Grand Winter Tour of Norway 16D/15N
Start your winter tour of Norway in Oslo, travel on the Bergen- & Flåm Railway through the Norwegian winter scenery, enjoy a fjord cruise and embark on a 10-day cruise with Hurtigruten along the coast of Norway (Bergen–Kirkenes-Trondheim). Return to Oslo by train across the Dovre Mountain. This is an independent tour.
- Enjoy a fjord cruise on the famous Nærøyfjord
- Cross the Arctic Circle and enter the Land of the Midnight Sun
- Emerse yourself in the spectacular scenery along the Flamsbana railway
Max group size:
- 5 nights hotel accommodation in a standard room with private shower/WC, including breakfast.
- Train & Flåm Railway from Oslo via Myrdal to Flåm.
- Boat from Flåm to Gudvangen.
- Bus from Gudvangen to Voss.
- Train from Voss to Bergen.
- Train from Trondheim to Oslo.
- 10 nights onboard Hurtigruten from Bergen to Trondheim.
- Accommodation in unspecified 2-berth polar inside cabin with shower/WC (twin beds, category D, B, I or K). Basic service level (see description below), cabin on lower, middle or upper deck.
- Full board during the cruise:
- Breakfast buffet with a wide selection of food, usually served between 07.00-10.00 hrs.
- Large lunch buffet with hot and cold dishes and dessert, usually served between 12.00-14.30 hrs.
- 3-course dinner, usually served between 18.30-21.00 hs.
- Electronic travel documentation, including a detailed travel itinerary and travel vouchers.
Departures - Independent AdventureDeparts Daily
DAY1 – Arrival in Oslo
Arrival in Oslo according to your own itinerary. The Norwegian capital is beautifully situated at the head of the Oslo Fjord and surrounded by forested ridges, arable fields, vast forests and untouched nature areas. Oslo offers many well known sights such as the Vigeland Sculpture Park, the Viking Ship Museum, the Munch Museum and Oslo Opera House. Accommodation in Oslo.
DAY2 – Travel with the Bergen- & Flåm Railway
Breakfast at the hotel. Departure from Oslo by train. The 5-hour train journey from Oslo to Myrdal is part of the Bergen Railway, classed as one of the finest train journeys in the world. The train journey will bring you across Hardangervidda Mountain Plateau, with Finse as the highest train station at 1222 meters above sea level. During wintertime the scenery is quite spectacular with its pure white snow, colourful skiers and perhaps even with clear blue sky. In Myrdal you will change to the Flåm Railway, connecting the Bergen Line to the Sognefjord. You will pass through wild and beautiful mountain scenery with waterfalls and steep mountain sides before reaching the fjord village of Flåm. Flåm is Norway’s only fjord village with train connection. Accommodation in Flåm.
DAY3 –Fjord cruise; by bus & train to Bergen
Breakfast at the hotel. Today you have the opportunity to experience the tranquility of the spectacular Norwegian fjord region outside the main tourist season. The morning is at your own leisure in Flåm before you will depart on a 2-hour fjord cruise on the Nærøyfjord to Gudvangen. The Nærøyfjord is the narrowest fjord channel in Europe, and has recently been added to UNESCO’s World Heritage List. During the winter the boat sometimes has to break its way through the ice; the cracking of the ice makes this an even more magical experience. From Gudvangen the journey continues by bus through Nærøyfjord Valley to Voss, where you will continue by train to Bergen. Bergen is Norway’s second largest city and the world’s only city surrounded by 7 mountains and 7 fjords. Accommodation in Bergen.
DAY4 –Bergen – evening cruise departure
Breakfast at the hotel. This day is at your own leisure in Bergen. Take a stroll along Bryggen Wharf before heading to Mount Fløyen with Fløibanen funicular for a spectacular view of the city. Other sights of interest include Edvard Grieg’s home Troldhaugen, the Fish and Flower market, Bergen Aquarium and Gamle Bergen (Old Bergen Open Air Museum). Your winter cruise with Hurtigruten begins in the late evening from Bergen, heading north along the western coastline of Norway to Kirkenes. During the cruise you will experience everyday life along the coast, and the mix of tourists, local travelers and transported goods make this a unique experience. All meals are included during the entire cruise. In addition you can choose between a wide selection of optional shore excursions. Accommodation onboard Hurtigruten.
DAY 5 – Cruise to Ålesund – Norway’s only Art Nouveau city
Breakfast onboard Hurtigruten. Today you have the choice between exploring the Art Nouveau city of Ålesund or to follow Hurtigruten on a cruise along the well known Hjørundfjord(the detour is possible from September 1 – October 31). Ålesund was completely destroyed by a devastating town fire in 1904, and rebuilt again in the Art Nouveau style, making it a truly unique town in Europe. The town centre reveals a lively urban scene with pleasant restaurants and cafés, and the picturesque Brosundet canal with its fishing boats. Sights of interest are the Atlantic Sea-Park, one of the largest aquariums in Northern Europe and the Sunnmøre Museum, an open air museum with an impressive boat collection and more than 50 old houses in beautiful surroundings (entrances not included). The beauty of the town can be appreciated from Mount Aksla, with a breathtaking view of the town. If you take the detour to the Hjørundfjord, you will cruise along the majestic Sunnmøre Alps with unpolished nature and steep rock walls. the Hjørundfjord is one of the most long-standing and stunning fjords in Norway. Evening departure from Ålesund. Accommodation onboard Hurtigruten.
DAY 6 - Cruise to Trondheim – Norway’s first capital
Today you will arrive in Trondheim, Norway’s third largest city. The city was founded by Viking King Olav Tryggvason in 997 BC, and occupies a special place in Norwegian culture and history. Trondheim was Norway’s first capital and continues to be the coronation city where Norway’s Kings from Harald Hårfagre (10th century BC) to King Harald V (1991 -) have been crowned and blessed. The journey continues along the Helgeland coastline.
DAY 7 - Cruise across the Arctic Circle to Lofoten Islands
Early in the morning you will cross the Arctic Circle, entering the Land of the Northern Light. In Bodø you will have approx. 2,5 hours at leisure before the journey continues across the Vestfjord to the Lofoten Islands. Lofoten stretches like a wall of mountains to the southwest in the sea. The archipelago consists of mountains and peaks, wide open ocean, sheltered inlets, stretches of seashore and large virgin areas. For centuries, catching cod and drying them has been a way of life and Lofoten’s largest industry. Two of the most recognizable sights are therefore the fishermen’s cabins and the Stockfish which is cod that has been hung to dry on a wooden frame. This evening you have the opportunity to join a Viking Feast on the Lofoten Islands.
Day 8 - Cruise via Vesterålen Islands to Tromsø
Your cruise will continue during the night and morning, passing Vesterålen Islands before arriving in Tromsø at 14:15 hrs. In Tromsø you will have approx. four hours at leisure, or your can join one of the shore excursions; dog sledding or sightseeing in Tromsø (see add-ons). The arctic city of Tromsø is the world’s most northern university town and the largest city in the Nordic countries north of the Arctic Circle. The city lies between the sharp craggy peaks of the Lyngen Alps, and combines wild scenery with urban life. Due to Tromsø’s location right in the middle of the planet’s Northern Light’s belt, the city offers the world’s best chances of spotting the Northern Lights. Sights of interest in Tromsø include the Polar Museum, Northern Light Planetarium and Tromsø Museum. Evening cruise departure from Tromsø.
Day 9 - Cruise to Honningsvåg/Optional North Cape Excursion
This morning you will spend at sea before arriving in Honningsvåg around noon. Excursion possibility to the North Cape Plateau where you can admire the panoramic view of the open wide expanse of the Arctic Ocean. Entrance to the North Cape Hall with viewing platform, souvenir shops, cinema, cafeteria and restaurant, is included in the excursion. The cruise continues in the afternoon towards Kirkenes.
Day 10 - Cruise arrival/departure in Kirkenes
While you sleep, the ship continues sailing east along the Varanger peninsula, past Båtsfjord and Vardø. At breakfast time, you will pass by Vadsø, the administrative centre of Finnmark. It was from here that the Arctic explorers Roald Amundsen and Lincoln Ellsworth began their flights over the North Pole in the airship, Norge. At 09:00 hrs you will arrive in Kirkenes, the last stop on the northbound journey with Hurtigruten. The town lies between two time lines, Helsinki and Moscow. Here you have the opportunity to choose between several shore excursions. Departure from Kirkenes for the southbound journey around noon.
Day 11 - Southbound cruise: Hammerfest - Tromsø
Arrival in Hammerfest, the first town in Norway to have electric street lighting. As early as 1891, residents could enjoy fully lit streets during the winter darkness. The journey continues south-west towards Tromsø, where you arrive late in the evening. Here you can participate in a midnight concert at the Artcic cathedral.
Day 12 - Cruise via Harstad and Lofoten Islands
Morning arrival in Harstad before the journey continues along Vesterålen Islands to Lofoten Islands. As an alternative you can join an optional shore excursion across the Vesterålen Islands. Arrival in Svolvær before dinnertime. Svolvær, the undisputed capital of the Lofoten Islands, is easily identified by the towering Svolværgeita Mountain. Spend the 2-hours long stop exploring the quays. The last stop for the day is Stamsund, a fishing station built into the rock, almost in defiance of nature. It is now one of the largest fishing stations in Lofoten.
Day 13 - Cruise along the Helgeland Coast
Cruise along the Helgeland coastline. Numerous legends and stories are associated with this coastline. One such story is about the Seven Sisters and Torghatten Mountain and how they came to be such unusual shapes. A myth about the beautiful sisters tells of how they ran away from their father, Suliskongen, and danced naked in the waters of the fjord. Unfortunately, the sisters forgot that when the sun rose they would all be turned into stone. Now they stand there, all in a row, as captivating and lovely as ever before. You spend the day at sea and can enjoy the spectacular views of this cruise in one of the cafés, restaurants or panorama lounges. To get the real winter feeling you should put on your winter clothes and go outside to the sundeck.
Day 14 - Cruise arrival in Trondheim
Early morning arrival in Trondheim. The day is at your own leisure. We recommend a stroll in Bakklandet, located on the east bank of the river Nid. Here you will find old wooden buildings which were formerly worker’s dwellings but are now partly restored as homes or charming shops and restaurants. Accommodation in Trondheim.
Day 15 - Travel by train to Oslo
Breakfast at the hotel. Morning departure by train from Trondheim to Oslo. During the 7-hour train ride you will travel on the Dovre Railway which brings you across the Dovre Mountain and through the Gudbrandsdal Valley to Oslo. Accommodation in Oslo.
Day 16 - Departure from Oslo
Breakfast at the hotel. Departure from Oslo according to your own itinerary.