2012 was a year of firsts. And bucket list items. And the biggest one of all? Finally going on a cruise in the Norway fjords.
This is, admittedly, most amazing thing I have ever done, bar none.
An early start at the Bergen train station to what seemingly was the middle of nowhere, and from where I would embark on the most incredible two hours of my entire life, despite the hordes of photo-aggressive Japanese tourists, and the amused looks from the Norwegian crew on board. But nothing could get to me – I was too enamored with my surroundings to care about anything else.
Understandably so, I think.
Photos Of The Norway Fjords
* Sorry about the horrible quality. I realised that my ISO was in the upper thousands once I left the boat. Rookie mistake, I know!
I barely spoke a word during the cruise, despite meeting fellow Canadians on board I could’ve chatted with all day. The beauty that surrounded me didn’t to be need enhanced by adjectives or superlatives. In fact, it didn’t any words at all. Just a good set of eyes, and in my case, a camera.
And also, good clothes. This is Norway, people – it’s strikingly beautiful, but it WILL freeze you to your bones.
What Exactly Is A Fjord Anyway?
Geologically speaking, a fjord is a space left by a glacier who, with time, moved away from a glacial valley. Since the glacier’s depth was often much lower than the sea-level, this sudden change in landscape gave way to sea waters to fill this inland space. The result? A long and narrow inlet, often characterized by steep cliffs and dozens of ramifications. Phew.
Or, in my own words, a fjord is a freakishly beautiful place that you MUST see at least once in your lifetime.
Norway Fjords: Good To Know
- Bring warm, waterproof clothes. Norwegians like to say that “There’s no bad weather, only bad clothing”. And in this climate, they couldn’t be more right.
- To get to the cruise, I took a train from Bergen to Voss, and then a bus to Gudvangen. It sounds complicated, but it’s really straightforward and well-indicated throughout. This round trip takes you to Norway’s two most beautiful fjords, the Geirangerfjord and the Nærøyfjord; both included on UNESCO’s World Heritage List. More info on Fjord Norway.
- Fjord cruises often end in Flam, where I suggest you spend a day, even though there isn’t much to do but marvel at the landscape. It’s worth it.
- Don’t stress about getting a good seat on the boat. People only sit down for the first 5 minutes, and then everybody runs from one side to the other, trying to get the best photo opportunity and thus leaving you ample choice in viewpoints.