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2 weeks in Norway

Hi! I have an idea for an epic trip through Norway and was just wondering if anyone had followed a simple itinerary and/or has suggestions. Here is what I was thinking for my dream trip:

Oslo - 3 days

Fjord areas (Bergen, Geirangerfjord & surrounds) - 4 days

Hurtigruten to Lofoten Islands & stay - 3/4 days

Hurtigruten to Tromso & stay - 1 day

Hurtigruten to Hammerfest & into Karasjok/Kautakeino & stay - 3 days

Thank you! :)

Posted by
5555 posts

What are you expectations and interests? And what do you want to see and do?

Posted by
3 posts

I'm traveling with my Mom and Dad. God(s) willing I would like this trip to be a gift for all of us. :)

I imagine:

Oslo - exploring the city, enjoy its restaurants, enjoy the nature in and around it (I am a runner & nature-lover, and we all enjoy good food! We have been to Oslo very briefly before, but never really explored it)

Fjord areas (Bergen, Geirangerfjord & surrounds) - Envision spending 2 nights each perhaps at 2 different places "Swiss-chalet" type places (have been to Lauterbrunnen in Switzerland, which we all loved) to enjoy the beauty of the fjords, and hike around there

Hurtigruten to Lofoten Islands & stay - We all love cruises and I thought this would be a fun experience to take the "packet"/postal ship a couple times through Norway. In the Lofoten Islands, I imagine this would be the most relaxed part of our trip. Stay in a cute B&B and just relax, island-hop, and take it all in

Hurtigurten to Tromso & stay - Tromso sounds like a fun college town. Would just like to explore there for a day.

Hurtigruten to Hammerfest (or other Arctic port) & into Karasjok/Kautakeino & stay - I envision heading into Sapmi (Sami territory) & Finnmark, into the forest and staying at a cozy spa/cabin for a couple days. Ideally here. (Lol, I found a place that actually sounds an awful lot like it!) :)

Posted by
25535 posts

What time of year do you plan to travel? Are you prepared to rent a car for part of the trip? If so, which part(s)? Public transportation in Norway may take longer, and run less frequently, than you expect.

The highly scenic Norway-in-a-Nutshell route from Oslo to Bergen is an all-day affair. It involves main-line train to Myrdal, Flamsbana spur line to Flam, Naeroyfjord ferry to Gudvangen, bus to Voss, and main-line train to Bergen. Taking this route is totally worthwhile. Public transportation in the fjord area around Flam is fairly limited. There are a few land- or water-based excursions on offer, but taking advantage of any of them would probably require you to spend at least one night along the way. If you might want to do that, you should pin down your plans ASAP, because lodging is very limited in Flam (the most convenient if not the most beautiful town to stay in).

Bergen is a very attractive city and totally worth at least a full day of sightseeing. I'd want to spend a minimum of two nights there, or at least one if you plan to depart on the 8 PM sailing.

Here's the summer schedule for Hurtigruten's northbound ships: Last year the Hurtigruten ferries ran five days a week; I don't know whether they'll be on the same schedule this year. Less-than-daily sailings may constrain your schedule, so you should ideally investigate that aspect of the trip before choosing the date for your flight to Norway.

There's now a second company, Havila Kystruten, taking ships up the coast. Its schedule (similar to Hurtigruten's) is here: I don't know whether it sails daily.

I think both companies sell point-to-point tickets. (I bought two segments on Hurtigruten last summer.) Cabin availability for passengers with tickets for individual segments may be limited, so don't leave purchase of those tickets too late. I believe ticket prices vary by date, and they may increase closer to the date of sailing.

Travel time from Bergen to Geiranger (summer only) is about 18 hours. The ship stops in Alesund both before and after detouring into the Geirangerfjord. Sailing time between the two towns is about 4-1/2 hours; the Geirangerfjord detour consumes 9 daytime hours. Including the detour, the total travel time from Bergen to Alesund is 22-1/2 hours. If the weather cooperates (not guaranteed), the trip into the fjord provides very good views. If you want to disembark and see more of that area, you'd have to wait at least one day before proceeding north by ferry. I'm not sure what sort of local transportation or excursion is available from Geiranger. There may also be bus and/or boat excursions from Alesund beyond what the ferry companies offer. Alesund is an attractive town known for Art Nouveau architecture. I believe there's not much at Geiranger other than the fabulous scenery.

Sailing time from Alesund to Svolvaer (Lofotens) is over 49 hours. (I don't remember whether there are other stops in the Lofotens.) Arrival time is 9:20 PM. That's two full days on the ship.

Sailing time from Svolvaer to Tromso is 16 hours (overnight); the ship arrives at 2:15 PM. Time from Tromso to Hammerfest is about 11 hours, with the ship arriving at 5:05 AM.

I think you've indentified good, varied destinations, but travel time and frequencies are probably going to require a longer trip, a reduction in the time spent at one or more destinations, or trimming of the itinerary.

As you may already know, Norway is a very expensive country. I spent a lot more time on advance planning than I usually do, because I wanted to be sure I was an efficient traveler.

Posted by
5555 posts

So, is this a summer or a winter trip? I'm guessing summer. Bergen deserves time, but Hurtigruten from Geiranger to Lofoten will take a lot of time as mentioned, is that something you are ok with? Tromsö is certainly worth a stop. But in my opinion, continuing north will just be more of the same.

Posted by
3 posts

I definitely want to see the Northern Lights. On the other hand, I would like there to be typical daylight in the middle of the day! So, I was thinking April or September.

Posted by
25535 posts

In Bergen, April is likely to be drier, but September probably warmer. I wouldn't be surprised if that pattern holds all along the west coast, but I haven't checked. There's a climate summary chart in the Wikipedia entry. Take a look at the rainfall number for September! For actual, day-by-day historical weather statistics (which is what I use to decide how off-season I dare go somewhere), go to I find monthly averages of only marginal use unless I'm just interested in comparing two months or two places. It's the extremes that can potentially make me miserable.

Bergen April 2022

Trondheim April 2022

Use the pull-down box above the graph at the right to change the month/year. Use the white Search box near the top right to change the city.

Be aware that western Norway is very wet. It can easily be rainy/foggy during the hours you are transiting the most beautiful legs of your itinerary. Visibility was poor on my Hurtigruten trip into the Geirangerfjord, but I was lucky--it cleared up as we headed back to Alesund.

Posted by
859 posts

We were in Bergen in mid September 2022 for four days and a couple of days were very, very cold and windy. We needed our down jackets, gloves and hats. When it wasn't cold, it was raining.

Posted by
5555 posts

If the Northern lights are important, this is not a good plan. There is a chance you might see them in April or September, it is by no means zero. But, the chance is not big and I would not bet on it. And apart from Karasjok/Kautokeino it seems like you are mostly planning to stay along the coast, which is not a great location for seeing the lights.