When continuing on from Flåm most people take a little fjord boat trip and then a bus to Bergen. As we opted for the Sognefjord trip oppose to the usual tour, we took a longer boat trip but straight to Bergen harbour. The Sognefjord is nicknamed the King because it’s the longest fjord in Norway and second longest in the world. It is a beautiful boat trip full of waterfalls, forest views, mountains and it even makes stops for locals at smaller villages along the way (which feature the most colourful, Scandi hut houses). It weirdly felt like we were commuting alongside the locals from their village homes to the ‘big city’. By the end of the trip the rain kicked in and it got pretty miserable being stuck on a boat. Luckily we had snacks and books but it is a long trip (several hours) so be prepared if you opt for this tour.
Bergen is a very popular midway point in Norway for travellers. It’s on the west coast with great fjord connections and opportunities to venture further north. It’s actually the second largest city in Norway but has a small-town, fisherman’s village charm to it. The harbour area feels very rural with local coffee bars, boats and an iconic fish market. If you want to be adventurous and try some whale steak or the catch of the day then it’s the best place to go! Although it feels quite ‘oldie times’, it’s a very trendy place full of Norwegian design, breweries and young folk.
A cool place to check out is the Bryggen aka an area along the harbour side. The buildings are very iconic with many fridge magnets being based on them and it being the go-to Instagram background. It’s a fun place to wander and get lost between the buildings. The different wooden slacks swing overhead as you pop into shops and cafes. From there you can walk to the funicular and get high up on the mountain for an amazing view of the city. We took the funicular up and then decided to walk down. It was the perfect balance of getting to ride and also see where the locals live on our way back. Up there are several viewpoints of the city below which are gorgeous. There’s also a forest area which people were having picnics in and jogging around.
And that’s that for Scandinavia (for now). It was a definite bucket list item for me and a trip I’ll always cherish. I’d love to go back and explore more of the hidden gem villages and venture further north to insane climates. For now though hitting up the major cities and getting to experience a slice was amazing. Feel free to catch up on Sweden, Denmark or Norway and I’ll see you in a few days for something new!