Last updated
Lillehammer kommune
Lillehammer City.jpg
Norway Counties Innlandet Position.svg
Innlandet within
NO 3405 Lillehammer.svg
Lillehammer within Innlandet
Coordinates: 61°7′N10°28′E / 61.117°N 10.467°E / 61.117; 10.467 Coordinates: 61°7′N10°28′E / 61.117°N 10.467°E / 61.117; 10.467
Country Norway
County Innlandet
District Gudbrandsdal
Administrative centreLillehammer
  Mayor (2019)Ingunn Trosholmen (politician)
  Total477 km2 (184 sq mi)
  Land450 km2 (170 sq mi)
Area rank211 in Norway
  Rank33 in Norway
  Density56/km2 (150/sq mi)
  Change (10 years)
Demonym(s) Lillehamring [1]
Time zone UTC+01:00 (CET)
  Summer (DST) UTC+02:00 (CEST)
ISO 3166 code NO-3405
Official language form Bokmål [2]

Lillehammer (Urban East Norwegian:  [ˈlɪ̂lːəhɑmər] ) is a town and municipality in Innlandet county, Norway. It is part of the traditional region of Gudbrandsdal. The administrative centre of the municipality is the town of Lillehammer. As of 2018, the population of the town of Lillehammer was 28,034. The city centre is a late nineteenth-century concentration of wooden houses, which enjoys a picturesque location overlooking the northern part of lake Mjøsa and the river Lågen, surrounded by mountains. Lillehammer hosted the 1994 Winter Olympics and 2016 Winter Youth Olympics. [3] Before Oslo's withdrawal from consideration, it was included as part of a bid to host events in the 2022 Winter Olympics if Oslo were to win the rights to hold the Games.


Populated places

Lillehammer Municipality is further subdivided into the following populated places (i.e.: neighborhoods, quarters, villages, localities, settlements, communities, hamlets, etc.):


The municipality (originally the parish) was named after the old Hamar (Norse Hamarr) farm, since the first church was built there. The name is identical with the word hamarr (rocky hill). To distinguish it from the nearby town and bishopric, both called Hamar, it began to be called "little Hamar": Lilþlæ Hamar and Litlihamarr, and finally Lillehammer. It is also mentioned in the Old Norse sagas as Litlikaupangr ("Little Trading Place"). [4] [5]


The coat-of-arms was granted in 1898 and shows a birkebeiner, carrying a spear and a shield, who is skiing down a mountainside. It symbolizes the historical importance of when the Birkebeiners carried the to-be-King Haakon from Lillehammer to Rena on skis. [6]


A church in Lillehammer Lillehammer kirke.JPG
A church in Lillehammer

The area has been settled since the Norwegian Iron Age. It is also mentioned as a site for Thing assembly in 1390.

Lillehammer had a lively market by the 1800s and obtained rights as a market town on 7 August 1827. There were 50 registered residents within its boundaries then.

The town of Lillehammer was established as a municipality on 1 January 1838.

The rural municipality of Fåberg was merged into the municipality of Lillehammer on 1 January 1964.

In 1973, Mossad killed a Moroccan waiter, having mistaken him for Palestinian terrorist Ali Hassan Salameh, which became known as the Lillehammer affair .

Lillehammer is known as a typical venue for winter sporting events; it was host city of the 1994 Winter Olympics, and the 2016 Winter Youth Olympics, and was part of a joint bid with applicant host city Oslo to host events part of the 2022 Winter Olympics until Oslo withdrew its bid on 1 October 2014.

Lillehammer is home to the largest literature festival in the Nordic countries, and in 2017 was designated as a UNESCO City of Literature.


A number of schools are located in Lillehammer including the Hammartun Primary and Lower Secondary School, Søre Ål Primary School and Kringsjå Primary and Lower Secondary School. Lillehammer Public High School consists of two branches, North and South, both situated near the city center. The private High school Norwegian College of Elite Sports, NTG, also has a branch in Lillehammer. The Lillehammer campus of Inland Norway University of Applied Sciences is situated just north of the town itself.

Lillehammer is also the home of the Nansen Academy - the Norwegian Humanistic Academy. The Nansen Academy is an educational institution for adult students with varied political, religious, and cultural backgrounds. The Academy was founded on the core principles of humanism and aims at strengthening the knowledge of these principles.

The 14th World Scout Jamboree was held from 29 July to 7 August 1975 and was hosted by Norway at Lillehammer.


Lillehammer is situated in the lower part of Gudbrandsdal, at the northern head of lake Mjøsa, and is located to the south of the municipality of Øyer, to the southeast of Gausdal, northeast of Nordre Land, and to the north of Gjøvik, all in Oppland county. To the southeast, it is bordered by Ringsaker municipality in Hedmark county. To the northwest is the mountain Spåtind.

Lillehammer is situated in an inland valley with reliable snow cover in winter Lillehammer Panorama (2237447375).jpg
Lillehammer is situated in an inland valley with reliable snow cover in winter


Lillehammer has a humid continental climate (Dfb), with the Scandinavian mountain chain to the west and north limiting oceanic influences; however, for the latitude, the climate is still relatively mild. The record high of 34 °C was recorded in June 1970. The record low of -31 °C was recorded in December 1978 and January 1979, and the same low was recorded in January 1987. There has been no overnight air frost in August since 1978 (the record low for that month being -0.6° C (30.9° F), a sufficient temperature for air frost), and the coldest recorded temperature after 2000 is -26.2 °C in January 2010. The current weather station Lillehammer-Sætherengen became operational in 1982; extremes are also from two earlier weather stations in Lillehammer.

Climate data for Lillehammer (240 m; average temperatures 2004 - 2015; extremes 1957 - 2018)
Record high °C (°F)10.4
Average high °C (°F)−3.5
Daily mean °C (°F)−5.5
Average low °C (°F)−7.6
Record low °C (°F)−31.0
Average precipitation mm (inches)39
Mean monthly sunshine hours 28681261682122422371951368344181,557
Source #1: [7]
Source #2: [8]


The basis for the city's commerce is its position as the northernmost point of the lake Mjøsa and as the gateway for the Gudbrandsdal region, through which the historical highway to Trondheim passes. The Mesna river has provided the basis for several small industries through the years, but Lillehammer is now all but industry-less.


One of the major Norwegian rail lines, the Dovre Line, runs from Hamar to the north through Lillehammer on its way up the Gudbrandsdal, to terminate in Trondheim.

European route E6 passes through Lillehammer.


Storgata shopping area Lillehammer Storgata.jpg
Storgata shopping area

In addition to the Olympic site, Lillehammer offers a number of other tourist attractions:

The official tourist information for the Lillehammer-region provides more information about activities and attractions in the region


Olympic ski jump Lillehammer Ski Jump.jpg
Olympic ski jump

Sports clubs

Notable residents

International relations

Twin towns – Sister cities

The following cities are twinned with Lillehammer: [11]

Lillehammer has also friendly connections with

See also

Related Research Articles

Hamar City in Innlandet, Norway

Hamar[ˈhɑ̂ːmɑr](listen) is a town in Hamar Municipality in Innlandet county, Norway. It is part of the traditional region of Hedmarken. The administrative centre of the municipality is the town of Hamar. The municipality of Hamar was separated from Vang as a town and municipality of its own in 1849. Vang was merged back into Hamar on 1 January 1992.

1994 Winter Olympics 17th edition of Winter Olympics, held in Lillehammer (Norway) in 1994

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Øyer Municipality in Innlandet, Norway

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Gudbrandsdalen District in Innlandet, Norway

Gudbrandsdalen is a valley and traditional district in the Norwegian county of Innlandet. The valley is oriented in a north-westerly direction from Lillehammer and the lake of Mjøsa, extending 230 kilometers (140 mi) toward Romsdalen. The river of Gudbrandsdalslågen (Lågen) flows through the valley, starting from Lesjaskogsvatnet and ending at Mjøsa. The Otta river flowing through Otta valley is a major tributary to Lågen. The valleys of the tributary rivers such as Otta and Gausa (Gausdal) are usually regarded as part of Gudbrandsdalen. The total area of the valley is calculated from the areas of the related municipalities. Gudbrandsdalen is the main valley in a web of smaller valleys. On the western side there are long adjacent valleys: Ottadalen stretches 100 km from Otta village, Gausdal some 50 km from Lillehammer and Heidal some 40 km from Sjoa. Gudbrandsdalen runs between the major mountain ranges of Norway including Jotunheimen and Dovrefjell-Rondane.

Mjøsa lake in Stange, Akershus, Norway

Mjøsa is Norway's largest lake, as well as one of the deepest lakes in Norway and in Europe. It is the fourth-deepest lake in Norway. It is located in the southern part of Norway, about 100 km north of Oslo. Its main tributary is Gudbrandsdalslågen in the north; the only distributary is Vorma in the south. Inflows would theoretically need 5.6 years to fill the lake. With an average depth of 153 meters, most of the lake's volume is under sea level. Average outflow is 316 m3/s or 9959 million m3. Mjøsa contains about 56 km3 of water compared to 15 km3 of Røssvatnet, the second largest volume of lakes in Norway.

Alpine skiing at the 1994 Winter Olympics 1994 edition of the alpine skiing competitions during the Olympic Winter Games

Alpine Skiing at the 1994 Winter Olympics consisted of ten alpine skiing events, held north of the host city of Lillehammer, Norway. The speed events were held at Kvitfjell and the technical events at Hafjell from 13–21 February.

Eidsiva Arena arena

Eidsiva Arena is an arena located at Stampesletta in Lillehammer, Norway. It consist of an ice rink, a combined handball and floorball court, and a curling rink. The venue, owned and operated by the Lillehammer Municipality, opened in 1988 and cost 65 million Norwegian krone (NOK) to build. One of the motivations for its construction was to help Lillehammer's bid to be selected as the host of the 1994 Winter Olympics. The ice rink has a capacity for 3,194 spectators and is the home rink of GET-ligaen hockey club Lillehammer IK. Eidsiva Arena is located next to the larger Håkons Hall, which opened in 1993. During the 1994 Winter Olympics, Kristins Hall was a training rink, and subsequently hosted the ice sledge hockey tournament at the 1994 Winter Paralympics. The venue also co-hosted Group B of the 1989 World Ice Hockey Championships.

Kvitfjell ski resort

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Hamar Airport, Stafsberg airport in Hamar, Norway

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Hafjell ski resort in Norway

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Stampesletta is a multi-use stadium complex in Lillehammer, Norway. Owned and operated by Lillehammer Municipality, it consists of a track and field venue, an artificial turf football field, three natural grass football fields, a gravel field and natural grass training pitches. In addition, it features a club house, locker facilities and a grandstand between the athletics and artificial turf fields. The venue is located about 1 kilometer (0.6 mi) from the town center, and serves as the home ground for the Second Division side Lillehammer FK, Lillehammer KFK, Roterud IL in football, and Lillehammer IF in athletics.

Lillehammer Olympic Bobsleigh and Luge Track

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Kanthaugen Freestyle Arena building in Lillehammer, Oppland, Norway

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Venues of the 1994 Winter Olympics Wikimedia list article

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Venues of the 2016 Winter Youth Olympics Wikimedia list article

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  2. "Forskrift om målvedtak i kommunar og fylkeskommunar" (in Norwegian).
  3. Lillehammer awarded 2016 Winter Youth Olympic Games
  4. Rygh, Oluf (1900). Norske gaardnavne: Kristians amt (in Norwegian) (4 ed.). Kristiania, Norge: W. C. Fabritius & sønners bogtrikkeri. p. 219.
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  6. "Historiske Linjer" (in Norwegian). National Archives of Norway. Archived from the original on 11 April 2016. Retrieved 4 January 2009.
  7. "Eklima /, sun hours from Kise 40 km south of Lillehammer". Norwegian Meteorological Institute. Archived from the original on 30 November 2016. Retrieved 11 September 2016.
  8. "". Retrieved 11 September 2016.
  11. "Lillehammers vennskapsbyer" (Microsoft Word) (in Norwegian). Lillehammer kommune. Retrieved 31 May 2014.
  12. "Radviliskis". Radviliskis. Archived from the original on 8 April 2014. Retrieved 3 May 2014.