A large city by Norwegian standards, Trondheim has still managed to preserve the charm and intimacy of a small town. After a catastrophic fire destroyed most of the city houses in 1681, the new streets were made wide to prevent fires from spreading. Some of the narrow alleys and streets, many originating in the Middle Ages, still exist, contrasting the wide boulevards from the 1600s. Even today Trondheim is known as one of the typical wooden cities of Europe, and the city centre has many special wooden buildings, some built as far back as the 1700s.
Trondheim has a strong position as the centre of trade for central Norway. NTNU (the Norwegian University of Science and Technology), Trondheim's internationally renowned university, and the city's many research communities ensure that it is a city of innovation and development of science, business and industry ventures. The students add a youthful exuberance to this thousand-year old city. While not a large metropolis, Trondheim's location and opportunities put it on an equal footing with the major cities of Europe.
Trondheim has a rich cultural life with an international flavour, and is a popular destination for pilgrimages. This historic city has a lot to offer. Take a stroll to see for yourself. Start at the Old Town Bridge and follow the path that heads south through the park next to the river Nid. The cathedral is on your right with the Archbishop's Palace that contains one of the best museums in Norway. The path brings you to Hadrian's place and the legendary St Olav's spring.
Bakklandet is Trondheim’s old quarter, and lies on the eastern side of the Nidelva. It is most easily reached by crossing Gamle Bybru from the town centre. The old wooden buildings, originally workers' houses, have now been restored and converted into flats, shops and restaurants.
Nidaros Cathedral is the world’s northernmost cathedral, and Norway’s national sanctuary. Construction began in 1070 over the shrine of Saint Olav. Nidaros was an important Christian pilgrimage site during the Middle Ages. Norway’s coronation regalia are displayed in the Archbishop's Palace.
Trondheim is reputed to be the town in Norway with the most restaurants and cafes per person. You can find something for every taste and wallet. Local food is popular, and local farmers supply the town restaurants with fresh ingredients.
If Trondheim is your last stop, you can make a little detour from Trondheim on your way to Oslo and enjoy 2 nights in a traditional hotel at the World Heritage Site Røros.
Trondheim was founded by the Viking king Olav Tryggvason in 997 and was the capital of Norway for 200 years. The city became an archbishop's seat in 1152, and in the same year, the country's first school, the Cathedral School, was founded here. The city quickly developed into a leading centre of trade for the surrounding region, a role it still holds today. The name Trondheim derives from the Old Norse Þróndheimr, meaning home of the strong and fertile.