I’ve always wanted to go through the Fjords. When I was 23, I wrote up a list of places I wanted to see before I kicked the bucket, and “Norwegian Fjords” was on that list! I wasn’t sure how to approach it though. My friend in Oslo gave me a wonderful itinerary for 3-4 nights in the Lofoten Islands, but there were many moving pieces and I didn’t have the time or energy (or money, frankly) to do something that cool and adventurous. So instead I went for the self-managed (no guide) 1 day trip from Bergen to Oslo, arranged by the Norwegian State Railways (NSB) called Norway In A Nutshell. Essentially the NSB sells you tickets for a train from Bergen to Voss, a chartered bus to take you from Voss to Gudvangen where you catch the waiting ferry (see below). The ferry takes you for 2 hours along the Sognefjord and drops you off at Flåm where you take a special train waaaaaaaay up the mountain to Myrdal, which is just a rail way station, sitting at about 2,800 feet. Then you catch the regular train back to Oslo. 8:30am to about 9:30pm. Long day but as you’ll see below, MUCH fun!
Shot from a racing train, from Bergen to Voss. Not a shabby front yard view, is it? Of course, this is JUNE.
Once you get to Gudvangen, you hop aboard this mighty vessel, the Fanaraaken. It’s a working ferry, taking cars and cargo, but mostly tourists.
We hadn’t even gotten on the boat yet and look at what we see!
Also at Gudvangen, notice the Viking Ship in the middle distance with Viking tourists hanging off it.
Random Sognefjord view. The day was overcast and occasional rain, but that just added to the atmosphere. Cool too, around low 50s.
More fjord! Did you know that there live sea mammals here? Seals and porpoises. We didn’t see any, but I could just tell they were underneath the surface, mocking us.
No roads can reach these fjord side villages, the only way is through the fjord. I’m not sure what they do for a living but this was one of several villages along the way.
Seagull in the fjord! National flag of Norway too.
Another village. I liked the red houses.
Early June, time for the fruit trees to blossom!
This may be out of sequence, but this is the view from the bus we took to catch the ferry. That there’s a farm down there. With the height of the flanking mountains, and the fact that they are so far north, these folks have figured out a way to live with out sunshine.
Taking the special train from Flam to Myrdal, we passed lots of amazing waterfalls, this being one of them. The water was, as you might guess, cold and clear. I could see the bottom of the fjord clearly when it was only 10-12 feet deep.
And then there was this. A hulder dancer!
Up at Myrdal, 2,800 feet, it was still winter! No roads come here, the hardy people who inhabit these cottages have to take the train to get here.
Stark. Bleak. But strangely beautiful.
June in Norway. Remember Munch?