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Very few places in the world have scenery as dramatic as the Norwegian fjords. Known for staggering peaks, deep-blue waterways, charming seaside hamlets, giant glaciers, and lush forests, the landscape is as grand as the legends and folktales told in the region.
Experience the essence of the Norwegian fjords on this epic 10-day adventure. From the historic city of Bergen, to the small, yet sophisticated city of Ålesund, we kayak, cruise, and hike through this majestic region. Our coastal journey is complimented by travel inland, where fjord arms, glaciers, and mountains greet us with fewer crowds and impressive vistas. Along the way, we embrace local culture with visits to working farms, seaside villages, and historic stave churches. A trip to the UNESCO-protected Western Fjords will make you feel as if you have crossed into the farthest corner of the Earth.
Welcome to Norway! Upon arrival in Bergen, you have the afternoon and evening free to explore town or rest in the hotel. Depending on your arrival time, you may be able to visit some of the sights such as historic Bryggen, local museums, and the city center. We recommend taking a ride on Fløybanen, the local funicular up to Mt. Fløyen, which offers great views over the city and lovely walking trails. Our hotel is centrally located in downtown Bergen near the harbor promenade, fish market, and tourist office.
Hotel Bergen BørsBergen, Norway
Located by Torgalmenningen, Bergen Børs occupies the old stock exchange that dates back to 1862. Rooms are sleek and modern, and the onsite restaurant is one of the city’s best.
Hardangerfjord & Lake Bondhusvatnet
After breakfast, we check out of our hotel and meet our guides at 8:30 a.m. in the lobby. After a short orientation, we embark on a transfer to the Hardangerfjord region, home to wild and rugged mountains rising from the fjord, verdant farmland, and storybook villages. Our first day will be spent visiting the Barony in Rosendal, a manor house built in 1665 that offers insight into Norway's creation, culture, and shaping as a nation. We have lunch in the Rosendal greenhouse, situated in the rose garden of the manor.
After lunch, we stretch our legs with a hike to the beautiful glacier-fed Lake Bondhusvatnet. Our gravel trail was built in 1863 to transport ice from the glacier down to the fjord for export. If time allows, we may continue around the lake almost to the edge of the Bondhus Glacier tongue.
Later this afternoon we cross the Hardangerfjord between Utne and Kinsavik, arriving shortly afterward at our hotel in Ullensvang, ideally-located along the fjord.
Ullensvang HotelLofthus Hardanger, Norway
The Ullensvang Hotel has been run by the same family for five generations and offers the perfect balance of rich traditions with modern facilities on the beautiful Hardangerfjord.
Husedalen Hike & Cider Farm
Our hike today begins in Kinsarvik and wends through the Husedalen Valley along one of the most beautiful trails in Norway. We see a succession of stunning waterfalls on the way from Kinsarvik to the Hardangervidda mountain plateau, the largest high mountain plateau in northern Europe. Because the hike is an out-and-back trail, it can be shortened for those who prefer a less strenuous day.
Early this evening we are met by a local farmer who will walk with us to the Alvavoll Fruit & Cider farm. Here we learn about the production of apples, pears, plums, honey, apple juice, and cider, and have an opportunity to taste some of the world-famous cider produced in the Hardanger region. Dinner will follow back at our hotel.
Hovden Viewpoint Hike & Voss
This morning we set out from our hotel for a hike to the extraordinary Hovden viewpoint. As we climb through lush forests to an alpine plateau, we are rewarded with a lasting image of Sorfjorden, one of Norway's most striking fjords.
Afterward, we transfer to Voss and our hotel for the next two nights. Known for outdoor and adventure activities, Voss is a charming, small town in the lake district, situated between the mountains and the fjords. Most of the melting water from snowmelt and rainfall comes through this region, and the lakes, rivers, and waterfalls are ever-changing depending on the water flow.
Hotel Store RingheimVoss, Norway
This 15-room historic hotel in a restored old farmhouse offers views over different parts of the surrounding farm landscape and distant mountains.
Sea Kayaking on Naeroyfjord
Today, we venture into the waterways of Norway — the fjords! Our morning begins with a 45-minute scenic transfer to Gudvangen, where we gear up for a glorious day on the Nærøyfjord, named by UNESCO as one of the world's natural wonders. Our guides offer expert instruction, and all necessary equipment is provided.
Our adventure takes us past unique rock formations, waterfalls, and local small-scale farms. We stop for a break at a suitable pull out point and enjoy a delicious barbecue cooked by our guides.
The return journey in the afternoon brings very different views, looking at the inner part of the fjord back toward Gudvangen. Upon completion of our kayaking route, we enjoy some light refreshments before returning to our hotel, where we have a chance to freshen up before dinner.
Voss Folkemuseum, Farm Visit & Stave Church
This morning we take a short walk from our hotel to the Voss Folkemuseum where we get the feeling of being transported back in time. When the Museum was founded in 1917 one of its main aims was to preserve the old farmstead at Mølster (Mølstertunet), where all the buildings still stand where they were once built. The wooden walls of the buildings have been weathered brownish-grey and the roofs are covered with timeless turf or ancient slates. Inside the old farmhouse the walls still give off the pungent smell of smoke from the open hearth.
From here, we drive to the historical hotel and viewpoint of Stalheim, offering great views of the Nærøy Valley. A short hike up the side valley brings us to the farm of Sivle, where we enjoy a local meal and hear about the old traditions of summer farming.
As we depart, we take the steep serpentine road leading down the front side of the mountain. A spectacular view of Sivlefossen appears half way down the mountain as melting water plunges over the cliff edge, making its way from the mountains to the fjord.
Early this afternoon, we visit the Hopperstad Stave Church in Vik. Believed to have been built around 1130, it is one of the oldest stave churches in existence. Inside, we see examples of carvings from the Middle Ages, and a guided tour of the church offers insight into the era connecting modern day Christianity and Viking beliefs.
Mid-afternoon we cross the Sognefjord and reach the township of Balestrand, where we check in to our fjordside Kviknes Hotel.
Kviknes HotelBalestrand, Norway
This historic hotel boasts a large art collection, an onsite restaurant and bar, and beautiful views. Past guests have included Kaiser Wilhelm II and other prominent figures.
Today's hike takes us from the Kreklingen Nature Trail to the stunning Buraasi lookout point. As we climb through moss covered forests and pine-clad trails, our vista opens up at approximately 1870 feet where we have staggering views of Balestrand and the majestic Sognefjorden. Here we enjoy a picnic lunch, or nistepakke, before our descent.
Later this afternoon, our guide will lead an optional Heritage Walk along the coast where we learn about this historic village and the life of the artists who lived here in the 19th century. Others may enjoy a bit of free time before we gather again for dinner.
Nigaardsbreen, the Blue Glacier
This morning we depart for one of the most accessible glaciers in Norway, Nigaardsbreen — a sidearm to the largest glacier in Europe, Jostedalsbreen, which covers an area of about 144 square miles.
After breakfast, we enjoy a ferry crossing to Hella, from where we drive further into the fjord system and up towards the glacial region of Jostedalen.
In order to deepen our understanding of glaciers, we begin with a visit to the Jostedalen Glacier Center, where we have lunch and view the local exhibit. Our adventure begins shortly after, with a glacial lake boat crossing, which takes us to the banks below the glacier foot. From here, our local guide leads us onto the glacier itself and we get to experience its magical blue ice up close. All technical equipment is provided, and we spend a couple of hours on the ice, depending on weather and ice conditions.
During the afternoon, we continue our journey further north as we approach the Jotunheimen Mountains. This evening, we stay in Bøverdalen at the unique Elveseter Hotel.
Elveseter HotelBøverdalen, Norway
This old family farm estate has been in operation since the 1870’s. In the last century, the estate has been transformed into a beautiful hotel with modern facilities and folk décor.
We enjoy a scenic drive past Lom as we head to the Geirangerfjord region this morning. The Geirangerfjord was granted UNESCO status in 2005 and offers stunning views of several waterfalls, including the famous Seven Sisters, many only accessible by boat. We embark on a RIB boat adventure in the early afternoon and get to experience waterfalls and magic scenery up close.
Upon returning to Geiranger, we enjoy lunch at a local café before beginning our final drive to the coastal city of Ålesund. Here, we make our way up to the Mount Aksla lookout, which offers fantastic views of the city.
This evening we gather for our final dinner and celebration of our journey, where we raise a glass to new friendships, shared memories, and the many adventures Norway has to offer.
Hotel BrosundetÅlesund , Norway
Ideally-located on the water, Hotel Bosundet has a contemporary and rustic design. A central fireplace and onsite restaurant create a particularly welcoming and cozy communal space.
A group transfer is provided to Vigra airport at 8:15 a.m., or you may check out individually any time for your onward travel arrangements.
Please note that this is a typical itinerary, and actual activities may vary due to weather conditions, local events, and to allow serendipity to play a hand in your experience. Accommodations are as outlined in the itinerary, although we reserve the right to change these or the order visited should the need arise.
Jul 27-Aug 5, 2019
Take over a date for your group! See "Make It Private" on Dates & Prices tab.
From $6,195 Per Person
First two reserved:$250
See single supplement policy below.
Jun 20-29, 2020
Jul 11-20, 2020
Aug 1-10, 2020
$6,195 Per Person
10+ Guests: $6,195 per person
9 or Fewer: from $6,595 per person
Make it Private price is based on Land Cost only, and a guarantee of the specified number of guests in double occupancy. For groups smaller than the numbers shown, or those requiring single occupancy, we reserve the right to adjust the per person price. Additionally, some trips have minimum group sizes. Please call 1-800-941-8010 for details.
2020 PRICING GUARANTEE
Please note that we are holding our 2019 pricing for 2020 dates. For bookings received prior to 2020 pricing being set, Boundless Journeys will cover the first 5% of any increase in pricing, and will only ask travelers to pay any amount beyond a 5% increase.
Accommodations (hotels, tents, cruise cabins) are based on double occupancy. A single supplement is paid by participants who specifically request single accommodations, subject to availability. If you reserve at least 120 days prior to departure, you may be eligible for a reduced or free single supplement.* This is generally limited to the first one or two solo travelers to reserve, and the reduction is outlined in the pricing for each trip. Please note, free or reduced single supplements are not combinable with other offers or promotions.
If you are traveling alone and wish to share accommodations, we will try to match you with a roommate of the same gender. If you reserve at least 120 days ahead and a roommate is not available, you will only be charged a “forced” single supplement in the amount of 50% of the standard single supplement* (unless otherwise noted in the detailed itinerary). Single accommodations are limited so you are encouraged to reserve early!
*This may not apply to certain trips with unique accommodation arrangements. Please see specific trip information for more details.
Boundless Journeys' trips are designed for energetic and flexible individuals who like to be active and have a spirit of adventure and a positive attitude. Western Fjords Adventure is rated 3, moderate, on a scale of 1-5 (with 5 being the most strenuous). The hikes on this trip are day hikes with minimal vehicle support. The hikes will be easy to moderate with some longer options, averaging 3-5 hours per day and 3-6 miles. Elevation gains vary from approximately 300 ft. - 2300 ft. with shorter options on our more challenging days.The sea kayaking excursion is suitable for beginners and no experience is necessary. We may cover 5-8 miles in 4-6 hours, depending on weather and water conditions.
A glacier walk is planned for Day 8, weather permitting. All necessary equipment is provided, including crampons and ice axes. The guides we hike with are experienced mountaineers with a great deal of knowledge about glaciers and safety procedures. After being fitted with gear and a safety briefing, we head onto the ice itself for a unique perspective on the importance and beauty of glaciers.
We have a large fleet of kayaks, both double and singles. All kayaks are expedition rigged with rudders and low backrests (in order to not get in the way of the sprayskirts). Our guides are usually able to find the best kayak fit for the person. We provide neoprene booties, a sleeveless long john wetsuit, a paddle jacket with a hood, a PFD, a sprayskirt and also a waterproof box for cameras or cellphones as well as a dry bag. No prior experience is needed.
Most Convenient Airport for Arrival: Bergen Airport, Bergen (airport code BGO)Most Convenient Airport for Departure: Ålesund Airport, Ålesund (airport code AES)
Summer in Norway brings long days full of sunshine and warmer temperatures. You are unlikely to have sunshine every day, but it is also unlikely for it to be cloudy for long. June, July, and August see 18-20 hours of daylight. The following are average temperatures in the fjord regions of Norway during the summer months.
Summer in Norway is short, and the best weather for hiking and outdoor pursuits is generally from June through August. Landscapes of lush greens, ripe fruits, and wildflowers peak this time of year. While it is often bright and sunny, cool and/or wet weather is possible any time of year, and the weather can change quickly in the mountains and on the coast.
Norwegians love fish — smoked, grilled, fried, salted, cured, poached, pickled. Menus for most meals will have fish options. In addition, you will find a variety of meat dishes, soups, root vegetables, and salads for lunches and dinners. Breakfasts offer breads, cheeses, yogurts, muesli, and yes, more fish. It is common even for small hotels to offer meals buffet-style, as this allows travelers to try traditional local dishes alongside more familiar fare. Simply put, Norwegian cuisine is hearty and fresh. Please inform us of any specific dietary restrictions, and we will do our best to accommodate you. Please call our office with any questions or concerns about our ability to meet your needs.
Einar has been working in the outdoors for more 30 years. When not guiding groups in the summer months, Einar manages the local ski school in Voss. He is often found on the largest glaciers, in the deepest valleys, or the highest mountain peaks of Norway, and always returns with a big smile on his face and plenty of stories to share. His guests appreciate his great sense of humor and depth of knowledge. In his free time, Einar enjoys kite surfing, kayaking Norway’s whitewater rivers, and backcountry skiing. He is fluent in Norwegian and English.
With a Boundless Journeys guide, your experience is that of friend and local adventurer. We believe strongly in working with local guides, experts in the areas to which we travel, and they hold the keys to unlocking the hidden delights of your chosen destination. Although you will never know they are at work—the mark of a truly great leader—our guides make magical things happen and add a dimension to your trip that you could not experience on your own. Over the years we have forged bonds with some of the best guides in the world, and we typically work with a small team of guides in each region. You will be informed of the guide for your trip one month prior to your departure.
Moderate hiking, 3-5 hours per day (3-6 miles); full-day sea kayaking (no experience necessary).
This trip can be your own adventure by taking over one of our scheduled dates, or we can request a fresh one.
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