Seth Profile picture
Aug 9, 2017 74 tweets 18 min read Twitter logo Read on Twitter
So, I decided that I'm going to tweet an interesting fact or observation about life in Norway every day, because my head is full of them:
#1: Norwegians eat their sandwiches like this, with no bread on top
They have special paper to stop toppings falling off when carried around
#2: Norway is a relatively young country, only achieving true independence in 1905. This is why Norwegians tend to be deeply patriotic.
#3: Norway had just one TV channel until around 1988. They still have state-funded channels, and a license fee for NRK (which is very good)
#4: It's very common to find shared acquaintances when you first get to know someone. 'Everyone knows everyone' still sort of holds true.
#5: Every person has the 'right to roam' over any part of the Norwegian landscape as long as it is uncultivated land.
#6: Each Norwegian is in effect a millionaire, in Kroner. The sovereign wealth (or oil) fund is valued at $950bn and is the world's largest.
#7: There is no equivalent for the word for 'accountability' in use in the Nordic languages. It's sorely needed, if you ask me.
#8: The people of Norway fly a lot. A typical Norwegian takes approximately 10 times as many domestic flights as a typical European does.
#9: Alcohol stronger than 4.7% can only be bought at a government-run store. These have limited opening times and there aren't many of them.
#10: Research shows that Norwegian society has unusually high levels of trust. This is often identified at their greatest resource (not oil)
#11: The groundbreaking drama #SKAM ('Shame') was aimed at a very small core audience of Norwegian teens, yet became a worldwide phenomenon
#12: The Norwegian word for boyfriend/girlfriend is gender neutral; 'kjæreste' ('dearest') doesn't specify male, female, other. 👫 👩‍❤️‍💋‍👩 👬
#13: The 'big four' predators native to Norway (wolf, lynx, bear, wolverine) are hunted so ruthlessly that populations are critically low.
#14: Norway is considered to be a world leader when it comes to gender equality, with many measures taken to redress imbalances.
#15: Norway has elections every second year. Through #ProportionalRepresentation there are 8 different parties with seats in the Parliament.
#16: There are two written forms of the Norwegian language, and very distinct dialects found among people from the West, South and North.
#17: Karl Ove Knausgård's six autobiographical novels are controversial here because he chose to reveal personal details about his family.
#18: Homophobia is uncommon. One of my happiest memories is the first time I felt safe enough to hold hands with my boyfriend in public.
#19: Some contemporary Norwegians you might recognise: Kristofer Hivju, Susanne Sundfør, Magnus Carlsen, Kygo, Ingrid Bolsø Berdal
#20:The Norwegian approach to work/life balance emphasises the value of free time rather than giving high status to those working long hours
#21: There are around half a million pet dogs in Norway. By law, these have to be kept on a lead in public in the spring and summer.
#22: Norway is a small country and is easily overlooked, which is likely why Norwegians get a thrill whenever the world takes notice of them
#23: Tax benefits for property owners with mortgages are generous, and so around 85% of Norwegians own their own home (with the bank)
#24: You can get a night train from Oslo to Bergen or Stavanger on the West coast, or Bodø in the north (13 hours) to reach #Lofoten by boat
#25: There are 'reverse vending machines' in every supermarket where you can return bottles and cans for recycling and earn back the deposit
#26: Former Environment minister Thorbjørn Berntsen famously referred to his British counterpart as a 'drittsekk' (bag of shit) in 1993
#27: Norwegians do very well in the winter Olympics. Not so well in the main Olympics. So they dismissively refer to it as 'Summer Olympics'
#28: The distance between Oslo and #Nordkapp in the far North is the same as the distance between Oslo and Rome, Italy (approx. 2000km)
#29: Norwegians have imported #coffee for hundreds of years, and are among the world's biggest consumers of coffee at 10kg per person yearly
#30: The birth rate is one of the highest in Europe, partly due to generous paternity leave, subsidised child care and cultural expectations
#31: You can experience the midnight sun if you are north of the Arctic Circle in Norway in early summer.
#32: Norway decided against formal EU membership, and instead is part of the #EEA, allowing free movement of people and single market access
#33: The works of iconic Norwegian painter Edvard #Munch are on display across Oslo, the city where he lived and worked.
#34: Traditional Norwegian dishes include #lutefisk (jellied fish), #fårikål (lamb ribs), elk and reindeer meat. Basically, dead animals.
#35: Norway's electoral system is significantly weighted in favour of those living in rural areas, reducing the influence of urban voters.
#36: Oslo's signature building is the National Opera and Ballet, designed by Norwegian architecture firm @snohetta. You can walk on the roof
#37: This is the view from Scandinavia's highest mountain, Galdhøpiggen, in the Jotunheimen area (2,469 metres). It's quite accessible.
#38: Norwegians tend to value safety and security above all else, likely a result of developing as an agrarian society in tough conditions
#39: Recipient(s) of the Nobel Peace Prize are chosen by the
Norwegian Nobel Committee each year. The ceremony is held at Oslo City Hall.
#40: There is an quirky tradition that Norwegians will read crime books, such as those by #JoNesbø, specifically at Easter. #påskekrim
#41: The #Sami are an indigenous ethnic minority with their own distinct culture, language and parliament, mainly living in the North.
#42: Berries and mushrooms can be easily found in forests. There's a free 24-hour hotline so you can check what you've picked isn't toxic
#43: Norwegians are notoriously bad at queueing. Standing in line or waiting your turn aren't hard-and-fast rules, but optional behaviours.
#44: The mighty Vikings were successful farmers as well as raiders. The helmets they wore didn't have horns though, that's a myth.
#45: #Hytter (cabins) are found all over Norway. Some can be stayed in, most are owned by Norway's middle class to use in their free time
#46: #Bergen is Norway's second city and easily outcompetes Oslo in terms of beauty and history. Just don't mention their #minoritycomplex
#47: “There’s no such thing as bad weather, only bad clothing” and "There's no shame in turning back" are Norwegian outdoors-related sayings
#48: Visitors often comment on the price of beer. It's several times what you'll pay in most other countries because of tax & other costs
#49: New parents enjoy generous parental leave from work, around one year fully paid. The father must take at least 3 months by law.
#50: Over 70% of people are members of the Church of Norway which happens automatically(!) at birth if one of their parents is a member.
#51: Norway has allowed same-sex registered partnerships since 1993. Actual same-sex marriage became legal in 2009.
#52: Norwegian isn't a very complex language grammatically. There are three extra vowels: Æ, Ø and Å. They don't use C, Q, X and Z much.
#53: It is believed over 800.000 Norwegians emigrated to USA between 1825 and 1925. Only Ireland lost a bigger proportion of its population.
#54: Norway is more diverse than many expect, with over half a million immigrants from Europe and beyond, making up 1/3 of Oslo's population
#55: Scandinavian caramelised brown cheese is very popular. It tastes smoky and sweet. They have a special cheese slicing tool too.
#56: The Royal Palace in Oslo is famously unimpressive and fancy from the outside. Norwegian buildings of the period were not very ornate.
More on this:
#57: When Norwegians eat out it'll probably be sushi, or pizza, or a kebab. Not that there aren't proper restaurants too.
#58: A few thousand people live on the island of Svalbard in the far North. It's said that it is illegal to die there (which is a myth)
#59: Henrik Ibsen (A Doll's House, Peer Gynt, Brand, Hedda Gabler) is the most frequently performed dramatist in the world after Shakespeare
#60: Labour unions are strong in Norway. Around one in four are a member of a union. Parties on the left receive heavy financing from unions
#61: Norway sees itself as a humanitarian state. ~1% of GDP is spent on aid. They were peacemakers in Israel/Palestine through Oslo accords
#62: Climatically, the West coast is wettest, while the South-East is dryer and warmer. Climate change is leading to more rain and less snow
#63: Two Norwegian TV personalities got the attention of 700m people worldwide by making a song about animal noises
#64: The 'Jante Law' is a sociological term to describe a condescending attitude towards individuality & success supposedly found in Norway
#65: The largest companies in Norway are focused on primary resource extraction such as petroleum, metals, chemicals, fishing and forestry.
#66: Norwegians tend to be unapologetic about their role in the decimation of global #whale populations. Some species may never recover.
#67: There are still quite a few wooden stave churches standing, some of which are over 800 years old, such as Heddal Church, Telemark:
#68: The Dragonhead Sap Beetle is found only in Norway. Various other plant and animal species are unique to Norway:
#69: 'Dugnad' is the concept of voluntary communal work, where a small group of people come together to get a job done. I love a Dugnad.
#70: Kids get to play outside much of the day in a typical Norwegian kindergarten. All year round.
#71: Skiing as a sport originated in Norway. It's rare to find a Norwegian who can't ski; it's said they are 'born with skis on their feet'
#72: Norwegians like their personal space. Here’s a bunch of them waiting for the bus:
(photo by @BeateSorum)

• • •

Missing some Tweet in this thread? You can try to force a refresh

Keep Current with Seth

Seth Profile picture

Stay in touch and get notified when new unrolls are available from this author!

Read all threads

This Thread may be Removed Anytime!


Twitter may remove this content at anytime! Save it as PDF for later use!

Try unrolling a thread yourself!

how to unroll video
  1. Follow @ThreadReaderApp to mention us!

  2. From a Twitter thread mention us with a keyword "unroll"
@threadreaderapp unroll

Practice here first or read more on our help page!

Did Thread Reader help you today?

Support us! We are indie developers!

This site is made by just two indie developers on a laptop doing marketing, support and development! Read more about the story.

Become a Premium Member ($3/month or $30/year) and get exclusive features!

Become Premium

Don't want to be a Premium member but still want to support us?

Make a small donation by buying us coffee ($5) or help with server cost ($10)

Donate via Paypal

Or Donate anonymously using crypto!


0xfe58350B80634f60Fa6Dc149a72b4DFbc17D341E copy


3ATGMxNzCUFzxpMCHL5sWSt4DVtS8UqXpi copy

Thank you for your support!

Follow Us on Twitter!