Norheimsund is a town in South West of Norway; North West of Oslo and East of Bergen. It is a beautiful town right on the water’s edge and a perfect base for exploring the region’s fjords and waterfalls. If you’re visiting Bergen from the UK, it’s a great addition to the trip as you can reach Norheimsund in just 1.5 hours if you hire a car, and it enables you to see more of this beautiful country.
If you do have time to visit Norheimsund, I recommend at least 2 days in the town, but 3 would enable you to really see more of the local area, per my itinierary below.
Day 1 – Explore Norheimsund
A. Start the day with a Fjord trip
Norheimsund sits on the amazing Hardangerfjord, which is the second largest fjord in Norway. Start your time in Norheimsund by getting out on the water, whether by boat tour or by Kayak – a boat trip will be around 2 hours and a kayak tour about 3.5 hours.
B. Visit the Hardanger Maritime Centre & Museum
Norheimsund has a rich boat making tradition, and this museum keeps the tradition of boat building alive. You can even try your hand at making rope, though we were terrible at it!
The boat yard (L) and traditional oars (R)
C. Admire Steinsdalsfossen
A 40 minute walk out of the town, and there is a beautiful waterfall which you can actually walk behind, called Steinsdalsfossen. It’s a lovely spot for an afternoon stroll.
Day 2 – Glacier Hike
Today is a full day trip to visit Folgefanna, a glacier which you can hike up. Lots of tour companies run trips here, including Fjord Tours, who run a 9 hour excursion to the glacier.
To get there, you ride a Catamaran away from Norheimsund over the fjord to Herand, and then take a (very scary) coach ride to a ski resort. You then get kitted out with ropes, ice picks and helmets and are sent to walk 200m up the ski slope. At the top, they speak through how glaciers are formed and then you walk on a few sections of the glacier. It was fun to do and a unique experience, but it really would have been better to get on the ski lift and spend more time at the top instead.
Day 3 – Explore more of the local area
Norheimsund is a great base to explore a bit more of the local area. I recommend taking a road trip across the fjord by car ferry and cross to Jondal, Tesenarsstaden, Utne, Kinarvik and Herand. These are beautiful, scenic drives through apple orchards, fruit farms and fishing villages, so is perfect for a relaxed day of enjoying the amazing scenery and nature around.
This also then enables you to see the fjords of Utnefjord, Sorfjord and Eidfjord, as well as take in the incredible Voringfossen waterfall. You can also then drive back to Norheimsund via the Hardanger bridge, one of the longest suspension bridges in the world.
The fjord and Voringfossen
Thanks for reading! Has this post inspired you to go in search of the fjords? Have you already been? Let me know in the comments below!