The characterful and charming mountain town of Røros in Norway is an early mining town founded way back in 1644 when the first copper ore was found in the area. Today it’s a living museum which retains most of its original character, with a street layout dating back to the 1600s and authentic wooden buildings from the 1700s and 1800s. Visitors come to explore its narrow streets and old courtyards and buildings, and visit independent shops and interesting workshops selling locally made ceramics, handicrafts, clothing and good food.
A UNESCO World Heritage site since 1980, Røros has worked hard to preserve and protect its heritage and environment, both for present and future generations and in the name of sustainable tourism. Conservation of the buildings, honouring and employing local communities, protecting the cultural heritage and natural surroundings are at the core of their efforts with sustainability, and in 2013 it was certified a sustainable destination by Innovation Norway. Visitor numbers are not yet limited, but there is focus on spreading the visits to other areas within the region that allow for memorable adventures without putting too much pressure on the most vulnerable areas, and the authorities have recently invested in new power stations for electric vehicles.
Røros is not just a fascinating place to visit for a dose of culture and history – it’s also one of Norway’s leading regions for locally produced food. Its sparse landscape and cool mountain temperatures means that food grows slowly and has time to develop a truly distinctive taste. Join a local food safari in the summer to find out more, or enjoy good local food year-round at one of the town’s many good restaurants. The Røros Dairy is 100% organic and is reknowned for its locally sourced organic dairy products.
In 2010, the Røros World Heritage site was expanded to include the splendid surrounding area, called the Circumference – 6,000 square kilometres of wilderness peppered with pine forest, low-growing heather and big Frozen boulders as far as the eye can see which the directors of the Disney hit visited for inspiration and advice before making the hit film.
The hiking is superb, and in Femundsmarka National Park you can also ski, canoe, hunt and fish depending on the season. Lake Femunden, Norway’s third largest lake, is central to all experiences, and in the winter the area becomes the location for the world’s largest dog race, the Femund Race, which features four days of fun-filled winter sports.
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