Explore the Aurlandsfjord and Nærøyfjord from Flåm
NORWAY IN A NUTSHELL WILL FLOAT YOUR BOAT
Float with me as we continue our Norway in a Nutshell tour through the gorgeous Norwegian Fjords. More than one scenic train ride stemming from Oslo yesterday brought us to charming Flåm for a relaxing overnight once the tourist hoards had vacated. Bellies sated from the full Nordic buffet at the Fretheim Hotel this morning, we check out and head to the harbor to start the boated portion of our pre-planned Norwegian package.
RELATED: NORWAY BY RAIL
Make sure that you know which dock your scheduled boat departs from – signs for “Norway in a Nutshell” fjord tours can mislead you to an earlier or later slated ticket time. Coveted window seats in the cafe area of the fjord boats fill up quickly and on a slightly soggy day like we experienced, enjoying a warm cocoa and slice of eplekake (apple cake) or muffin along with the passing fjord views helped. (Note, outside food and drink not allowed in the cafe area.)
Our vessel, comparatively small to the mammoth cruise ships docked nearby, departs with a chugging putter and we wave goodbye to little Flåm, Norway. Once aboard, there is minimal communication about where and what you are seeing, it is best just to soak it all in. And soaked we sometimes were, with clouds and mist and ensuing rain following our watery tour. The first hour of our cruise heads up the wider Aurlandsfjord and allowed us to get our fjording bearings. The wee peaked houses that we met initially in the Oslo Fjord and again along our train route mark our progress cheerfully from the shores. The canned recording overhead tells us of historic churches not to miss in four languages but we have difficulty pointing them out, wondering if the announcement settings aren’t off pace. It doesn’t really matter. The scale of anything human in this neck of the woods pales in front of the awesome cliffs they are set against.
It is really all about the FJORD here. We stop in and out of little ports of call per se – not much more than a cluster of little colorful houses and a dock. The captain expertly maneuvers his boat and quickly passengers are let off and more embark. A few here, a few there. Hikers with packs and sticks greet us at one such dock, as we turn into the narrower Nærøyfjord. Quick hugs and they release two members of their group to join us – the rest apparently fjording on by foot. Just another place to customize your Nutshell experience.
NEARING THE NÆRØYFJORD
The Nærøyfjord is much more impressive than the first hour on the Aurlandsfjord. The water is deeper and the cliffs much closer. Seemingly, they plunge with their waterfalls right into the ancient water with us. Goats amble up the rocks. An occasional seal surfaces and his glance proves that in fact, we are the ones being watched. The rain turns to mist and white clouds drip down the mountainsides only making this place more magical and surreal. Seagulls follow us, a reminder that these waters eventually lead to the sea. Today, I’m taking you only as far as Gudvangen which we reach after two lovely, albeit passive, hours on the water. I will admit that my children became a wee bit numb to the spectacle but were revived with the upcoming twisty bus ride to Voss. Our next Norway in a Nutshell leg – on the road to Bergen – in the next post… stay tuned! Enjoy the pics. (Want to see them larger? Just double-click and scroll through!) Traveled on a different fjord? Liked it better? Please share in the comments below! Cheers from Denmark – Erin
RELATED: BY BUS TO BERGEN
Norway is just beautiful at every turn. Go a little further north and explore Norway above the Arctic Circle. The perfect place to meet the midnight sun in summertime.
NOTE: Originally written in 2015, post updated January 2017.
RELATED: 8 Reasons to Love the Lofoten Islands in the Summer | ARCTIC NORWAY
Save it for later!
Disclosure: This post may contain affiliate links, which means if you click a link and purchase something that I have recommended, I will get a small commission. Anything I recommend here I have personally tried, loved and truly believe in. Clicking these links won’t cost you any extra money, they will help us keep this site up and running. For more details, check out my full disclosure policy. Thank you for your support!
43 thoughts on “Norway by Boat”
Nice variety of pics.
Thank you kindly!
Oooh this brings back amazing memories! We did the Norwegian Fjords about 7 years ago on the QE2, we stopped at Bergen, Stavanger and Oslo and took a beautiful boat ride down some of the Fjords, it was such a magical trip. Thank you for reminding me!
Glad I could trigger some happy memories! Thanks for reading – cheers from Denmark!
Next time hopefully you’ll make it to the northern part 🙂 I hear the Norway in a Nutshell tour is very intensive.
Ohh you really make me move Norway to the top of my list with all these amazing pictures.
You’re welcome 😀
Pingback: By Bus to Bergen – Onsdag Wanderlust – Volume V | oregon girl around the world
Ohhhh wonderful! The fjords of Norway are one of my favorite places in Europe! I have good memories of Geiranger, did you go there?
Pingback: Norway by Rail - oregon girl around the world
No better way to experience Norway in my opinion! I think I’d never get off the boats except for docking at all of these cute colorful villages. #FarawayFiles
I have visited over 65 countries, but Norway is still one of my favourites. I love the enchanting beauty of the fjords. #FarawayFiles
I adore Norway!
How magical, Erin, and I was delighted to spot our Faraway Files picture in here! The Norwegian fjords are so high on my travel wish list. My youngest son has been desperate to go to Norway ever since seeing Frozen and years later, he’s as keen as ever. I love the slowness of this trip up the fjords too.
You should definitely go! We have never regretted going to Norway any of the times we’ve visited. So much awe inducing epic landscapes to be seen and adventures to be had!
Sounds like that’s a great way to explore Norway! So in love with those pictures!!! #farawayfiles
Thank you kindly! Have you been to Norway? It’s just stunning from top to bottom!
The Norway Fjords are high on my list. We recently visited Milford Sound in New Zealand, which has some similarities, so I can only imagine how awe inspiring Norway is!
New Zealand is definitely on my list! Norway is so stunning. We loved it!
We did the Norway in a Nutshell tour when we visited and stayed overnight in Flam.It’s great how they organise it for you and was a fun way to see a lot of great scenery. Glad you enjoyed it too! #FarawayFiles
I liked staying in Flåm after all the tourists left! Completely different atmosphere. Such a beautiful area isn’t it?
Yes, it was nice having the beach to ourselves in the evening, absolutely stunning!
Love the fjords, sounds like a great way to explore them too – I suspect I would take a lot of photos en route (between apple cake) #farawayfiles
I could look at photos of the fjords all day long..absolutely spectacular!! #farawayfiles
I’ve always wondered what they cover in the Norway Nutshell tour. Now I know 🙂
We visited Norway this summer and it just felt like one incredible view after another! We skipped Norway in a Nutshell tour because we felt it would be a bit much for our two small kids, but we did take the train from Oslo to Bergen – easily one of the most beautiful train rides I have ever done! Looking forward to seeing more of your posts! #farawayfiles
The houses are so colourful! #FarawayFiles
Oh these photos remind me so much of Milford Sound in New Zealand. I love the serenity of places like this. Norway keeps pushing its way up my bucket list! #FarawayFiles
Oh, I want to visit the fjords one day. I think it is a good idea to ride on a small ship. Big ships can be a bit maddening. I get what you are saying about the recording. I had the same experience on a Rhine cruise. I felt like the recording was taking about a place when the boat was leaving for another place. #FarawayFiles
It always surprises me how colourful Norway is and it’s such a majestic country as well. Gorgeous!!
I love the colours of Norway the Scandinavians know how to brighten up the dark days and regular bad weather. I also loved Iceland for that reason. #farawayfiles
This is just spectacular! I must admit your proximity to so much beauty is something I envy, but thankfully I get to see it through your eyes! Question: Did you have to arrive extra early to get those great window seats? I loved the photo looking through the portal. Somehow I feel that here in the US we’d never be able to open the portal… #farawayfiles
I am so glad you got to do this, it looks just stunning! I don’t suppose you read my friend’s guest post on my blog about her slightly catastrophic Norwegian trip and missing their Norway in a Nutshell cruise!!! 😀
I do love your photos. The sheer scale of the mountains against the water is so special and so breathtaking. I would love to visit.
Isn’t Norway just beautiful! I have recently returned from my 4 days there – didn’t get to do the Norway in a Nutshell tour but only my relatives drove me around up to Voss from Bergen – just beautiful. Did a short fjord cruise from Bergen too. Heart strings pulling while reading this post and seeing your photos! #farawayfiles
Insider’s road trip probably better! That area is soooo amazing.
I am hoping to get to the Norwegian Fjords next year and after reading this post am really quite excited. Your photos are great.
Ooooh! I hope you get to go and experience it for yourself!
I was only a young girl when we visited the Hardangerfjord and still have very vivid memories of its beauty. I remember your Norway in a Nutshell trip. Might need to investigate further – I’m needing a mountain and water fix!
This sounds like such an incredbile trip!! You describe the sights so well I feel like I was there with you! Amazing 🙂 #farawayfiles
I really really want to see the fjords by boat. Norway in a nutshell sounds like a brilliant way to do that #FarawayFiles
This is fantastic! Something we’ve been wanting to do for far too long now. Is there a specific tour you would recommend? (We see many tempting options at Norway in a Nutshell!) We have definitely Pinned this for future reference. For now, we’re going to look at your pictures and daydream some more. 🙂