Åsgårdstrand is an idyllic small coastal communities. Just to stroll around this small town and see all the manicured gardens provide a lovely ambience in the body. Beautiful and white painted snugly settlement in Åsgårdstrand, with a population of about 3,000 residents.

Overnight at the wharf in Åsgårdstrand ->

Munch's vacation paradise

Especially in summer, this city has much to offer. Åsgårdstrand is a wonderful mix of boats, galleries, cyclists and swimmers. One can swim almost all along the shoreline in the city center, and the shoreline is good about space. Åsgårdstrand is very popular among summer visitors by boat and cabin area. The port is however not so great, and it may be wise to bring in the sails before entering the harbor. The port is expanded with two new pools and it has thus become better accommodate visiting boats. Cobblestones give quay a special touch. In 2007 Åsgårdstrand classified as tourist because the number of tourists and visitors are so high in relation to permanent residents. Summer visitors are largely involved in shaping the atmosphere of the city.

The White City by the Oslo fjord - Åsgårdstrand

Åsgårdstrand is Horten Municipality smallest and oldest city, and was founded about 450 years ago on the basis of timber and shipbuilding. But not until the mid-1800s began passenger boats between Oslo and Vestfold towns to visit Åsgårdstrand, which made the city a popular bathing and holiday resort. Åsgårdstrand eventually became known as the center for artists because of the unique light here.

Ride on the coastal path from Horten to Åsgårdstrand? Read more ->

There is no doubt that Edward Munch enjoyed staying in Åsgårdstrand, and was inspired as an artist. In 1889, he spent his first of many summers in Åsgårdstrand, and bought a few years later a simple fisherman's house from the 1700s. In this house decorated his living room to serve as bedrooms, study and dining room. Today owned house of Horten Municipality, and it serves as a museum where everything is preserved as it was when Edward Munch lived there. The museum is open every day during the summer months of June, July and August, except Mondays.

The light of the Oslo Fjord and the beaches of Åsgårdstrand fascinates as much today as in Edvard Munch's time.

Edward Munch painted many of the most famous paintings in Åsgårdstrand res, including "Girls on the Bridge" in 1902. There have been many famous artists in Åsgårdstrand, and primarily painters. The place became known as the center for artists and since 1880 a number of artists painted in Åsgårdstrand, among them world names like Christian Krogh and Hans Heyerdahl as well as Edvard Munch, as already mentioned. In the center we find several galleries, and many artists have sommeratelierene its here. The place is known for its distinctive light that is reminiscent of the unique light at Skagen. Artists went to either Skagen or Åsgårdstrand to paint this special light.

Charming café life in Åsgårdstrand streets

In Åsgårdstrand we find a number of inviting restaurants and cafes. If you go up the steep hill from the harbor next to the hotel and turn left at the top, you are moving into a typical Åsgårdstrand-coat with picket fences and whitewashed houses. Here is Frantz Confectionery with backyard cafe next door to the cozy Munch's Café. Here you can sample the local traditional favorite crab wonder. A crab lure is a round donut baking, reminiscent donut. The cafe is a cross between patisserie and restaurant. The chowder here can heartily recommend. And in Åsgårdstrand only pub boathouse has been life for many years. Come and savor the local atmosphere.

Bike ride to art and donuts at
Åsgård Beach

Would you like to have culture, nature, and history without uphill slops this summer? Join the short ride between Horten and Åsgårdstrand, or Åsgård Beach. A bike ride without lots of effort but nonetheless beautiful stretches of coastal path. 

You need not be a bike enthusiast to enjoy cycling from Horten to Åsgårdstrand. You just have to know how to ride a bicycle. The ride is safe for kids, too. The path is clearly marked, and running mostly through forests and hills. It's not far. Uphill conspicuous by its absence, and there is much to see along the way. Don’t have a bicycle? At the tourist office on the pier in Horten, you can rent one for 35 kroner. Then you have the bike and helmet for three days, if you’d like. From Horten, you must ride through some lovely residential areas before going to the forest.

After a few kilometers through the forest, we arrive at Borre, Scandinavia's largest collection of graves from the Viking era. The nine large mounds still reign over the majestic landscape. You can have a picnic under an oak tree, or grab a cup of coffee and watch the show at Midgard Historical Centre. Now comes the final treat of the ride: The last part of the way through Fjugstad nature reserve, with Scandinavia's largest ash forest. The trail is sun speckled, with ash trees closing around us and buttercups growing in the grass. All we hear are birds chirping.

- I'm sitting in the only nice house I have lived in – the house in Åsgårdstrand, wrote Edvard Munch to his friend Sigurd Autumn. If you follow the road straight ahead when entering Åsgårdstrand, you’ll reach Munch's house. The house was bought by Åsgårdstrand municipality in 1944 and is a museum today. Everything here is preserved as it was when the painter lived there. His suit hangs on the wall, collars in the closet, inkwell and pen splits on the table. Munch bought the house in 1897 for 900 kroner. At the time, this was the poor district of Åsgårdstrand.  Fishermen here lived in small houses with their large families. But Munch enjoyed living here. He sought the real and original. Munch came here when he was very young, and was looking for his expression, which was largely shaped here in Åsgårdstrand. Here he met his great love, Mille Thaulow, which he never forgot. She was married, so they faced each other off in bird song, which is the forest we just rode through. Munch’s motives are everywhere in Åsgårdstrand. Portions of Munch iconography, moon pillar, and the shoreline are taken from this area.

Åsgårdstrand offers a variety of galleries, studios, restaurants and nice little shops. Munch Café has been the area’s confectionery since 1914. Back then, the painter often ate krabbelurer, or “crab wonders,” here, which is a kind of roll with donut dough. It’s normal to buy a krabbelurer and take it down to the pier where Munch painted girls on the bridge, sit down on a bench and recharge the return trip: The forty-five minute bike ride on a sunny trail along the lake.