Nine memorable Norwegian news stories from 2017

The Local
The Local - [email protected] • 28 Dec, 2017 Updated Thu 28 Dec 2017 13:17 CEST
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From cycling competitors getting struck down by sheep poo to bus seats being mistaken for burkas, 2017 offered its fair share of remarkable news in Norway.

2017 – an election year – has not shied away from providing its fair share of offbeat Norwegian news stories.

Here, in no particular order, we present our selection of the year’s most ridiculous, notable and downright bizarre.

Norway becomes first country to switch off FM radio

Earlier this month, Norway completed its transition to digital radio, becoming the first country in the world to shut down national FM broadcasts.

The move is not universally popular in Norway, and international interest provided a late contender for one of our most-read stories of the year.

Anti-immigrant Facebook group confuses empty bus seats with 'terrorists'

A far-right Facebook group was mocked when members apparently could not tell the difference between empty bus seats and burka-clad women.

When a user posted a photo of empty bus seats to the Facebook group Fedrelandet viktigst (roughly translated as ‘Fatherland first’), members decried it as proof of the ‘Islamification' of Norway. It was not.

Sheep poo makes cyclists sick

At least 50 cyclists who took part in the TransØsterdalen race at the end of June were struck with fever, stomach pain and diarrhoea, probably due to sheep faeces, which had decomposed during heavy rain and was then sprayed on to bottles, faces and hands.


Discovery of 10,000-year-old petroglyph described as 'sensational'

A petroglyph of a boat discovered in northern Norway was estimated to date back 10,000 to 11,000 years – making it possibly the oldest depiction of a boat in existence.

Google Maps error sends hundreds of tourists to quiet village

An error in Google Maps sent hundreds of early-summer tourists looking for the famous Preikestolen (Pulpit Rock) cliff formation on a narrow, winding detour that ended 30 kilometres away in the village of Fossmork, on the wrong side of the fjord.

At least one visitor made light of the technical glitch, though – according to a Fossmork resident, an American tourist was so taken by the village, he wanted to buy a cabin there.

Norway is world’s second-most expensive place to get a Big Mac

The Economist's Big Mac Index 2017 placed Norway behind only Switzerland as the country with the most overvalued currency, based on the metric of Big Mac prices adjusted for exchange rates against the dollar.

Once readjusted for Norway’s average income, though, the light-hearted science of ‘burgernomics’ had the Norwegian kroner actually undervalued by 3.3 percent as a function of its Big Mac purchasing power.

Turkish cyclist stopped in Oslofjord tunnel after following Google Maps

Google Maps errors were apparently all the rage in Norway this year.

In August, a Turkish cyclist was stopped by police as he was about to begin a three-kilometre incline inside the Oslofjord tunnel after following a Google Maps route into the underpass, resulting in it being closed for 30 minutes.

Local choir behind 'Frozen' soundtrack gets global album launch

One of the feel-good stories of the spring followed a box office behemoth onto the list of the achievements of Cantus, the Norwegian choir who sang the opening track to Disney's animated hit 'Frozen'.

Norwegians take six-metre inflatable Santa to top of Europe's highest sea cliff

A festive hit to round off our list.

An inflatable Santa was given a unique airing at the top of the Hornelen mountain in the Nordfjord region, the result of a quintessentially Norwegian challenge between a group of good-humoured friends. The photos would have made Father Christmas, himself a fan of high altitudes, beam with delight. 

Photo: Svenn Petter Kjerpeset



The Local 2017/12/28 13:17

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