We plan to do the Norway in a Nutshell tour from Oslo to Bergen the end of August and then have 3 days before flying home. We would like to do some hiking or scenic drives as day trips from Bergen and are thinking of renting a car there to do so. Seeing a stave church or hiking on a glacier would be awesome too. Any suggestions?
This is only a partial reply to your question - it does not address the (presumed) many activities one could undertake in Bergen - my wife's favorite city in Norway. However, although I do not regret a single moment spent in Norway last summer, I do regret one aspect of my planning. Although "Norway In A Nutshell" can easily be completed in one day - I wish we had made at least one overnight stop. We began and ended the "Nutshell" in Bergen - starting around 8:30 and returning around 18:30 - a full day. But, several of the locations enroute seemed worthy of more than a glance from the boat. I'd suggest a little research to determine potential points of interest.
If you take the funicular from Bergen, there are some hiking trails at the top.
Your query did not include your itinerary information. If you are considering a one day Oslo to Bergen NiN, I would add support to Blue's suggestion that you could spend more overnight time enroute to Bergen from Oslo. https://en.sognefjord.no/explore-sognefjord/towns-and-villages/flam
I have visited Oslo a number of times and Bergen only once. My bias is there are more things to see and do without a rental car in Oslo than in Bergen. Consider more days in Oslo. Oslo Nordmarka hiking trailheads can easily be from city center by metro transit. And you can see (relocated) stave churches and other buildings at the Norsk Folk Museum.
I stayed at Finse ,"the southern most artic place"
Its on the Olso Bergen railway and from the DNT hut its about 40mins walk to a glacier.I am pretty sure the Finse 1222 hotel do guided walks
Check out Rick's Norway book for more ideas but I think renting a car for a day trip or two outside of Bergen is an excellent idea. Bergen is lovely but scenic drives were my favorite part of visiting Norway. I think it all depends on what you're most looking forward to seeing. A drive up to Sognefjoreden and a cruise of the fjord, then back down to Bergen could probably be done in a (pretty full) day, or you could stay a night in Solvorn or somewhere similar and make enough time to see the Urnes, Borgund or Hopperstad stave churches. On that route is Tvindefossen waterfall, Stalheimskleiva scenic road, and absolutely gorgeous natural scenery. Have a wonderful time!
Thanks for the suggestion to hike after riding the funnicular and ideas on where to see stave churches. As far as an itinerary - we plan to take the train at 6:43 to Mydral, the private train from Mydral to Flam, boat thru the fjords from Flam to Gudvangen, a bus from Gudvagen to Voss and a train from Voss to Bergen. We thought of just renting a car to do this but I read the best part of this is the train from Mydral to Flam and a car can't do that. Does anyone know if that is true? Or if we drive will we be able to see other areas that are as spectacular?
...from Mydral to Flam and a car can't do that.
I believe that you are correct. However you can bike or hike the route:
Explore the Flåm Valley on foot or from the saddle! Combine the
stunning Flåm Railway train journey with an idyllic walk down the
verdant Flåm Valley. The path follows the last section of the popular
Rallar Road, ending back at Flåm on the Sognefjord.
The train journey up and the walk or cycle back down offer amazing
views of majestic waterfalls: Kjosfossen, Kårdalsfossen, Rjoandefossen