An international small town with an exciting historical past.
Sandefjord is a historical town which has become a modern town of culture with a dynamic business life. The history of Sandefjord has been formed by the Viking Age, the shipping industry and whaling in Arctic and Antarctic areas. Sandefjord has a history of pioneer spirit and creativity, daring and bravery.
The Vikings had their very first settlements in Vestfold. The Gokstad Viking Ship which dates from the year 900 was discovered in Sandefjord. Today one can find a replica of this famous ship (the "Gaia“) down at the harbour. Like the Vikings, the urge to go abroad and explore foreign countries led the first whalers to the Artic Ocean. The history of the whalers can be explored at the Whaling Museum and at the Museum's Wharf with a visit aboard the whale-catcher "Southern Actor.“
Sandefjord is also a well known and frequently visited vacation spot for Norwegians.
Vestviken Kollektivtrafikk operates a bus service within Sandefjord and throughout Vestfold. The central bus station is just south of the train station on Møllersgate. Buy tickets on the bus, they accept both cash and credit cards. Another alternative is to buy a travel card at the Narvesen shop at the train station. You can get either a periodekort (period travel card) (unlimited travel in two weeks or a month) or a verdikort (stored-value card) (you must put at least 100NOK on to start with, and can then add as much or as little as you like, in the shop or on the bus). The card itself costs 50NOK.
There is a taxi stand at the train station, the airport and close to the main square. Keep in mind that traveling by taxi in Norway can get really expensive. The local taxi company is Vestfold Taxi +47 33 42 02 00
The Whaling Monument is Sandefjord's most famous attraction. It's a sculpture from 1960 showing whalers in action.
The Whaling Museum (Hvalfangstmuseet), Museumsgata. Gives a very in detail history about whaling in Norway and around the world. It is very in depth, and goes in to great detail about how the whales are hunted and killed so it's not for the easily upset! Also has a collection of mounted Norwegian animals, including a large whale and (downstairs) several whale skeletons.
The whaling ship "The Southern Actor"
The Gokstad mound, Helgerødveien (can be found on the left hand side on the RV 303, about 2 kilometres from the centre towards Tønsberg). The site where the famous Gokstad Viking longboat was excavated in 1880. There are information boards with pictures on the site in English, Norwegian and German about the mound and the excavation.
Go for a walk on the Vesterøya peninsula North Sea Trail. Take the 168 bus to the end of the route (Tveitan) and follow the blue tracks (marked Kyststien) around the point. The tourist information centre has maps. Careful, there are only a few buses per day.
Sandefjord has a charming city center, consisting of a mixture of old and modern buildings and a wide selection of shopping possibilities.
Hvaltorvet, Torget 7, ☎ +47 334 62 866, . Mon-Fri 1000-2000, Sat 1000-1800, Sun Closed. This is the local mall located right next to the main square, they have a variety of different shops and cafés.
Sandefjord has a good selection of restaurants and cafés. What is possibly one of Norway’s best gourmet restaurant outside Oslo, Solvold, is located here in a modern building near the harbour. Also located at the harbour is the fishmonger well known for the excellent quality of its goods and delicacies.
Brygga 11, Geir Skeie, Brygga 11, ☎ +47 955 59 191, . 1200-2230. Seafood Restaurant, serving local delicacies by the waterfront. Open for the summer from April 26 - August 30.
Kokeriet, Brygga 1, ☎ +47 33 46 62 62, . Located at the harbor and is one of the relatively few places where whale meat is regularly served.
La Baguette, Upstairs at Hvaltorvet shopping centre, Jernbanealleen. Excellent sandwiches. Also have icecream.60NOK for a sandwich.
Peppes Pizza, (At the port, to the east of the Color Line terminal). Good national chain. Kids play area.
ICA, Basement of Hvaltorvet shopping centre (On the Torget (main square) near the corner of Jernbanealleen and Hjertnespromenaden). Supermarket.
Statoil, Dronningens gate 40 (north end). A garage with grocery store. Open even over Easter when other shops are closed.
Buying alcohol in stores
Beer can be purchased in supermarkets at a cost of 12-25 NOK for a 0.33l bottle. Supermarkets stop selling beer after 20:00 each day, 18:00 on Saturdays, and 15:00 on holiday weekends. It is not possible to buy beer in a store on a Sunday. It is illegal to drink in public areas. You will get a warning if spotted by a police officer with an open alcoholic beverage in your hand, but if you behave impolitely or he/she see you drinking from it you'll receive a fine starting at 2000 NOK.
Hard liquor or wine can only be bought at the state-owned shop called Vinmonopolet.
Vinmonopolet, Jernbanealleen 13, ☎ +47 22 01 50 00, . Mon-Thur 1000-1800, Fri 0900-1800, Sat 0900-1500, Sun closed.
Pubs and bars
All bars, pubs and restaurants in Sandefjord are smoke-free, which means you have to go outside to smoke. But since you can't drink in public areas, you have to leave your drink inside unless the bar/pub has a designated drink-area.
The price for a half-liter of beer is typically ranging from 70-85 NOK. Closing hours are 02:30. Local legislation says you can't serve any alcohol after 02:00.
Draaben Bar, Torggata 28, ☎ +47 33 47 16 00, . 02:30. Small cosy Bar with a good selection of Whiskeys and Cognacs. Often live music in the weekends. Free entrance.
James Clark Pub & Restaurant AS, Thor Dahlsgate 1-2, ☎ +47 33 45 83 75, . 0230. James Clark Pub & Restaurant is an English pub and restaurant located at the harbor in Sandefjord. Free entrance all days except friday and saturday when they charge 50 NOK
Apartment Hotel Sandefjord, Bjerggata 57, ☎ +47 464 15 175, . Modern apartment hotel in the middle of the old town in the center of Sandefjord.
Clarion Collection Hotel Atlantic, Jernbanealleen 33, ☎ +47 33 42 80 00, . Clarion Collection Hotel Atlantic is a modern business hotel in the northern part of the town center with 114 rooms and free eveningmeal.
Hotel Kong Carl, Torggata 9, ☎ +47 33 46 31 17, . The historic Hotel Kong Carl, located in the heart of the town center, has 33 rooms with 2 different standards.
Rica Park Hotel Sandefjord, Strandpromenaden 9, ☎ +47 33 44 74 00, . Rica Park Hotel Sandefjord is located by the harbour in the town center and is the biggest hotel in town with 350 rooms, saltwaterpool, gym, spa and big conference capacity.
Sandefjord Motor Hotel, Fokserødveien 21, ☎ +47 33 48 90 60, . 3km from Torp airport (TRF) (135NOK by taxi) and 6 km from Sandefjord town center, and well-connected by bus 01 to Sandefjord.
Strömstad - Do as a lot of the locals during summer and take a one-day-trip with the ferry to the summer town of Strömstad in Sweden with or without a car.