Geiranger and Trollstigen

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The day would turn out to be one of the most spectacular summer days of our Norwegian adventure. Clear skies and temperatures around the 30 degree mark. Not common for Norway, so we wanted to take full advantage of it.

From Stryn there are two ways of getting to Geiranger. You can drive to Hellesylt, and catch the ferry from there going through the fjord. Or you can drive up Strynefjellet and down Fv 63.

We chose the latter as I wanted to take the old road across Strynefjellet (Gamle Strynefjellsveg). It is part of the 18 National Scenic Routes in Norway, and one of my personal favourites in the area, so it was a must.

Strynefjell Valley

After passing Hjelle, where we stopped for some photos yesterday, the road starts to wind itself up the mountain. Just before the first tunnel is the exit to the old road. From there the road becomes a lot narrower and it’s important to look ahead and plan for oncoming traffic.

We made many stops on the way and probably took too many photos… But the weather was too nice not to enjoy the cool mountain air.

strynefjellet

After our breaks we finished up the old road, and joined the main road again. Heading towards Stryn, we got to Fv 63 quickly and started our descent from the mountain towards Geiranger.

Between you and me… I think Geiranger is hyped up a bit too much. Of course the scenery is spectacular, but it’s a victim of its own success. Tourists are everywhere and on a nice day you have to be lucky to find parking… not really our cup of tea. But it’s Geiranger, have to experience it once in your lifetime!

Geiranger

Right before you drive down through the town to the centre there is a lovely little lookout. Even with a couple buses parked there it’s spacious enough so you’re not stepping on peoples toes.

the throne

After arriving in Geiranger we drove to the main parking area and circled around, ready to pounce if something opened up. But it was just impossible to find a spot. So we were about to give up and try on the way back from Trollstigen… But we were getting hungry so we ended up parking in the ditch on the main road and walking back into town.

After our lunch we had a look at the souvenir shops and picked up some things to bring back to Japan. Then we got back in the car and started the drive up the other side towards “Ørnesvingen” (lit. trans. Eagle Corner).

ørnesvingen

Again, parking was a nightmare… I suggest bringing a big portion of patience of you want to enjoy the view from this lookout.

In the end it’s worth it though. And I think we got lucky that there were not any major cruise ships anchored up to spoil the view.

After Ørnesvingen we set our sights towards Trollstigen. It’s a road that winds its way up a steep cliff side. I had not been there since I went there as part of a school trip in primary school. So I was hoping it was still as impressive as I remember it.

Down the mountain we went, arriving at Eidsdal and catching the ferry to Linge ferry wharf. From there we drove through Valldalen towards a waterfall called Gudbrandsjuvet. It’s on the way to Trollstigen, so if you need a rest it’s a good place to stop. This stretch of road had a lot of strawberry stalls as well! Awesome!

Arriving at Trollstigen was kind of surreal… Last time I was there (20 odd years ago) the only thing I remember was a small parking space. But now there must have been room for at least 200 cars. And there was even a cafe! Daim Ice Cream, highly recommended!

trollstigen view
trollstigen

Trollstigen was the definite highlight of the day, we drove down and back up just to experience it. Captured a little time laps as well.

All in all this was an amazing day. Perfect weather, company and scenery. Couldn’t ask for more. Now it’s back to do the final preparations for the big road trip.

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