TEN-DAY SAMPLE NORWEGIAN FJORDS ITINERARY: ÅLESUND TO BERGEN
We welcome you onboard Silver Cloud for ten relaxing days discovering the delights of the Norwegian Fjords. The following itinerary will have you leisurely exploring the waters of Norway as we travel from Ålesund to Bergen, passing some spectacular scenery and amazing sights.
You’ll visit some of Norway’s loveliest places where you can marvel at the stunning surroundings and explore a variety of historical landmarks. We begin in the charming Art Nouveau town of Ålesund, characterized by a building style that is sure to amaze and delight. We then sail south, visiting some of the best fjords Norway has to offer. Dramatic mountains, spectacular waterfalls and cavernous valleys await, as we visit Geiranger, Malor, Flåm and Balestrand. The cruise ends in the historic city of Bergen, with two days to explore this fascinating city.
The SILVER CLOUD crew will ensure you see all the highlights while offering the ultimate in personal service and guest care. Welcome aboard!
DAY 1&2 - ÅLESUND: Your cruise aboard Silver Cloud begins in the beautiful Art Nouveau town of Ålesund. This waterfront town’s beautiful architecture is known far and wide, and the myriad of turrets, spires and beautiful ornamentation give the town a distinctive and magical character that’s sure to enchant. After a fire destroyed all but 230 of the town’s houses in 1904, new houses were designed by young Norwegians influenced by the period’s popular architecture style – Art Nouveau. Today, Ålesund is a member of “Rèseau Art Nouveau Network”, a European network of Art Nouveau cities, which includes Glasgow, Barcelona and Vienna. For a magnificent view of the town and harbor, visit the Town Park on the west side of Mount Aksla. A long staircase of 418 steps leads up the mountain. The park is also home to two historic statues – of German Kaiser Wilhelm II who helped with rebuilding efforts after the 1904 fire, and Viking Gange-Rolf who founded Normandy after leaving the Ålesund area in 911. We’ll spend the evening here, so you can choose to explore this delightful town by night.
DAY 3 - GEIRANGER, STRANDA (GEIRANGERFJORD): After breakfast we set off for Geiranger in the West Norwegian Fjord. The 57 nautical miles will take around 5 hours to sail. Geiranger fjord was listed on the UNESCO World Heritage List in 2005 – the first natural World Heritage Site in Norway to be included on the list. Majestic, snow-covered mountain peaks, beautiful and wild waterfalls, lush, green vegetation and the deep blue waters await – it really is like something out of a fairy tale! If you enjoy wandering through beautiful scenery, there are many sign-posted walks of varying degrees of difficulty. Or, keen anglers will find excellent opportunities in the Geiranger fjord. There are also historic sites to visit including the wooden Stranda Church, which was constructed in 1838 and incorporates a number of elements from older churches in Stranda that date back to the 11th century. We spend the day here, before departing after dinner for an overnight sail to Måløy – a trip that will take around 11 hours to cover 122 nautical miles.
DAY 4 - MÅLØY: We arrive in the morning in the town of Måløy, which is situated in the north of FjordKysten. Nature has helped to create a perfect location with a harbor basin that is sheltered from the weather and open sea by a string of islands. At the end of the 1800s Måløy developed to one of the leading fishing areas in Norway. The basis for this development was the fishing season of cod and herring. Måløy is now one of the busiest export harbors in Norway. The town square in Måløy has a monument honoring the inhabitants of Sør-Vågsøy and Davik municipalities who fell in World War II. Another monument is a memorial to Martin Linge, an actor and the only Norwegian who died during Operation Archery. When exploring the town, note that few streets in Måløy are named; most, especially the ones on the hillside, are only numbered.
DAY 5 - FLORØ: We have a short sail this morning to Florø, the westernmost town in Norway. The sail will take us 2 hours, 30 minutes, to travel 28 nautical miles. Florø is an idyllic city, surrounded by beautiful nature. The municipality reaches from the skerries of the North Sea to the Ålfot Glacier, and along the way are rushing rivers, snow-clad summits and lonely lakes. The coast is a world in itself with a multitude of islands of all sizes. Most of them are inhabited and offer a wide range of activities – including hiking, cycling and fishing.
Florø was founded in 1860 when herring fisheries were just as important for Norway as the oil industry is today, and Florø was one of the largest centers for those fisheries. With its wide range of sights to explore, Strandgata Street in the heart of Florø is well worth a visit. Read the information signs attached to historic buildings in the city to learn more about Florø’s history and what it was like to live here in the past. You will be surprised to learn how much went on in these streets! This evening you can head onshore for a seafood meal in the charming town, or enjoy another fine meal aboard Silver Cloud.
DAY 6 - SOGNEFJORD TO FLÅM: At midnight we’ll head up the Sognefjord on a 10 hour cruise. Norway’s longest and deepest fjord, Sognefjord lies in the heart of the Norwegian fjord country and is considered one of the world’s most beautiful travel destinations. The 112 nautical mile trip will see us sailing the Aurlandsfjord, a tributary of the Sognefjord, which is 126 miles long and up to 4,290 feet deep, to the port of Flåm. The name “Flåm” means “little place between steep mountains” and the town is surrounded by steep mountains, roaring waterfalls and deep valleys. From Flåm Port it is only a short walk to the famous Flåm Railway, where you can enjoy a train journey through some of Norway’s wildest and most magnificent scenery. On the 12 mile ride you can see rivers that cut through deep ravines, waterfalls that cascade down the side of steep, snow-capped mountains and mountain farms which cling dizzily to sheer slopes. Flåm has a huge range of other nature-based activities, including hiking, mountain biking and kayaking. To get a feeling for the area’s history, you can visit Otternes Bygdetun, an old farmyard and ‘living museum’ with 27 buildings dating back to the 1600s. Here you can also see old handcraft techniques and try food made in traditional style.
DAY 7 - FLÅM, BALESTRAND, BERGEN: This morning we’ll head for Balestrand on a cruise of 3 hours, 30 minutes, that will take around 36 nautical miles. Located in the Sogn og Fjordane, the municipality is situated at the junction of the Sognefjord and Esefjord. Balestrand became popular early due to the interest of artists, such as Hans Gude, Alfred Heaton Cooper, Hans Dahl and Johannes Flintoe, whose paintings of the scenery around Balestrand inspired visitors to travel to see the beauty of the area for themselves. Attractions include St Olaf’s Church, also known as the English Church, built in the style of a Stave church in 1897 as a memorial to an English woman Margaret Green who married a local man. The 19th century Kvikne’s Hotel is another famous building in Balestrand, made popular for European visitors in the early part of the 20th century by Kaiser Wilhelm II, who often visited during his summer vacations prior to World War I. A number of emperors, kings, presidents, Prime Ministers, film stars, and artists from many countries have followed in his footsteps. After dinner we’ll head for Bergen, an overnight sail that will take us around 10 hours, 30 minutes, to cover a distance of 117 nautical miles.
DAY 8 & 9 - BERGEN, NORWAY: Our last port of call is Norway’s second largest city, Bergen. Bergen is located in the Hordaland County among a group of mountains known as "De syv fjell”, literally translated into “The Seven Mountains”. The city of Bergen has a long history and is thought to have been founded by King Olav Kyrre in 1070 AD. Take in the maze of characteristic wooden buildings with pointed gables. The old Bryggen Hanseatic wharf is architecturally unique and is included on UNESCO’s list of world heritage of history and culture. Also worth visiting is the medieval Castle Håkon’s Hall, built during the reign of King Haakon Haakonsson between 1247 and 1261. It was the largest and most imposing building of the royal residency in 13th century Bergen, then the political centre of Norway. If you’re interested in finding out more about the history, explore the Bryggens Museum, displaying the foundations of the city’s oldest buildings from the 12th century on their original site. Or, for art enthusiasts, visit the Bergen Art Museum with its extensive collections of paintings by Munch and Picasso. You have the evening to enjoy this charming town, and possibly enjoy a stroll around the historic harbor.
DAY 10 - BERGEN: Enjoy the morning at your leisure before the Silver Cloud crew assist you on your onward journey. As your cruise on board Silver Cloud comes to a close, you can be sure that you’ve experienced some of best the scenery and towns that Norway has to offer.