Tur? What is it and where does it go?

Aurlandsdalen, 71 grader nord, 2004. Photo:  Bergphoto.net


A lot of tourists bump into the word “tur” when they travel in Norway. This could be a typical conversation between a foreign visitor and his/her Norwegian host planning what to do.

– Do you want to join for a “tur” tomorrow?

– What is “tur”?
– Normally it is a walk, but it could also be running, biking, or cross country skiing in winter.

– What do you do on a “tur”?
– Nothing specific, really. We have a look around, and when it is time for a break, we have a picnic with sandwiches from our backpack.

– Why don’t you just stay home, watch a movie, and have your dry sandwiches at home?
– You feel much better outside, and it is great exercise.

– But why do you want to go out now, the weather is bad?
– It is so nice when you get back here in front of the fireplace.

– How long does it take?
– It depends. Anything from half an hour to all day. Or more.

– Where does it go?
– Typically on a narrow trail, that passes viewpoints or ends up on a peak. Or around a lake. Or across an island. Sometimes you do not decide until you are out there.

The Norwegian “tur”?
The Norwegian meaning of the word “tur” could be numerous things. Normally, we refer to it as a recreational hike in rural surroundings. But it is still mostly an urban phenomenon, to get away from traffic and paved roads and suck in some fresh air. Because when you travel around to pittoresque gems in deep fjords, it is not that common for the locals to have visited the surrounding peaks or places that tourists travel the globe to see.

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