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Kristiansand is the urban centre of "Sorlandet" - the south coast area of Norway that is very popular for family summer holidays by the sea and for fishing trips.  It has ferry links to Denmark, Sweden and Britain and an airport with international flights.  Founded in 1641 by the king of Denmark and Norway, its centre is a 1 kilometre square of straight streets called Kvadraturen.

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Denmark used to rule Norway and Kristiansand was the garrison town just scross the Skagerrak (narrow sea) from Denmark.  As with other wooden towns, it suffered a series of large fires, the last one in 1892, leaving only a small part of the original town, in the northern corner of Kvadraturen.  This part - posebyen - was then partly demolished by the planners in the 1950's before people woke up to what they were losing.

The remaining parts of the town were rebuilt in brick and concrete, but the town is pleasant to walk around, especially the car-free parts of the centre.

There are guest harbours and a sandy beach on the south-east side of Kvadraturen, the ferry terminal and train station are on the south-western edge, and a large open nature area of paths and woodland called Baneheia extends beyond the north-west side.  The river Otra flanks the north-east side.
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The coast around here is very popular, with sailing boats and all types of motor boat cruising around enjoying exploring around the skerries (small islands) that dot the coastline.  There are thousands of hyttes beside the coast, many of them for rent.

DON'T confuse Kristiansand (South) with Kristiansund (North)!

Kjevik airport is 16 km to the east of the city centre.

Hotel booking in the Kristiansand area
Hotel booking in Sørlandet West - the south coast west of Kristiansand
Hotels in Sørlander East - the south coast east of Kristiansand
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