As the largest of the Norwegian fjords, Sognefjord extends inland for 127 miles from Sygnefest out to the east of Skjolden. The spectacular 3 mile wide fjord is 4291 feet deep and runs along a collection of quaint little fishing communities and farmers nestled in the mountain bases. Hop onboard a train, boat or a car and explore the area’s breathtaking national parks, mountain ranges, glaciers and waterfalls.
Top Attractions in Sognefjord
This is probably one of Sognefjord’s most spectacular arms and spans 11 miles long with its narrowest point pinching in at a mere 820 feet across. The nearly vertical mountain range than outline the fjord rise up over 5,600 feet above the tranquil waters beneath and it really is a sight that might just change your heart for good. The fjord is listed as a UNESCO World Heritage Site and the small village of Gudvangen nearby is superbly interesting to start your exploration off with
Located near Jostedalsbreen (Europe’s largest glacier) you’ll find a branch of Sognefjord called Fjærlandsfjord. This fjord is sadly retreating, but the sights on offer here are still absolutely magical. In the area you’ll also find the Norwegian Glacier Museum, the Norwegian Booktown and Hotel Mundal which is lovely and an attraction in its own right.
Balestrand is best known for its touristic attractions, which is why it’s one of the most visited areas in Sognefjord. The dramatic surroundings are what draw the masses here. Historically significant treasures like the Cooper House, St Olaf’s Church and the King Bele statue along the Cultural Heritage Trail are all great sights to see. You might also want to include a visit to the renowned Kvikne’s Hotel that was built during the 19th century and carries a lot of history within its walls.
The Stave Churches
Sognefjord is where you’ll find some of Norway’s few remaining Stave Churches like the ornately decorated Hopperstad Stave Church that was built in 1140 in the village of Vik. Then there’s also the 40 seat Undredal Stave Church located in Aurlandsfjord, which is the smallest church still in use in Scandinavia. All of the churches are UNESCO Protected and the best of the bunch would have to be the Urnes Stave Church located in Lusterfjord. It’s Norway’s oldest church and is a beautifully decorated 900 year old timer building.
This outdoor museum features 40 houses that depict life during the 18th and 18th centuries in Norway. It’s an interesting and informative look into Norway’s history and one of the best ways to get the real understanding behind Norwegian culture.
The Flam Railway is the world’s steepest gauge line and it’ll provide you with some of the most spectacular views of Aurlandsfjord scenery. Twisting through countless tunnels, this 13 mile gauge line passes by waterfalls and snow-capped mountains before stopping at the Kjelsfossen waterfalls, measuring in at 738 feet high.
Kaupanger lies at the head of Amlabught, an inlet of Signefjord. In ancient times, the area was home to a Viking settlement and boasts a breathtaking 12th century Stave Church that’s well worth seeing. It’s also home to a peculiar open-air museum, the Heibergske Samlinger, which makes for a great historical exploration.