Hiking & Exploring in Norway's Sognefjord Region - Langdale Walking Holidays

Explore the lakes, mountains and valleys of Norway’s captivating Sognefjord region on a journey to the heart of Norway’s most unspoilt and culturally significant regions.

 

  • Cruise Norway’s longest and most beautiful Sognefjord
  • Stay at the delightfully located and traditional Kviknes Hotel in the village of Balestrand
  • Two nights in Bergen with time to explore
  • Guided mountain walks with local English-speaking local guides
  • Explore the village of Vik and learn about its culture
  • Explore the fjords and the Norwegian legacy of the Vikings
  • Cruise the Nærøyfjord, one of the most dramatic fjord trips in Europe
  • Visit the reconstructed Viking Village in Gudvangen
  • Travel back to Bergen on the Flam Railway, regarded as one of the most beautiful train rides in the world

Join us for exhilarating walks, scenic river cruises and Viking cultural tours; returning each night to the comforts of your high-quality accommodation.

Fly from the UK to Bergen, where we spend our first night before cruising along Sognefjord, Norway’s longest and deepest fjord. Experience the stunning mountain panorama as we sail past the beautiful quaint villages that line the shores of the fjord. Cruising along the tranquil waters is the perfect way to take in the dramatic fjord scenery, an unforgettable experience characterised by crashing waterfalls and spectacular views.

The fjord extends from the coast just north of Bergen to the impressive mountains of the Jotunheimen National Park and the Jostedalsbreen glacier, the surrounding mountain areas being amongst Norway’s most popular hiking areas. This is breath-taking scenery on a vast scale, with the Sognefjorden plunging to more than 1,300 metres at its deepest and the mountains along the fjord rising to more than 1,700 metres.

Our destination is Balestrand, known for its artistic connections.  Artists the world over have travelled here for inspiration, and traces of both English and German architecture can be seen throughout the village.

The mountain areas surrounding the innermost part of Sognefjorden are amongst Norway’s most popular hiking areas. Notable areas include Jotunheimen National Park, Jostedalsbreen National Park, Breheimen, the Aurlandsdalen valley and the Utladalen - all part of this distinctive natural heritage site.

We cruise along The Nærøyfjord, one the most beautiful experiences the Sognefjord has to offer - waterfalls, steep snow-covered mountains, crystal clear water and idyllic farms clinging to the mountain sides. The Nærøyfjord is 17 km long and at the narrowest point only 250 m wide, with the passage through the Nærøyfjord being one of the most dramatic fjord trips in Europe.

Walking Grade: Grade: Moderate

Day 1: Friday 21st August: Fly to Bergen

Met on arrival at Bergen Flesland international airport and transfer by private minibus to Hotel Opus XV1.

Dinner in local restaurant and over night at Hotel Opus XV1.

Accommodation: Hotel Opus XV1

Meals: Dinner,

Day 2: Saturday 22nd August: Explore Bergen and Hike Mount Floyen

Bergen is known as the city between the 7 mountains, meaning there are more than ample hiking opportunities.
Available for the evening is a recommended hike to Mt. Fløien, Mt. Ulriken, or between the two across the “roof of Bergen”. You have a funicular for easy access to Mt. Fløien and a gondola for Mt. Ulriken wherefrom you have wonderful views of the city below.

We will be exploring Bergen and hiking Mount Floyen.

Dinner in local restaurant and overnight at Hotel Opus XV1.

Accommodation: Hotel Opus XV1Hotel Opus XV1

Meals: Breakfast, Dinner,

Day 3: Sunday 23rd August: Cruise Sognefjord to Balastrand

Short walk to the Pier to board the 08:00 express-boat to Balestrand, and the beautiful Kviknes Hotel.

Check-in to the hotel. Optional lunch.

Eli Grete, our local guide from Ciderhuset, takes us on a guided cultural walk of the artist village that is Balestrand.

Here you’ll discover old churches, Viking burial sites and painters’ villas along a tour that concludes back at the Cider House. Explore the family run micro cidery 1,5km from the village centre of Balestrand, with an organic orchard cultivating a range of different fruit producing ciders, fruit wines and brandy. You will have an introduction and cider tasting session before a leisurely walk back to your hotel.

Dinner at Kviknes. After dinner, enjoy a drink relaxing on one of the many terraces overlooking the wonderful views of the mountains and fjords. This time of year brings long summer nights, where the sun sets around 22:30.

Kviknes Hotel is beautifully located in Balestrand, beside the Sognefjord. The Kvikne family has been the hosts here since 1877. The hotel was built in the “Swiss” style and is now a modern hotel with an old-world charm and atmosphere – considered one of the most traditional hotels in Norway (www.kviknes.com).

Dinner and overnight Kviknes Hotel, Balestrand.

Accommodation: Hotel Kviknes, Balestrand

Meals: Breakfast, Dinner,

Day 4: Monday 24th August Gaularfjellet Mountain Pass

We travel by private coach to Gaularfjellet mountain pass. This is a beautiful national tourist road with the recently instated viewing point a memorable highpoint.

Our rest break is located at the top of the ascent from the Vetlefjord, and from here you’ll find an incredible vantage point over the mountain scenery, with views over the scenic trails that climb along the hillside.

With a clear view towards 1500-metre high mountains and deep canyons, the viewing platform balances on the edge of the mountain, 700 metres above the ocean.

We then join a privately guided hike on the Fossestien Waterfall Path that runs from the Gaular mountains down to the parish of Viksdalen. Along its route are 14 waterfalls and 7 lakes. It is a relatively easy-going hike, with a height difference of approx. 500m and a total length of 21 km.

Bus returning to Kviknes. Dinner at the Hotel.

Accommodation: Hotel Kviknes, Balestrand

Meals: Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner,

Day 5: Tuesday 25th August: Hike Raudmelen Mountain

Raudmelen is a mountain which towers 972 metres above sea level over the centre of Balestrand. A hiking trail runs up the mountainside from Balestrand to the top of Raudmelen. From the top there are fantastic views over the Sognefjord, both out towards the mountain plateau Stølsheimen and in towards the Fjærland and Leikanger fjords.

The first part of the hike travels along a marked nature trail, which soon turns off onto an uphill path. After following the relatively steep path up through the woods, we then have an opportunity to take a break at Orrabenken (370m) where you have wonderful views over Balestrand and the Sognefjord. At Burasi (575m), another fine resting place, you can also find stunning views over the Sognefjord and Esefjella. The path forges up and along the ridge towards the top with wonderful views on both sides. On one side you can gaze over the green slopes to Balestrand and on the other, the dramatic rocky mountainsides towards Esedalen. At the top you are rewarded with lunch, as well as fantastic views over the Sognefjord.

This is a full day hike that will take approx. 6 hours. It is possible to do a shorter loop from Orrabenken or Burasi if the full hike is too demanding.

Dinner and overnight at Kviknes Hotel.

Accommodation: Hotel Kviknes, Balestrand

Meals: Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner,

Day 6: Wednesday 26th August: Tjuatoten Summit

A bus will take you and your guide the 10 minutes to the starting point of today’s hike.

Tjuatoten (1098m) is a mountain peak towering over Dragsvik and Balestrand. A hiking trail takes you up across the mountainside from Dragsvik to the top of Tjuatoten. At the top you have fantastic views over the Sognefjord, including out towards Stølsheimen plateau and in towards the Fjærland and Leikanger municipalities.

The first 400m of the trail follows a forest track. The rest of the trail goes through forest and mountain terrain. The trail continues winding its way upwards, becoming steeper towards the top. When you reach the top, you are rewarded with exceptional views over Sognefjord and its surrounding mountains. You will also see an old suncross on the ground. Enjoy your packed lunch with amazing views!

This hike should take around 7 hours.

Dinner and overnight at Kviknes Hotel.

Accommodation: Hotel Kviknes, Balestrand

Meals: Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner,

Day 7: Thursday 27th August: Flåm Railway and fjord cruise to Bergen

We cruise The Nærøyfjord. This UNESCO World Heritage listed fjordarm is one the most beautiful the Sognefjord has to offer. We cruise through the narrow fjord in unique settings: waterfalls, steep snow-covered mountains, crystal clear water and idyllic farms clinging to the mountain sides. The Nærøyfjord is 17 km long and at the narrowest point only 250 m wide. The passage through the Nærøyfjord is one of the most dramatic fjord trips in Europe. During the cruise we’ll pass the small villages of Undredal and Styvi before arriving to the village of Flåm.

From the tiny village of Flåm with it’s 300 inhabitants we will embark on what was voted ‘The most beautiful trainride in the world!’.

The famous Flåm Railway attracts more than 1 million visitors a year, renowned for its route dramatic landscape as you travel on the steep train track from the fjord to the mountains. The beautiful Flåm valley is bound to impress with a number of waterfalls and goat farms as you follow the river and the scenic route Rallarvegen to the end station of Myrdal. Here we change trains to the main rail line, taking us back to Bergen.

Transfer to our hotel for our last night in Norway.

Dinner in local restaurant and over night at Hotel Opus XV1.

Accommodation: Hotel Kviknes, Balestrand

Meals: Breakfast, Dinner,

Day 8: Friday 28th August: Flight to UK

After breakfast, we transfer by private bus to Bergen airport Flesland for the flight back home.

Meals: Breakfast,

Hotel Opus XV1 - Bergen

Norway Walking Holiday Hotel

The first two nights of your trip are spent in the beautiful city of Bergen, returning each night to the 5* Hotel Opus XVI, located in the heart of the city. The hotel looks out towards Mount Fløyen or  the quiet plaza of Vågsallmenningenre, within luxurious surroundings that date back to 1876.

Its this atmosphere and old-world charm that makes Hotel Opus XVI more than just a luxury hotel, and with its distinctive style and enviable location the hotel is an ideal introduction to Norwegian culture and hospitality.

 

Norway Walking Holiday Accomodation

Hotel Kviknes - Balestrand

We spend five nights in the village of Balestrand at the beautifully Kviknes Hotel located on the shores of Sognefjord. The hotel was built in 1752 in the ‘Swiss’ style, and the Kvikne family have been the hosts here since 1877.

There have been many new buildings, reconstructions and extensions ever since, and although the Kviknes is now a thoroughly modern hotel, its extensive collection of artworks and antiques lends the hotel an old-world charm and atmosphere.

Availability Status: Available To Book

Option Price p.p Notes
Price per person TBC Sharing a twin or double room, departing from Gatwick
Manchester departure supplement TBC
Single supplement TBC

What The Standard Price Includes

  • International travel from UK to Bergen
  • Private airport transfers
  • Accompanying tour leader
  • Local qualified English-speaking guide
  • Private coaches in connection with the walks and visiting places of interest
  • Welcome reception
  • Local English-speaking guide
  • Private coaches in connection with the walking programme and visits to places of interest
  • Meals shown in the itinerary
  • Two nights at Thon Hotel Rosenkratz, Bergen
  • Five nights at Kviknes Hotel, Balestrand
  • Fjord cruising
  • Entrance fees to all places of interest
  • Flam Railway experience

 

Not Included

  • Drinks
  • Travel insurance
  • Gratuities to guide, which are optional

 

 

Please Note: For reasons of safety, weather conditions and unforeseen circumstances, it may be necessary to make changes to the programme without advance notice. Every effort will be made to avoid this if at all possible.

Outbound

Friday 21st August: Fly to Bergen

Arrive at the airport under your own arrangements. Please check-in at least two hours before the departure time. Flight times are the latest known and subject to confirmation by the airlines.

Flights include allocated seating and hold luggage allowance of 20kg and a carry-on bag of 10kg.

Depart London Gatwick:

  • Depart London Gatwick: 10:50
  • Flight Time: 2:00
  • Arrive Bergen: 13:45

Flight time: 2hr

Depart Manchester:

  • Depart Manchester: 11:25
  • Flight Time: 4:55
  • Arrive Bergen: 10:30

Flight time: 4hr 55

Return

Friday 28th August: Return Flight to UK

After breakfast, we transfer by private bus to Bergen airport Flesland for the flight back home.

Flights include allocated seating and hold luggage allowance of 20kg.

Depart Bergen: 

  • Depart Bergen: 09:15
  • Flight Time: 2:00
  • Arrive London Gatwick: 10:15

Flight time: 2hr

Depart Norway:

  • Depart Bergen: 17:00
  • Flight Time: 4:15
  • Arrive Manchester: 20:15

Flight time: 4hr 15

 

Flight times are the latest known and are subject to confirmation from the airline. All flight times are local time (BST+1).

August Weather

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Useful Information

Currency: Krone (NOK). £1 will get you (roughly) 11.21 Kroner, with the average price for a cup of coffee in Bergen being 30kr . There are ATMS in Bergen and Balestrand. You can exchange money in post offices and banks, which will generally give you a better rate (without commission) than the dedicated exchange offices. You may need your passport or ID on hand when exchanging money.

Language: Norwegian is the national tongue, but English-speakers should be able to navigate with ease - especially with those working within tourism. Norwegians are especially proficient in speaking English as a second language, generally speaking, though you may find that most people you encounter may not be able to communicate beyond the most basic English.

Timezone: Time alternates between Central European time (GMT+1) and Central European Summertime (GMT+2).

How Fit Do I Need to Be? Hiking trails do not exceed anything above a moderate pace, with the most challenging among our guided walking routes being the ascents of viewing points stationed around the fjord. Walking in the historic centres of the towns, villages and cities is at a more relaxed pace, best suited to sightseeing. Our policy is always to set the pace to the needs of the group, and we are happy to take regular breaks if necessary.

By keeping group sizes at a manageable level, we can cater to a range of comfort levels while out on the path, but we generally find that you are more likely to get the most out of these tours if you’re at a confident level of fitness prior to your departure.

Dressing for the the Norwegian Climate: Hiking boots will be the only technical bit of clothing necessary, with lightweight layers appropriate for higher altitudes, to be taken on and off where necessary. We travel in October, with mild and bright weather best suited for hiking excursions.

Power Plugs and Sockets in Norway: Wall outlets will typically accommodate the European two and three-pin plugs, if you're travelling from outside the European mainland you will need an adapter.

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