Getty Images/Flickr RF


Kristiansand is Norway's fifth-largest city and styles itself as 'Norway's No 1 Holiday Resort'. That can be a bit misleading: sun-starved Norwegians do flock to this charming big town in the summer, and there's a petite town beach and flash marina, but it tends to serve as a gateway to the villages of Norway's southern coast and the inland region of Setesdalen.

What Kristiansand offers in spades, though, is a lively cultural and shopping scene, some excellent restaurants and very healthy nightlife. In addition, anyone travelling with children will more than likely find themselves cajoled into visiting the town's outstanding children's park and zoo.

Explore Kristiansand

Top attractions

These are our favorite local haunts, touristy spots, and hidden gems throughout Kristiansand.


Learn more about Kristiansand

Uncover the heart of travel and be inspired to see new sights with one of Lonely Planet’s in-depth, award-winning guidebooks.