Renowned for its sunshine, mild temperatures and immense spa, Larvik is a popular holiday destination south of Oslo. It was the hometown of the famous Norwegian adventurer Thor Heyerdahl and lies on the doorstep of Norway’s largest beech forest.
Things to do in Larvik
Learn about Larvik’s years as a Danish royal county at Herregården, a mansion built by the Danish count Ulrik Frederik Gyldenløve in the 1670s. After browsing the historic artefacts and period furnishings on display, you can get up close to vintage tools and equipment at Verksgården in the historic Hammerdalenin quarter, which was historically connected to the Fritzøe ironworks.
A short boat ride from Larvik takes you to the Svenner Lighthouse, which was first lit in 1874 to protect vessels navigating the Svenner archipelago. Originally constructed from stone, it was rebuilt in 1900 as the cast-iron tower seen today. The island of Korpekollen is an idyllic setting for swimming in the summer months and is a popular destination for crabbing.
Along the shores of Farris Lake to the north of Larvik is Bøkeskogen, the northernmost beech forest in the world. It encompasses dozens of burial grounds dating back to the Pre-Roman Iron Age, making it one of Norway’s most accessible Viking Age archaeological areas. A network of hiking trails wind through the forest, offering sweeping views across Farris Lake from The Bellevue.
Getting around Larvik
Larvik is around 1.5 hours’ drive from the centre of Oslo and just over two hours from Oslo Airport. The smaller Sandefjord Airport Torp is 20 minutes away. Regular trains connect from the Norwegian capital to the Larvik railway station while daily ferries travel to Hirtshals in Denmark. Buses travel throughout Larvik, with the city centre compact enough to explore on foot.