Norway itinerary

10 Day Norway Itinerary: The Ultimate Road Trip through the Fjord Region

Julie Itinerary, Norway 147 Comments

For hikers and outdoor enthusiasts, this Norway itinerary is perfect. In 10 days, you will be able to do four amazing hikes. Be daring and stand on Kjeragbolten, hike out to Trolltunga and pose for the camera, enjoy epic views out to the Atlantic Ocean from Romsdalseggen, and hike Norway’s most popular hike, Pulpit Rock. Mixed in with the hiking days are visits to quaint coastal towns, scenic drives along the fjords and through the world’s longest tunnel, and a chance to experience some of the best that Norway has to offer.

Norway is a gorgeous country, and on this itinerary you get to see it via car, ferry, airplane, train, and your own two feet. In our opinion, there is no better way to see Norway than by hiking!

This Norway itinerary is good for:

  • Epic hiking
  • Scenic Drives
  • Fjords
  • Quaint Coastal Towns

How to Use This Map: Click the tab in the top left hand corner of the map to view the layers (points of interest, hiking trails, and cities). You can click the check marks to hide or show layers. If you click the icons on the map, you can get more information about each point of interest.

If you click the star next to the title of the map, this map will be added to your Google Maps account. To view it on your phone or computer, open Google Maps, click the menu button, go to “Your Places,” click Maps, and you will see this map on your list.

Day 1

Arrive in Oslo, Fly to Stavanger

Arrive in Oslo and catch a connecting flight to Stavanger. Stavanger will be your home base for the next three nights. From here, you will hike to Pulpit Rock and Kjeragbolten.

Have dinner, get some rest, and tomorrow will be the first Norwegian hike.

Where We Stayed in Stavanger: The Comfort Square Hotel. This modernly decorated hotel (with interesting artwork) is located within the heart of Stavanger. Take-away breakfast is available, perfect if you want to grab breakfast and get an early start hiking.


Day 2

Hike to Pulpit Rock

Stavanger is connected to Pulpit Rock by public transportation. After breakfast at your hotel, catch the ferry from Stavanger to Tau. This is a twenty-minute scenic ferry ride, giving you your first glimpse of the Norwegian fjords.

Stavanger Ferry

Once in Tau, there is a bus service that will drive visitors to the start of the Pulpit Rock hike.

The hike to Pulpit Rock is Norway’s most iconic hike, with views of the Lysefjord and this slab of rock that almost looks like it is from another planet. This giant monolith is also known as Preikestolen.

The hike is five miles round trip, the shortest on this itinerary. It is an easy hike that anyone with average fitness can do, including children. Since it is Norway’s most popular hike, expect lots of crowds, especially during the peak travel season from June through August.

Pulpit Rock

Pulpit Rock August

Earth Trekkers Scandinavia

To get back to Stavanger, take the bus to Tau and the ferry to Stavanger. There should be plenty of time for dinner in Stavanger.

We ate at ND Sorensen’s Dampskibsexpedition Pub. The food was fantastic but it was expensive. Well, this is Norway, one of the most expensive destinations in the world. Expect to pay $30 to $40 for an entrée and $10 for a beer.


Day 3

Kjeragbolten Hike

This was our favorite day while visiting Norway. The hike to Kjeragbolten is epic, with some of the best views of the fjords in Norway along with that chance to step out onto the boulder…if you so dare!

Kjeragbolten MapKjeragbolten is located two hours away from Stavanger (140 km) and there are two ways to get there: a bus service that only runs during the peak summer months, or by rental car. We chose the rental car option. For four people this was more economical and more convenient.

The hike to Kjeragbolten is 12 km round trip, taking hikers between 5 and 7 hours to complete the hike. It is longer and more strenuous than Pulpit Rock, with sections of rock scrambling and chain-assisted climbing, which made this the favorite hike in Norway for Tyler and Kara. The views along the way are unbelievable. Even if you have no plans to step out onto Kjerag, this hike is still absolutely worth it for the views along the way.

Hiking Norway with Kids

Earth Trekkers Norway

The infamous boulder is wedged between two rock faces 1000 meters off of the ground. It’s a crazy thing to do but one of our favorite traveling memories, for sure!

Kjeragbolten

Best Hike Norway

For more on hiking to Kjeragbolten (including details on how to get here), check out these posts:

The Kjeragbolten Hike: A Complete Guide

Kjeragbolten: Our Favorite Hike in Norway

After the Kjeragbolten hike, if you are up for another adventure, then you might consider driving down (and then back up) Lysevegen Road. It is a narrow road with 32 sharp bends, an average gradient of 9.4%, and an elevation difference of more than 800 meters (2600 ft) over only 5.8 km (3.6 miles). And if that isn’t crazy enough then there is a tunnel near the bottom that turns 340 degrees.

If you are up for this adventure, like we were, then when you pull out of the Kjerag parking lot turn left and you’ll start going down this dangerous, windy, switchback road almost right away. This road connects the Kjeragbolten car park with the town of Lysebotn.

Drive two hours back to Stavanger, return the rental car, and get a good night’s sleep.


Day 4

Bergen, Norway

Take a morning flight from Stavanger to Bergen. It is possible to take a bus or a ferry to Bergen, but this takes five hours and you need that time today to tour Bergen.

Once in Bergen, rent another car. You will have this car until you reach Ålesund on day 10.

Most of the day is available for exploring Bergen, a coastal town that was once a German settlement. Have lunch at the fish market, wander the cobblestoned streets, take the funicular up the hillside for the best views over Bergen, and explore Bryggen, the location of the Hanseatic houses along the harbor.

Bergen Norway

Bergen

Once finished in Bergen, you will drive to a town near the Trolltunga hike.

You have several options where to stay near the Trolltunga hike. Odda and Tyssedal are the two towns located closest to the hike. From Bergen, it takes about three hours to drive to these towns.

You can also stay in Kinsarvik or Eidfjord. These two towns are north of Trolltunga, so you will have a longer drive to get to the trailhead for Trolltunga. However, since you are farther north, you will do less driving on day 6 when you go to Flåm.

On the drive, there are two waterfalls you can stop and visit. Steinsdalsfossen is a waterfall that is visible from the road. You can follow the footpath behind the waterfall. Twenty minutes east of Eidfjord is Vøringfossen, a stunning waterfall that you can hike to.

For recommendations on where to stay near the Trolltunga hike, read our article Where to Stay Near Trolltunga.


Day 5

Trolltunga

Today is another day of epic hiking and a chance to see more of iconic Norway.

If you stayed in Eidfjord or Kinsarvik, it is an hour drive south to Tyssedal and the start of the Trolltunga hike. The views along the way were some of my favorites in Norway.

Eidfjord

Norway Road Trip

Several years ago, the hike started as a 1 km strenuous walk up an old funicular track. That is now closed. There are now several options for hiking to Trolltunga.

Option 1 is to hike the switchback trail near the funicular track. This is strenuous but once at the top, it is mostly easy-going for the rest of the hike out to Trolltunga. Option 2 is to arrive very early in the morning and be one of the first cars to park in the new, upper parking lot. This drive lops off the first major descent of the hike and can save you hours of time. But you need to get here very early in the day. Read our Trolltunga article for more information.

Option 3, the Sky Ladder, is a tour that has visitors cycling and then climbing a Via Ferrata, finishing the journey not far from Trolltunga.

After the first major climb, whether you did on foot or by car, you are treated to amazing views. And then, of course, you get to step out onto Trolltunga.

Norway Hiking

Trolltunga

The hike to Trolltunga takes 8 to 10 hours to complete, going 23 km total. After completion of the hike, drive back to your hotel.


Day 6

Norway in a Nutshell

The Norway in a Nutshell tour is a very popular excursion for first-time visitors to Norway. This tour includes a cruise on Naeroyfjord (a UNESCO World Heritage Site and the narrowest fjord in Norway) and Aurlandsfjord, a railway journey to and from Myrdal, and a spectacular view of the Naeroydalen valley from the Stalheim Hotel.

Flam Norway

If you are following our itinerary and/or have your own transportation, then it is not necessary to book the organized tour. You can follow our guide on how to do Norway in a Nutshell on your own. You’ll want to drive to the Stalheim Hotel, where our guide begins.

Read more about this full day itinerary, including what to see on the drive from Eidfjord to Flåm: 

How to do Norway in a Nutshell on your own

Naeroyfjord

Once the tour is over it is time to drive to Balestrand. On the way, and only about 30 minutes from Flåm, is the Stegastein Viewpoint, a scenic lookout over Aurlandsfjord. From this viewpoint you can continue along the Aurlandsvegen Snow Road, a high mountain road with spectacular scenery. Or you can back track down the mountain and take the world’s longest tunnel, Lærdalstunnelen (24.5 km or 15.2 miles).

Norway Drive

Where We Stayed in Balestrand: We stayed in the Balestrand Hotel, a nothing fancy, family-run hotel. If you want a nice view, request a room overlooking Sognefjord.


Day 7

Drive to Geiranger

To Geiranger MapToday is a full day of driving but if you get lucky with the weather (we did not) the scenery is amazing. This drive takes you along fjords and through small towns, giving you plenty of opportunities to stop for food along the way.

Sites to see on the drive between Balestrand and Geiranger include:

  • Likholefossen (we ended up not stopping here ourselves due to a late start)
  • Jostedalsbreen National Park Centre (listed in Google Maps as Jostedalsbreen Nasjonalparksenter) for an education on glaciers
  • Old Strynefjell Mountain Road (Old Road 258) … for the views
  • Videseter Hotel to look at the view of the valley (located on Old Strynefjell Mountain Road)
  • From the Videseter Hotel you can also walk to the Videfossen Waterfall (listed in Google Maps as Buldrefossen)

As you approach Geiranger there are various viewpoints to see:

  • Dalsnibba Viewpoint – highest of the views of valley and fjord. The road here is Norway’s highest car road.
  • Knuten Viewpoint
  • Flydalsjuvet Viewpoint

In the afternoon, you will arrive in Geiranger, a UNESCO World Heritage Site and a fjord known for being one of the most spectacular in Norway.

Where We Stayed in Geiranger: Hotel Utsikten. We chose this hotel for its awesome views over Geirangerfjord. Unfortunately, during our stay in Geiranger, it was wet and foggy and at times we could barely see the fjord from the hotel. If you chose to stay here, hopefully you will have better luck. The hotel is within walking distance of the town, where you can rent kayaks and go shopping. We enjoyed hanging out at the hotel bar at the end of the day, and overall really enjoyed our stay here, despite the rainy weather.


Day 8

Geiranger

There is plenty of time in the day to explore Geirangerfjord before moving on again. There are hiking and biking trails, kayaks to rent, viewpoints to drive to, and the small town of Geiranger to explore and to go shopping.

Kayaking Geirangerfjord

From Geiranger it is a two hour drive to the next town, Åndalsnes. This is another scenic drive and just before arriving in Åndalsnes you will drive the Trollstigen (Troll’s Ladder), a switchback road that is one of the most popular drives in Norway.

Trollstigen

Have dinner in Åndalsnes and get settled into your accommodations. Tomorrow is an early morning.

Where We Stayed in Åndalsnes: We spent two nights at the Trollveggen Campground in Åndalsnes. We slept in cabin #3 and it was adorable.  Tyler and Kara loved it. In fact, they described it as “epic.”


Day 9

Romsdalseggen Hike

Romsdalseggen SignRomsdalseggen is an 11 km hike along the spine of a mountain. Although not the longest hike in the itinerary, we found it to be the most difficult. This hike can take 8 to 10 hours to complete.

You can hike this trail from July 1 through September 30, when the shuttle bus is in service. Read our article about the hike for full details.

From Åndalsnes, there is a bus that delivers hikers to the start of the hike. This hike is a point to point hike, starting on farmland and ending in the town of Åndalsnes. Weather can be unpredictable…we were here in August and there was a chance of snow in the forecast.

The hike starts off with a strenuous climb, taking hikers to the spine of the mountain. From here, on a clear day, you can see all of the way out to the Atlantic Ocean. We were not so lucky, but even so, the views were still amazing.

Julie Rivenbark

Romsdalseggen Ridge

Beware of the low cloud cover…this hike goes right along the edge of a mountain and one false step could send you off over the side. Our kids called it “oblivion.”

If you don’t want to hike Romsdalseggen Ridge, or the weather is not cooperating, you have the option to hike to the Rampestreken viewpoint. This viewpoint is located along the Romsdalseggen trail and overlooks Åndalsnes and the valley. It takes roughly 3 hours round trip to hike to the viewpoint. With 700 meters of climbing, it a strenuous walk to get here.

After your hike, enjoy dinner in town.


Day 10

Ålesund and Oslo

From Åndalsnes it is a two hour drive west to Ålesund, another coastal town.

Enjoy the day exploring Ålesund and don’t miss the walk up the hillside to Fjellstua for the best views of the town.

Alesund

In the afternoon, fly to Oslo, completing your tour of Norway.

Where We Stayed in Oslo: The Clarion Royal Christiana. This is a four star hotel located in downtown Oslo within walking distance of the train station and the Oslo Opera House. My favorite thing about this hotel (other than it’s great location) was the huge breakfast buffet.

When To Go

The best time to do this itinerary is between June and September, especially if you plan on hiking these trails. Snow lingers on some of these trails up until June. The earliest you can hike Trolltunga without a guide is June 15, according to the Visit Norway website.

If you are planning a trip to Norway before June with the intent to go hiking, here are some things to consider:

Pulpit Rock: You can hike Pulpit Rock from April to October. For the remainder of the year, the trails will be covered with snow. It is only recommended that you hike Pulpit Rock from November through March with a guide.

Kjeragbolten:  The best time to hike Kjeragbolten is from June 1 through September 31. The bus from Stavanger does not start running until June 1. Before June 1, snow can still cover the roads, so you may not even be able to drive to the start of the hike.

Trolltunga:  June 15 to September 15. All other times of the year you should hike with a guide.

Romsdalseggen Ridge:  June 30 to September 30 (when the shuttle bus is in service).

For your best chance of clear weather, visit Norway in the spring and early summer. In August, rainfall chances increase. It is not unusual to have rainy weather during September and October.

If you do not plan on hiking, some roads on this itinerary can be closed from November through May. Trollstigen and the Aurlandsvegen Snow Road make it onto this list. For a list of possible road closures, plus their dates of opening and closing times, click here.

We did this same itinerary in early August.

Looking for another epic trip to Norway? Learn how to spend 10 days road tripping from Tromsø to the Lofoten Islands:

10 Day Itinerary: The Lofoten Islands and Northern Norway

Or, learn how to combine a road trip through the fjords with a visit to the Lofoten Islands:

10 Days in Norway: The Fjords and the Lofoten Islands


More Information for Your Trip to Norway:

Are you planning a trip to the Norway? Read all of our articles about Norway in our Norway Travel Guide.

You May also Like:

 

Visiting Norway? Buy the Guide


Norway Travel Itinerary

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Norway Itinerary

Comments 147

  1. Hello! I want to do the 10 day travel hike you did with my two girls who are 8 and 11 years. Think it’s possible? What about doing this with only the three of us? what would you say the cost came to, maybe not the exact but close? Anything I should know about doing this trip with kids?
    Thanks you!

    1. Post
      Author

      When we did this trip, Kara was 8 (almost 9) and Tyler was 11, so they were the same age as your girls. Before the trip, we took them hiking a bunch of times, including doing an almost 10 mile, strenuous hike, just to test them out and see if they could handle big hikes. So, yes, it’s definitely possible to do this with your girls. A rough estimate for costs (in USD): hotels can be $150-$300 per night, food $100 – $200 per day, rental car can cost up $200 per day (that’s a high estimate), and then extras for gas, activities, etc. You will be in the car a lot, so make sure they have something to do to keep them busy. And Kara loved having her picture taken with the troll statues…you will see them everywhere. Cheers, Julie

  2. Hi Julie,
    Thank you for the informative post!
    This was extremely helpful.
    I’m interested to know which car rental company you went with from Bergen to Alesund, and how much you ended up paying, as they all seem to be charging through the roof given it’s being returned in a different location.

    Thank you!
    Jay

    1. Post
      Author

      Yes, unfortunately there is a drop charge for returning a rental car at a different location than from where you pick it up. This charge can vary by season, rental car company, etc, and seems to get a little higher every year. We did this road trip in 2013 and prices are much different now (although we just took a road trip through northern Norway last summer), so the prices we paid won’t be accurate for 2019. I recommend using Auto Europe to get prices, or get prices directly from companies like Hertz, Europcar, Avis, etc. That’s what we do, and then pick the cheapest option. But I do know that the drop fee can be a lot…not just in Norway, but anywhere in Europe. Cheers, Julie

      1. Thanks for the quick and thorough response Julie!
        I’m now looking into public transport options for 2 people at the same rate of travel as your itinerary during the period of late May to June. Would you happen to know if this would be achievable?
        I’m really keen to follow the path you’ve travelled on.

        1. Post
          Author

          Since we had a rental car, I don’t know a whole lot about public transportation. I would recommend looking at the Visit Norway website for more info. It is possible to get around by bus and train, but you will most likely have to modify this itinerary to fit the bus schedules. Also, if you want to do the hikes, you are better off going in mid-June. You need a guide to hike Trolltunga before June 15 and it’s not advisable to hike Kjeragbolten before June 1. Plus, I know that there will be more public buses traveling between Kjeragbolten, Trolltunga, Stavanger, and Odda in June than in May (since the hikes don’t “open” until June). I hope this helps! Cheers, Julie

  3. Hi Julie,

    Love this itinerary but since I am going as part of my business trip in April, I guess many of the hikes will still be closed. Would you recommend your Lofoten itinerary for late April? I heard it might be too late for Northern Lights as well but my main concern is driving conditions. Thanks!

    Cheers,
    Christina

    1. Post
      Author

      Yes, you can do the Lofoten Island itinerary in April. I think you will miss out on seeing the Northern Lights. Snow is still possible so that could mean more difficult driving and hiking conditions. I haven’t read anything about the hikes “not being open” in Lofoten and Vesteralen (like Trolltunga and Romsdalseggen). I have seen and read about people hiking Reinebringen in the snow, which sounds crazy. Check out the Visit Norway website to see if you can get more info on the hikes if this is something you want to do. Also, the ferry from Gryllefjord to Andenes won’t be running so you will have to drive to the Vesteralen Islands instead. Cheers, Julie

  4. Hi Julie,

    What an amazing itinerary! It proved so helpful in planning our trip for mid-August. We plan on doing an abbreviated version:

    Day 1: Arrive in Stavanger. Explore.
    Day 2: Pick up rental car. Pulpit Rock hike. Scenic drive.
    Day 3: Drive to Bergen. Explore Bergen
    Day 4: Drive to Flam and Flam railway. Spend the night in either Flam or Undredal.
    Day 5: Drive to Geiranger, through the scenic route. Spend the night in the area.
    Day 6: Explore Geiranger.
    Day 7: Drive to Alesund.
    Day 8: Leave for US.

    My gf and I both like the small village/town experience. Are there any small towns/villages we could visit/spend the night at between Flam – Geiranger or Geiranger – Alesund? Or do you not recommend any in between?

    Also, is there an alternative place to spend the night than Flam? Alternative to Geiranger? Or do you recommend we stick to staying in one of those 2.

    Sorry if the question is confusing. I suppose I just want to break up the monotony of long drives (I know the scenery is amazing!), with visits/stays in smaller, quiet towns, ideally fjord-side, on any of the long driving stretches. Also, to see if its worth staying in any other village aside from Flam and Geiranger.

    Thanks so much again!

    1. Post
      Author

      Hello Henya. There are no particular towns that really stand out in my mind to visit between Flam and Alesund. You will see a lot of small towns on this drive, simply clusters of colorful houses on the fjords, it’s wonderful! Don’t miss Trollstigen on the way to Alesund, it’s located near Andalsnes. Geiranger is beautiful, I would definitely stay here for a night. Flam is good, it’s convenient. We stayed in Balestrand, just to knock of some of the driving for the next day, but Balestrand is nothing special. It’s a beautiful drive and I doubt it will feel monotonous. Check out some of the viewpoints and waterfalls we have listed to help break up the drive. Have fun! Cheers, Julie

  5. Hello!
    My family is planning a similar road trip this July, though we are not flying between towns, just driving. We are planning to pick up our car in Stavanger, drive through Bergen, Aurland, Jotunheim and return the car in Oslo on a two week trip. I’ve done a tone of searching, but can’t seem to find anywhere how much to budget for fuel and ferries. Would you be able to give me an estimate? Thanks!

    Megan

    1. Post
      Author

      Sorry, I don’t have an estimate to give you. If you want to know ahead of time you will need to do some research. Online, take a look at the ferries you plan to take and you should be able to get the exact prices you will pay. You could also research the current price for fuel and then get a rough idea how much it will cost based on how many kilometers you will drive. Cheers, Julie

  6. Hello!! thank you for the awesome Blog. I’m looking to plan a solo hiking trip to Norway and really dig your 10 day Norway butttt also want to squeeze in the Lofoten Islands. Would it be doable to do a few day Fjord cruise from Trolltunga to the Islands? then spend a few days hiking the Islands? That way I’ll still do the epic hikes of Pulpit Rock, Kieragbolten, and Trolltunga. Plus the town of Bergen. I’ll get a cruise of the fjords and hike the Senja hike in Lofoten.

    So my questions are
    1. is my idea doable (to cut short your 10 day Norway and add a few of Lofoten Islands)?
    2. if you only have a 3 days of Lofoten what would you do…I’m thinking the Senja hike for sure….anything else?
    3. is there a cruise of the Fjords that would take me from around the region of Trolltunga to Lofoten?

    Kind regards
    Emma

    1. Post
      Author

      Hello Emma. There is no cruise that goes from Trolltunga to the Lofoten Islands. You can cruise from Bergen to the Lofoten Islands but I would imagine this would take multiple days which would eat into your precious time. If you want to do the hikes and see the Lofoten Islands, you will have to fly between the 2 different locations. Even then, timing will be tight. And just so you know, Senja is an island north of the Lofoten Islands. To get to Senja, it’s a very long drive plus a ferry from either the Lofoten Islands or Tromso. You can spend 5 days in southern Norway to do these hikes, starting in Stavanger and ending in Bergen. Then you can fly to the Lofoten Islands. If you only have 10 days, you will have 2 to 3 days on the Lofoten Islands (but not enough time to get to Senja as well). Cheers, Julie

  7. Hello!
    My husband and I are using this itinerary for a trip to Norway in mid-September. We have 2 extra days, but as we are pushing the Sept 15th deadline on the Trolltunga we can’t use them on the first half of our trip. We were thinking of adding an extra day in Geiranger and another to Alesund (we take off directly from Alesund so will not be flying back to Oslo). Is this something you would recommend? If so, do you have any additional recommendations on what to do with our extra time here?
    Thank you so much, we are so excited to use this fantastic itinerary!
    Ellie

    1. Post
      Author

      Hello Ellie. Near Alesund you can drive the Atlantic Road. We ran out of time for this but with your extra day you will be able to drive it. You might also have time to hike the Besseggen Ridge, which is in Jotunheimen National Park. You would add this in between Flam and Geiranger. It’s another one of Norway’s great hikes (and still on our bucket list). Have fun in Norway! Cheers, Julie

  8. Hi Julie,

    My girlfriend and I were planning to do a similar abbreviated itinerary at the end of May:

    Day 1: Fly into Oslo
    Day 2: Oslo to Bergen via Norway in a Nutshell
    Day 3: Bergen
    Day 4: Fly to Alesund, Drive to Geiranger
    Day 5: Hiking in Geiranger
    Day 6: Drive to Andalsnes, Train to Oslo
    Day 7: Fly home

    Unfortunately, we recently learned that Norway in a Nutshell does not do trips from Oslo to Bergen on Sundays, so rather than waiting a day and potentially missing out on our itinerary, we are considering doing our original itinerary in reverse (Oslo to Andalsnes to Geiranger, etc). Do you see any problems with doing the itinerary in reverse? Or if you have additional recommendations, I would welcome those as well. We are both outdoorsy and plan to do some hiking (where possible in late May) while we’re there. Thanks!

    Drew

    1. Post
      Author

      Hello Drew. Doing this in reverse should not be an issue, you just have to make sure the trains and the Norway in a Nutshell sync with your dates. In late May, some hiking trails will still be “closed.” For example, the Romsdalseggen Trail in Andalsnes can be snow covered through June. You could email your hotel in Geiranger about what to expect on the hiking trails at the end of May (they would know more than me). It sounds like a very nice trip. Enjoy Norway! Cheers, Julie

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