Hello Fellow travelers: I am looking at the following itinerary. Basically, we'd like to do an Oslo-Bergen round trip, and include two nights in Balestrand. It is our first time to Norway too, and I would very much appreciate your advice on the following itinerary. Since I could not find a standard NIN route, I stitched up legs together. (Thanks BB for the super helpful information here: https://community.ricksteves.com/travel-forum/norway/bergen-sognefjord-stave-church-oslo-how-to-details).
Day 1: Leaving Oslo 6:25 am, arriving Flam 13:10 on train (with a change in Myrdal). Leaving Flam 15:30, arriving Balestrand 16:55 on boat.
Day 2: Balestrand. We are thinking to take the ferry to Fjaerland in the morning, and a hike in Balestrand in the afternoon.
Day 3: Leaving Balestrand 7:50 am, arriving Bergen 11:55 on express boat.
Day 4: Goofing off in Bergen. (activity suggestions welcome!).
Day 5: Leaving Bergen at 8:40am, do the standard NIH route (Bergen-Voss-Gudvangen-Flam-Oslo), arriving in Oslo at 22:35.
We booked all trains and boats ticket, except the Bergen-Voss-Gudvangen leg, since the online system does not allow you booking that particular train (why?). On the phone, the train representative said that there will always be "standing room" if necessary.
As a general question: it makes me a bit nervous that the minpris tickets are non-refundable. That is, if an earlier leg runs late (due to weather or anything), we are completely responsible for buying a new ticket). The question is: can you count on bus/train/boat in Norway run on schedule? :-)