Bergen is a municipality and city in the county of Hordaland, Norway.
Bergen is the second largest city in Norway. It is located on the south-western coast-line of Norway, between de syv fjell, "seven mountains", according to folklore. Bergen is also known as the gateway to the fjords of Norway.
A photo of buildings near Bryggen built 1901
Founded as a city by Olav Kyrre in 1070 AD and considered to be Norway's capital until 1299, Bergen toward the end of the thirteenth century became one of the Hanseatic League's four most important cities. The trading activities and administration was located at the bay that forms the centre of Bergen, and the continuous quayside buildings of Bryggen are now on the UNESCO list of World Heritage Sites. The city suffered greatly when the Black Plague was introduced in September 1349 by crew members on Hansa ships and spread to the rest of the country by the following summer. In 1429 descendants of the Victual Brothers attacked Bergen with some ships, plundered the town and burned it down.
Since 2000, the city of Bergen is governed by a city government (Byråd) based on the principle of Parliamentarism. The government consists of 5 government members called commissioners, and is appointed by the city council, which is the supreme authority of the city.
Bergen is renowned for its plentiful rainfall. In average, it rains two out of three days. Yearly average rainfall is 2250 mm (88 inches). Its longest period of uninterrupted rain in recent years was from January 3, 1990 to March 26, 1990. For some years there were vending machines for umbrellas on some streets. However, it did not turn out to be a success.
The University of Bergen  is known for its strong marine biology and geology (petroleum) research. Recently the university was awarded three national centers of excellence  in climate research, petroleum research and middle age studies. It is also home of the Norwegian School of Economics and Business Administration (NHH), a leading business school in Norway. In december 2004, billionaire Trond Mohn donated 250 million NOK to the University for the purpose of research. Only months later (april 2005), he added an additional NOK 50 million.
Industries in Bergen include deep sea shipping, fishing, academia, and services. The nearby Mongstad complex is the largest port in Norway, responsible for about 70% of all wet bulk.
Bergen has an international airport, Flesland, and has a railway line to Oslo. Public transportation is provided by Gaia Trafikk and Hardanger Sunnhordlandske Dampskipsselskap (HSD). There is also a funicular (Fløibanen) and a aerial tramway (Ulriksbanen ).
Bergen is also an important cultural centre in its region and in Norway, maybe best known for hosting the annual Bergen International Festival  (Festspillene). Bergen was a European City of Culture in 2000. Other main cultural events includes Nattjazz  and Bergenfest  (former Ole Blues).
In the late 1990s and early 2000s many musicians from Bergen became famous, in Norway and abroad. Many of whom were connected to the small record label Tellé. In domestic press, this became known as the Bergen Wave. Musicians and bands from Bergen include Kings of Convenience, Röyksopp, Erlend Øye, Annie and Sondre Lerche.
Bergen has a small but thriving scene for contemporary art, most notebly centered around BIT , Bergen Kunsthall , USF  and Bergen center of Electronic Art - BEK .
The local football team, S.K. Brann, plays in the Norwegian premier league (2004).
Ole Borneman Bull was born in Bergen in 1810.
Ludvig Holberg was born there in 1684.
The composer Edvard Grieg (1843-1907) was born and died in Bergen.
Bergen has several sister cities. They are: