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Norway in summer: Fjords or Lofoten? Or Fjords near Lofoten?

Norway in summer: Fjords or Lofoten? Or Fjords near Lofoten?

Nov 7th, 2019, 11:32 AM
  #1  
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Norway in summer: Fjords or Lofoten? Or Fjords near Lofoten?

Starting a new thread as originally I thought my husband and I would visit both the Fjords and Lofoten islands not realizing the distance between and time needed.
Now we're thinking we should narrow to one or the other. We're flying into Oslo in July and then considering if we should go to see the Fjords or take a jumper flight up to the Lofoten area (and possibly see the Fjords up there while visiting the islands). My questions are:
1) Fjords or Lofoten if have never been to Norway?
2) If Fjords, which area should we see? Which offer the most dramatic scenery?
3) If we do the Lofoten area (fly into Bodo), can we get a real feel of the Fjords by visiting them up there (i.e. Trollfjord) or should we just focus on the islands?

Many thanks in advance.
JES28 is offline  
Nov 7th, 2019, 11:51 AM
  #2  
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Also, can anyone tell me where this stock photo was taken? It's linked to many different places when I do a google search.
Norway in summer: Fjords or Lofoten? Or Fjords near Lofoten?-fs8voiz.jpg
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Nov 7th, 2019, 04:12 PM
  #3  
 
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This is Reine in the Lofoten.

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Reine
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Nov 7th, 2019, 05:13 PM
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Thank you!
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Nov 7th, 2019, 10:19 PM
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Itís a 3 hour ferry journey from BodÝ to Reine and that leaves you in one of the most beautiful places in the world nut it is isolated.

Consider taking a connecting flight from BodÝ to a Leknes, hire a car there and the rent a house in this area. Youíre the central for all of The Lofotens. The area isnít the secret it was and it does get busy in summer. If you want the same scenery without the people look at Senja further north.

Do you hike?
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Nov 8th, 2019, 06:52 AM
  #6  
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Thanks BC, we're not big hikers - we're fit and don't mind a hike to see something spectacular but we're not the type to hike or trek all day. We prefer to drive to spots and take shorter hikes or walks from there.
Do you recommend Lofoten to the Fjords?
Senja looks spectacular! I wish I had a month to see more!
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Nov 8th, 2019, 08:23 AM
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If you have at least 10 days in Norway I see no reason why could you not see a bit of both regions and you don't have to fly between them.

Taking the coastal ferry(Hurtigruten) or a train on the Nordland railway will be much more memorable experiences where the journey itself is the experience, it's not wasted time.

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Hurtigruten

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Nordland_Line

https://rail.cc/en/blog/bodo-trondheim-train
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Nov 8th, 2019, 09:58 AM
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Totally agree with BDKR travelling
in Norway is a spectacle.

I havenít used the train system but by the coast Hurtigruten is a great experience. However, the ships are slow and have a VERY odd schedules. The ships plough up and down the coast and act as part delivery ship, part posh(ish) cruise ship. The problem being is that they can arrive and leave the port you need at 3am.

There is a local fast ferry between The Lofogens and further north.

2_070119.pdf

Iím not sure where you are flying in from but last February we had the following scheduled and booked.

Manchester UK to Oslo (one night there)
Early morning flight to Leknes with a change in BodÝ, then rent cottage 15 miles away from Leknes on the coast, there are some stunnning places on AirBnB. We were to stay there for 5 nights then a drive to Harstad, take the Tromso fast ferry to Finnsnes and tour Senja for 3 nights then take the ferry up to Tromso and fly back home via Oslo.

This was all ruined by Norwegian Air who cancelled our flights a month before departure. Weíve been to the area 3 times before, so we just went to the Bavarian Alps as an alternative.

Iíve given up on Norwegian, they have cash flow issues and seem to have frequent schedule disruptions. SAS are a far better option, also look at Wideroe Air who offer short hops. Skyscanner is quite useful with routings.

i just asked about hiking because there are some shockingly beautiful routes which are mainly below 3000ft.

This area is IMO one of the most stunning in world but also hasnít been swamped by tourism. For me, Phang Nga Bay in Thailand has to be the most stunning place but it is anything but undiscovered.
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Nov 8th, 2019, 10:08 AM
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Iím sure that if you dig around you will find the schedules for the complex ferry routes which run in summer. Our routes were curtailed as the routes close down in winter. As Iím sure that you have appreciated, the Norwegian coast is very convoluted and without the option of the summer ferry network you can end up having to drive 100s of miles by road.

Incidently, north of Harstad Andenes, itís a long drive but it is the closest port to the drop off of the continental shelf in the Artic Ocean. At this point, sea life is abundant and you can take shortish trips by boats to see Blue Whales.

Global warming has messed up the Orcaís migration, in just 5 years they have had to move 300 miles up the coast north of Tromso to find herring. As such, I donít think that they now frequent the Lofotens.

Do you want to rent a house ?

if so whatís your budget ?

I only post this, as Iíve spent 3 years poking round for the most stunning rentals.

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Nov 8th, 2019, 10:48 AM
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"However, the ships are slow and have a VERY odd schedules. The ships plough up and down the coast and act as part delivery ship, part posh(ish) cruise ship. The problem being is that they can arrive and leave the port you need at 3am."

The summer schedule is very convenient for a voyage from the western Fjords to the Lofoten.

Aalesund departure 19:30
Bodo arrival +1day 12:40

2 nights on the ship

https://www.hurtigruten.no/praktisk-...?season=Summer
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Nov 8th, 2019, 11:56 AM
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Yes, but there is always a long stop in BodÝ which is never anyoneís final destination.

The boat arrives in Svolvaer at 22:00 which during summer will be daylight but youíll probably not be moving from there that night which is a day lost on a 10 day trip. BodÝ to Svolvaer isnít much to write home about. Probably the most boring stretch of the whole coastal route.

As a a personal choice Iíd skip the Southern Fjords and head for the Lofotens.
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Nov 8th, 2019, 02:54 PM
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Yes, but you can debark at Bodo at 1pm and take a local ferry to Moskenes.
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Nov 8th, 2019, 10:04 PM
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Originally Posted by JES28 View Post
Starting a new thread as originally I thought my husband and I would visit both the Fjords and Lofoten islands not realizing the distance between and time needed.
Now we're thinking we should narrow to one or the other. We're flying into Oslo in July and then considering if we should go to see the Fjords or take a jumper flight up to the Lofoten area (and possibly see the Fjords up there while visiting the islands). My questions are:
1) Fjords or Lofoten if have never been to Norway?
2) If Fjords, which area should we see? Which offer the most dramatic scenery?
3) If we do the Lofoten area (fly into Bodo), can we get a real feel of the Fjords by visiting them up there (i.e. Trollfjord) or should we just focus on the islands?

Many thanks in advance.
Lofoten.
menachem is offline  
Nov 9th, 2019, 12:29 PM
  #14  
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Thanks BDKR, I'd love to see both and love traveling by boat/train but was worried about spending the time traveling rather than having enough time in our destinations.
I didn't realize the flights could be an issue with a lot of cancellations.
Do you know if the 2 night boat trip just goes along the coast or if it includes some of the Fjords?
Also, I'm not sure how to read the arrival/departures. So I would take the boat from Alesun and not Bergen? And if so is the departure time listed is from Alesun and the arrival time when it gets into Bodo? Sorry if I'm being thick here but I don't see where to/from.

BC, I would definitely consider a small house rental. As for budget we tend to like higher end places while being somewhat budget conscious. We will splurge for something special. I'd love any recommendations if you're willing to share
I'd also love to see the whales! I'll check it out, but it may not be the right season? I wish we would be able to see the Auroras too but it's either the midnight sun or..and this is when we can go.

It sounds like the consensus is Lofoten, can I ask why Lofoten over Fjords if we had to choose just one? Are the Fjords up near Lofoten worthwhile or is the time better spent exploring the islands?

Thanks so much for the great input!
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Nov 9th, 2019, 03:14 PM
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Unless I missed something you're still keeping the length of your trip a secret. If you have a week or less I'd stick to Oslo and the western fjords, the Norway in a Nutshell package or something less touristy if you have more than 2-3 days.

"love traveling by boat/train but was worried about spending the time traveling rather than having enough time in our destinations."

Well, Norway is your destination and you will still be in Norway on the ferry or the train and you get to see some amazing landscapes. OK, I'm not suggesting to spend 2 days travelling for only 2 days at your destinations. The question is still unanswered: How long is your trip?

The Hurtigruten ferries sail among the coastal islands, through open seas and some fjords as well. It's sort of like the Inside Passage of the Alaskan Marine Highway, but the largest, most spectacular fjords are in the west of Norway and they deserve as much time as you can afford. As you can see from the schedule the Hurtigruten ships sail into the Geiranger Fjord on the way from Bergen to Alesund.

I linked the Norwegian language site and I thought the schedule is clear without speaking Norwegian, but you could of course easily switch the site to English: https://global.hurtigruten.com/pract.../sailing-plan/
If reading a simple schedule like this is causing you difficulties, you may be better off letting a travel agency organise the trip for you.

" BC, I would definitely consider a small house rental."

Good idea, you can rent local fisherman's houses called rorbu. https://www.classicnorway.com/hotels...-rorbu-cabins/

"I'd also love to see the whales! I'll check it out, but it may not be the right season?

I think you have a good chance to see whales and you will certainly see lots of birds.
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Nov 9th, 2019, 11:31 PM
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Originally Posted by JES28 View Post
Thanks BDKR, I'd love to see both and love traveling by boat/train but was worried about spending the time traveling rather than having enough time in our destinations.
I didn't realize the flights could be an issue with a lot of cancellations.
Do you know if the 2 night boat trip just goes along the coast or if it includes some of the Fjords?
Also, I'm not sure how to read the arrival/departures. So I would take the boat from Alesun and not Bergen? And if so is the departure time listed is from Alesun and the arrival time when it gets into Bodo? Sorry if I'm being thick here but I don't see where to/from.

BC, I would definitely consider a small house rental. As for budget we tend to like higher end places while being somewhat budget conscious. We will splurge for something special. I'd love any recommendations if you're willing to share
I'd also love to see the whales! I'll check it out, but it may not be the right season? I wish we would be able to see the Auroras too but it's either the midnight sun or..and this is when we can go.

It sounds like the consensus is Lofoten, can I ask why Lofoten over Fjords if we had to choose just one? Are the Fjords up near Lofoten worthwhile or is the time better spent exploring the islands?

Thanks so much for the great input!
Lofoten over Fjords and I've seen both. And yes, Fjords like Geirangerfjord are overwhelmingly beautiful. Then I went to Lofoten and was just stunned. By the light, a kind of liquid luminosity that is almost physically present. Also the landscapes, the remoteness of it and island culture. Also, Lofoten is under pressure as Norway's oil and liquid gas industry is expanding, so see the area before it will have changed irrevocably.
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Nov 10th, 2019, 04:03 PM
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BDKR,
LOL, my trip length certainly isn't a secret...all you need to do ask We have a one way ticket to Oslo at the moment and were thinking 7 days but could push it to 10 if we need to. If the ferry trip is spectacular and a "do not miss" experience we would consider if we need to add days for it vs possibly taking a day cruise in the Fjords and then flying up to Lofoten. Or skipping the Fjords all together (bc it takes to long to get to the departure point).
In terms of the ferry schedule, I did change it to English but either way it appears there's info missing that is normally on schedules. For instance for Bergen it says Arrival: 14:30 Departure: 21:30. I'm guessing it doesn't mean arrives at the port at 14:30 and sits there for 7 hours until it departs. When I look at the next port to see if maybe there is synergy the times don't seem to coordinate.
For every schedule I've ever used usually it says the departure from one port and an arrival time in the next port. (For example, this one: https://www.vallejobayferry.com/vallejo-ferry-schedule/vallejo-san-francisco-ferry-fleetweek-schedule-2014/)
I've spent over 30 years planning my own trips and have not had issue so I was hoping someone would be kind enough to explain how this one schedule works. If not, sure I can call a travel agent to see if they can tell me.

Menachem, thank you for explaining your thoughts on Lofoten and why over the Fjords. I think we're leaning toward Lofoten. Have you been to the Fjords in that area?
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Nov 10th, 2019, 04:58 PM
  #18  
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Also BDKR, thank you for the link for the Rorbu cabins, they look fantastic.
One more question for anyone who has been to Lofoten in the summer - there appear to be some beautiful beaches; however in looking at average water & air temps in July it seems too cold to swim. Can anyone comment on this?
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Nov 10th, 2019, 06:37 PM
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"there appear to be some beautiful beaches; however in looking at average water & air temps in July it seems too cold to swim. Can anyone comment on this?"

You can swim if you want, not only in summer. It may help if you have Nordic genes.


"For instance for Bergen it says Arrival: 14:30 Departure: 21:30. I'm guessing it doesn't mean arrives at the port at 14:30 and sits there for 7 hours until it departs."

Yes, it stays there for 7 hours. Bergen is the home port of the ships and that's where they turn around.

First column port of call, 2nd column arrival to that port, 3rd column departure from that port

As you can see the interval is only 10 minutes at smaller ports, but can be much longer at larger ports(3 hours in Trondheim for example).
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Nov 10th, 2019, 06:48 PM
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If you have 10 days you may do:

Oslo - Myrdal - Flam by train, Flam - Gudvangen by ferry, Gudvangen - Voss by bus, Voss - Bergen by train. This trip is marketed as Norway in a Nutshell by travel agencies who sell it as a package.

https://www.norwaynutshell.com/original-tour/

Hurtigruten ferry from Bergen to Trondheim(2 nights) via the Geirangerfjord.

Trondheim - Bodo by train, ferry to Lofoten.

Last edited by BDKR; Nov 10th, 2019 at 06:50 PM.
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