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A Beginners Guide to Cod Fishing in Norway

Norway, with its rugged coastline, deep fjords, and pristine waters, is a dream destination for anglers from around the world. Among the various species you can catch in Norwegian waters, Cod fishing stands out as a thrilling and rewarding experience, and there is a real chance of catching a world record if you visit the right destination at the right time.

In this blog, we’ll take you on a journey through the basics of Cod fishing in Norway, including when and where to go, what gear to use, and some tips to maximize your chances of landing a big catch.


The best time for Cod fishing in Norway typically spans from late winter to early spring. February to April is the prime Cod fishing season, as this is when these fish migrate closer to the coast to spawn. However, you can catch Cod throughout the year.


Norway boasts an extensive coastline, so you have a multitude of locations to choose from. Some of the top Cod fishing spots include Sørøya, the Lofoten Islands, and lesser-known places such as Senja Island and Loppa. We offer a range of tours all around northern Norway to target Cod, however, the three destinations that we cover can be found in this blog are our top picks for hooking up with that dream 35kg+ fish.

Fishing Rod

A sturdy spinning or baitcasting rod, around 5 to 9 feet in length, is ideal for Cod fishing. Make sure it has enough backbone to handle the weight of Cod. The rod needs to be in the weight range of 200g – 400g casting weight, which will cover most lure work.


Match your rod with a quality spinning or baitcasting reel. Ensure it has a good drag system to handle the strong runs. If fishing is to take place in cold conditions, we would recommend a reel without level wind, as these tend to freeze up in tough conditions.

Fishing Line

Use a braided fishing line in the 20-50lb test range. It offers excellent strength and sensitivity. A marked braid is a must for this style of fishing.

Terminal Tackle

You’ll need a selection of hooks, lures, and swivels. We advise you not to cheap out on these as the Cod will find any weakness in your tackle, and you may lose the fish of your dreams. Leaders need to be replaced regularly as the Cod will roll on your leader and, before long, will cut through.


Cod are opportunistic feeders, and they’ll go for various baits. Popular choices include fish-shaped lures, silver chrome pirks, and a good way of targeting large Cod is with dead baits.

Bottom Fishing

Cod typically dwell near the seafloor. Drop your bait to the bottom and jig it up and down to attract Cod.

Drift Fishing

This is the most popular style of fishing, and this is when you are best to use a lure/shad. Look on your fish finder to see what depths the Cod are sitting at and lower your rig to the depth; this is when depth marked braid is important.

Local Regulations and Licenses

Before you embark on your Cod fishing adventure in Norway, make sure you understand the local regulations. Norway has strict rules regarding catch limits and sizes, and these are in place to ensure sustainable practices and protect the fish population. To find out more information in regards to the regulations in Norway, you can read the official Norwegian Regulations for foreign visitors here.

Dress Warm

Norway’s climate can be chilly, especially during the Cod fishing season. Dress in layers and be prepared for varying weather conditions.

Book a Guided Fishing Holiday

If you’re new to Cod fishing in Norway, consider booking a guided fishing holiday. Local guides know the best spots and can provide valuable expertise.

Respect the Environment

Practice catch and release whenever possible to help preserve the Cod population for future generations.

Be Patient

Specimen Cod fishing can sometimes require patience. Be prepared to wait for the bigger ones to feed, and don’t get discouraged if it takes time to land your trophy fish.


Cod fishing in Norway offers anglers a chance to experience the stunning natural beauty of the Norwegian coastline while pursuing one of the most sought-after fish species in the region. With the right gear, techniques, and knowledge of the best times and places to fish, you’ll be well on your way to enjoying a memorable and successful Cod fishing adventure in Norway. So, pack your fishing gear, bundle up, and get ready to reel in some impressive Cod in the pristine waters of Norway!


If you would like to speak to a member of the Sportquest Holidays sea fishing team about a Cod fishing trip, you can call us anytime on 01603 407596 or by email at

Alternatively, you can take a closer look at all of our Cod fishing tours here on our website. For some fantastic footage of some of the Cod action that can be had in Norway, you can take a look at our Cod fishing playlist, which can be found on our YouTube channel here.

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