroll in the surrounding english park which is ideal for peacefullness, inspiration. Open to all visitors. Maybe it’s tempting to take a dip in seaside bathing facility at Elsesro (Sandviken Sjøbad)? Just remember that grilling and the use of open fire is prohibited in the museum area.

Practical information

Old Bergen Museum is a short bike or walk from the center, approx. 10 min by bike or 40 min to walk.
You can arrive by sea from the center with the boat “Beffen”, or make your return trip from Old Bergen to the city center.
Bus nos. 3, 4, 12, 19, 16E from the city center to the bus stop: Gamle Bergen.
Limited parking.
Museumshop: gifts, postcards, coffee, tea, traditional cinnamon buns, ice cream and soft drinks.
Old fashion grocerist where you can can buy old fashioned sweets and groceries.
Wheelchair access: To enter the houses it is not acceccible with a wheelchair.
You can rent Torvsalen for various occasions. Rental can by agreement be combined with cultural experiences.
Grilling and the use of open fires are prohibited in the museum area.
Prohibited to take your dog into the houses, except for an approved guide dog.