The only canalsystem in Norway connected to the sea.
We will suggest a trip along the Telemark Canal and give you information of sites to see and places to stay with your motorhome og campervan. As always we focus on beutiful freecamp (wildcamp sites) for places to stay overnight with your campervan.
The Telemark Canal have 18 lock levels divided over 8 lock systems to lift boats 72 metres above sea level to the lake of Flåvatn. From here beautiful lake and river reaches take the traveller on to Dalen, 150 km inland, in the heart of the mountains of southern Norway.
The Telemark Canal was completed in 1892 and 500 men had worked for 5 years to bring this waterway into the heart of Telemark. The canal is a living heritage site, and has kept its nineteenth century air, with manual operation of most of the lock gates. The beautiful old walls and lock systems have been preserved in their original form. Along the banks of the canal you can still see the old lock-keepers houses, the smithies, the sawmills, the watchmens cottages and the jetties with warehouses and other buildings.
The contrast between the broad agricultural districts, the wilderness and the old industrial sites makes the Telemark Canal one of the most attractive tourist destinations in Europe. In addition, the water is clean and the fish live well!
Porsgrunn / Skien
These two cities have more or less germinated into each other, and have ritch industrial traditions. The Telemark canal starts here and you can take a tour up the canal with some smaller canal boats. Day trips on the Telemark canal are arranged with a combination of canal boats and bus. The trips can be initiated from several places along the canal, and gives you the possibility to start and end at the same location. It is also possible with at roundtrip all the way to Dalen. Booking and information HERE
Ulefoss / Lunde
Ulefoss is one of Norway’s oldest industrial communities, with sawmills operating from the 1400s; mining and ironworks from the 1600s. Ulefoss is still largely an industrial site, with a number of people employed in the iron foundry and mechanical industries. Ulefoss lock system has three lock chambers with at total lift height of 10.7 meters. The Ulefoss system still stands as it was built in 1891.
The village of Lunde has a large campsite “Telemark Kanalcamping” situated near the Lunde Locks. The canal boats are passing only a few meters from the campsite. This is a great starting point for excursions up and down the canal.
Kviteseid / Vrådal
The landscape changes to steeper mountain sides down to the canal and the highest mountains peaks to over 1000 meters. In Vrådal there are even a ski resort with 5 lifts and several slopes that makes for an attractive destination in the winter.
The end of the journey is Dalen at the very heart of Bandak. Among the well known tourist attractions is the “fairytale hotel” Dalen Hotel wich was completed in 1894 and the veteran ships “Henrik Ibsen” and “Viktoria” in regular traffic on the canal, between Dalen and Skien.
Dalen Hotel – Photo: Erik Solheim