But what about the people up here? Are they as weathered and turbulent as the harsh climate may suggest?
Quite the contrary, according to travellers who have taken a chance and gone for a coffeebreak with one of our local hosts. Most of them are open – and curious about you and your life. In return, you’ll get a unique glimpse into Northern Norway and the people living here. Some may appear shy at first, but nothing gets the chat going like a hot cup of coffee.
Still: Knowing what you’re in for socially might be useful as well. Here are some facts about Norwegians’ coffee habits – and how they affect life up here:
Coffee is a natural part of celebrations
Of course, coffee is an essential building block in Norwegian everyday life – for breakfast, at work and after dinner. But it’s also a brew for the grand occasions: Imagining baptisms, confirmations or weddings without freshly brewed coffee is impossible. At wedding parties, something happens with the mood when the coffee arrives at the table: The official programme is over, the shoulders are lowered, and the party can finally begin.
Coffe is both the village and the city
The Norwegian coffee tradition is characterized by a pragmatic, down-to-earth approach to the beverage, typically served black and strong if nothing else is specified. The trend sensitivity for different types of coffee is naturally more prevalent in the bigger cities, such as Oslo, which occasionally has resulted in people from smaller places referring to the capital’s citizens as “latte-drinking hipster doofuses”.
Everybody drinks coffee
When Norwegians were introduced to coffee in the 1600s, it was primarily a drink for the affluent part of the population. These days it’s the other way around, thankfully: Nothing signals equality, community, openness and inclusion like a cup of coffee.
PS. Wait, what: You don’t drink coffee? Don’t worry: Most Norwegians will also have a cup available for visitors such as yourself.