Facts About Norway

Norway Basic Facts

  • Official Name: Kingdom of Norway (Kongeriket Norge)
  • Government: Constitutional monarchy
  • Capital: Oslo
  • Population: 5,372,191
  • Official Languages: Bokmal Norwegian and Nynorsk
  • Money: Norwegian kroner
  • Area: 148,726 square miles 

Fun Facts About Norway

Norway has many mountains. Some of the peaks are so steep that no one has ever tried to climb them. 

Norwegian children don’t begin school until they are seven years old.

Norwegian citizens age 18 and older can vote in the parliamentary elections.

Around 98% of Norway’s domestic power usage is drawn from hydroelectric power plants.

The world’s most remote island is a Norwegian territory.

Norway is home to the Sami, indigenous reindeer herding people. Learn more about the Sami in this video.

YouTube video

History of Norway

Humans have lived in Norway as early as 9,000 to 8,000 B.C. The earliest inhabitants lived in caves and tents. Germanic tribes moved to the area. The people began farming instead of hunting and gathering. Farming settlements organized themselves into small independent states.

By the eighth century A.D., there were 30 of these states. In the 9th to 11th centuries, Viking warriors set out from the Scandinavian countries to raid Europe and expand their territories.

In 872, Harald Fairhair was the first ruler to unite most of western Norway. Denmark and Sweden invaded Norway during the rule of Harald Fairhair’s descendant. Denmark ruled Norway for the next century. In 1319, control of Norway was passed to Sweden. In 1397 Denmark, Norway, and Sweden were united as the Union of Kalmar by Queen Margrethe in the late 14th century.

Sweden broke away from the Union in 1523, but Denmark ruled Norway until 1814. During part of the 19th century, Norway went back under Swedish control. Norway became an independent country in 1905.

Norway remained neutral during World War I, but during World War II Germany invaded the country in a surprise attack in April 1940. Germany occupied Norway until the end of the war.

Map of Norway

Map of Norway from National Geographic

Color in Norway on this map!

Norway Flag Activity

Norway flag from National Geographic

HERE is a fun printable Norway flag coloring sheet!

Famous Norway Landmarks

Featured Important Norwegian Person: Aili Keskitalo, former President of Sámi Parliament of Norway

Aili Keskitalo served three terms as the President of the Sami Parliament of Norway. She was the first woman to hold the position.

YouTube video
YouTube video