Norway has over 1,700 fjords. Every single one of them has its own distinctive character. But, if you only have time to visit some of them, which fjords are unmissable, and what does each fjord have to offer? Here, we present some real treats for you: 7
Norwegian fjords offering adventures and experiences you will never forget.
1. Nærøyfjord — A stunningly beautiful UNESCO-listed fjord
Nærøyfjord is a sight to behold at any time of year. Whether you see it in its winter blanket of frost and snow, with its emerald-coloured glacier meltwater in spring or its green, flower-speckled hillsides in summer, or in its brightly coloured autumnal splendour.
Nærøyfjord is a UNESCO World Heritage Site. National Geographic magazine voted the fjord "The best unspoiled travel destination in the world" in 2004. When CNN chose its 50 most awe-inspiring natural wonders in 2017, it wrote: “If you only have time to visit two fjords in your lifetime, make it the Geirangerfjord and Naeroyfjord in southwest Norway” The two fjords shared tenth place in competition with other famous natural wonders worldwide. Other amazing places on the list included Preikestolen at Lysefjord, Stromboli volcano, the Salar de Uyuni salt flat in Bolivia and the Ngorongoro Crater in Tanzania.
Beautiful, narrow Nærøyfjord is 17km long. The fjord is an arm of Aurlandsfjord. Nærøyfjord ends at the little village of Gudvangen, located at the very tip of the fjord arm. On the tour, you will experience both cascading waterfalls, idyllic villages and many more sights that will linger long in your memory.
Fjord cruises depart twice daily in winter and five daily departures in summer from Flåm and Gudvangen. You can book tickets
here. From Flåm, you can also go on a guided fjord safari by RIB-boat and get close to Norwegian nature and culture along Nærøyfjord. One of the world's most spectacular train journeys runs from Flåm to Myrdal. Read more about the Flåm Railway and book your tickets here.
READ MORE: What type of holiday do you prefer? Find the fjord that's right for you (Fjords & Sightseeing)
2. Lysefjord — broad and majestic
In the southwest of Norway, not far from the oil capital of Stavanger, majestic Lysefjord has carved a 42km-long gorge into the landscape. Join a cruise on the fjord, relax and soak in the imposing rock formations towering over
Lysefjord. The two best-known formations are the cliffs of Preikestolen (Pulpit Rock) and Kjerag.
Preikestolen is one of Norway's most popular tourist destinations. Around 30,000 tourists visit the attraction every year. The famous mountain ledge was voted by Lonely Planet as the world’s “Most Breathtaking Viewing Platform” in 2015. And in 2017, Preikestolen topped CNN's list of the natural wonders of the world.
If you've ever seen the movie “Mission: Impossible - Fallout", you will also have seen those incredible stunts by Tom Cruise from Preikestolen. The granite wall of Kjerag towers 1084 vertical metres up from the valley floor and makes an impressive sight from Lysefjord.
Around 300 metres from the Kjerag plateau is Kjeragbolten, a particularly challenging rock formation for daredevils and a favourite photo opportunity for everyone. From Stavanger, you can join a day cruise on Lysefjord. If you have more time to spare, you can walk up to Preikestolen or Kjerag. Just remember to wear sturdy footwear and take plenty of clothes, food and drink with you.
Read more about Lysefjord and fjord cruises
3. Geirangerfjord — Norway at its most beautiful
Like Nærøyfjord, you will also find
Geirangerfjord on UNESCO’s World Heritage List. Few places have featured in as many photographs as this 15km-long fjord. Geirangerfjord is actually one of Norway's most famous and popular destinations, both for Norwegians and for visitors from abroad.
If you take a cruise on Geirangerfjord, you can get close to waterfalls and imposing mountains from the comfort of your boat. On the trip, you will get to experience the Knivsflåfoss waterfalls, better known in English as the ‘Seven Sisters’. The name of the waterfalls originates from the water cascading down the mountainside, which is reminiscent of the hair of seven women.
On the other side of the fjord, you will find the waterfall known as Friaren. The name of this waterfall comes from a legend about a suitor who repeatedly proposed to the Seven Sisters, but was rejected every time.
Amongst the many fascinating features of Geirangerfjord are the small farms that cling to the steep hillsides. The farms may be abandoned now, but you can still see them today if you go on a fjord cruise. You can even walk to one of the farms, Skageflå, from the centre of Geiranger.
You will find more information about fjord cruises from Geiranger and booking
4. Hjørundfjord — fjords and Norwegian alps
The majestic Sunnmøre Alps are cleaved in two by
Hjørundfjord. This fjord cuts deep into the mountain massif with its many jagged peaks.
Hjørundfjord is 33 kilometres long and surrounded by unspoiled nature and small villages on both sides. Some places are only connected to the outside world by boat.
In this wild and untamed landscape, hikers and skiers have found their mecca, but Hjørundfjord can also be enjoyed at leisure from a
fjord cruise from the beautiful art nouveau town of Ålesund to the village of Øye. Along the way, you can hop off and back on again at little Trandal or Urke.
You can put together your perfect holiday based around Hjørundfjord as your destination. The alps offer hiking, climbing and skiing for the active.
Or you can take it easy in Øye and savour the atmosphere, romanticism and excellent food and drink at the historic Hotel Union Øye. You can also combine nature with culture and architecture in the art nouveau town of Ålesund. There really is something for everyone here. It is most definitely the trip of a lifetime.
TIP! You can easily take in Hjørundfjord and Geirangerfjord in a single trip. Read more
5. Sognefjord — Queen of the Norwegian fjords
Norway's longest fjord extends all the way to Jotunheimen National Park, which boasts no fewer than 24 of Norway's 25 highest peaks.
Mighty Sognefjord has a jumble of fjord arms spreading outwards into beautiful landscapes packed with wild nature and rich cultural heritage. You are never far away from unforgettable hikes, exciting glacier walks, activities to set your pulse racing, fishing trips or other exciting activities and unique experiences for the whole family.
Sognefjord is no less than 204 kilometres long. At its deepest, the fjord extends 1300 metres down to the seabed, which also makes it Norway’s deepest fjord. Majestic mountains towering over 1,700 metres surround the beautiful blue water of Sognefjord.
Fjord arms such as Aurlandsfjord and
Nærøyfjord, on UNESCO’s World Heritage List, all radiate out from Sognefjord.
7. Romantic Hardangerfjord
Vision of The Fjords - Hardangerfjord
Travel the mighty Hardangerfjord from a exciting new angle on board Vision of The Fjords. The vessel Vision of the Fjords represent a brand-new standard in design and technology. It has been designed to maximise the tourist experience during any kind of weather, with large windows and walkways inspired by the winding trails of steep mountain terrain. Passengers are encouraged to go out on the top deck and enjoy a very different experience compared to traditional passenger vessels. Inside you will find Nordic inspired interior design offering a high level of comfort.
'Cider from Hardanger'
'Cider from Hardanger' is a protected geographical designation in line with Calvados or Champagne. In Hardanger there is 19 different cider producers with their own unique cider based on their apples and local history. Hardanger has a lot to offer the traveller also seeking authentic cultural and historical experiences with 'Agatunet' being one of the oldest cluster farms in Europe, dating back to 1220. The farms in Hardanger has been central producing fruit for generations.