I am planning a trip to Norway in mid-July with my husband. We plan to arrive in Oslo by overnight ferry from Copenhagen, stay 1 night in Oslo, then continue by train to Myrdal and Flam, explore Sognefjord (stay 2-3 nights, Friday, Sat, Sun) and then on to Bergen for 1-2 nights before flying home.
We are in our early 30s, and would prefer not to spend too much, but could spend up to $150 or $175/night for lodging. I'm trying to figure out the best place for us to stay in Sognefjord area. I would like a place that is a good base for day trips (e.g., excursion to the glacier, another to a stave church - ideally Urnes, potentially a half day of kayaking or cycling). Although we do a lot of outdoor activities in the US - including wilderness trips - we may not have the necessary gear for really serious outdoor activities (as we are adding this vacation to the end of a professional conference, and trying to travel light) - i.e., hopefully we will not need to bring hiking boots, if we could get by with tennis shoes. The perfect place would provide or arrange day trips with transportation by bus or ferry to places we could do these activities, or be near public transportation we could walk to. Given we will not have a car, it would be nice to stay somewhere that had a couple cafes or restaurants within walking distance, but it seems only a few towns are this large (Balenstrand?).
It seems like Solvorn in particular, or maybe Fjaerland, are closer to the glacier (and Solvorn to Urnes chuch), but that they have few lodging options and dining. Balenstrand seems to have more lodging and eating options, but sounds like transportation to see the glacier (Nigardsbeern, ideally) would be lengthy, and Urnes Church is also difficult to reach. Although it seems like the transportation for these day excursions is probably scenic and interesting in itself, I sometimes have problems with motion sickness, so I don't necessarily want to spend 4+ hours each day in a boat or on a bus (I understand that substantial boat travel - and some bus travel - are necessary, but it would be nice to choose a "base camp" that minimizes the travel required each day for excursions).
Am I correct in thinking that Solvorn would be a better base for these activities?
Are there other towns that would be a good compromise between proximity to these day trip activities, places to eat and sleep, and that we could reach without a car?
Thanks very much for any advice!