The Most Breathtaking Fjords in Norway

Omaholmen is located in Hardangerfjord, the third-longest fjord in the world.
Omaholmen is located in Hardangerfjord, the third-longest fjord in the world. | © McPhoto/Nilsen / Alamy Stock Photo

Norway’s fjords were created thousands of years ago by retreating glaciers and the results are spectacular. With more than 1,000 fjords along Norway’s coastline you may need help prioritising which ones to visit. Here’s Culture Trip’s guide to the most scenic of the bunch.


This one’s a bit of an underdog. Hjørundfjord is surrounded by the towering mountain peaks of Sunnmørsalpene, which usually get most of the attention. The fjord itself deserves to be in the limelight, too; it’s surrounded by lush forests, with small, scenic villages dotting its 35-kilometre (22-mile) course.

Hjørundfjord is 35 kilometres long.


As is the case with most things in Svalbard, the Isfjord is pretty cool, both literally and figuratively (although thanks to the Gulf Stream, Isfjord actually remains ice-free for large parts of the year). It has a lot of different branches, as it cuts more than 100 kilometres (62 miles) into Spitsbergen island, and following it, you will come across bird sanctuaries, human settlements and even the world’s northernmost radio station.

Isfjord is located in the Svalbard archipelago.


It has been called ‘the King of the fjords’ because of its size: at 200 kilometres (124 miles), Sognefjord is Norway’s longest fjord and the second-longest in the world. The fjord’s inner end is covered by continental Europe’s biggest glacier, Jostedalsbreen. And two of Sognefjord’s smaller arms, Aurlandsfjord and Nærøyfjord, are just as interesting to visit as the main event.

Nærøyfjord is just as interesting to visit as its parent glacier, Sognefjord.


Trollfjord, in the municipality of Vågan, Lofoten, may be small, but it has a complicated history. Back in 1890, there was a battle between the fishermen who used the new, steam-driven boats and those who still used traditional open boats, over who would get control of the fjord. If you’re wondering why they couldn’t all just get along, the answer is simple: this fjord is so narrow, there’s not enough space for everyone.

Trollfjord is located in Vågan.


You probably already know about Trolltunga, the majestic cliff shaped like a troll’s tongue. But do you know about Hardangerfjord, the third-longest fjord in the world, which dominates the region? What about the Hardangervidda National Park, and the four waterfalls in the Husedalen valley? Or the legendary apples of the region? We thought not.

Hardangervidda is Northern Europe’s largest mountain plateau.


One of the arms of Sognefjord, Aurlandsfjord starts at the scenic little town of Flåm, where you can also take one of the most picturesque train trips in all of Europe. Train rides aside, Aurlandsfjord is also home to one of the beautiful vantage points in all of Norway: the Stegastein viewing platform.

Aurlandsfjord is one of the smaller arms of Sognefjord.


The second arm of Sognefjord is perhaps the most popular of them all. Nærøyfjord is so beautiful, it’s been declared a UNESCO World Heritage Site. At 17 kilometres (11 miles) long and only 250 metres (820 feet) wide, surrounded by snowcapped mountains with flowing waterfalls, Nærøyfjord is a sight you won’t soon forget.

Nærøyfjord is a designated UNESCO World Heritage Site.


It’s not just that Lysefjord is majestic, which it certainly is. Here, you can encounter some of the highest mountains in Norway’s fjords, with peaks rising to around 3,000 metres (9,843 feet). There are unique rock formations, like the Kjeragbolten, the Preikestolen and the Lyseboth, not to mention the world’s longest wooden stairway, which you can hike to get a bird’s-eye view of the area. All in all, Lysefjord doesn’t disappoint.

Preikestolen is a unique rock formation in Lysefjord.


What makes Geirangerfjord number one on our list? For starters, the Seven Sisters: seven waterfalls that fall from 250 metres (820 feet) high into the fjord. Then, there’s the Geiranger Skywalk in Dalsnibba and the Flydalsjuvet, both breathtaking viewpoints offering panoramic views of the fjord. And, of course, there’s the Ørnevegen, a steep stretch of road up in the mountains, where you can follow the fjord if you’re feeling brave – at some point, this ‘eagle road’ rises to 620 metres (2,034 feet) above sea level.

The Seven Sisters waterfalls drop from a height of 250 metres.

Culture Trips launched in 2011 with a simple yet passionate mission: to inspire people to go beyond their boundaries and experience what makes a place, its people and its culture special and meaningful. We are proud that, for more than a decade, millions like you have trusted our award-winning recommendations by people who deeply understand what makes places and communities so special.

Our immersive trips, led by Local Insiders, are once-in-a-lifetime experiences and an invitation to travel the world with like-minded explorers. Our Travel Experts are on hand to help you make perfect memories. All our Trips are suitable for both solo travelers, couples and friends who want to explore the world together.

All our travel guides are curated by the Culture Trip team working in tandem with local experts. From unique experiences to essential tips on how to make the most of your future travels, we’ve got you covered.

Culture Trip Summer Sale

Save up to $1,665 on our unique small-group trips! Limited spots.

Edit article