Trondheim historically Kaupangen, Nidaros and Trondhjem, is a city and municipality. Trondheim is the third most populous municipality in Norway, although the fourth largest urban area. It is also the third largest city in the country. The city functions as the administrative centre of Sør-Trøndelag county. Trondheim lies on the south shore of the Trondheimsfjord at the mouth of the river Nidelva. The city is dominated by the Norwegian University of Science and Technology (NTNU), SINTEF, St. Olavs University Hospital and other technology-oriented institutions.
The settlement was founded in 997 as a trading post, and was the capital of Norway during the Viking Age until 1217. From 1152 to 1537, the city was the seat of the Archdiocese of Nidaros; since it has remained the seat of the Diocese of Nidaros and the Nidaros Cathedral. It was incorporated in 1838. The current municipality dates from 1964, when Trondheim merged with Byneset, Leinstrand, Strinda and Tiller.
Most of the downtown area of Trondheim is scattered with small specialty stores and shops, however a considerable part of the downtown shopping area is concentrated around the pedestrianized streets Nordre gate (Northern street), Olav Tryggvasons gate and Thomas Angells gate even though the rest of the city center also is riddled with everything from old, well-established companies to new, hip and trendy shops.
In the mid- to late 1990s, the area surrounding the old drydock and ship construction buildings of the defunct Trondhjems mekaniske Værksted shipbuilding company at the Nedre Elvehavn were renovated and old industrial buildings were torn down to make way for condominiums. A shopping mall was also built, known as Solsiden (The Sunny Side). This is a popular residential and shopping area, especially for young people.
DORA 1 is a German submarine base that housed the 13th U-boat Flotilla during the World War II occupation of Norway. Today the bunker houses various archives, among them the city archives, the university and state archives. More recently, DORA has been used as a concert venue.
Kristiansten Fortress, built 1681–1684, is located on a hill east in Trondheim. It repelled the invading Swedes in 1718, but was decommissioned in 1816 by Crown Prince Regent Charles John.
A statue of Olav Tryggvason, the founder of Trondheim, is located in the city"s central plaza, mounted on top of an obelisk. The statue base is also a sun dial, but it is calibrated to UTC+1 so that the reading is inaccurate by one hour in the summer.
The islet Munkholmen is a popular tourist attraction and recreation site. The islet has served as a place of execution, a monastery, a fortress, prison, and a World War II anti-aircraft gun station.
Stiftsgården is the royal residence in Trondheim, originally constructed in 1774 by Cecilie Christine Schøller. At 140 rooms constituting 4,000 square metres (43,056 sq ft), it is possibly the largest wooden building in Northern Europe, and has been used by royals and their guests since 1800.
A statue of Leif Ericson is located at the seaside, close to the old Customs Building, the cruise ship facilities and the new swimming Hall. The statue is a replica, the original being located at a Seattle marina.
With students comprising almost a fifth of the population, the city of Trondheim is heavily influenced by student culture. Most noticeable is Studentersamfundet i Trondhjem, the city´s student society. Its characteristic round, red building from 1929 sits at the head of the bridge crossing the river southwards from the city centre. As the second largest university in Norway, the Norwegian University of Science and Technology (NTNU) is the host of some 24,000 students. Sør-Trøndelag University College has 6,000 students.
Student culture in Trondheim is characterized by a long-standing tradition of volunteer work. The student society is for example run by more than 1,200 volunteers. NTNUI, Norway´s largest sports club, is among the other volunteer organizations that dominate student culture in Trondheim. Students in Trondheim are also behind two major Norwegian culture festivals, UKA and The International Student Festival in Trondheim (ISFiT). NTNU lists over 200 student organizations with registered web pages on its servers alone.
Rosenborg BK is the city´s premier football club and plays their home matches at Lerkendal Stadion. They have won the Norwegian Premier League twenty two times between 1967 and 2010, and had until 2007 played eleven times in the UEFA Champions League. Byåsen IL plays in the Women´s handball league, and is a regular in EHF Women´s Champions League, playing their home games at Trondheim Spektrum. Rosenborg IHK plays in the premier ice hockey league, with their home games played at Leangen Ishall.