The "Right to Roam" is unique

adapted from:  (Miljødirektoratet “Right to Roam”, 2017)

Right to Roam Outdoor recreation is an important part of our cultural heritage in Norway. Since ancient times, we have had the right to roam freely in forests and open country, along rivers, on lakes, among the skerries, and in the mountains – irrespective of who owns the land. We are allowed to harvest nature’s bounty – which means not only saltwater fish, berries, mushrooms and wildflowers, but also our sensory impressions of the whole outdoor experience. The main principles of the right to roam are legally enshrined in the Outdoor Recreation Act of 1957.


You can:

  • Hike and ski freely in the countryside all year long
  • Go through fields/farmland when the ground is frozen or covered with snow from October 15th to April 29th
  • Swim, paddle, and bathe in water and waterways
  • Rest, camp and spend the night (but you must stay the  minimum distance of 150 meters from houses and cottages)
  • Cycling is permitted on private roads and trails in the lowlands, and anywhere in the mountains.
  • Pick berries, mushrooms and flowers (Please note that special rules apply to picking cloudberries in the counties of Nordland, Troms and Finnmark, where landowners or users can prohibit picking.)
  • Children under the age of 16 can fish for free in fresh water

But remember:

  • Fires burning in or near woodland are prohibited without the fire chief's permission during the period of 15 April to 15 September.
  • Mobile coverage is not always as good in the mountains
  • Motor traffic in the lowlands is normally prohibited.
  • Hunting and inland fishing is not part of the “Right to Roam”. Read more about fishing rules at the county governor in Aust- and Vest-Agder.
  • Park with care.
  • Show respect for other people’s property - use fence splitters and close all latches.
  • Landowners are allowed to expel people who damage property.
  • Leash laws are generally in effect from April 1 to August 20, so that dogs can not hunt or damage wildlife and livestock. Respect this prohibition.
  • In the bird-watching areas of Lista dog leashes must be used from March 1st to November 1st. In Sirdal, the leash law applies from April 1st to November 1st.
  • Dogs must be kept on leash and under supervision on all lighted trails and groomed ski slopes. Dogs should not prevent anyone using the trails.

Respect the nature and the animals that live here:

Nature is vulnerable. Take care of animal and plant life as you travel in nature. Do not disturb the wildlife or the animals grazing in nature. Neither domestic animals nor wild animals must be fed.

Clean up after you when you leave and pick up trash after others if you find it along trails or trails. That way we help each other to keep nature clean.

The dog’s owner is required pick up after their dog in ski slopes, hiking trails, residential areas, public roads and free areas for the public. Use dog waste bags.


What is cultivated and uncultivated land?

Uncultivated land or open country includes most of Norway’s lakes, shores, bogs, forests and mountains and is usually not fenced off. Small uncultivated areas within cultivated land are not regarded as open country. Cultivated or built-up land: fields, meadows, pastures, gardens, courtyards, building plots and industrial sites. You do have access to some cultivated land, such as fields and meadows, between October 15 and April 30 when the ground is frozen or covered in snow. Please note that cultivated land need not actually be fenced off.


Right to Roam