Norway street journey itinerary
Planning a Norway street journey will be overwhelming. There are limitless prospects and so many unimaginable issues to see in Norway. The place does one even start?
After all, you need to go to as many locations as you possibly can. Nevertheless, you additionally have to stability the period of time spent within the automobile. You don’t need to transfer so quick that you just really feel such as you’ve spent all the journey sitting within the automobile. That’s not enjoyable. Or the purpose of the street journey journey.
On this Norway street journey, we journey with our two boys, aged 10 and eight on the time. Due to this, buying flights and/or prepare tickets begins so as to add up. Sadly, this eliminates the northern areas, just like the Lofoten Islands, from this specific Norway journey itinerary.
Though we had 12 days for this street journey round Norway, you possibly can simply skip a number of of those locations to cut back it a 7 day Norway street journey. That’s the factor we love most about street journeys – you may make changes as you go!
Issues to contemplate when planning a Norway street journey
Earlier than we dive into every vacation spot on this Norway street journey itinerary, we really feel it’s essential to share a number of of the elements that affect our selections.
- Brief drive days. We don’t need to drive greater than 3 hours per day. Our boys are nice vacationers, however they don’t like lengthy automobile rides. Windy roads and a number of stops can simply flip a 3 hour drive into 6 hours.
- Oslo departure and arrival. It’s cheaper to pick-up and return your car on the similar location. We depart Norway from Oslo and take an in a single day ferry to Copenhagen. This implies backtracking to Oslo, which provides further drive time. You’ll be able to keep away from this by ending your street journey in a unique metropolis, like Bergen, Stavanger, Alesund or Trondheim.
- Household journey. We’re travelling with our two boys. If we didn’t have youngsters with us, we might select a barely completely different route. For instance, we might do the common Pulpit Rock hike, which might imply visiting Stavanger. And, we’d have taken a flight from Alesund again to Oslo.
- Go to the favored Norway points of interest. For this street journey, we need to embody stops in Bergen, Jostedalsbreen Nationwide Park, Aurlandsfjord, Sognefjord, Geirangerfjord and Lillehammer. We additionally need to see a number of of Norway’s iconic stave church buildings.
- Lodging. Visiting Norway in the summertime is pricey. Lodges replenish shortly. There are restricted “household rooms” that match a household of 4. This lack of viable lodging impacts the route and locations we keep. In Oslo we stayed in a two bed room with breakfast included on the Clarion Assortment Lodge Bastion.
Trying to hire a car in Europe?
Take a look at Auto Europe to seek for charges and availability from the highest automobile rental firms in Europe.
We acquired a hybrid Ford SUV from Hertz and did the pick-up/drop-off in Oslo metropolis middle.
We additionally use KAYAK to seek for offers on automobile leases. It helps us get a baseline on pricing.
Above is the 12 day Norway street journey map
The route goes as follows: Oslo > Hemsedal > Borgund > Aurland > Flam > Gudvangen > Bergen > Forde > Jostedalsbreen Nationwide Park > Geiranger > Trollstigen > Lom > Hafjell > Lillehammer > Oslo.
For those who’ve been researching concepts for one of the best Norway street journey itinerary, you could be shocked by the above route. It’s lacking a number of common vacationer locations, like Stavanger and Alesund. We needed to make some powerful selections. We’ll clarify why in every part under.
To see the countryside of Norway, it’s finest to hire a automobile. Public transportation is pricey and restricted. There are alternatives for organized excursions and day journeys. Nevertheless, we discover organized excursions to be difficult with youngsters. We discover them to be too restrictive and cater to wider viewers, which isn’t our choice.
On this submit, we break down every location with drive instances, points of interest and the place to remain.
It doesn’t matter what Norway street journey route you resolve, you’ll be impressed by Norway’s beautiful landscapes and majestic fjords. Additionally, you will look again on the locations you might have visited with slight FOMO. As I write this submit, I’ve had a number of “Doh, we should always have gone there!” moments.
Sadly, that is unavoidable. Until you dedicate a month (or extra) to journey Norway.
Day 1 & 2 – Oslo
We spent 2 nights in Oslo earlier than beginning our Norway street journey. We spent 1 extra night time in Oslo (whole of three nights) after dropping off the automobile rental on the finish of the street journey. Clearly, if in case you have extra time, you possibly can add (or subtract) days at the start or finish of this Norway street journey from Oslo.
There are such a lot of issues to do Oslo.
Go to the Oslo Opera Home and Rådhuset (Metropolis Corridor), stroll alongside Karl Johans Gate to The Royal Palace, wander the fashionable Aker Brygge promenade, go to the Nobel Peace Middle and/or The Nationwide Museum, discover the historic Akershus Fortress, go to the Munch museum and/or Astrup Fearnley Museum of Fashionable Artwork. That ought to hold you busy for a number of days!
Be aware – The Viking Ship Museum is closed till 2026.
For a singular expertise, go to a floating sauna within the Oslo fjord. You’ll discover these situated beside the Oslo Opera Home (see picture under), close to the Munch museum (see the second picture under – we expect that is one of the best location), and there are a number of floating saunas at Aker Brygge promenade.
The place to remain in Oslo
There are many resorts in downtown Oslo. We stayed at Clarion Assortment Lodge Bastion.
The breakfasts in Norway are superb. Consuming at eating places could be very costly in Norway, so having breakfast included together with your lodge will prevent cash.
We researched Oslo condo leases on VRBO however didn’t discover something appropriate for our household in our value vary. Once you think about breakfasts, espresso and lightweight dinners, it’s really extra economical to remain at resorts. This, in fact, is determined by how many individuals you might be touring with.
Day 3 – Oslo to Hemsedal
We picked up our rental automobile at 9:30 AM. Earlier than we left Oslo, we visited Norsk Folkemuseum at Bygdøy. That is an fascinating outside museum and good introduction into Norway’s historical past. The Gol Stave Church (Gol stavkirke) is outstanding. Watch a brief video of the church right here.
We spent 2 hours on the Norsk Folkemuseum. It was 1:30 by the point we left Oslo.
We selected Hemsedal for a number of causes:
- Reasonably priced and obtainable lodging with a household room.
- It’s a 3 hour drive from Oslo (we arrived at 4:30 PM).
- We need to go to the black Borgund Stave Church.
- It’s a ski resort within the the Scandinavian Alps. We plan to hike within the morning.
- It’s a simple 2 hour drive from Hemsedal to Aurland (our subsequent cease)
We stayed at Skogstad Hotell. It’s situated on the principle street (Freeway 52), making it a simple and handy street journey cease.
The household room has an upstairs loft. We just like the privateness and additional house with the loft, which is required after spending the day within the automobile collectively.
Day 4 – Hemsedal to Aurland (through Borgund)
The drive from Hemsedal to Borgund is about an hour. The unique plan for a morning hike in Hemsedal was spoiled by rain. After a fast go to to the ski hill, we made our method to Borgund to go to the spectacular Borgund stave church, constructed round 1180.
We spent an hour on the church and customer middle. It’s probably the most distinctive stave church buildings in all of Norway. We predict it’s price visiting.
The street journey continues with a drive via Lærdalstunnelen, the longest street tunnel on the planet at 24.5 km. It’s a outstanding engineering accomplishment. It has a number of caverns which are illuminated with shiny blue lights in order that drivers can pull over in the event that they want a break.
We selected Aurland for a number of causes:
- We couldn’t discover lodging in Flam, which is the place we initially needed to remain. It’s solely quarter-hour drive from Aurland to Flam.
- There are only some resorts on this space. Due to this, lodge rooms are very costly ($500+ per night time) and availability is proscribed in peak journey season.
- It was difficult to discover a lodge room that accommodates a household of 4.
- Aurland to Bergen is just 3 hours drive.
We stayed at Winjum Cabin Aurland Stegastein.
The property has a number of primary cottages with bunk beds. We thought it will be enjoyable to combine issues up and keep in one among these rustic picket cottages. Upon arrival, the proprietor knowledgeable us that he had overbooked the cottages. To compensate, he supplied us a big 2-bedroom cottage with a full kitchen, lavatory with laundry. It was a pleasant improve!
Stegastein viewing platform
One of many essential points of interest in Aurland is the Stegastein viewpoint. It provides panoramic views of Aurlandsfjord at 650 metres above sea degree.
Sadly, our pleasure to go to this attraction was spoiled by the rain. We had been informed by many individuals that this specific summer season in Norway was exceptionally wet and chilly.
We determined to go to the Stegastein viewing platform the next morning, earlier than leaving Aurland. The excellent news is that the rain stopped. The unhealthy information is that thick fog rolled into the fjord, making it tough to see something from the viewing platform. Watch this video to see what occurred.
It was disappointing, however we did get a number of open views half-way down the mountain.
Strolling on the Stegastein viewpoint overlooking Aurlandsfjord. Or, on this case, a view of the thick morning fog that engulfed the fjord.
Aurlandsfjord is a 17 km arm of Sognefjord, the world’s second longest fjord. Collectively, alongside with the Nærøyfjord, the Aurlandsfjord is without doubt one of the most picturesque fjords on the planet. These West Norwegian Fjords are listed as a UNESCO World Heritage Website.
Within the above picture, for those who look within the distance, you possibly can see a white cruise ship. That’s the city of Flam. It’s a preferred port of name on Norway fjord cruises.
Day 4 – Aurland to Bergen (through Flam and Gudvangen)
We left the Stegastein viewpoint and drove to Flam. We spent about an hour in Flam.
The well-known Flam Railway, or Flamsbana, is ranked as one among Europe’s most spectacular rail journeys. It’s a key characteristic within the vastly common Norway in a Nutshell tour.
We thought-about using the Flam Railway to Myrdal.
It’s an hour every approach, so it takes a number of hours to finish. It was a troublesome choice. Nevertheless, we determined to skip the Flam prepare. The climate was not cooperating that day. It was wet and foggy, with restricted visibility within the mountains. We felt just like the views could be disappointing, like our earlier go to to Stegastein lookout.
We’re disillusioned that we didn’t get to expertise the Flam prepare, but it surely didn’t really feel like the fitting transfer on the time. I’m undecided if we made the fitting choice. It’s such an iconic Norway vacationer attraction.
We left Flam and drove via the Gudvanga Tunnel. It’s Norway’s third longest street tunnel at 11.4 km.
This fjord village is surrounded by waterfalls and plush mountains in each course. There’s a enjoyable Viking vacationer attraction right here, together with a restaurant, restaurant and lodge. Many kayak and paddleboard excursions begin from Gudvangen.
The Flam Railway prepare station is surrounded by mountains and waterfalls.
Among the best components of a street journey is the stunning stuff you’ll uncover on the journey. Tvindefossen is situated simply off the E16 freeway, making it simply accessible. It’s price pulling over and spending a couple of minutes admiring it’s cascading waterfalls.
We continued driving to town of Voss. It has a gondola that takes friends as much as the ski space. The Voss Gondola is claimed to be the largest and most trendy mountain gondola in Northern-Europe.
Sadly, we didn’t find out about this gondola. We most likely would have deliberate our day in another way had we recognized. It appears like a enjoyable place to spend a number of hours.
Day 5 – Full day in Bergen
We arrived in Bergen at 4:00 PM on Day 4. On condition that we determined to skip the Flam Railway, this was sooner than initially anticipated.
After checking into our Bergen lodge room, we made our method to the Fløibanen funicular, one among Bergen’s most visited vacationer points of interest. Rain was anticipated the next day, so we determined to do that exercise on the finish of day 4, as an alternative of on Day 5. It was the fitting name. The climate was considerably cooperative that night.
The subsequent day is a full day in Bergen. After altering resorts three nights in a row, it’s good to have a number of nights in the identical place. It’s essential to stability our need to see every little thing with transferring too quick.
Sadly, the rain was nonetheless hanging round. Due to this, we determined to go to Bergen Aquarium, Akvariet, stated to be Norway’s largest aquarium. Visiting the aquarium was a pleasant change of tempo. Our boys loved the go to. You solely want a pair hours, at most, to see the displays.
The place to remain in Bergen
There are many resorts in central Bergen. We stayed within the Bryggen space, which is costlier however centrally situated inside strolling distance to most points of interest. Bryggen, the outdated wharf of Bergen, is arguably Bergen’s hottest vacationer points of interest and is listed as a UNESCO’s World Heritage Website.
We stayed at Clarion Assortment Lodge Havnekontoret. It’s situated near Bryggen on the waterfront.
We loved this property and would suggest it. Much like the Clarion in Oslo, it provides a day tea and lightweight dinner buffet, together with the breakfast buffet, included within the lodge value. It is a good characteristic that made our keep extra gratifying and price efficient.
View from the lookout tower at our lodge. The Clarion Assortment Lodge Havnekontoret provides beautiful views of Bryggen’s picket rooftops and Bergen’s Previous City.
Day 6 – Bergen to Forde
The Norway street journey continues north, from Bergen to Førde.
We hit the street after a late breakfast and made our method to Ytre Oppedal. That is the place the freeway turns right into a ferry crossing. We arrive simply because the ferry departs from Ytre Oppedal to Lavik, so we wait about 20 minutes for the following ferry to reach.
We had been just a little confused about how the ferry crossing works. There may be not place to buy tickets. You drive your car right into a lane and wait to board the ferry. Automobiles are robotically charged the ferry toll. Most rental automobiles could have the autopass set-up, so that you don’t have to do something.
Why did we select to remain in Forde?
We struggled to seek out lodging within the space. Initially, we thought-about staying in Skei, on the Thon Associate Lodge Jolster. Nevertheless, there have been no household rooms obtainable on the time. We discovered this to be a typical theme when reserving resorts at peak summer season journey season.
As a substitute, we selected to remain within the city Forde as a result of it’s a 3 hour drive from Bergen. Keep in mind, that’s one among our targets for this Norway street journey.
We stayed at Forde Gjestehus og Tenting. This campground has a number of choices, from personal cottages to RV campsites to flats.
We selected the 2 bed room condo. It’s a spacious condo with full kitchen and laundry, which is simply what we would have liked. There’s a grocery retailer near the campground, in order that night was spent buying, cooking and doing laundry. The much less glamourous aspect of street tripping.
We loved our keep at this property and would suggest it.
Nevertheless, if we might do it over once more, we might skip Forde and drive straight to Olden or Leon.
This can add 2 hours to the drive, making it an extended 5 hour drive from Bergen. BUT, after visiting Briksdalsbreen in Jostedalsbreen Nationwide Park, we’d suggest the longer drive to spend extra time on this space. It’s beautiful right here.
There are a number of campgrounds with small cottages alongside the street from Olden to Briksdalsbreen. The rooms are primary, so don’t count on a elaborate breakfast buffet. However for those who’re open to a country cabin expertise, we’d suggest this space as an alternative of Forde.
The colourful color of Oldevatnet Lake is spectacular. Severely, watch this video to see for your self. You need to spend time at this lake for those who can.
Day 7 – Jostedalsbreen Nationwide Park
Jostedalsbreen is the biggest glacier in continental Europe. Jostedal Glacier has a complete space of 487 sq. kilometres (188 sq. miles). As you possibly can think about, there are a number of locations to view the glacier, so that you’ll have to decide on what route is finest for you.
If you wish to do a glacier hike at Jostedalsbreen, you’ll need to enter on the south aspect of the glacier. Right here’s extra data about Jostedal Glacier climbing. For those who select this route, you’d need to drive from Bergen to Guapne or Sogndalsfjøra. Consider, this can add a number of further hours of drive time.
We selected to see the glacier from Briksdalsbreen, an arm of the Jostedalsbreen Glacier. It’s a 5 km hike spherical journey (2.4 km every approach), from the parking zone to the Briksdalsbreen Sightseeing Spot. It’s a reasonable hike with stairs and approx. 200 metre elevation.
For those who’re not up for the hike, you possibly can soar on the glacier shuttle that takes you many of the method to the glacial lake. You catch the shuttle beside the souvernirshop in Briksdal. The Troll automobile takes about 1.5 hours roundtrip.
Drive from Forde to Briksdalsbreen to Geiranger
We left Forde at 10:00 AM. The drive from Forde to Briksdalsbreen takes about 2 hours. It’s a ravishing drive, particularly the street from Olden to Oldevatnet Lake.
We arrived on the Briksdalsbreen parking zone round 12:00 PM. We spent 3 hours contained in the park.
After visiting Briksdalsbreen, we drove to Olden and stopped for a late lunch. Then we pushed on to Geiranger, our remaining vacation spot for the day.
It was an extended day of driving. About 5 hours in whole. As talked about above, we’d somewhat have accomplished the additional 2 hours the day earlier than, as an alternative of staying in Forde. That approach, we’d solely have about 2.5 hours drive from Briksdalbreen to Geiranger.
You’ve got two choices to get from Stryn to Geiranger.
There’s a automobile ferry from Hellesylt to Geiranger (extra data and pricing right here). Otherwise you drive to up the mountain move to Djupvatnet Lake (image under) and down the well-known switchbacks of Geirangervegen.
It was raining closely as we drove down this windy street, which provides to the thrill.
Day 8 – Geirangerfjord
We spent two nights within the village of Geiranger. This provides one full day to discover, with none driving. After days of driving, it’s good to have a break day.
Geirangerfjord is one among Norway’s best treasures. Surrounded by steep cliffs and towering mountains, Geirangerfjord is a UNESCO World Heritage Website that should be included in your Norway street journey itinerary.
The village is touristy and a few would possibly say you solely want a number of hours right here. We spent a full day in Geiranger in order that we might be part of a fjord safari on a RIB Boat. It’s a enjoyable method to expertise the majestic Geirangerfjord from a unique viewpoint.
Right here’s a brief video of the Seven Sisters Waterfall.
We loved our two nights in Geiranger. The highly effective waterfall that splits via town is a sight to behold. And we did the Geiranger zipline and nature park. It’s a small however enjoyable course.
We stayed at Havila Lodge Geiranger, pictured above. It’s completely situated on the waterfront with quick access to the village eating places and vacationer outlets. The rooms are small however clear and cozy. It’s property to spend an evening or two.
Day 9 – Lom and Hafjell
The Norway street tip continues. We left Geiranger at 10:00 AM and backtracked up the dizzying Geirangervegen. There are a number of lookout factors alongside this spectacular freeway, together with the Geiranger Skysslag (Skywalk).
Sadly, the rain and fog adopted us to Geiranger and, like Stegastein a number of days earlier, the spectacular views had been nothing greater than thick fog.
As we approached the city of Lom, we determined to take a break. And we’re glad we did! Lom is known for Lom Stave Church, one of many few remaining stave church buildings in Norway, and Lom Nationwide Park Village.
Our boys had been feeling stressed that day, so we made a go to to Lom Aktivitetspark. We spent about 1.5 hours at this journey park earlier than driving to Hafjell, the place we might spend the following two nights.
Do you observe us on Fb? If not, come say hi there!
Geiranger to Alesund / 10 day Norway street journey
An alternative choice is to drive from Geiranger to Alesund, which is about 2.5 hours drive with a ferry crossing. You’ll end the street journey right here and catch a flight from Alesund to Oslo or Bergen. This may provide you with an ideal 10 day Norway street journey itinerary.
We thought-about this selection. And, we’re disillusioned that we missed Alesund on this street journey. It appears like a extremely cool metropolis.
Nevertheless, the price of 4 flights plus the extra expense for not returning the rental automobile to the unique location, was too costly for us.
Subsequently, we selected to drive again to Oslo and spend a pair nights in Lillehammer on the way in which.
Day 10 – Hafjell and Hunderfossen Familiepark
We selected to remain in Hafjell as a result of we needed to take our boys to Hunderfossen Familiepark, also called Hunderfossen Fairytale Park.
There’s solely so many stave church buildings and fjords that our boys can deal with. We really feel it’s essential to breakup the sightseeing and lengthy drives with some child pleasant actions, too.
It was the fitting choice. We had a blast spending the day at Hunderfossen. It’s a smaller amusement park, when in comparison with a few of the parks in North America. It’s the right dimension park for the age of our boys. A pleasant mixture of simple curler coasters, mini-golf, river rafting, go karts and, naturally, a lot of Norwegian trolls!
We’ll write a separate weblog submit about Hunderfossen quickly.
Enjoyable reality – Hafjell hosted the alpine snowboarding technical occasions (large slalom and slalom) on the 1994 Winter Olympics in Lillehammer.
The place to remain in Hafjell
We rented a non-public alpine condo close to the Hafjell gondola – Hafjell Resort Alpin Residences Solsiden. Pictured above.
We stayed in a 2 bed room condo with full kitchen and personal sauna. It’s a pleasant property and placement, particularly for those who go to in the course of the ski season. Having separate rooms is a pleasant change of tempo. We picked up groceries from the close by grocery retailer and used the kitchen as an alternative of consuming at eating places.
Earlier than leaving Hafjell, we deliberate to trip the gondola to the highest of the mountain. The gondola is open in the summertime for mountain biking and climbing. It’s solely 9 minutes to the highest and the gondola is situated proper beside our condo rental, so we thought it will be a enjoyable exercise earlier than our remaining drive again to Oslo.
Sadly, it was closed that day. Apparently that Monday was the beginning of the shoulder season (it was mid-August), so the gondola was closed in the course of the week. Summer season hours of operation ended the day earlier than, after we had been at Hunderfossen Familiepark.
Are you able to see the operating man holding a torch within the above picture? It’s simpler to see within the winter when the mountain is roofed with snow.
It’s referred to as Fakkelmannen (or The Torchbearer in English). This mountainside mural was created for the 1994 Winter Olympics in Norway. It’s an iconic image of these winter video games.
Day 11 – Lillehammer to Oslo
The Norway street journey continues. We left Hafjell round 10:00 AM and drove quarter-hour south to Lillehammer, host metropolis of the 1994 Winter Olympics in Norway.
We spent a pair hours in Lillehammer. It’s a pleasant metropolis. We visited the long-lasting Lysgårdsbakkene Hoppanlegg, dwelling of the Lillehammer Olympic ski leaping occasions. We’re a snowboarding and snowboarding household, so it’s enjoyable to see the Lillehammer Olympiapark.
After lunch, we accomplished the ultimate leg of the street journey. It’s about 2 hours from Lillehammer to Oslo.
Day 12 – Depart Oslo
We arrived in Oslo late afternoon. After spending near an hour looking for a fuel station in rush hour visitors, we dropped off the rental automobile.
We booked a lodge that’s inside strolling distance to the automobile rental location. That approach, we prevented discovering transportation to get to our lodge.
For our remaining night time in Norway, we stayed on the Clarion Assortment Lodge Savoy. For those who’ve been paying consideration, this was our third keep at a Clarion Assortment lodge. We like this lodge chain and would suggest it.
The next day, we boarded the DFDS Ferry from Oslo to Copenhagen. And similar to that, our nice Norway journey was over.
Congratulations. You made it this far! Properly accomplished.
Once I began scripting this submit, my aim was to maintain it lower than 2,000 phrases. I failed miserably.
Hopefully you discovered this 12 day Norway street journey itinerary useful. You’ll be able to shrink this itinerary to turn into a shorter street journey, however I’d suggest spending at the very least 7 days for a correct Norway street journey.
Are you planning a Norway street journey?
When you’ve got questions, depart us a remark under. We’ll do our greatest to reply in a well timed method.