Photo: Cliff Buschhart
Founded in 997, and initially named Nidaros, the town became the first capital of Norway and is also one of the oldest cities in Scandinavia. Later, the town gained its fame due to the patron saint St. Olav, who was buried at Nidaros Cathedral in 1030, making the town one of five major European pilgrimage destinations in the late Middle Ages.
In 1997 Trondheim celebrated its 1000 years anniversery. It is well known for its Cathedral, Nidarosdomen, and other medieval tourist attractions like the prison island, Munkholmen.
Education and research in the past and present
Trondheim has been a regional trading and communications hub for more than 1000 years, and has long traditions in science and education. Norway's first school, Schola Cathedralis Nidarosiensis, was established in Trondheim in 1210, and still exists as an upper secondary school. In 1760, the Royal Norwegian Society of Sciences and Letters was established as an academic institution, and is still Norway's most prestigious society.
Norway's first technical school was established in Trondheim in 1870. What is today the Norwegian University of Science and Technology (NTNU) was established in Trondheim in 1910 as the Norwegian Institute of Technology, and together with its research foundation SINTEF and the St. Olav's University Hospital, it makes up one of the largest technological and scientific communities in Scandinavia. The oldest part of what is now the University college in Trondheim goes back to the year 1906.
Friendly and safe city
With its 160 000 inhabitants Trondheim has the charm of a small town, but also offers the facilities worthy of a city. Trondheim offers a wide variety of services, such as museums, galleries, beautiful parks, theatres, concert halls, cafes, restaurants, shopping malls, sports installations and other leisure activities. Crime is fortunately rare and the social atmosphere is friendly. The city takes pride in the preservation of its long and varied history, and offers an interesting mix of historical and modern buildings. As in most parts of Norway, mountains, forests and fjords are close by. The city is also experiencing growth in its technological industries and community.
Scenery and climate
Trondheim is situated by the Trondheim Fjord, with Bymarka bordering the city in the south. Bymarka, an ideal area for excursions, is easily accessible and is only 10 minutes from the city centre by bus.
Situated at 63 degrees north latitude, Trondheim is not as cold as one might imagine. During winter the coastal areas of Norway are heated up by the Gulf Stream, and hence since Trondheim is a coastal city, temperatures are quite mild considering how far north the city is. In summer July is the warmest month with a maximum average temperature just below 20 degrees Celsius.
The vibrancy of a university town
The large number of students swell the number of people actually staying in the city to around 175 000. Students can take part in a wide variety of social activities. The Student Union "Studentersamfundet", dating back to 1929, occupies a 7000 m² circular building. The building consists of 350 rooms offering activities such as choirs, a symphony orchestra and a theatre. There is also a library in this building. The individual campuses offer activities such as sports, student newspapers and various kinds of clubs and societies. Every other autumn, students in Trondheim host the nationally acclaimed UKA at Samfundet. UKA, ("the Week"), which is a three week festival for students, is organised and run by students, and is claimed to be one of the biggest cultural events in Norway.
The International Student Festival in Trondheim, ISFIT http://www.isfit.org/ is arranged every other year in February. It lasts for more than a week, and attracts about 450 students from all parts of the world who gather to discuss social and political topics with international relevance. The next ISFiT will take place in 2011.
Getting there & around
Housing, health services, sports and other services for students are organised by the Student Association in Trondheim (Studentsamskipnaden i Trondheim).