The Fjords in Norway

November 12, 2012

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You come to Norway to see the fjords.  These narrow inlets of the sea are book-ended by steep walls of rock or craggy cliffs: wildly dramatic, the effect is heart-stopping, breath-taking, and awe-inducing.

To be honest, Norway was never on my short-list of places to visit, namely because I knew nothing about the place except that it was very cold during the winter, was known for its Vikings, and had fjords.  I have never seen a picture of Norway, let anyone met anyone from there. It was one of those places I had heard of and nothing more.

But now that I have been, now that I have seen, I tell you this: you must go to Norway.

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I feel compelled to spread the word: Norway is one of the most naturally gorgeous places I have ever been to.  After a day of admiring the colourful houses in beautiful Bergen and contemplating the view from the city’s cable car, Liebling and I hopped on a ferry and embarked on a two day tour of the Sognefjord and the Fjaerlandsfjord, two of  the most impressive fjords in Norway.

Take a fjord cruise

The best way to tour Norway’s fjords is via special ferries, known as fjord cruises. While there are a great deal to choose from, Liebling and I opted for the Norway in a Nutshell tour, the country’s most popular fjord trip, which itself has a variety of routes and itineraries.   For the first leg of the cruise, we did a four-hour stretch from Bergen to Balestrand, which showed off the best parts Norway’s fjord network.  Now, I have to admit that, as someone who frequently gets motion sick, I worried about how I would fare on such a long ride on the open seas.  But Norway in a Nutshell hooked us up: our ferry was HUGE, brand new, and extremely comfortable! I didn’t feel sick for one moment.
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Salivate over the majestic Sognefjord and beauteous Fjaerlandsfjord

If you’re looking to be wowed by crazy scenery, one needn’t look any further than the fjords in Norway.  At 204 kilometres long and 1038 kilometres deep, the Sognefjord is the king of all fjords, the largest in Norway;  and the emerald-green Fjaerlandsfjord (say THAT five times fast!) is the crown jewel.  Bow down, lowly serf!  The immensity of the water-filled valleys is almost intimidating, especially for me since it is well-documented that I can barely swim.   But I’ll be damned if I didn’t drape myself over the railing time and time again to get an amazing picture of the fjords in Norway.

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The takeaway

I am smitten with the fjords in Norway and realize that the only reason tourists don’t flock there in droves is because they don’t know that beauty like this exists there. Norwegians seem to be a humble people, unwilling to sing their country’s praises in an international forum, but there’s no reason that Norway shouldn’t be a prime European travel destination like France or Spain or Italy. I was duly impressed by all the natural beauty Norway had to offer and and am hoping that, after my seeing my photos and reading my words, you are, too. Because if Norway isn’t on your travel hit list… then you should put it on. Like immediately.

What do you think of Norway?  Has it ever figured on your travel wish list?  Have I convinced you that you absolutely need to go before you die?

 I was a guest of Visit Norway USA, but all opinions and kick-ass fjord photos are mine.

{ 21 comments… read them below or add one }

crazy sexy fun traveler November 12, 2012 at 10:41 pm

This is such a beautiful place to visit! You just convinced me that I should really go to visit next year :)
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Oneika November 12, 2012 at 10:58 pm

You should add it to your list for sure!

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Arianwen November 12, 2012 at 10:42 pm

Wow. I am sold! I also want to go there to see the Northern Lights. They were meant to be especially good at the start of this year but I was too busy saving for South America.
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Oneika November 12, 2012 at 10:58 pm

I would love to see them there too!

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AmericanBlackChickinEurope November 12, 2012 at 10:42 pm

Visited Norway over the summer (I hit Oslo, Bergen, Stavanger and Flam) and loved it! You’re right, it’s just a natural beautiful country. I definitely want to go back and explore more!
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Oneika November 12, 2012 at 10:58 pm

Well Copenhagen is basically next door!! So no excuse not to go back :-)

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Rhona November 12, 2012 at 10:45 pm

Just WOW! This pics are amazing Oneika. Norway has been on my places-to-visit list for about 3 years now. Like you, I knew nothing about the place. It was not until I went to Germany did I hear that I ‘must’ visit. Now that I have seen your breathtaking pictures, I know I really must get there. It is really expensive to fly there though from Toronto. And, isn’t it expensive period? This is what I have heard and from looking at pictures, I think it might be true. Expensive or no, I need to go. Thanks for this beautiful post.

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Oneika November 12, 2012 at 10:57 pm

I think you can fly to Norway fairly cheaply on Iceland Air actually! Norway on the whole is really expensive but so worth it! You can cut costs by buying groceries because eating out is insane!

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ashley November 12, 2012 at 11:03 pm

I actually went a few short weeks ago and feel the same way! I was awestruck by Norway’s beauty. It was even snowing, which made the fjords and the town I was in quite magical. I tell everyone I know to go to Norway now!!
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Little Gumnut November 12, 2012 at 11:27 pm

Love Norway!! We’ve been once to Oslo in the dead of winter to visit friends but I would love love love to do a fjord trip – it looks amazing!
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jade November 12, 2012 at 11:32 pm

Seriously- wow. I’m not sure what it is but Norway has been killing it lately on Facebook and Twitter. IT’s like everytime I turn around someone else is posting about it or talking about Norway! Must get there asap- looks and sounds incredible!
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Kim November 13, 2012 at 1:29 am

Wow, stunning! Love the photos and would love to see the fjords with my own two eyes. Isn’t Norway insanely expensive to visit? The cost is what’s keeping it off of my travel list in the near future.
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Kimvan November 13, 2012 at 12:14 pm

breathtaking indeed, on my list of places to visit
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Amanda November 14, 2012 at 12:07 am

I can totally understand becoming smitten by these fjords! Wow, they’re so gorgeous!

Must. Go. To. Norway.
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wintersundays November 14, 2012 at 12:27 am

Okay, you’ve convinced me! One of my other favorite bloggers, Megan @ http://www.meganstarr.com lives in Bergen, Norway. Between this post and her accounts of life in Norway, I must go for a visit! Your photos are stunning. Great post!
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Auscanucksarah November 15, 2012 at 11:33 am

Norway looks so beautiful! I’d love the chance to visit! I know people in Oslo and Jay from http://www.fromtheretoheretheblog.com/ lives in Stavanger. Everything she posts looks gorgeous and your photos are amazing! Hoping maybe I can schedule a visit when I’m in London next year!
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Chitra Sivasankar Arunagiri November 16, 2012 at 5:39 pm

Oh wow! do these places really look as beautiful as in the pics. :) Wow! I just noted this on my Bucket list. But not anytime sooner though :(
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Deidre November 17, 2012 at 7:58 am

Oh wow! It looks INCREDIBLE. Norway is on my travel list!

Amazing.

(Also I hate to do this, but I also have a giveaway going on my blog)
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Rig December 2, 2012 at 10:27 pm

Your pictures have increased my temptation to visit Norway….especially to know by reading this information that it offers such open sea to visitors.http://www.travelgeeze.com/how-to-visit-london-with-a-low-budge/

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Kristine January 8, 2013 at 6:00 pm

Wow thanks for all those kind words, I’ve been looking on your site because I’m planning a trip to Peru (I am studying Spanish) and when I noticed you’d been to Norway i could not help but feeling slightly curious to how you would describe my home and country. I’m born and raised and still live in Bergen:) I love your site even more now haha x

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Igor January 10, 2013 at 12:52 am

Been there — totally amazing and unforgetable!

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