Seeing Norway’s Fjords from Bergen

Norway has over a thousand fjords, and obviously you’re not going to (nor do you need to) see them all. Bergen is considered a great starting point to experience some of the more popular fjords, though. What I didn’t realize when arranging a stay in Bergen is that, if you’re coming from Oslo, some of these “popular fjords” are back the other way. In retrospect, I should have scheduled a stop somewhere in between instead of taking the train directly from Oslo to Bergen.

That said, if you look up fjord tours, you’ll most likely come across Norway in a Nutshell that focuses on the fjords between Gudvangen and Flåm. Be aware, though, that Norway in a Nutshell isn’t so much a tour as it is a series of train, bus, and boat tickets that they simply book for you. Knowing this, and not really wanting to backtrack on the same train, I opted for an all-day, all-inclusive bus tour instead. Fjordrive departs from Bergen and puts you on the same Gudvangen-to-Flåm ferry, with the added benefit of a stop at a waterfall and scenic overlook:

Looking down at the fjord from the Stegastein viewing platform

We really enjoyed the extra stops that would have otherwise been difficult to do without a rental car. And, of course, the views from the fjord ferry were pretty spectacular:

A small village on the shoreline of the Aurlandsfjord waterway

I also booked a second, shorter fjord tour with Rødne Fjord Cruise. This tour is a 3-hour roundtrip to Mostraumen and back to Bergen. The mountains here weren’t as tall, but the scenery was a little more interesting:

The view from the Mostraumen fjord tour boat

It helps that this is a proper tour and not a commuter ferry, so the boat will occasionally slow down and pull up next to waterfalls. I think I actually enjoyed this trip more than the previous one, though I’m glad we did both.

And don’t forget that Bergen is a city on a fjord, itself. For a great view of said fjord and city, you can take the funicular to the top of Mount Fløyen. This was my favorite activity in Bergen, and maybe the entire trip, because there’s still a lot to do up there after you’ve seen “the view:”

Looking down at Bergen from atop Mount Fløyen

Mount Fløyen has some nice walking trails and a few lakes to explore. Oh, and there are goats up there, too! Lastly, I recommend hiking down the mountain when you’re ready to leave, instead of taking the funicular again.

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