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Trip planning for Norway

We are planning a 20 day trip to Sweden and Norway (2 travel days) , spending more time in Norway. Originally looked at RS trip but decided that we preferred to spend more time in Norway. As of now, we will arrive in Stockholm on 9/21, spend 3 days there and then take a train to Oslo; followed by Norway in a Nutshell trip (will plan this ourselves; spend a night in Flam), ending in Bergen, on or about 9/27 or 9/28. I would like recommendations for what to do next. We have looked at Hurtigruten excursions and also explored the port to port trips on Hurtigruten. We like the idea of the port to port travel but have no idea how to go about this or where to stop along the way. We have planned several trips throughout Europe but am finding this one much more difficult!

We definitely want to see a few fiords and the cities and small towns along western coast. We fly out of Oslo on 10/9 to return to the US. Thanks in advance.

Posted by
6670 posts

What are you interested in and what do you want to see and do?

Suggestion:
Take Hurtigruten north to Ålesund, including the detour to Hjørundfjord. Spend a night or two in Ålesund. Continue to Trondheim, either by sea or by train. Spend a few days in Trondheim, then take the train south to Røros. Spend a night there before taking the train to Oslo airport.

Posted by
457 posts

We did this in two weeks earlier this summer. Oslo for a few days, fly to Alesund, pick up rental car for 7 days, stayed in Alesund, Storfjord and Trondheim with the car, drop off car in Trondheim and board Hurtigruten there overnight and one day back down to Bergen and then a few days in Bergen. Included a one way ferry with the car through Geiranger fjord. We found lots to do. Our trip was a good mix of culture such as museums and of outdoors. Here is an abbreviated version of our itinerary if helpful. We did more than than described each day, the list was just our plans.

Arrive Day 1 Oslo
Self guided walking tour highlights
Day 2 Oslo
Guide for architecture tour in the morning
Munch Museum
Dinner at Munch Museum restaurant Tolvte
Jazz concert at Munch Museum
Day 3 Oslo
Fram Museum
Historical Museum w/ Viking exhibit
National Museum
Day 4 fly to Alesund, pick up rental car at airport
Day 5 Alesund
Architecture museum in Alesund
Aquarium in Alesund
Day 6 Storfjord
Roads and ferries to Geirangerfjord and back
Ferry Hellesylt to Geiranger
Day 7 Storfjord
Guided kayaking trip
Day 8 drive to Trondheim
Norwegian Mountaineering Museum
Drive over Atlantic Road
Day 9 Trondheim
Sverresborg Trøndelag Folk Museum
Day 10 Trondheim
Cathedral and museums nearby
Drop off rental car in Trondheim
Day 11 Hurtigruten ferry
Ferry departs
Day 12
Ferry arrives
Day 13 Bergen
Bryggen Museum
Theta Museum (WWII secret radio room)
Dinner at Pingvinen
Concert at Bergen festival
Day 13 Bergen
Fantoft Stave Church
Dinner at Spisekroken
Day 14 fly home

If you would like some further inspiration there are some fun youtube channels with lighthearted Norwegian history and culture episodes. We especially enjoyed Ronald’s “yourway2norway” channel and Anna Goldman’s channel about living as an expat in Norway. Some good books: Children of Ash and Elm: A History of the Vikings by Neil Price (based on more recent archaeological study and reinterpretation) and The Last Viking The Life of Roald Amundsen (the polar explorer) by Stephen Bown.

Posted by
27434 posts

Badger's suggestion is close to what I did last year via public transportation; I opted to day trip to Roros from Trondheim so I could take the scenic route back to Oslo through Andalsnes. I believe I had 19 nights in Norway; I spent two of those nights on Hurtigruten ships, separated by a night in Alesund so I could enjoy the city's Art Nouveau architecture. If you're willing to rent a car for part of your time, you'll have additional options.

I'm not sure I have this right, but it looks as if this is how you plan to start out:

Sep 21: Stockholm (3 nights)
Sep 24: Train to Oslo (2 nights; add 1 day to subsequent dates if you stay 3 nights)
Sep 26: Train to Myrdal and Flamsbana to Flam (1 night)
Sep 27: Ferry to Gudvangen, bus to Voss and and train to Bergen
Ten nights to be allocated to Bergen and other Norwegian destinations
Oct 8: Return to Oslo (1 night)
Oct 9: Fly home

If I'm correct, you'll have only two full days in Stockholm, which is a really lovely city. I liked Oslo and spent 8 nights there, but I think there's more to see in Stockholm.

The train from Stockholm to Oslo takes over 7 hours, so that will chew up most of Sep 24.

The 8:25 AM departure from Oslo will get you to Flam a bit after 2 PM on Sep 26. Will that give you enough time for what you want to do in Flam?

On Sep 27 you'll probably arrive in Bergen at 3 PM, assuming you don't plan a morning activity in Flam.

Bergen's a very physically appealing city with iffy weather. It's worth some time. If you leave Bergen on a Hurtigruten or Havila ship, your departure will be late enough to allow a full day's worth of activities in Bergen before you head to the ferry.

Posted by
10 posts

I have learned so much from reading this forum! I have a partial itinerary (below) but would like recommendations for the last part of our trip.

Day 1. Arrive Stockholm
Day 2. Stockholm
Day 3. Stockholm
Day 4. Stockholm
Day 5 Train to Oslo
Day 6 Oslo
Day 7 Oslo
Day 8 Norway in Nutshell -overnight in Flam
Day 9 Arrive Bergen
Day 10 Bergen
Day 11-17 I saw a recommended car trip from Bergen-Lavik-Sande-Balestrand-Voss-Kinsarvik that looked very appealing.
Or take a Hurtigruten boat to Trondheim (port-to-port travel). If we take the boat to Trondheim, how many days are suggested for a stay there?

Day 18 or 19 travel back to Oslo
Day 20 Flight from Oslo to home
Thanks in advance!

Posted by
10 posts

I just realized that I have a good suggestion from Badger (thank you!) about the trip on the Hurtigruten. I will wait to see what others have to say about the car trip. I do like the idea of ride on the famous Hurtigruten.

Posted by
6670 posts

It looks like a good plan. Although I'm not sure the car trip you mentioned is a good idea. It's more or less the same area that you visit during Norway in a Nutshell. Sure there are some other areas you see, but a lot of it is just returning to the same area.

Regarding Trondheim, I'd suggest 2-3 days there. Also, don't disregard a night in Røros on the way back to Oslo.

Posted by
486 posts

Any idea about weather for these weeks? I am considering similar dates for Norway fall 2024.

Posted by
27434 posts

You can find actual, day-by-day, historical weather data for most places of tourist interest on the website timeanddate.com. I usually check five years' worth of statistics.

Bergen weather September 2022

Use the pull-down box to change the month and year displayed. Use the Search box to change the city.

For precipitation data I primarily use the climate-summary chart in most cities' Wikipedia entries. Western Norway tends to be quite wet.

Posted by
11368 posts

We do not go on cruise ships but did enjoy our trip on Hurtigruten up the coast from Bergen to Kirkenes near the Russian border.
We sat out on the deck and watched the nearby scenery passing by. Each port was different and locals were getting on and off the ship at different ports.. Rooms were plain but comfortable and the meals were outstanding. No entertainment except for a small combo playing in the bar at night. There were very, very few from USA, less than ten on our dates. Most passengers were from Northern Europe. Very interesting trip!