Cruising Norway's Fjords


A fjord's spectacular-factor is a function of its width—the narrower the better. By this yardstick, few rival world-famous Geirangerfjord, Norway's most gorgeous fjord.

This slender tongue of green sea winds its way far inland between sheer, snow-capped mountains. Long, silvery waterfalls cascade hundreds of feet down into the deep waters of the fjord. Even if cruise ships aren't your thing, you can't help but enjoy seeing them dwarfed by Geirangerfjord as they thread their way though its narrow walls to anchor at its head.

Driving up from Oslo, you'll catch your first glimpse of Geirangerfjord from far above. Look for a sign that says "Dalsnibba" as you hurtle across highlands where roadside snow and frozen lakes are common in July. Take the switchback to the top of this scenic overlook and enjoy the mile-high panorama of the distant fjord and encircling mountains.

The village of Geiranger sits at the very head of the fjord, and the road down delivers postcard-perfect views at every hairpin turn. From Geiranger, you can take off for day trips to hike, climb, fish, or explore. But make time to just sit back and space out in this special place.

The overlook on Xrnevegen (Eagle's Road), the only other road out of Geiranger, provides you with a photographic perch directly above the fjord. Following it to the top takes you through a mountain pass before winding down into... yet another fjord. Get the picture?

The best way out of Geiranger is by boat. The eye-popping, hour-long ferry to Hellesylt offers an unforgettable climax to your visit.

When you get off at Hellesylt, head south for one of Norway's premier playgrounds.

Published: 30 Apr 2002 | Last Updated: 15 Sep 2010
Details mentioned in this article were accurate at the time of publication


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