Grand Norwegian Explorer with Fjærland

Cities, fjords & islands
It’s the grandeur of the scenery that makes a holiday in Norway so special. On this self-guided adventure you experience memorable journeys on the Flåm, Dovre and Nordland railways, combined with boat rides along the fjords, and stays in Bergen, Oslo, Trondheim and the magical Lofoten Islands (with car hire included).
Grand Norwegian Explorer with Fjærland. 16 nights
Grand Norwegian Explorer with Fjærland. 16 nights

Holiday information


A touring holiday in Norway

The most enjoyable and memorable rail journeys are usually those which pass through the most striking landscapes. And, since spectacular scenery is one of the things that Norway does best, it follows that its railways are some of the most impressive in Europe. This remarkable touring holiday features three iconic train rides, plus some short but exhilarating journeys on express boats and the famous Hurtigruten coastal steamer, to reveal the great variety and majestic scale of Norway’s landscapes.
Bergen, Norway’s second city, is your starting point, from where you take an express boat into the fjords, with time to discover the glorious scenery up close, including a foray along one of Sognefjord’s most idyllic spurs to Fjærland, which nestles below Europe’s largest glacier. Next comes a ride on the impressively engineered Flåm Railway, which climbs more than 850 metres over a distance of just 20 kilometres. After a stay in Oslo, you travel northwards on the Dovre Line, a 553-kilometre railway which crosses rugged moorland and high green valleys to Trondheim, Norway's original capital. Linking Trondheim to Bodø is the even more epic Nordland Line, which traverses almost 300 bridges over the course of its scenic 739-kilometre journey. From Bodø you board the Hurtigruten for the short crossing to your final base on the Lofoten Islands, whose wild and untamed beauty will linger long in the memory. 



The key to Inntravel holidays is flexibility. You can start on the day of your choice, and are free to add extra nights.
  • Arrival in Bergen
    Night 1: at Thon Hotel Rosenkrantz (the first of two nights here).
    As your first night’s accommodation is on the day of travel, Day 1 is your first day of exploration.
  • Explore Bergen
    Today is free to explore Bergen on foot using our self-guided tour. Norway's second-largest city has a relaxed and friendly atmosphere and is overlooked by forested mountain slopes. There’s a real sense of history here, and the famous Bryggen – the UNESCO-listed, Hanseatic harbour district – has long been a melting-pot for traders from all over the world. Wander amid its brightly painted shops and warehouses, and peek into the large, glass-sided Fisk Torget (fish market) – a riot of sound and colour, especially when the catch comes in. It’s also worth taking the funicular up the mountain behind the city for views over the fjords.
    Visit the Fish Market
    Explore Bergen
  • Bergen to Fjærland
    Leaving Bergen, you travel by express boat along the coast and into majestic Sognefjord. From water level, the mountains framing it seem even grander, and all you can see ahead is headland after headland plunging into the sapphire waters. At Balestrand you change onto a conventional boat for a journey along one of Sognefjord’s most picturesque spurs. Your destination is Fjærland and the Fjærland Fjordstue, where you spend two nights. (Journey time: 5.5hrs)
  • Explore Fjærland
    Fjærland is a mere stone’s throw from Jostedalsbreen, Europe’s largest glacier, so it’s no surprise to find the impressive Norwegian Glacier Museum here. What you might not be expecting, however, is a wealth of second-hand bookshops – 14, at the last count – that makes this farming village as appealing to bibliophiles as to lovers of the great outdoors. If you fall into the latter category, you might find time to hire a bike and cycle along the shores of the fjord, or to simply take to the water in a rowing boat.
    Peaceful Fjaerland
    Fjaerland, the book village
  • Fjærland to Balestrand
    You retrace the last part of Day 2's journey back to Balestrand, for two nights in Kvikne’s Hotel, offering sumptuous fjord-side views. (Journey time: 1.5hrs)
  • Explore Balestrand
    There are plenty of ways to spend day here: enjoy a bike ride, or stroll along Balestrand’s heritage trail to learn about the artists who have visited the village. You could also seek out the fjord-side Cider House, a distillery and restaurant run by a Norwegian-Turkish couple amid over 100 varieties of fruit trees. Other options are to walk up the slopes behind the hotel to gain a different perspective on the splendid scenery, or to visit one or more of the area’s remarkable ‘stave churches’ – elaborate, 12th-century wooden structures, often topped with dragons’ heads, much like the prows of Viking longships.
    Follow the Balestrand heritage trail
    Visit Vik stave church, just across the fjord
  • Balestrand to Flåm
    Leaving Balestrand, you take the express boat further inland, along steep-sided Aurlandsfjord to Flåm, for two nights at the historic Fretheim Hotel. (Journey time: 1.5hrs)
  • Explore Flåm
    Take an exhilarating bike ride down the old 'Navvies' Road from Myrdal, enjoy the more sedentary sipping of award-winning ales in surroundings (including a nine-metre-high fireplace) inspired by Norse mythology at the Ægir Brewery, or take a boat trip along beautiful Nærøyfjord, where waterfalls plunge 1,200 metres from the clifftops.
    Enjoy a ride down the old Navvies Road
    The Future of the Fjords electric boat on Naerøyfjord (C)âm AS
  • Flåm to Oslo
    Take your seat on the Flåmsbana, one of the world’s great train journeys. From the fjord, you ascend ever higher into the mountains, past lush woodland and thundering waterfalls. At the top, you change trains and over the next couple of hours descend gradually to Oslo, where you have two nights at the Hotel Bristol. (Journey time: 6hrs)
    Take the Flâm Railway onwards to Oslo (C)âm AS
  • Explore Oslo
    Spend the day exploring Norway’s flourishing capital, using our self-guided walking tour to take in some of its many sights. Stroll around the bustling harbour, see the fortress on the headland overlooking Oslofjord, or tour attractions such as the sculpture park, and fascinating museums such as that devoted to Viking ships. You could also admire the ship that took Amundsen all the way to the South Pole in 1911; visit the Nobel Peace Centre; or explore Aker Brygge, the waterfront district which typifies the Norwegian capital’s bold sense of style. Here, you can ascend the 90-metre Tjuvtitten Tower (the ‘Sneak Peak’) for sensational views over the city.
    The Akershus Fortress in Oslo
  • Oslo to Trondheim
    You can choose an early morning or early afternoon departure for today's scenic train ride north from Oslo to Trondheim. This 553-kilometre journey takes you past Mjøsa, Norway's largest lake, to Lillehammer, which hosted the 1994 Winter Olympics; through the verdant scenery of Gudbrandsdalen, the valley associated with Ibsen's Peer Gynt; alongside the Lågen, one of the largest rivers in Norway; over the highest point on the line, Hjerkinn, at 1,017 metres above sea level; and beneath the towering peaks of the Dovrefjell National Park. In Trondheim, you spend two nights at the Hotel Bakeriet. (Journey time: 6.5hrs)
  • Explore Trondheim
    Trondheim may be Norway's third city, but it has a relaxed, easy-going feel. At the centre of the Old Town is Torvet, a large square where a statue-cum-sundial of the city's founder takes pride of place. From here, broad avenues lead north to the fish market; east to the old bridge of Gamle Bybro, on the other side of which is the pretty district of Bakklandet, complete with old warehouses and timber buildings; and south to Nidaros Cathedral, Scandinavia's largest medieval building and the traditional venue for coronations and royal burials. Our half-day, self-guided walking tour helps you to make the most of your time in the city, with ample time to visit, if you wish, one or two of Trondheim's museums, which include the National Museum of Decorative Arts, the Maritime Museum, the Ringve Music Museum with its collection of instruments from around the globe, and the City Art Gallery.
    Trondheim waterfront
    Nidaros Cathedral
  • Trondheim to Bodø
    An early start is required for today's epic journey. The Nordland Railway is the longest – and one of the most spectacular – in Norway, and weaves through great forests, past narrow fjords and alongside rivers famous for their salmon. About four-fifths of the way through the journey, you cross the Arctic Circle and continue through the majestic Saltfjellet mountains. After 739km of spectacular scenery, not to mention 293 bridges and 154 tunnels, you reach the coast at Bodø, where you stay overnight at the Thon Nordlys Hotel. (Journey time: 10hrs)
  • Bodø to Svolvær
    Our self-guided walking tour serves as a good introduction to Bodø’s main sights – including its 20th-century cathedral – as well as giving you an insight into its history. After lunch, you make your way to the port, ready for the mid-afternoon departure of the Hurtigruten. You’ll probably want to spend the majority of this six-hour sailing out on deck, admiring the craggy, fjord-indented coastline and the many small islands. On arrival in Svolvær, you collect your included hire car and drive the short distance to the Svinoya Rorbuer, situated on an island connected to the centre of Svolvær by a bridge, where you spend your last three nights in a converted fisherman's cottage. (Journey time: 6hrs)
    Explore Bodø
    Hop on the Hurtigruten over to the Lofoten Islands
  • Explore the Lofoten Islands
    The wild beauty of the Lofoten Islands is humbling. Rugged granite spires frame silver beaches and an impossibly blue sea, while rocky headlands are dotted with small communities of wooden houses and distinctive, red-and-white rorbuer (fishermen’s huts). We suggest a combination of walking and driving for your time here, and include route notes for a couple of walks. Visit one or two of the islands’ museums, such as the Viking Museum with its impressive reconstruction of the chieftain’s longhouse that was found here; take a boat trip to the incomparable, sheer-sided Trollfjord, the two-kilometre-long stretch of water separating the Lofotens from the Vesteralen archipelago; stroll through the UNESCO designated fishing village of Nusfjord; or enjoy the near-deserted walk from Brenna.
    Take a boat trip to the Trollfjord
    Visit the Viking Museum


You stay in a series of well-located, high-quality hotels, before finishing with a stay in a converted fisherman's cottage on the Lofoten Islands.

In some places we work with more than one hotel, as shown below. All are hand-picked by us and, unless there is a price implication (in which case we will contact you to discuss your options), we will tell you which one we have booked for you on your booking confirmation.

Wherever you stay in each city, we recommend adding an extra night to give you more time to explore.

Options to extend or shorten your stay

Prices & travel options
All prices are in £ sterling (GBP). If you'd like to see what they equate to in your currency, use the converter. For general information on pricing, see the 'your holiday price explained' page.
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  • 16 nights: 30 May 2024 - 27 September 2024

    Start any day | End by latest date(s) shown above

    Starting Price Single room
    30 May - 18 Jun 2024 £4180 £875
    19 Jun - 22 Aug 2024 £4325 £925
    23 Aug - 11 Sep 2024 £4120 £870
    30 May - 18 Jun 2025 £4350 £910
    19 Jun - 22 Aug 2025 £4500 £965
    23 Aug - 11 Sep 2025 £4285 £905
    3rd & 4th person discount -£450 to -£555
    Single traveller supplement £455 to £565

    Includes accommodation, meals, travel between hotels and any other services integral to the holiday as described, plus a detailed information pack, but no travel from the UK, nor any connecting travel from the airport unless stated below.

    Included travel: Boat Bergen – Fjærland – Balestrand – Flåm. Rail Flåm – Oslo – Trondheim – Bodø. Coastal steamer Bodø – Svolvær. 3 days' category B car hire (eg Citroen C3 or similar with automatic transmission) on the Lofotens.

    Driving time from final accommodation: Svolvær airport 0h10

    Book your flights through us and we'll find the best route and times to suit you. Please contact us to find out more about our flight booking service. We can also book connecting travel - see below.

  • Room upgrades (£ per person per night)

    Kvikne’s Hotel, Balestrand
    'Demi-suite' in the historic building: 30 May - 27 Sep 2024 £46
    'Demi-suite' in the historic building: 30 May - 27 Sep 2025 £48
    Fjord view in the historic building: 30 May - 27 Sep 2024 £18
    Fjord view in the historic building: 30 May - 27 Sep 2025 £19
    Fretheim Hotel, Flåm
    'Historic': 30 May - 27 Sep 2024 £0
    'Historic': 30 May - 27 Sep 2025 £0
    Thon Nordlys Hotel, Bodø
    Superior double (no twins): 30 May - 27 Sep 2024 £22
    Superior double (no twins): 30 May - 27 Sep 2025 £23

    Extra nights (£ per person per night) in a double or single room

    Kvikne’s Hotel, Balestrand (with dinner) Double room Single room
    30 May - 27 Sep 2024 £180 £224
    30 May - 27 Sep 2025 £190 £236
    Hotel Bristol, Oslo (B&B) Double room Single room
    30 May - 27 Sep 2024 # £112 £174
    30 May - 27 Sep 2025 # £116 £180
    # Add £13pp/n if staying in Oslo Mon-Thu 14 May-28 Jun & 7 Aug-30 Sep
    Bergen for the outward flight; Svolvær for the homeward flight
    There are multiple inter-island flights each day between Svolvær and Bodø, from where you can fly via Oslo to a choice of UK airports.

    As an alternative to flying, we can arrange rail travel from London

    Travelling from the UK

    Travelling from outside the UK

    If you are flying from outside Europe,  we recommend flying via Oslo. To discuss onward connecting travel to the start of your holiday, please contact us.

    Outward route Airline
    Aberdeen - Bergen SAS,  Wideroe 
    Aberdeen - Bergen (via Stavanger) SAS 
    Return route Airline
    Bodø - Aberdeen (via Bergen) Wideroe 
    Bodø - Aberdeen (via Oslo (Gardermoen) & Bergen) SAS 
    Bodø - Aberdeen (via Oslo (Gardermoen) & Stavanger) SAS 
    Bodø - Aberdeen (via Oslo (Gardermoen) ) SAS 
    Oslo (Gardermoen) - Aberdeen Loganair,  SAS 
    Oslo (Gardermoen) - Aberdeen, via Amsterdam KLM 
    Oslo (Gardermoen) - Aberdeen, via Bergen SAS 
    Oslo (Gardermoen) - Aberdeen, via Copenhagen SAS 
    Oslo (Gardermoen) - Aberdeen, via Stavanger SAS 
    Outward route Airline
    Birmingham - Bergen (via Amsterdam Schiphol) KLM 
    Birmingham - Bergen (via Copenhagen) SAS 
    Birmingham - Bergen (via Paris CDG) KLM 
    Return route Airline
    Bodø - Birmingham (via Oslo (Gardermoen) & Copenhagen) SAS 
    Oslo - Birmingham (via Copenhagen) SAS 
    Oslo (Gardermoen) - Birmingham (via Amsterdam Schiphol) KLM 
    Oslo (Gardermoen) - Birmingham (via Frankfurt) Lufthansa 
    Outward route Airline
    Bristol - Bergen (via Amsterdam Schiphol) KLM 
    Return route Airline
    Oslo (Gardermoen) - Bristol (via Amsterdam Schiphol) KLM 
    Outward route Airline
    Edinburgh - Bergen Loganair 
    Edinburgh - Bergen (via Amsterdam Schiphol) KLM 
    Edinburgh - Bergen (via CPH) Norwegian 
    Edinburgh - Bergen (via Oslo (Gardermoen) ) Norwegian 
    Return route Airline
    Bodø - Edinburgh (via Oslo (Gardermoen) & Stockholm) SAS 
    Bodø - Edinburgh (via Oslo (Gardermoen) ) Norwegian,  SAS 
    Oslo - Edinburgh (via Paris CDG) Air France 
    Oslo (Gardermoen) - Edinburgh Norwegian 
    Oslo (Gardermoen) - Edinburgh (via Amsterdam Schiphol) KLM 
    Oslo (Gardermoen) - Edinburgh (via Copenhagen) Norwegian 
    Outward route Airline
    Glasgow - Bergen Loganair 
    Outward route Airline
    Gatwick - Bergen Norwegian 
    Gatwick - Bergen (via Oslo (Gardermoen) ) Norwegian 
    Return route Airline
    Bodø - Gatwick (via Oslo (Gardermoen) ) Norwegian 
    Oslo (Gardermoen) - Gatwick Norwegian 
    Oslo (Gardermoen) - Gatwick (via Bergen) Norwegian 
    Outward route Airline
    Heathrow - Bergen, via Copenhagen SAS 
    Heathrow - Bergen, via Oslo (Gardermoen) SAS 
    Heathrow - Bergen, via Stavanger SAS 
    Return route Airline
    Bodø - Heathrow (via Bergen) Wideroe 
    Bodø - Heathrow (via Oslo (Gardermoen) ) SAS 
    Oslo (Gardermoen) - Heathrow British Airways,  SAS 
    Outward route Airline
    Luton - Bergen Wizz Air 
    Return route Airline
    Oslo (Gardermoen) - Luton Wizz Air 
    Outward route Airline
    Stansted - Bergen Wideroe 
    Return route Airline
    Oslo (Gardermoen) - Stansted Ryanair 
    Outward route Airline
    Manchester - Bergen SAS 
    Manchester - Bergen (via Amsterdam Schiphol) KLM 
    Manchester - Bergen (via Oslo (Gardermoen) SAS 
    Manchester - Bergen (via Oslo (Gardermoen) ) Norwegian 
    Manchester - Bergen (with touchdown in Inverness) Loganair 
    Manchester - Bergen, via Copenhagen SAS 
    Return route Airline
    Bodø - Manchester (via Oslo (Gardermoen) & Copenhagen) SAS 
    Bodø - Manchester (via Oslo (Gardermoen) & Heathrow) SAS 
    Bodø - Manchester (via Oslo (Gardermoen) ) SAS 
    Oslo - Manchester (via Paris CDG) Air France 
    Oslo - Manchester (via Stavanger) Norwegian 
    Oslo (Gardermoen) - Manchester Norwegian,  SAS 
    Oslo (Gardermoen) - Manchester (via Amsterdam Schiphol) KLM 
    Oslo (Gardermoen) - Manchester (via Bergen) SAS 
    Oslo (Gardermoen) - Manchester (via Brussels) Brussels Airlines 
    Oslo (Gardermoen) - Manchester (via Frankfurt) Lufthansa 
    Oslo (Gardermoen) - Manchester, via Copenhagen SAS 
    Oslo (Gardermoen) - Manchester, via Heathrow SAS 
    Oslo (Gardermoen) - Manchester, via Stockholm SAS 
    Outward route Airline
    Newcastle - Bergen Loganair 
    Newcastle - Bergen (via Amsterdam Schiphol) KLM 
    Return route Airline
    Newcastle - Oslo (via Stavanger) Loganair 
    Oslo - Newcastle Loganair 
    Oslo (Gardermoen) - Newcastle (via Amsterdam Schiphol) KLM 
    Travelling from outside the UK

    If you are flying from outside Europe,  we recommend flying via Oslo. To discuss onward connecting travel to the start of your holiday, please contact us.

    This list of flight options should be used as a guide only, and you should check each airline’s website for current routes, frequency and schedules. Not all flights operate daily, and may not run for the entire season. You should also heed the latest flight arrival time and earliest flight departure time, as it may not be possible to arrange connecting travel outside these times. Please do not book your flights until we have confirmed your accommodation to you. Alternatively, our expert reservations team will be happy to offer advice and to make flight bookings for you for any of the options listed above. We charge £35 per person for our flight booking service. Your flights are then covered by our package-booking conditions, which give you greater protection in the event of delay or cancellation, as well as providing ATOL cover.

  • Prices below are based on 2 people travelling together.

    Where a price range is given, the price you pay depends on your date of travel.

    Connecting travel options - flying via Bergen

    Outward route Price per person Latest flight
    arrival time
    own travel arrangements from airport to hotel pay locally flexible
    Homeward route
    not recommended in this direction

    Connecting travel options - flying via Bodø

    Outward route
    not recommended in this direction
    Homeward route Price per person Earliest flight
    departure time
    drive to Svolvær airport (0h10), domestic flight Svolvær to Bodø (0h25) contact us TBC

    Connecting travel options - flying via Oslo

    Outward route
    not recommended in this direction
    Homeward route Price per person Earliest flight
    departure time
    drive to Svolvær airport (0h10), domestic flight Svolvær to Oslo (2h20) contact us TBC

    Connecting travel options - flying via Svolvær

    Outward route
    not recommended in this direction
    Homeward route Price per person Earliest flight
    departure time
    drive to Svolvaer airport (0h10) n/a flexible
What is included
  • 16 nights
  • 8 dinners
    16 breakfasts
  • notes for city walking tours for Bergen & Oslo
  • detailed cultural information
  • boat/rail travel Bergen-Fjærland-Balestrand-Flåm-Oslo-Trondheim-Bodø
  • coastal steamer Bodø-Solvær
  • 3 days’ category B car hire (automatic) on Lofotens

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If you have any questions relating to this or any other Inntravel holiday, our friendly travel experts will be happy to help. You might also find our General FAQs section helpful.
  • The information that we send to you 2-3 weeks before your holiday includes practical information about each stage of your journey so that you can travel confidently from one hotel to another, recommendations for places to visit and eat out in each place, plus cultural information about the area. Where applicable, we also provide notes for a self-guided walking tour of most cities, and some large towns. Sample travel pack >
  • We can book a wide range of routes from the UK with a variety of airlines. As well as being more convenient for you to book all elements of your holiday together, it also means that we’ll accept liability for your travel arrangements, so if things go wrong, such as the airline going bust, we’ll make suitable alternative arrangements for you. The fee for this service is £35 per person (£15 for children aged 2-11). More information on flights >
  • We can’t book flights that originate outside the UK, but if you wanted to book your own flights to London (or elsewhere in the UK), we can make all onward travel arrangements (including flights) from there. Alternatively, if you are booking your own flights to an airport in continental Europe that’s appropriate for your holiday, we can book onward rail travel and/or taxis. More information about how we can tailor holidays for customers outside the UK >
  • Once you’ve decided on your exact itinerary (our travel experts will be happy to offer advice), you need to provide us with your party’s details, either by phone or via our booking form. At this point we also ask you to pay a deposit so that we can secure a room for you immediately on confirming availability with the hotel(s). If it turns out that we can’t secure the accommodation for the holiday you’ve requested, or offer an acceptable alternative, we’ll refund your deposit promptly and in full. After booking your accommodation and other key elements, we'll then book your travel (or you can do so if you’re making your own arrangements) and send you a Booking Confirmation and Invoice.

    More information about the booking process >
    Information about accommodation, general practicalities and more >
    Booking conditions >
  • Yes, it’s something we insist on, even for holidays in the UK. The vast majority of holidays go smoothly, but when things go wrong, it can be expensive to put them right. Buying a new pair of walking boots after your suitcase is stolen mightn’t seem so bad, but the bill for being airlifted down from a mountain with a broken leg or flown home while still recovering from an illness or accident can incur a five or six-figure bill.

    Many insurers offer travel insurance (you can find details on our insurance page of a policy that you may like to consider if you are a UK resident), but you do need to make sure that you’re covered for medical emergencies – including falling ill with Covid-19 while on holiday – and repatriation. We also recommend that you are covered for other eventualities, such as cancellation and loss of luggage and passports.

    When you purchase a policy, be sure to check that it covers the activities you'll be doing on holiday and that it is adequate for your own individual needs.
  • It is your responsibility to ensure you are in possession of the correct travel documents, with the correct validity. If you’re a UK citizen, you need a full British passport to travel to Norway, but not a visa (please note, however, that a new travel authorisation system is being introduced). If you are a citizen of another country, you’ll need to check requirements with the national embassy or your own consulate.

    Current information regarding vaccinations and travel health advice for UK citizens can be found through the Travel Health Pro website. You must make sure you have adequate insurance cover for illness, accidents and repatriation (see the insurance question). There is no need to apply for a Global Health Insurance Card (GHIC) as this (and still-current EHICs) is not valid in Norway. However, should you need medical help, you can show your UK passport at the medical facility and treatment will be provided on the same terms as for Norwegian nationals. It is important that, if you already have travel insurance in place, the terms do not exclude medical cover, especially for existing conditions, in the absence of an EHIC.
  • The most widely spoken language is Norwegian. The currency is the Kroner. Norwegian time is GMT/UTC + 1. It uses Daylight Saving Time, so in summer is on BST + 1.
  • For information on the practicalities of travel now that the UK is no longer part of the European Union, visit
  • The UK Foreign, Commonwealth & Development Office (FCDO) provides up-to-date, country-by-country travel advice, as well as information on security, local laws, passports and visas for UK citizens.

    If you live outside the UK, see our essential travel information page for a list of relevant websites.
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