Northwestern Norway is definitely not lacking in unique sights – if the Atlantic Road is any indication. The area is full of mountain peaks, jagged shores, picturesque little towns and endless opportunities for outdoor adventures. One of its highlights is the Innerdalen valley in Sunndal Municipality. To reach it, you have to leave your car at the parking lot at Nerdalen (about 10 kilometers on the north side of the road at Ålvundeid, between Kristiansund and Sunndal) and walk for an hour along the gravel road. But it’s well worth it.
Innerdalen has been called, “the most beautiful mountain valley in Norway,” and perhaps that’s no exaggeration. It is, after all, Norway’s oldest nature reserve, established in the ’60s. With no vehicles allowed in the area, there’s no traffic noise; just nature surrounding you. There is a towering mountain, a calm lake, hiking trails and rustic cottages. One of them in fact, Renndølsetra, doubles as a dairy farm – so prepare for the company of cows and sheep. Maria von Trapp will have nothing on you.
Once you reach Innerdalen, you may feel the urge to just stay there and chill forever. And while you can certainly do that up to a point (or at least enjoy waffles, coffee and fresh milk and yogurt at the cottage), it would be a pity not to roam the area a bit. You can start with the lake: rent a boat and a life-jacket from the cottage and row around the crystal clear waters of Innerdalsvatnet. You can go fishing, as there’s a lot of trout here, or just explore the scenery – it changes dramatically every few meters.
Speaking of dramatically, Innerdalstårnet should also be on your list. The mountain that has become famous to locals thanks to the Norwegian TV-series Blåfjell, towers at 1,452 meters above sea level and is the most prominent in the valley. There’s a network of marked paths that will take you there, but if you feel nervous about climbing it on your own, there are guided tours available. On your way up, you’ll notice several small rivers cascading down towards the valley. And once you get to the top, take a moment to look around you. It’s admittedly difficult to pick favorites in a country that has so many epic views, but you’ll soon see Innerdalen is undoubtedly one of the most beautiful places in Norway.