The most popular area for a holiday in Norway in recent times is the western fjord
area, including the three major fjords, Hardangerfjord, Sognefjord and Nordfjord,
which stretch far inland from the west coast. In Victorian times when tourism to
Norway first started, some of the more northern fjords such as Geiranger and Norangsfjord
were popular destinations as they could be reached directly by boat services from
the UK. The whole of the fjord area is well served by hotels, some of which have
been in existence since Victorian times, though most have been extended many times
and some completely rebuilt following disastrous fires.
The size of the fjord area is such that you can visit most of it on day trips from
a base in two or three different places, and we strongly recommend that you spend
at least 3 nights in each place. In this way you can let the atmosphere, scenery
and culture of Norway really soak into you. You will miss a great deal if you just
Fortunately many of the hotels in the fjord area are set in idyllic surroundings,
often with gardens beside the fjords or larger lakes. The uninterrrupted views across
the open water offer spectacular vistas of glaciers and barren rock of the high mountains,
waterfalls and forested hills. The hotels often have rowing boats available for their
guests to use for a peaceful and perhaps romantic trip out on the water. Excellent
public transport connections, including express boats in some places, enable you
to make a variety of excursions though it has to be said that having a car will make
the best use of your time.
The best time to visit the fjord area is May to September, and only a few fjord hotels
are open outside of these times.
The hotels below are a small selection of ones we can recommend from personal experience
and good feedback from our customers. Which one will suit you best depends on many
factors, both practical and personal, so it is probably best if you let us help you
choose. We can always book at the same price shown on the web sites.
Midtnes Hotel at Balestrand on the Sognefjord is a charming small hotel and one of
the best of its type in Norway. Very reasonable rates and frequently praised by our
Kviknes Hotel , also at Balestrand and a very different hotel from Midtnes, but equally
popular and frequently recommended. Quite a large hotel, the main part of which is
a magnificent old wooden building. Delightful waterside garden with a small boat
harbour and bathing jetty.
Petrines Hotel in the small village of Norddal by the Geirangerfjord. Charming small
hotel offering excellent local food.
Alexandra Hotel at Loen on the Nordfjord. One of the largest hotels in the fjord
area with a superb modern spa and pool complex. Excellent base for excursions around
the Nordfjord area and out to the west coast. Its smaller sister the Loenfjord Hotel
is just across the road and offers more modest accommodation and very reasonable
rates, especially early and late in the season.
Ullensvang Hotel on the Hardangerfjord is another large and high standard hotel with
excellent sports facilities including an indoor pool and tennis courts. Good base
for those who want a luxurious base to see a little of everything the fjord area
has to offer without travelling too far from Bergen.
Fleischers Hotel is in the town of Voss, about 60 miles inland from Bergen. It is
located by Voss station on the Oslo to Bergen rail line. Some of its newer rooms
are in the old station building, though you won’t be disturbed by the almost silent
electric trains. It is a very good base for excursions by public transport or by
car to both the Sognefjord and the Hardangerfjord and is the best starting point
for the famous ‘Norway in a Nutshell’ tour. Open all year round as Voss is also a
famous ski resort.
Sandven Hotel is a beautiful wooden building, sympathetically restored in recent
years, with a delightful fjordside garden in the centre of the town of Norheimsund
on the Hardangerfjord.
Sandven Hotel and its garden, beside the Hardangerfjord.
Norheimsund on the Hardangerfjord., home of the Sandven Hotel.
Hjelle Hotel beside Strynsvatnet lake. Is an ideal base for visiting the Nordfjord,
and Geirangerfjord .