The best five beaches in Southern Norway

Text: Anne Bloksgaard Nielsen Published 14.02.2022

When Danes think of holidays in Norway, not many envision sandy beaches and scantily-clad bathers. But the southern part of Norway actually boasts a string of delightful sandy beaches, where you can take a lovely dip in surroundings that are very different to ones we’re familiar with on the Danish west coast or at North Zealand’s beaches.

With inspiration from Visit Sørlandet, here are five tips (plus a bonus tip) for a fantastic trip to the beach in Norway.

Sjøsanden at Mandal

At Mandal, right next to Tregde, you’ll find many lovely bathing locations (so it’s always possible to find a good spot, regardless of which way the wind is blowing). The absolute jewel in the crown is Sjøsanden, one of Norway’s best known and best loved beaches. The 800 metre long beach is within walking distance of Mandal and can often be used all year round due to its protected location, which provides good shelter and warm water temperatures.

Haviksanden on Lista

Haviksanden offers gorgeous white sand and wonderful water for swimming, which attracts locals and tourists alike – and many kite surfers use the beach too, if the other beaches in the area are too windy. There is a large car park at the beach, so it’s always easy to get to – maybe for a quick dip on your way back to Tregde after a visit to Lista Fyr?

Donestranden at Søgne

Donestranden is located in the Helleviga outdoor area south-west of Kristiansand. This is a delightful lagoon with a beach, as well as tables, benches and barbecue spots to cook your own lunch or dinner after enjoying a swim. If you’re looking for more than just fun on the beach, there are also a number of walking trails through forests and along beaches in the area.

Lomsesanden at Farsund

Lomsesanden, around an hour’s drive west of Tregde, lies in a bay, well protected from the westerly wind. Here, you can enjoy a day filled with beach activities in the shallow water and white sand – and in summer you can enjoy an ice cream from Lomsesanden Family Camping which is right by the beach.

Hamresanden outside Kristiansand

Hamresanden, right next to Kristiansand and Dyreparken, is 3 km long and offers the perfect setting for a beach trip with the kids. Most of this stretch has shallow waters and the beautiful sand is perfect for building sand castles or for sunbathing. If you’re staying in Kristiansand, you can take a bus to the beach from Kristiansand city centre.

Bonus tip: City beach in Kristiansand

One of Southern Norway’s most popular beaches is right in Kristiansand’s city centre. Come and visit “Bystranda” (City Beach), a beautifully landscaped sandy beach with bathing piers, seated areas – and palm trees! In fact, the beach is home to Scandinavia’s biggest beach festival, known as Palmesus.