Lillehammer (Norwegian pronunciation: [ˈlɪl̥əhɔmɔr]) is a
town and municipality in
Oppland county, Norway. It is part of the
traditional region of Gudbrandsdal. The administrative centre of the
municipality is the town of Lillehammer. As of May 2011, the
population of the town of
Lillehammer was 26,639. The city centre is a
late 19th-century concentration of wooden houses, which enjoys a
picturesque location overlooking the northern part of lake
the river Lågen, surrounded by mountains.
Lillehammer hosted the 1994
Winter Olympics and 2016 Winter Youth Olympics. Before Oslo's
withdrawal from consideration, it was included as part of a bid to
host events in the
2022 Winter Olympics
2022 Winter Olympics if
Oslo were to win the rights
to hold the Games.
9.1 Sports clubs
10 Notable residents
11 In popular culture
12 International relations
12.1 Twin towns — Sister cities
13 See also
15 External links
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").
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.
The area has been settled since the Norwegian Iron Age; it is also
mentioned as a site for council in 1390.
Lillehammer had a lively
market by the 1800s and obtained rights as a merchant city on 7 August
1827, at which point there were 50 registered residents within its
The town of
Lillehammer was established as a municipality on 1 January
Further information: formannskapsdistrikt
The rural municipality of
Fåberg was merged into the municipality of
Lillehammer on 1 January 1964.
Lillehammer was the site of the
Lillehammer affair in 1973, wherein
operatives of the Israeli
Mossad shot and killed a Moroccan waiter
they mistakenly thought was Ali Hassan Salameh, who was involved in
the Munich Massacre.
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
host events part of the
2022 Winter Olympics
2022 Winter Olympics until
Oslo withdrew its
bid on 1 October 2014.
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
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 July 29 to August 7, 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.
By Norwegian standards,
Lillehammer has an inland climate, with the
Scandinavian mountain chain to the west and north limiting oceanic
influences. 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. Recent
decades have seen warming. There has been no overnight air frost in
August since 1978, 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 - 2015)
Record high °C (°F)
Average high °C (°F)
Daily mean °C (°F)
Average low °C (°F)
Record low °C (°F)
Average precipitation mm (inches)
Mean monthly sunshine hours
Source #1: 
Source #2: 
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.
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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
European route E6 passes through Lillehammer.
Storgata shopping area
In addition to the Olympic site,
Lillehammer offers a number of other
Maihaugen, centrally located in Lillehammer, is the largest open-air
museum in Norway, with 185 buildings, mostly from
Lillehammer and the
valley of Gudbrandsdalen.
Garmo stave church
Garmo stave church (built around 1150)
Norwegian Olympic Museum
Norwegian Olympic Museum is the only museum in Northern Europe
that shows whole the Olympic history from the ancient times and up to
today, including all Summer- and Wintergames. The museum also houses
the Norwegian Sports Hall of Fame and a special section about the
Lillehammer `94 Olympic Wintergames. The Museum is located in the
indoor museum at Maihaugen.
Lillehammer Art Museum
Hafjell (Ski resort 15 km (9 mi) from Lillehammer, host of
slalom and super-G in the Olympic games 1994)
Kvitfjell (Ski resort 55 km (34 mi) from Lillehammer, host
of downhill in the Olympic games 1994)
Skibladner is the world's oldest paddle steamer in scheduled
service, launched in 1856. Summer sailings around lake Mjøsa:
Lillehammer, Moelv, Gjøvik, Hamar, and Eidsvoll.
The ski jump at Lysgårdsbakkene.
Sjusjøen is a skiing destination with forest and mountain terrain
only 20 kilometres (12 miles) away (east) from the centre of
Lillehammer in the municipality of Ringsaker.
The Sambandets Utdanning og Kompetansesenter is an army unit located
in the camp
Jørstadmoen 3–4 km (2–2 miles) northwest of
The rock carvings at Drotten, Fåberg, west of Gudbrandsdalslågen
about 1.5 km (0.9 mi) above Brunlaug bridge.
The sculpture Mothership with Standing Matter by
Antony Gormley in a
pavilion by Snøhetta architects close to
The official tourist information for the Lillehammer-region provides
more information about activities and attractions in the region
Olympic ski jump
Lillehammer Ishockeyklubb (The team competes in Norway's major hockey
league, the GET-League.)
Atle Antonsen, a Norwegian comic and actor, was born in
Sigrid Undset lived in
Lillehammer at her home "Bjerkebæk" from 1919
through 1940. She brought her children with her for a short rest,
planning on returning to
Oslo but chose to remain in Lillehammer. She
wrote her most famous works there: the three-volume Kristin
Lavransdatter, the six-volume Sverkholt tales, and the four-volume
Olav Audunssønn. In 1940, because she had expressed strong anti-Nazi
sentiments since the early 1930s, she fled
Lillehammer before the
invading German army reached the town. She returned to Lillehammer
after the war and died there in 1949. She is buried at the cemetery in
Mesnali, a nearby village.
Ingrid Olava, a Norwegian singer and musician was born and grew up in
In popular culture
Netflix Original series
Lilyhammer takes place
in Lillehammer. The show stars Steven Van Zandt, who plays Frank "the
Fixer" Tagliano, a New York mobster who moves to
the U.S. Witness Protection Program after being inspired by the 1994
Winter Olympics to relocate to Norway.
Toki Wartooth the fictional guitarist from the adult swim tv show
metalocalypse was born and raised here
See also: List of twin towns and sister cities in Norway
Twin towns — Sister cities
The following cities are twinned with Lillehammer:
- Autrans, Isère, France
Sarajevo Canton, Bosnia and Herzegovina
- Hayward, Wisconsin, United States
- Hørsholm, Region Hovedstaden, Denmark
- Leksand, Dalarna County, Sweden
- Oberhof, Thuringia, Germany
- Oulainen, Oulu Province, Finland
Shiozawa, Niigata Prefecture, Japan
Lillehammer has also friendly connections with
- Düsseldorf, North Rhine-Westphalia, Germany
Minakami, Gunma Prefecture, Japan
- Bujanovac, Serbia
- Radviliškis, Lithuania
European Youth Parliament
Junior Eurovision Song Contest 2004
St. Mary Church, Lillehammer
^ "Navn på steder og personer: Innbyggjarnamn" (in Norwegian).
Språkrådet. Retrieved 2015-12-01.
Lillehammer awarded 2016 Winter Youth Olympic Games
^ Rygh, Oluf (1900). Norske gaardnavne: Kristians amt (in Norwegian)
(4 ed.). Kristiania, Norge: W. C. Fabritius & sønners
bogtrikkeri. p. 219.
^ "Lillehammers historie" (in Norwegian).
Archived from the original on 11 October 2007. Retrieved 4 January
^ "Historiske Linjer" (in Norwegian). National Archives of Norway.
Retrieved 4 January 2009.
^ "Eklima / met.no, sun hours from Kise 40 km south of Lillehammer".
Norwegian Meteorological Institute. Retrieved 11 September 2016.
^ "Infoclimat.fr". Infoclimat.fr.observations-meteo. Retrieved 11
^ "Lillehammers vennskapsbyer" (Microsoft Word) (in Norwegian).
Lillehammer kommune. Retrieved 31 May 2014.
^ "Radviliskis". Radviliskis. Archived from the original on 8 April
2014. Retrieved 3 May 2014.
Look up lillehammer in Wiktionary, the free dictionary.
Wikimedia Commons has media related to Lillehammer.
Wikivoyage has a travel guide for Lillehammer.
Municipal fact sheet from Statistics Norway
Oppland travel guide from Wikivoyage
Lillehammer Tourist Office
Hafjell ski resort 20 km (12 mi) north from Lillehammer
Kvitfjell ski resort 55 km (34 mi) north from Lillehammer
Norway University of Applied Sciences
Lillehammer Icehockey Club (in Norwegian)
Olympic Park in Lillehammer
Pictures from the Olympic games in 1994¨
Norwegian Olympic Museum
Municipalities of Oppland
Winter Olympic Games
Winter Olympic Games host cities
1928: St. Moritz
1932: Lake Placid
1940: Cancelled due to World War II
1944: Cancelled due to World War II
1948: St. Moritz
1956: Cortina d'Ampezzo
1960: Squaw Valley
1980: Lake Placid
2002: Salt Lake City
Winter Paralympic Games
Winter Paralympic Games host cities
2002: Salt Lake City
Youth Olympic Games
Youth Olympic Games Host Cities
Summer Youth Olympics
Singapore • 2014:
Nanjing • 2018: Buenos Aires
Winter Youth Olympics
Innsbruck • 2016: Lillehammer
Sport in Lillehammer
Søre Ål IL
Kanthaugen Freestyle Arena
Lillehammer Olympic Bobsleigh and Luge Track
Lillehammer Stadium (closed)
World All-Round Speed Skating Championships for Women 1953
World Ice Hockey Championships
1989 (Group B)
World Women's Handball Championship
1994 Winter Olympics
1994 Winter Paralympics
2008 European Men's Handball Championship
2010 European Women's Handball Championship
2016 Winter Youth Olympics
Most populous urban areas of Norway
As of 1 January 2014, according to Statistics
Mo i Rana
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