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Destinations Europe Norway

Norway Trips

At the northern tip of Europe is this land of deep, dramatic fjords, mighty glaciers and midnight sun. Part of the country lies within the Arctic Circle, including the isolated archipelago of Svalbard, but other regions are also unspoilt, uninhabited wildernesses and nearly as remote.

Norway’s most iconic symbol is the fjord, a sheer-sided inlet gouged out by glaciers. West Norway is fjord country and has Europe’s longest, the Sognefjord, which is one of the most visited, along with the Hardangerfjord. Listed as UNESCO World Heritage Sites, the Geirangerfjord and the Nærøyfjord are equally impressive, with their vertiginous sides, snow-capped peaks and magnificent waterfalls. One of Europe’s most spectacular train journeys is in Norway. The Flam Railway runs from Myrdal in the mountains dropping down over 800 metres to Flam on the shores of Aurlandsfjord and passes roaring waterfalls. From Flam cruise ships operate on Aurlandsfjord to Sognefjord.

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Given Norway’s wealth of wild beauty, it’s not surprising that it offers many stunning natural attractions. For one of the best views in Europe, head to the viewpoint at Dalsnibba at 1,500 metres above sea level. Here, you can gaze down over the surrounding mountains, the Geirangerfjord and its UNESCO protected area. At over 200 metres high, the Kjosfossen waterfall is one of the most impressive sights along the Flam Railway. Or go on a glacier hike in Jostedalsbreen National Park and see mainland Europe’s largest glacier. The vast Austfonna in Svalbard is the world’s third largest ice cap, after Greenland and Antarctica, and Europe’s largest glacier.

Norway is one of Europe’s top destinations for winter sports. Even in the capital city, Oslo, you’re only 30 minutes away from thousands of kilometres of cross-country skiing trails, at Oslo Winter Park Tryvann. Snowboarding is also excellent at Tryvann. You can ski 2,000 metres down the mountain in the Sunnmore Alps from Stranda Ski Resort to Geirangerfjord in western Norway. Much further north, in Svalbard, get out in the wilderness with dog sledging or on a snowmobile across the frozen tundra.

Norway’s settlements are in some stunning locations. Bergen sits on a peninsula surrounded by seven mountains and fjords, with a brightly painted waterfront warehouses dating from the 15th century, when the town was a Hanseatic trading post. Oslo is sandwiched between Oslofjord and vast forests, while Svalbard’s main settlement is Longyearbyen, set in a barren treeless landscape, snow-covered in winter and which spends an equal amount of days in the year in the midnight sun and polar night.

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