LAKE BONDHUSVATNET IN HARDANGER

Lake Bondhusvatnet and Bondhusbreen Glacier was one of the first places the English tourists visited when they discovered Norway in the mid 1800´s. Map to use: Folgefonna 1:50000.

In the late 1800´s and early 1900´s, the Bondhusbreen Glacier was much larger, and the massive glacier could be seen from the outlet of the lake. Today, the glacier has retracted and the glacier arm is much smaller, but it can still be seen from the outlet of Lake Bondhusvatnet.

Visit HardangerfjordVisit Sunnhordland

Visit Hardangerfjord and Visit Sunnhordland are the official destination companies for the Hardangerfjord area.

About season and other important information

GRADING: Easy. ALTITUDE DIFFERENCE: This hike starts at approximately 60 masl (Parking). Highest point at approximately 190 masl (Lake Bondhusvatnet).

SEASON: June to September, depending on temperature and snow.

The Hike to Lake Bondhusvatnet

Lake Bondhusvatnet with Bondhusbreen Glacier in the background. Kvinnherad by the Hardangerfjord in Sunnhordland, Norway.
Lake Bondhusvatnet with Bondhusbreen Glacier in the background.

Drive to Sunndal in Kvinnherad by the Hardangerfjord. If you start from Odda, drive through the 11.150 meter long Folgefonn Tunnel to Mauranger and continue seven kilometers to Sunndal. From Sunndal, drive up Bondhusdalen Valley to the end of the road where you can park your car.

The trail towards Lake Bondhusvatnet starts at the parking place. Continue hiking on the 2.5 kilometer long trail to the outlet of the lake. The trail is surrounded by beautiful and wild nature with steep mountains and cascading waterfalls. The Bondhuselva River runs along the trail. It is a wild river with many beautiful waterfalls. The trail, or “Isvegen” (the Ice Road) as it is called, was built in year 1863 to transport ice blocks from the glacier down to the Hardangerfjord from where they were shipped to foreign countries.

It is an easy hike on a well prepared trail. The hike to Lake Bondhusvatnet will take you approximately one hour (two hours both ways). The hike back from Lake Bondhusvatnet is on the same scenic trail as you came.

After the hike to Lake Bondhusvatnet, you can stop by Olaløo Farm Restaurant to taste local food and drinks. During the summer season, from late June to early August, they have an open café. Otherwise you have to book in advance.

Bondhusbreen Glacier

From the trail towards Lake Bondhusvatnet.
From the trail towards Lake Bondhusvatnet.

The Bondhusbreen Glacier is a glacier arm of the Folgefonna Glacier, the third larges ice-cap in Norway. The Folgefonna Glacier is situated between Sørfjorden and the Hardangerfjord.

The Bondhusdalen Valley was formed during the ice ages, from glaciers that were situated where the Bondhusbreen Glacier lies today. Later, around 7000 years ago, the valley became ice-free. Around 4000 years ago, the climate again became colder, and the Folgefonna Glacier as it is today was then formed.

Between the Bondhusbreen Glacier and the Parking Lot at Sunndal, there are several moraines which were created by the retreats and the growth of the glaciers. The trail to the lake and to the foot of glacier goes through many of the moraines and several landslide blocks. See map from GRIND with Moraines in the Bondhusdalen Valley  (Map: Moraines are marked in green, Landslides are marked in grey blocks).

Summer Ski on Folgefonna Glacier

There are three Summer Ski Centres in Norway. One of them is Fonna Glacier Ski Resort which is located on the Folgefonna Glacier in Jondal in Kvinnherad in Hardanger. Restaurant FONNA is located at 1199 masl, at the base of the ski resort.

From the ski resort you have fjord view to the Hardangerfjord. From the top of the ski-lift you can see towards the Hardangerfjord in several directions.

The Hardangerfjord Area – What to See and Do

Fjords Norway - View from Kjeåsen Mountain Farm towards Eidfjord and the Hardangerfjord.
Hardangerfjord.

The Hardangerfjord area,  the orchard of Norway, is known for Summer Skiing at Folgefonna Glacier and a spectacular fruit tree blossoming in spring.

Lake Bondhusvatnet and the Bondhusbreen Glacier in Kvinnherad was one of the first places the English tourists visited when they discovered Norway in the mid 1800´s.

Drive in the Hardanger area and see the Vøringsfossen Waterfall in Måbødalen in Eidfjord, the Låtefoss Waterfall in Oddadalen and all the other great waterfalls in the Hardangerfjord area.

In summer, you can take part in a Cider Cruise on the Hardangerfjord, where you can combine a fjord cruise in beautiful nature with a visit to some of the local farms along the fjord. Remember that if you want to visit local cider producers, you must book this in advance.

Odda, in the heart of Sørfjorden,  has now transformed from an industrial town into an adventure town. Trolltunga Active and Trolltunga Adventures are based at Odda, and offers guiding and equipment rental. Some of the adventures they offer are Trolltunga hikes, the Dronningstien hike, Via Ferrata Trolltunga and Tyssedal, Fjord Adventures and Winter Adventures.

Combine a fjord cruise on the Hardangerfjord with a trip to Måbødalen to see the mighty Vøringsfossen Waterfall from the new viewing platform and viewing bridge built in connection with the Hardangervidda National Tourist Route.

The Hardangerfjord is located in the county of Vestland, near Bergen, in the middle of Western Norway. Bergen is the second largest city in Norway and is known as The Gateway to the Fjords. Bergen is also the gateway to the Hardangerfjord.

References

GRIND – University in Bergen: Bondhusdalen Valley
UT.no: “Isvegen” (the Ice Road) between Sunndal and Bondhusbreen

Hotels and Accommodation by Lake Bondhusvatnet

Hardanger Fjord Lodge
Mauranger Kro og Gjestehus
Sundal Camping

 

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.

Lake Bondhusvatnet – Map Overview