Specialty Modernist Architecture Tours
Denmark / Sweden / Norway
Curated by USModernist®

USModernist® is a nonprofit hosting the world's largest educational archive for mid-century Modernist residential architecture.  In 2016, we created wildly popular specialty European tours - exclusive to Modernist architecture. - but they were only offered once a year.  Now, through an alliance with Firebird, one of Europe's largest specialty tour agencies, you can experience unique USModernist® architecture itineraries all year long!

 Did you know that Scandinavia is home to some of the world's best Modernist buildings? It's no secret that Danish, Swedish, and Norwegian design has influenced architectural style for the last century. You will see - and visit - incredible architecture, art, design, and furniture in three countries.  This is a truly thrilling opportunity to see some of the world's best architecture plus the stunning natural beauty of Denmark, Sweden, and Norway. 

Special Features Include:

  • Nearly every day, a morning of guided touring, 4-5 hours typically, and the rest of the day on your own. Grab a quick lunch at a street cafe, or spend a time people-watching as you stroll with a gelato, or explore each city on your own in the late afternoons and evening.

  • Airport shuttle service in both Copenhagen and Bergen.

  • Nice touring buses, with Firebird's own professional licensed guides leading you to great sights every day. Many buses have free wifi. 

  • Your own three-day bus and subway pass around Copenhagen. Public transport is clean, efficient, safe, and brilliant in Scandinavia. Some tours will use public transport.

  • Modern, double-occupancy hotel rooms with free breakfast and free wifi.  Lunches and dinners are on your own.

  • All scheduled site admissions.

  • Roundtrip train/bus from Copenhagen to Malmo.

  • Overnight ferry, double occupancy, from Copenhagen to Oslo, including breakfast.

  • Train from Oslo to Flam via Myrdal. 

  • Hydrofoil from Flam to Bergen. 

  • 3-day public transport card in Copenhagen, 2-day card in Oslo and 1-day cards in Malmo and Bergen, getting you unlimited access to center city bus and subway connections.

  • Emergency Firebird phone support 24-7 during the trip.

  • A free year's membership in USModernist's Mod Squad.

  • A free subscription to the USModernist newsletter.

  • Not included: flights, multiple arrival/departure transfers, other meals not mentioned, optional tours and services, all personal expenses.

Day by Day Schedule

Day 1 - Departure! Fly to Copenhagen, Denmark (CPH) on the airline of your choice. Make your own arrangements or book through Firebird. 

Day 2 - Arrival!  If you arrive between 11am and 2pm, the Firebird Guide will meet you at the Copenhagen airport. Soon you'll be at the beautiful and centrally located Scandic Copenhagen.  Relax in your cozy room or start exploring the charming city center on your own.  We recommend an evening visit to the world-famous Tivoli Gardens, an elegant old-world amusement park.

Your hotel, the beautiful Scandic Copenhagen

Tivoli Gardens

Day 3 - Explore Modern Copenhagen!  After breakfast, you will meet your guide and visit the brilliant Copenhagen Opera House, attracting both opera and architecture lovers from all over the world.  See buildings by the one of the most famous architects in the world, Denmark's Bjarke Ingels, including 8 House, VM Houses, Tietgenkollegiet, and Mountain Dwellings. 

Mountain Dwellings

Copenhagen Opera House

8 House

Day 4 - Sweden and Malmo! In the morning, after having a delicious breakfast, you go to Malmo, Sweden, to explore the country-spanning
Oresund Bridge and the Turning Torso by Calatrava. After lunch (on your own) visit sites in Malmo including Moderna Museet, University Hospital, Hyllie Water Tower, and the Emporia shopping area. On the way back to
Denmark from Sweden, you will visit the fantaastic Blue
Planet, the National Aquarium.

Turning Torso by Santiago Calatrava

Ankarspelet Public Housing

Blue Planet
Day 5 - More Copenhagen then Cruise to Oslo, Norway!  After breakfast you'll go for touring more great modern architecture: the Crystal Building, the Denmark Architecture Center, Frosilo, and the Black Diamond.  
Lunch is on your own. Then you will go to more Bjarke Ingels projects such as Amager Bakke (a ski slope built on a power plant), Urban Rigger, and Superkillen.  That afternoon you board a romantic overnight ferry to Oslo, Norway. Dinner is on your own on board from one of several restaurants. There's also a casino and wellness area.

Urban Rigger

The Crystal Building



The Danish Jewish Museum

Amager Bakke

Ferry to Oslo

Day 6 - Oslo!  In the morning, after having a delicious breakfast on the ship (provided), you arrive in Oslo and start touring Tjuvholmen, which contains the highest concentration of intriguing outdoor design in the entire city. Then you will see the MAD building in the Opera Quarter.  The tour ends at your hotel, the modern Radisson Blu, right in the center of Oslo!  The afternoon is free time for exploring the city. Lunch and dinner are on your own.


MAD Building


radisson blu oslo
Radisson Blu Hotel

Day 7 - More Oslo!  After breakfast, you see the Oslo Opera House, Statoil Office building (considered one of the best office buildings in the world), and Westerdals School of Communication. Lunch and dinner are on your own.

The Westerdals School of Communication

Oslo Opera House

The Statoil Headquarters
Day 8 - Fjord Train to Flam!  Following breakfast you walk across the street to the central Oslo railway station for the scenic train to Myrdal - into the mountains towards Bergen. You'll then connect to the world famous Flam Railway. The Flam Railway is a spectacular train journey of Norway's magnificent nature and fjord landscape. The journey runs through 20 tunnels and 863 meters in altitude in the span of an hour.Lunch is on your own en route, available on the train. You will have an unbelievable train trip admiring the nature and picture-postcard scenery of Norway.  The fjords are the soul of Norway, considered the best preserved attraction on the UNESCO World Heritage List. Upon arrival you are greeted and walk to the Aegir Hotel to rest and relax. Have dinner that night at Aegir Brewery (it's the only restaurant in town, and it's very good!).

Flam Railway

Aegir Hotel and Brewery

Day 9 - Onward to Bergen! After your morning breakfast you'll take the hydrofoil for a 5-hour journey through the beautiful fjords to Bergen. Pack a light lunch from the general store in Flam (there's only one), and there is also food on board.  You have free time that afternoon and evening to explore the city.

Image result for flam fjord
The Flam Fjord

The Scandic Ornen
Day 10 - Beautiful Bergen.  Following breakfast you go on the Floibanen Mountain Train 1000 feet above sea level with amazing views over Bergen. Then you tour Bergen University College, Gronneviksoren student apartments, Norwegian School of Economics, the Documentation Center, and Kranen.

Floibanen Train


Day 11 - The Flight Home, or the Journey Onwards.  After an early breakfast, you shuttle to the Bergen airport to fly out, or you may stay in Bergen to continue your journey.  You will leave with fabulous memories, lots of photos, and a heart full of exciting Scandinavian architecture, wonderful people, and natural beauty!

Register Here

The Fine Print:

This tour requires a valid US passport expiring no later than a year after the tour ends.  There are no travel visas necessary to Scandinavia of Sept 2019; however, Denmark, Norway, Sweden, or the EU may change this requirement and you are responsible for attaining any required visas in advance. Effective Oct 2020, you are required to have a REAL ID form of driver's license to fly in the US domestically (passports and other certain kinds of ID's will also work).

All participants must sign a Firebird/USModernist liability release in order to travel.  Architects can get self-reported CEU hours if arranged in advance with the AIA.  USModernist® curates the tour itinerary; however the tour is staffed entirely by personnel employed or contracted by Firebird.  Hotels are chosen for modernist style, comfort and affordability, walkability, and and central location; other luxury accommodations may be arranged through Firebird for an additional fee.  The itinerary and order of trip events are subject to change without notice or refund.

There is a small but possible risk of overnight stay if flights are delayed from weather, labor unrest, or other causes beyond reasonable prediction, in which case participants are responsible for any additional costs of meals, lodging, transportation, and incidental expenses. 

USModernist® is a division of the 501C3 nonprofit educational archive Modernist Archive, Inc. Proceeds from these tours benefit USModernist's ongoing documentation, preservation, and promotion projects.