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trips to fjords from Bergen

Family of 4 traveling to Norway for 10 days. Trying to travel by boat up the coast to see more fjords. Any recommendations for ferries or small cruise. Any other recommendations of must sees besides Bergen and Oslo

Posted by
2176 posts

Must sees are subjective, what are your plans so far and what are you interested in? Will you visit any other places apart from Norway? Between Oslo and Bergen you can take the Norway in a Nutshell tour (as a package or on your own) wich will give you a boat trip on one of the largest fjords. You could also look at a shorter trip with Hurtigruten. Or the ferry to Stavanger, which will not give you much fjord views but nice coastal views.

Posted by
3196 posts

Ålesund is historic and scenic.

You can see a lot and save money by driving in the fjord area, renting a cabin, and cooking your meals. I think this is far preferable than expensive hotels and restaurants and then feeling you have to rush the country because of the expense.

Posted by
30 posts

Thank you for your advice. 23 years ago with traveled on the Norway in the nutshell from Oslo to Bergen. Loved the adventure. We were hoping to find a smaller boat cruise up the north coast and into more fjords. We are now returning with 2 daughters 19 and 21 and not wanting to take the large expensive cruises

Posted by
18922 posts

You can do segments on the Hurtigruten ships--just for short-distance transportation without sleeping on the ferry. I imagine that's fairly reasonable in cost. At least some of the ships make a foray into the Geirangerfjord, stopping in Alesund both before and after. But you'd have to get yourself to and from Alesund to take advantage of that.

It's my impression that sleeping on the Hurtigruten ferries costs considerably more, per night, than you'd pay on a regular cruise. (Though who knows what the situation will be like next year.) The full Hurtigruten itinerary (Bergen to Kirkenes) is 6 nights northbound and 5 nights southbound. I've read that availability of cabins for segments of the itinerary in unpredictable; it depends on how many cabins are left over after the demand for the full itinerary is satisfied.

There's supposed to be an additional company running ferries up and down the coast next year, Havila Kytruten.

I believe there are two companies running ferries on the Sognefjord: Fjord1 (newer boats) and Lustrabaatane. It seems that the segment between Flam and Gudvangen is the most scenic.

There are fast ferries from Bergen into the Sognefjord (to Flam, among other destinations), but they don't go into the narrowest part of the fjord (Naeroyfjord, where Gudvangen is located).

Sorry to be so vague. I haven't been to Norway but am researching a trip of my own for next year (I hope).

Posted by
3196 posts

Mentioning that Bergen is not really a "gateway to the fjords." As you have already visited, why not visit someplace new?

If you are seeking a fjord immersion, look to starting in Ålesund (flights from Amsterdam, so one stop on KLM from SFO, less than 15 hour journey), or take the train from Oslo to Åndelsnes, right on a scenic fjord, and work from there. This is outside the Rick Steves books so look at Rough Guide for help planning in the fjords area.

Thinking that you should conduct a lengthy week or more fjord trip by starting in Bergen, or by expanding from the short Nutshell tour, works but it is a mistake. Also, I have posted this before, but the fjords are prettier from the mountaintops looking down, than from a boat. In driving around you will take many little ferries, I thought that was enough scenery from the water.

Without working it out this time (I have previously), a driving vacation staying in one or more cabins and cooking will run less than half the cost of a trip consisting of hotels, restaurants, and coastal ferry trips which will be one of the most expensive trips Europe offers. For example we had a meal of hamburgers in Åndelsnes that was counter ordered and get your own water in cups (no table service or drinks) that cost $125 (just burgers, no fries or salads, nothing else). On our trip, family of 5, we stayed in hotels to start and end, needed 3 rooms the first hotel (2 person/room max) and 2 rooms the last hotel (they had 3 person rooms), but $500/night for the 2 rooms you will need is not out of the question. Cabins run about $225 with 3 bedrooms. 2 baths, parking, living room. Be sure to save eye shades from the plane if traveling in June-July for sleeping during the night (there's no darkness in the mid-north, Ålesund and Åndelsnes).