The most popular areas for summer visitors are all within easy driving distance to
the north and east of Bergen. The Bergen area itself has a very wide range of cultural
and scenic attractions and is an especially good base for those using only public
transport. Less than 2 hours drive to the east the Hardanger area centred on Norheimsund
offers Norway in miniature, with fjords, lakes, big mountains and glaciers, coastal
scenery and a city all within easy reach. 3-4 hours drive north of Bergen is Sognefjord,
the longest fjord in Norway with the popular tourist centres of Flåm, Balestrand
and Sogndal at its heart.
The huge and complex Jostedal glacier lies to the north of Sognefjord and to the
east are the Jotunheim mountains including Norway's highest peaks. 6-7 hours drive
north of Bergen is Inner Nordfjord with even more spectacular mountain scenery and
easy access to the north side of the Jostedal glacier. Stryn is the main town and
this is an excellent base for making day tours by car to many different places. The
Sunnfjord area is also a good choice for a touring base as it lies between Sognefjord
and Nordfjord and has many beautiful but less well known attractions of its own.
The Stavanger area, south of Bergen, attracts surprisingly few visitors yet it has
Lysefjord at its heart, probably the most spectacular of all the fjords, and there
is an extraordinary variety of scenery within 2 hours drive.
The more seasoned or adventurous traveller will enjoy the Møre and Romsdal area north
of the Nordfjord. This area is a long day's drive or more from Bergen but the scenery
here is at its most spectacular and includes the stunning Geirangerfjord and Romsdal
mountains, which are connected by the famous and still hair-raising Trollstigveien
road. A beautiful and complex coast includes the large towns of Ålesund, Molde and
Kristiansund. Sunnmøre just south of Ålesund is a good base and is the closest part
of this area to Bergen. This is where the British Victorian pioneers of tourism
to Norway chose to stay over a hundred years ago.
Balestrand on the Sognefjord
Waterfall at a stop on the Flam railway, where you may just see a water nymph appear.
The historic city of Bergen is the natural starting point for a visit to the fjord
area. View from the Strand Hotel.