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  • Norway: Western Fjords Adventure
Overview

Traverse a landscape of dazzling fjords, cascading waterfalls, and historic villages.

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, mountains, and valleys on this epic 10-day adventure. From the historic city of Bergen, to the small, yet sophisticated city of Ålesund, kayak, cruise, and hike through this majestic region. Travel inland where smaller fjord arms, glaciers, and mountains greet us with fewer crowds and impressive vistas. Along the way, 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.

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Itinerary &
Accommodations

Itinerary & Accommodations

Day 1

Arrival

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.

Accommodations
Hotel Bergen Børs

Hotel Bergen Børs
Bergen, 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.

Day 2

Hardangerfjord

  • Activity Overview: Transfer and cultural touring
  • Activity Level: Easy
  • Activity Length: 8 hours

After breakfast, we check out of our hotel and meet our guides at 9 a.m. in the lobby. After a short orientation, we embark on a transfer to the Hardangerfjord region, home to many fruit growing farms situated along the steep mountains. 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.

During the afternoon we visit the Hardanger Folk Museum in Utne, which offers insight into community life and culture along the fjord. The museum has an attached outdoor museum with buildings spanning from the Middle Ages to the 20th century.

Later this afternoon, we cross the Hardangerfjord between Utne and Kinsavik, arriving shortly afterward at our hotel in Ullensvang, ideally-located along the fjord.

Accommodations
Ullensvang Hotel

Ullensvang Hotel
Lofthus 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.

Day 3

Buer Glacier Valley

  • Activity Overview: Hiking
  • Activity Level: Moderate, elevation gain of 1,800'
  • Activity Length: 3-4 hours

This morning we head to the Buer Valley — a narrow valley leading up to the majestic Buer Glacier. The glacier is one of the largest outflow glaciers attached to the larger Folgefonna Glacier plateau. The glacier edge is visible for large parts of the hike, and if we are lucky, we may witness smaller calvings from a safe distance. Our hike leads us through lush forest at the lower part of the trail and along the Buer River, which is fed by glacial meltwater running off the Folgefonna plateau.

After returning from our hike we pay a visit to the small town of Odda, situated at the end of the Sørfjord. We take a well-deserved rest at a local café and return to our hotel mid- afternoon.

Accommodations
Ullensvang Hotel

Ullensvang Hotel
Lofthus 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.

Day 4

Husedalen Hike

  • Activity Overview: Hiking
  • Activity Level: Easy to moderate, elevation gain of 2,800'
  • Activity Length: 2-4 hours, up to 5 miles

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.

This afternoon we sample some of the region's unique ciders on a local farm overlooking the scenic bay of Ulvik at the Hardangerfjord. Afterward, we transfer to Voss and our hotel for the next two nights. 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 everchanging depending on the waterflow. Voss is known for outdoor and adventure activities.

Accommodations
Hotel Store Ringheim

Hotel Store Ringheim
Voss, Norway

This 15-room historic hotel in a restored old farmhouse offers views over different parts of the surrounding farm landscape and distant mountains.

Day 5

Sea kayaking on Naeroyfjord

  • Activity Overview: Sea kayaking
  • Activity Level: Moderate
  • Activity Length: 4-6 hours with stops, 7-12 miles

Today we venture into the waterways of Norway — the fjords! By sea kayak, we explore the spectacular Nærøyfjord, which was named by UNESCO as one of the world's natural wonders. Our guides offer expert instruction, and all necessary equipment is provided. No previous experience is required to complete this day. Our adventure takes us past small villages, 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.

Accommodations
Hotel Store Ringheim

Hotel Store Ringheim
Voss, Norway

This 15-room historic hotel in a restored old farmhouse offers views over different parts of the surrounding farm landscape and distant mountains.

Day 6

Farm visit and Stave church

  • Activity Overview: Walking
  • Activity Level: Easy, 300' elevation gain and loss
  • Activity Length: 1 hour

We leave our hotel after breakfast and 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 existing stave churches. 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 embark on our Sognefjord crossing and reach the township of Balestrand, where we check in to our fjordside Kviknes Hotel.

Accommodations
Kviknes Hotel

Kviknes Hotel
Balestrand, 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.

Day 7

Balestrand Hike

  • Activity Overview: Hiking
  • Activity Level: Easy to moderate
  • Activity Length: 2-4 hours

Today's hike takes us to Kreklingen Trail, which offers some of the best local viewpoints looking over Balestand, the main part of Sognefjord, and some of the side arms of the connecting fjords. This is an easy trail with ascents of 300-800 feet, with a few options for longer or shorter mileage. We lunch at a scenic point and enjoy a rest before completing the last leg of the hike.

This afternoon brings a good opportunity for rest or independent exploration upon returning to Balestrand — some may choose to visit St. Olav's Chuch. This evening we gather again for dinner.

Accommodations
Kviknes Hotel

Kviknes Hotel
Balestrand, 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.

Day 8

Nigaardsbreen, the Blue Glacier

  • Activity Overview: Glacier walk
  • Activity Level: Easy to moderate
  • Activity Length: 3 hours

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 exhibition. Our adventure begins shortly after, with a short 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.

Accommodations
Elveseter Hotel

Elveseter Hotel
Bøverdalen, 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.

Day 9

Geirangerfjord

  • Activity Overview: RIB boat excursion
  • Activity Level: Easy
  • Activity Length: 1-2 hours

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 begin 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.

Accommodations
Hotel Brosundet

Hotel Brosundet
Ålesund , 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.

Day 10

Departure

A group transfer is provided to Vigra airport after breakfast, 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.

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Dates &
Prices

Dates And Prices

2019
Trip Length

10 Days

Trip Dates

Jun 15-24, 2019

Jul 13-22, 2019

Jul 27-Aug 5, 2019

2019 Land Cost

$6,195 Per Person


Single Supplement

First two reserved:$250

Additional:$750

See single supplement policy below.

What's Included

  • Expert leadership
  • All accommodations
  • All meals from breakfast on Day 2 to breakfast on Day 10
  • House wine and local beer with included dinners
  • All transportation during the tour
  • Park fees
  • Activities as noted in the itinerary
Single Supplement Policy

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.

What To
Expect

What To Expect

Physical Activity

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 3-4 hours per day and 3-5 miles. The sea kayaking excursion is suitable for beginners and no experience is necessary. We may cover 7-12 miles in 4-6 hours, depending on weather and water conditions.

Glacier Walk

A glacier walk is planned for Day 8, weather permitting. All necessary equipment is provided, including crampons and ice axes. The mountain guides we will 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.

Meeting Point

Bergen, Norway

Departure Point

Ålesund, Norway

Travelin To and From

Most Convenient Airport for Arrival:
Bergen Airport, Bergen (airport code BGO)

Most Convenient Airport for Departure:

Ålesund Airport, Ålesund (airport code AES)

Weather

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.

Bergen

June

High: 62
Low: 50

July

High: 64
Low: 53

August

High: 64
Low: 53

Voss

June

High: 66
Low: 46

July

High: 68
Low: 50

August

High: 66
Low: 49

Ålesund

June

High: 56
Low: 49

July

High: 59
Low: 53

August

High: 59
Low: 53

When To Go

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.

Cuisine

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.

Guides

Featured Guides

About Our Guides

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.

$6,195 / person* *airfare not included
10 Days
Reserve This Tour
  • Departure Dates: Jun 15-24, 2019
    Jul 13-22, 2019
    Jul 27-Aug 5, 2019


Activity Level 3 Moderate

Moderate hiking, 3-4 hours per day (3-5 miles); full-day sea kayaking (no experience necessary)

Read about our Activity Levels
  • Group Size: 6-16 Guests

Make it Your Own!

This trip can be your own adventure by taking over one of our scheduled dates, or we can request a fresh one.

Prefer a Custom Tour?

Questions?

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1-800-941-8010

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