Borgund Stave Church was built around the year 1181 AD. and is the most visited stave church in Norway. Close by is the Vindhellavegen Road that runs between Borgund and Husum in Lærdal. Vindhellavegen is part of the old Kongevegen (The King´s Road) between east and west in Norway. Map to use: Filefjell 1:50000
If you visit Borgund Stave Church, we recommend that you also visit Vindhellavegen Road, which is just behind the stave church. The 1.7 kilometer long Vindhellavegen Road was completed in 1793 AD. and is now part of a 100 kilometer long hiking trail, the old King´s Road, between Vang in Valdres and Lærdal by the Sognefjord.
Visit Sognefjord is the official destination company for the Sognefjord area.
About season and other important information
SEASON VINDHELLAVEGEN: June to September, depending on temperature and snow.
A Stave Church is a wooden church from the middle age. Most of the Norwegian Stave Churches were built right after the Viking Age around year 1100-1200 AD. The name “Stave Church” comes from the construction of the buildings; large ground beams of wood are placed on a foundation of stone, then internal wooden pillars (staves) are interconnected and also connected to the outer walls.
Borgund Stave Church was built around year 1181 AD. at Borgund in the Lærdal valley. This is the most visited stave church in Norway, and with its charasteristic design it has often been used as a “model” when other stave churches has been restored or built.
There is a visitor centre and café near by where you can buy tickets for a guided tour and to get information about the stave church.
The visitor center is open from mid-April to mid-October, this can vary. Check out the official website for Borgund Stave Church for more information on opening hours, tickets and guiding.
If you are hiking along the Vindhellavegen Road, it is great to start from the visitor centre at Borgund Stave Church where you can also park your car. From there it is about 500 meters to walk along Fylkesveg 630 in a northern direction to where the Vindhellavegen Road starts.
The first part of the Vindhellavegen Road goes slightly uphill until you are west of Borgund Stave Church. Then the road goes slightly downhill to the point where the steep turns at the Vindhellavegen Road starts. This is also the most beautiful part of the road and what most of the people come to see and to experience, and not least to photograph.
Below the steep turns, the Vindhellavegen Road continues downhill until it ends down at Husum by Fylkesveg 630, west of Borgund Stave Church.
The hike along the Vindhellavegen Road, from the start at the visitor centre to the parking lot where it ends, is a total of 2.2 kilometers. The Vindhellavegen Road itself is 1.7 kilometer long. The photos and the video are from a hike along the Vindhellavegen Road in early November 2021.
Hiking the Sverrestien Trail back to Borgund Stave Church
Instead of walking the Vindhellavegen Road back in the opposite direction, it is a good alternative to hike along the Sverrestien Trail which starts from Husum by Fylkesveg 630, only 50 meters south of where the Vindhellavegen Road ends. The start of the Sverrestien Trail is well marked with signs, and the trail is well maintained and marked all the way back to the new Borgund Church where the Sverrestien Trail ends. The new Borgund Church is located just south of Borgund Stave Church. This part of the Sverrestien Trail is three kilometers long and has some incline in the first half of the trail.
The Sverrestien Trail is an old horse road that was used until the Vindhellavegen Road was built in year 1793 AD. This is where King Sverre Sigurdsson (1151 – 1202 AD.) and his Birkebeiner-army retreated after losing the battle against the peasant army at Voss in year 1177 AD. The photos are from a walk along the Sverrestien Trail in early November 2021.
If you walk the Vindhellavegen Road, we also recommend you to visit Borgund Stave Church, which is located next to the road. This is where the walk along the Vindhellavegen Road ends if you hike the Sverrestien Trail back.
The Sognefjord, the king of the fjords, is the longest fjord adventure in Norway. The Sognefjord is 204 kilometers long and 1308 meters deep at its deepest. Join a guided glacier walk on the Nigardsbreen glacier, see the beautiful stave churches. Join a fjord safari or a fjord cruise on the Aurlandsfjord and Nærøyfjord. Experience the view from Stegastein viewpoint above the Aurlandsfjord. Take a short hike to Mt Molden in Luster and you will see the fantastic view down to the Lustrafjord. Balestrand is one of the first places the foreign tourists visited when they discovered Norway in the mid-19th century. The Fjærlandsfjord, Aurlandsfjord and Nærøyfjord, the Årdalsfjord and the Lustrafjord are all branches of the Sognefjord. These side fjords are perhaps even more famous than the Sognefjord itself, which is located in the middle of western Norway. The Sognefjord is so long that it almost divides Norway in two.