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Itinerary help - one week in western Norway

In cooperation with: Visit Norway
Dallas, Texas
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Itinerary help - one week in western Norway

We will be spending a bit less than a week in western Norway. Actually we're buying a Volvo in Sweden and will spend the first night in Oslo. Then we have to return the car to Sweden a week later, so will probably spend the 7th night in Oslo as well.

We would like to focus on the fjords, but aren't opposed to spending some time in Bergen as well. Since we have the car, we aren't as interested in doing the train.

Would it be worthwhile to do a cruise of some sort in the fjords?

Is it feasible to drive from spot to spot, sleeping in various spots along the way, or does it make more sense to have a "base camp" and take day trips?

Travelers will be my husband, my 78 year old mother in law, and me. Short walks would be great, longer hikes probably not.

Travel dates mid-September 2013.

Thanks so much!!

Stavanger, Norway
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1. Re: Itinerary help - one week in western Norway

One of the forum regulars, Brainspin, has created this excellent guide for driving between Oslo and Bergen:

http://www.jiffymade.no/

Please note that driving in Norway is slow and the roads are not straight as the roads in Texas.

Book accomodation in advance. How many hours are you prepared to do each day? This will probably dictate if you can have a base camp or drive from spot to spot. Probably a combination is the best.

Also note that September is outside the tourist season and summer is over. Now after experiencing the record high 107 F yesterday in Houston and it was probably more or less the same in Dallas, you may find the cool in Norway to be a nice change.

www.yr.no for weather forecast and statistics

Edited: 01 July 2013, 02:12
Stavanger, Norway
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2. Re: Itinerary help - one week in western Norway

...meant to say cool/chilly temperatures...

Edited: 01 July 2013, 02:15
Harstad, Norway
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3. Re: Itinerary help - one week in western Norway

I would say it can be nice to ejoy the fjords from the fjordside as well. There are some tourist services where you can bring your car onboard while cruising and crossing.

http://www.fjord1.no/eng/tourist-services

Dallas, Texas
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4. Re: Itinerary help - one week in western Norway

Thanks so much for the replies! Pippi we are definitely happy to get away from the heat and flat in Texas!

Kilm, thanks for the link for the cruise company. One site I saw had the cruises stopping at the end of August, so I'm very happy to see we can still do that till the end of September!

I think we're going to focus on the fjords since we will actually have less than a week this time. My daughter (not coming on this trip) would love to go to the Grieg museum so I think we'll save Bergen for a time when she can join us.

Dallas, Texas
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5. Re: Itinerary help - one week in western Norway

Just an update and a new-ish question.

My husband wants to spend 2-3 days in Oslo. So that cuts our fjord time to 3-4 days. I told him we needed to bypass Bergen as we just can't do everything in a week. So what would you recommend for 3-4 days? Should we do something with Norway in a Nutshell? Would we be crazy to try to see both Sognefjord and Geiranger? If so, which would you recommend? In mid-September do we need to prebook the fjord boat cruise?

Thanks again.

Charmouth, United...
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6. Re: Itinerary help - one week in western Norway

If you don't mind the driving distances, which aren't excessive by US standards, in 3 - 4 days you could have a very enjoyable trip by driving from Oslo straight to the Sogndal area on the Sognefjord, then via Fjaerland and Skei to Olden / Loen / Stryn on the Nordfjord. You should have time for a day trip to Geirangerfjord including the ferry from Hellesylt (if it's still running when you are there). From the Nordfjord it's a fairly long but easy day's drive back to Oslo.

Use Google Maps for driving distances and times (though 1 minute per kilometer is a more realistic driving times than Google's calculation).

You don't need to book any ferries in advance in September.

Dallas, Texas
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7. Re: Itinerary help - one week in western Norway

Thanks so much for the driving route - I've got it up on Google Maps and it looks very doable, even with going 60 KPM.

Dallas, Texas
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8. Re: Itinerary help - one week in western Norway

Do you think we'll need to prebook hotels in mid-September, or will we be okay being flexible?

Harstad, Norway
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9. Re: Itinerary help - one week in western Norway

There are not a lot of hotels in the fjord areas and some close for the season in September. Closing times vary, some are open all September but probably not all. It it also a question of budget.

I would suggest you do a certain research on accomodation possibilities, then phone ahead the day before or when you know your arrival. This way there will be no big surprises. You can also ask your hotel to make the reservation for the next night.

Dallas, Texas
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10. Re: Itinerary help - one week in western Norway

Thanks for the suggestion. You've helped me think through our options.

Now I'm thinking we may park ourselves in the Sognefjord area so we're not spending so much time just driving from Point A to Point B, and we can book ahead and take day trips. I'd really love to see Geiranger but I think that may need to wait for another trip...