Visiting address:

City Hall Quarter
Rådhusgata 18 - 2nd floor
4611 Kristiansand

Way of life
"It is quite amazing that reconnecting with nature and having an outdoor lifestyle is still part of the Norwegian soul despite this very modern lifestyle that Norwegians have today."
French-born author, blogger, and lawyer Lorelou Desjardins (2019)

A generational bond with nature

It has often been pointed out that there is nothing more Norwegian than the concept of "friluftsliv", and the central role it plays in our life and identity. The Agder regions's stunning coastline and picturesque forests provide ample opportunities to embrace this Norwegian concept of nature-bound, open-air living.

Nestled in Southern Norway, Agder benefits from a milder climate compared to other regions of the country. This allows for year-round outdoor activities including hiking, fishing, cycling and boating. 

Coastal living and maritime heritage

The Agder way of life is intrinsically linked to its coastal heritage. The region's numerous harbors and fishing villages reflect a long-standing relationship with the sea. This maritime influence extends beyond mere geography, shaping a relaxed culture that invites natives, settlers and visitors to embrace life's simple pleasures.

Maritime influence is also evident in the local cuisine and home-cooked recipes. Fresh seafood, game meats, and locally sourced ingredients are staples of the regional diet. An emphasis on the seasonal and local that echoes the broader Scandinavian ethos of sustainability.


A quintessentially Nordic work culture

Like most Scandinavian regions, Agder has a strong emphasis on work-life balance with several key aspects. The average work week is 37.5 hours, with many employers operating with flexible working hours. Employees are entitled to a minimum of five weeks paid vacation per year, as well as paid parental leave for both parents. 

Our workplaces are characterized by a high level of gender equality and flatter power structures that prioritize collaboration and teamwork over formality and status. This encourages employees to actively participate by asking questions and contributing to a healthy work environment. 

Agder at a glance

Location and geography
  • Agder is the southernmost county in Norway, bordering the Skagerrak and North Sea.
  • The coastline of Agder stretches from Gjernestangen (east of Risør) to Lindesnes, and westward to the Sira River.
  • Agder shares borders with the counties of Vestfold and Telemark to the east and Rogaland to the west.
  • Agder's geography is diverse, featuring forests, valleys, heaths, and mountains in the north.
Establishment and politics
  • On January 1, 2020, West Agder and East Agder were merged to create the current Agder County. It consists of 25 municipalities, with Kristiansand municipality as the regional capitol. 
  • The Agder County Council (fylkesting) is the main governing body, consisting of 49 councilors elected for four-year terms.
  • The council has an executive board (fylkesutvalg) that meets more frequently than the full council to handle day-to-day governance.
  • The County Council is led by a Chairperson (fylkesordfører), who also heads the executive board. 
  • The County Executive (fylkeskommunedirektør) oversees the administrative organization.
  • Inhabitants: As of January 1, 2024, Agder had 319,850 inhabitants.
  • Ranking: Agder is Norway's seventh largest county.
  • Growth: Since 2010, Agder has been one of the fastest growing regions in Norway.
  • Reasons for growth: High immigration is the main reason for this growth, but the county also has a somewhat younger population and a slightly higher birth rate than the national average.
  • Immigration: The largest immigrant groups come from Poland, Lithuania, and Syria. 
Historical facts
  • During the early Viking Age, before Harald Fairhair united Norway, Agder was an independent petty kingdom.
  • After Norway's unification, Agder became known as "Egdafylki" and later "Agdesiden", a county within the kingdom of Norway.
  • During the Age of Sail, Agder's outports were crucial service stations for merchant ships traveling between the North Sea and the Baltic Sea.
  • The region has strong ties to the USA due to historical emigration, particularly in areas like Lista, Vanse, Farsund, and Kvinesdal.
Fun facts
  • The name "Agder" is older than the Norwegian language itself, believed to be at least 1,500 years old. Its original meaning remains uncertain.
  • Norway's southernmost point, a skerry called Pysen located southeast of Mandal, is in Agder.
  • The region is sometimes called "The Norwegian Riviera" due to its temperate climate and numerous attractions.
  • Kunstsilo, the ground-breaking museum set inside a meticulously restored grain silo, is located in Kristiansand, Agder. It houses one of the greatest Nordic art collections in the world. 
  • The southern dialect of Norwegian spoken in Agder has a softer tone similar to Danish, with characteristic differences in pronunciation compared to other Norwegian dialects.