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Looking for your help to build a plan for 15 days trip

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chicago
posts: 351
reviews: 6
Looking for your help to build a plan for 15 days trip

In my previous post I mentioned I booked the tickets to Norway. We will be flying to Bergen on June, 13 and coming back from Oslo, on June 30. So we have 15 full days.

I have been reading books and forums, and so far I am little lost on how to build my iteneries.

I kind identified areas we would be interested to see, but I really need your help to build a plan. Here is what I was thinking (a lot of it based on Lonely Planet suggestions):

1. Arrive to Bergen

2. Spend a day in Bergen

3. Take Norway in Nutshell roundtrip from Bergen (Here I am not sure what to do - it makes sense to brake this route here to to stay around Sognefjord more days instead of backtracking here later. We could stay in Ballestrand, or Stalheim, but it would be nice to have a car. Not sure where to rent a car here)

4. Rent a car in Bergen, Go to Hardangerfjord. (Not sure here. 1-2 days?)

5-6. More time around Sognefjord if we do not stay there during Norway in Nutshell (in Ballestrand,Stalheim or around). Can we drive to Ballestrand?

I am also interested in Jotunheimen National park, but I am not sure how to accomplish this.

7. Come back to Bergen, and get on Hurtigruten northbound

8. Alesund by Hurtigruten. Take Geirangerfjord

trip from the ship

9. Trondheim by Hurtigruten

11. Arrive to Svolvær Hurtigruten

12-13- Lofoten islands

14. Hurtigruten to Tromso

15. Fly from Tromso to Oslo

16. Fly home

Anyway, this is not even a plan, just thoughts on what would be nice to do. I really looking for your suggestions on how to organize this better (what to include/what to exclude).

We would like to incorporate some scenic train rides, and some driving, and some boat time.

Thank you in advance for your help!!!

Oslo, Norway
Destination Expert
for Norway
posts: 7,002
reviews: 21
1. Re: Looking for your help to build a plan for 15 days trip

The Hurtigruten part of the trip is fine. I would simplify the fjords part. Instead of making three different roundtrips from Bergen I would combine them into one. With five days you could make a roundtrip covering everything on your list and more, for example like this: http://goo.gl/maps/Vw60K

Some highlights, Rosendal: www.baroniet.no/en/index.php?kategori=3

Lofthus: …travelmarket.com/modules/TM_Imagebank2/uplo…

Vøringsfossen: …wikimedia.org/wikipedia/…_mosaic.jpg

Aurlandsdalen: www.lunde-camping.no/image/aurlandsdalen2.gif

Tindevegen Årdal-Turtagrø: http://www.tindevegen.no/

chicago
posts: 351
reviews: 6
2. Re: Looking for your help to build a plan for 15 days trip

Iverh,

Thank you so much for your reply! This route looks really good, but I have several questions on this:

1. With all this driving, wouldn't we be missing all these beautiful train rides? That was the only reason I was thinking of Norway in Nutshell - because of train rides.

2. On the route you suggested, I am trying to identify where we need to make night stops.

- It looks like first stop in Eidfjord. Do we need a couple of nights here? Park Hardangervidda looks attractive. And where should we take a boat trip along Hardangerford (and should we?)?

- Second stop seems to be Flam. Is this correct? I really would like to take Flamsbana. Can we leave a car and a roundtrip on Flamsbana? Cruise Nærøyfjord here?

- Third stop in Luster, Turtagro Hotel?

- Last stop in Ballestrand? Seems like I need a couple of days here too.

Am I thinking in the righ direction? Please let me know what you think or correct me where I am wrong.

Where do we visit glacier Nigarsbreen from?

Thank you again for your help!!!

Oslo, Norway
Destination Expert
for Norway
posts: 7,002
reviews: 21
3. Re: Looking for your help to build a plan for 15 days trip

Yes, you are thinking in the right direction.

The long sightseeing trip on Hardangerfjord is difficult to combine with a driving trip, a good substitute could be the car ferry Kvanndal-Utne-Kinsarvik.

From Flåm you you may do a return trip on the Flåm Railway, and the Flåm-Gudvangen ferry.

If you want to go for a glacier hike on Nigardsbreen, it takes most of a day. Nes Gard, Høyheimsvik, Luster is the perfect place to stop before going there.

The itinerary was a suggestion, if you want visit Nigardsbreen and stay two nights in Balestrand you may consider shortening it by cutting out Rosendal or Turtagrø or both.

Oslo
posts: 8,095
reviews: 61
4. Re: Looking for your help to build a plan for 15 days trip

Self-drive is not convenient to combine with "cruises" on the fjords and may not add much in terms of scenery (except perhaps the Gudvangen-Flåm boat or the Gudvangen-Kaupanger ferry). The Gudvangen-Flåm boat is best as a roundtrip so you return to your car, or if in a group you can take turns shifting the car.

Self drive usually involve several ferry crossings that can function as mini-cruises (10 min to 2 hours).

Also note that the most impressive landscapes are often not in "parks". And if you don't plan to go on long hikes, visiting Hardangervidda or Jotunheimen simply means that you drive on the public road passing through the area. So perhaps do not focus on a specific park, but on the scenic road. Sognefjellet (road 55 from the great fjord to Norway's "alps" or "giant mountains" as they are in fact called) for instance:

…wordpress.com/2009/07/100_0325.jpg

…wordpress.com/2009/07/100_0304.jpg

…blogspot.com/-QM1S6kIjGu4/…DSC_0464.JPG

fjordblick.com/wp-content/gallery/feigumfoss…

chicago
posts: 351
reviews: 6
5. Re: Looking for your help to build a plan for 15 days trip

Iverh, OsloViking, I really appreciate your perspective! This makes it so much easier for me to understand where my focus should be. We are not in group, it is just two of us. We are not planning on any long hikes during this trip. I do not think we want to walk on glacier either, but I think we want to walk to glacier.

I have enough time to plan the details, but I really would like to finalize the number of days we need for first part of the trip (before Hurtigruten), to make sure we have time to do the cruise.

So, based on your suggestions, here is another plan (approximately). Please let me know what you think.

Iverh, I like your idea about using this car ferry Kvanndal-Utne-Kinsarvik. At what point in this route can we use it? I was looking at map, and it seems like if we eliminate Geilo, then we can take this car ferry on the was from Eidfjord to Voss to Flam. Am I correct or not?

Anyway, here is my newer plan. And thank you so much again for helping me!

1. Arrive to Bergen

2. Spend a day in Bergen

3. Rent a car in Bergen, drive to Rosendal (maybe), Lothus, stay overnight in Eidfjord

4. Drive to Flam

5 Flam - part of Norway in Nutshell - roundtrip to Flam

6. Drive to Luster via Songdal, vist Nigarsbreen, stay overnigh in Luster, Turtagara (visit Lom?)

7. Drive to Balestrand

8. Drive Back to Bergen. Board Hurtigruten

9. Alesund by Hurtigruten. Take Geirangerfjord

trip from the ship

10. Trondheim by Hurtigruten

11. Arrive to Svolvær Hurtigruten at night

12-13- Rent a car inSvolvær - Lofoten islands

14. Hurtigruten to Tromso arrives 2:30 pm

15. Fly from Tromso to Oslo

16. Oslo

17. Fly Home

Harstad, Norway
Destination Expert
for Bergen, Norway
posts: 13,610
reviews: 35
6. Re: Looking for your help to build a plan for 15 days trip

You use the Kvanndal-Kinsarvik ferry on day 3.

Cannot quite see the point in the Hurtigruten overnight trip to Tromsø - although there is 24 hour daylight as this time of year, we still need our beauty sleep (at least I do).

Oslo, Norway
Destination Expert
for Norway
posts: 7,002
reviews: 21
7. Re: Looking for your help to build a plan for 15 days trip

hxmtravel, the revised itinerary looks good. Yo may use the car ferry Kvanndal-Kinsarvik day 3 if you skip Rosendal or day 4 if you skip Geilo, I agree with klimaflyktning, consider a scenic drive via Senja to Tromsø day 14 instead of Hurtigtuten: http://goo.gl/maps/rgDs3 http://www.senjafergene.no/index-en.htm onmytodd.org/wp-uploads/2011/03/IMG_4332.jpg …wikimedia.org/wikipedia/commons/c/c0/Ersfjo…

This drive can be done in 1 day, but two days would be better.

chicago
posts: 351
reviews: 6
8. Re: Looking for your help to build a plan for 15 days trip

Klimaflyktning, this was a Lonely Planet suggestion. I guess, the point is to see Tromso. I thought we can book a cabin on the ship for sleeping for one night. On the other hand, I know, the ship passes Trollfjord during the night, which may interfere with sleeping.

I am not a fan of not sleeping at night either :)

What do you suggest for these last couple of days?

We need to get back to Oslo for at least one day there.

chicago
posts: 351
reviews: 6
9. Re: Looking for your help to build a plan for 15 days trip

Iverh, thank you! I will look into this. Can we rent a car in one place and return in another? I was thinking of renting a car in Svolvær, and with this drive, we will need to return it in Tromso.

Harstad, Norway
Destination Expert
for Bergen, Norway
posts: 13,610
reviews: 35
10. Re: Looking for your help to build a plan for 15 days trip

Yes, of course you can take a cabin and sleep overnight but most would take Hurtigruten for the scenery. As for sleep, ports of call and the detour to Trollfjord may be disturbing if you are a light sleeper.

You can rent a car in one place and deliver in another, but there will be drop-off charges.