A KAYAK TRIP ON THE AURLANDSFJORD AND NÆRØYFJORD

It was late August in 2013, and we drove from Oslo towards Aurland by the Aurlandsfjord which is a branch of the 204 kilometer long Sognefjord in Western Norway.

We had our kayaks on the roof of the car, and the plan was to paddle and go for a few hikes and just enjoy the beautiful nature that the Aurlandsfjord and Nærøyfjord are surrounded by.

 

GUIDING: For safety reasons, we recommend you to join a guided kayak tour if you are going to kayak in the fjords. Njord Sea Kayak and Wilderness Adventures with base in Flåm and Nordic Ventures with base in Gudvangen offer Guided Kayak Tours on the Aurlandsfjord and Nærøyfjord

Visit Sognefjord

Visit Sognefjord is the official destination company for the Sognefjord area.

Hotels and accommodation in the Aurlandsfjord and Nærøyfjord area

Overview of hotels and other places where you can spend the night in the area around the Aurlandsfjord and Nærøyfjord.

FJORDS NORWAY - Salthella beach by the Nærøyfjord.
Salthella beach by the Nærøyfjord, this was our Base Camp during this fjord adventure.

Stegastein Viewpoint

Early morning at Stegastein, what a fantastic view!
Early morning at Stegastein, what a fantastic view!

We arrived Aurland late in the evening, and drove up to Stegastein Viewpoint above the Aurlandsfjord. We hoped to get some great photography opportunities from this viewpoint the next morning, so we decided just to sleep in the free air. Early in the morning we woke up to the best view in the world.

We packed our stuff early in the morning, before the first tourists came, and stayed at the Stegastein area for a few hours before we drove down the beautiful Aurlandsfjellet Mountain Road towards Aurland and the Aurlandsfjord.

Undredal by the Aurlandsfjord

We continued to Undredal, a small and beautiful village on the other side of the Aurlandsfjord. From here we paddled out on the Aurlandsfjord in our kayaks.

It was clear blue sky, wind still, and a perfect day for kayaking. Further out the fjord we rounded the foot of Mt Beitelen and paddled into the UNESCO-protected Nærøyfjord, one of two Norwegian fjords that are part of our common World Heritage.

The UNESCO Protected Nærøyfjord

FJORDS NORWAY - Base Camp at Salthella in the middle of the Nærøyfjord.
Base Camp at Salthella in the middle of the Nærøyfjord.

In the afternoon, we reached our campsite at Salthella Beach in the middle of the Nærøyfjord. We put up our tent and had something to eat before it became dark.

In the morning I had a short hike to the hill above the campsite before we paddled further into the Nærøyfjord, towards Bakka, a small beautiful village beside the fjord.

From there we hiked up the Rimstigen trail so we could see the beautiful Nærøyfjord from above. The Rimstigen trail starts at Kvernaviki between Bakka and Tufto by the Nærøyfjord.

Heading back to Undredal

The last day we paddled out the Nærøyfjord and into the Aurlandsfjord and back to Undredal which was our starting point for this fjord adventure.

We had three days in two of the most beautiful fjords in Norway where we did what we liked best; Photo, kayaking, hiking and camping. We couldn´t have asked for more, and the weather showed its best side throughout the whole trip.

Aurlandsfjord and Nærøyfjord – What to See and Do

FJORDS NORWAY - The UNESCO Protected Nærøyfjord
Nærøyfjord.

Flåm, Aurland and Gudvangen are perfect starting points for experiences in and around the Aurlandsfjord and Nærøyfjord, two of the world’s most beautiful and dramatic fjords. On 14 July 2005, the Nærøyfjord together with the Geirangerfjord became part of our common UNESCO’s world heritage.

From Flåm you can take part in a fjord safari or a fjord cruise on the Aurlandsfjord and Nærøyfjord. You can take this fjord cruise as a round trip (both ways) or one way combined with bus between Flåm and Gudvangen. See the great view from Stegastein viewpoint, 650 meters above Aurland. Taste the local goat’s cheese in Undredal or in Skjerdal, two villages by the Aurlandsfjord.

Flåm Railway is the train journey from mountain to fjord, perhaps the most beautiful railway in the world. You can combine this train journey with cycling along Rallarvegen which goes from the high mountains via Flåmsdalen Valley to Flåm. Aurlandsdalen Valley is one of Norway’s most popular hikes. The lower part of Aurlandsdalen, which is also the most popular, starts from Østerbø and ends at Vassbygdi in Aurland.

The Flåm Valley is a beautiful adventure. The valley between Myrdal (866.8 masl) and Flåm by the Aurlandsfjord is 18 kilometer long. The valley is narrow and the mountains are steep, and there are waterfalls and rivers wherever you turn around. Flåm Valley is a great place for hiking and biking. Flåm Zipline sends you off at over 100 kilometers per hour, you are just hanging in a thin steel wire high above the valley.

By the Nærøyfjord, we have the small villages of Gudvangen, Bakka, Styvi and Dyrdal. Styvi is the only place without permanent inhabitants during the winter, and is together with Dyrdal without road connection. Gudvangen is one of two ports where the iconic ferry trip along the inner part of the Sognefjord departs and arrives. Visit the Viking village Njardarheimr in Gudvangen and experience the history and culture of the Viking Age.

The Nærøyfjord and Aurlandsfjord are both part of the 204 kilometer long Sognefjord which is located in the northern part of the county of Vestland, in the middle of Western Norway.

Hotels and accommodation in the Aurlandsfjord and Nærøyfjord area

Overview of hotels and other places where you can spend the night in the area around the Aurlandsfjord and Nærøyfjord.

Sakte – Stay and Explore the Aurlandsfjord and Nærøyfjord 



“Sakte” is a collaboration between companies that provide adventures, accommodation, dining and short-travelled food- and products. “Sakte” are located in the area around the Aurlandsfjord and Nærøyfjord and is an offer for those who want to contribute to a sustainable society in the world heritage area.

FJORDS NORWAY - Reis Sakte - Hiking towards Skjerdal and the Aurlandsfjord
Reis Sakte – Hiking towards Skjerdal and the Aurlandsfjord.

How to travel to the Aurlandsfjord and Nærøyfjord area

Many roads lead to the Aurlandsfjord and Nærøyfjord area.
Many roads lead to the Aurlandsfjord and Nærøyfjord area.

It is easy to travel to Flåm and Aurland, the Aurlandsfjord and the Nærøyfjord. Almost “all roads” go to Flåm and Aurland, and you can also travel there by train, bus and boat. It is only a short distance between the two neighboring villages of Flåm and Aurland.

You can start this fjord adventure by train from Oslo or Bergen to Myrdal station. Then you get to experience the Bergen Railway between Oslo and Bergen and Flåm Railway, one of Norway’s most spectacular railway lines, from Myrdal station to Flåm, which is located down by the Aurlandsfjord. If you take Flåm Railway, you get to experience the beautiful Flåmsdalen valley at the same time.

There are several daily bus departures between Oslo/Bergen and Flåm.

The nearest airport is Sogndal Airport at Haukåsen near Kaupanger. Most flights that go to and from Sogndal Airport come from and go to Oslo and Bergen. From the airport to Flåm, it is 70 kilometers by road, including a wonderful crossing of the Sognefjord by ferry.

 

HOTELS - LINKS - FAQ

Here you will find an overview of recommended HOTELS in addition to SPA & BATH HOTELS and OTHER ACCOMMODATION PLACES in Western Norway. The combination of beautiful nature, activities that you can do in all four seasons and a stay at a great accommodation is unique. A stay in one of these places will do you good, both for body and mind.

There are ten restaurants that have awarded Michelin stars and Michelin awards in Western Norway. Eight of the Michelin restaurants are in Stavanger and two in Bergen. Here you will find FJORDS MICHELIN, where you will also find a list of recommended hotels in Western Norway, recommended by Michelin.

USEFUL LINKS is a list of websites with great information on Norway and the Fjords. FAQ is an overview of articles that answer the most common questions you have when planning to visit the fjords in Western Norway.

Season and Safety - Kayaking on the fjords

SEASON - Many of the activities and attractions mentioned on this website are open only in summer and are closed in winter. This also applies to many of the roads and accommodations mentioned. Season and opening time will vary. It depends on where it is and what activity, attraction, road and accommodation it is, it usually opens in the summer and closes in the autumn, depending on i.a. the amount of snow and the risk of avalanches in the area. Hikes mentioned in this website have different seasons. See links to the various hikes to read more about the hikes and season.

SAFETY - Important Safety Information about kayaking in the fjords: For safety reasons, it is recommended to join a guided kayak trip if you are going to paddle on the fjords in Norway. The fjords can be exposed to strong winds and currents, and the weather can change rapidly even if nice weather and no winds are reported. There are steep mountain sides and cliffs in many parts of the fjords, this can make it difficult to enter land if weather gets bad or if an accident happens. It is recommended to avoid kayaking in thunderstorms and when there is wind and waves and bad weather conditions!

Watch out for and keep good distance to boats, ferries and cruise ships when kayaking on the fjords. Also remember to frequently look behind you. Some of the fjords are heavily trafficed with boats and ships.

It is recommended to keep a safe distance to steep mountain sides and cliffs where there is a risk of rockfall, landslides and avalanches. The guide companies in the different fjords usually have local knowledge about where to keep distance to land with regard to rockfall etc.

Read more about season, important safety information and your own responsibility when kayaking and when exploring Norway…

The Aurlandsfjord and Nærøyfjord – Map Overview