Norway’s mountains and fjords are really magical to me. I love the jagged peaks, the intricate waterways and the tiny villages tucked away in sheltered coves. On a sunny day, the water sparkles like a million diamonds.
On a cloudy day, the glowing window of a fisherman’s hut invites passersby to step in for tea and a long visit. Norwegians are masters of two worlds—rain and sun, mountain and water, darkness and light. For nearly two months during the summer, the Lofoten archipelago (above photo), situated at nearly 200 km above the Arctic Circle, lives in a world of perpetual daylight.
The sun never sets, but rather skips along the horizon like a tennis ball bouncing off a court. The winter is the complete opposite. A blanket of eternal darkness covers the land. It’s called the Polar Night, and it can do strange things to the mind. While December is the darkest month of the year, November is dark and rainy, potentially making it the worst month to visit. Unless you have your heart set on experiencing the Polar Night, we recommend avoiding a trip to visit Norway at this time of the year.
The days grow longer in February but the sun still hangs low in the sky. Days start to feel a more normal length in March and in April the land begins to thaw. You can still experience winter storms in April but the snow long sticks in the lower elevations.
The winter months can be tough for those visiting from out of town, if only because it can be hard to find anywhere open to get a cup of coffee! At it’s coldest the winter months can be around 14º Fahrenheit, but the windchill can make it feel much colder. If you are going to visit during this time of year be prepared for many warm layers and a shell for extra protection from the elements.
Norway is a landscape of extremes, but I think of it as a place of harmony and balance. Call it yin and yang if you will, the contrast energizes. It reminds us that we’re alive on a wondrous planet filled with mystery and awe.
Hiking Norway’s Mountains and Fjords
Viewed from such a perspective, it’s no surprise that our Norway hiking tour should be so different from other hikes that we have on offer. We head off into the backcountry using the undulating sun and a compass as our guide instead of well-marked trails. In lieu of alpine ski chalets for accommodation, we bed down in rorbuer (fisherman’s cottages). You are lulled to sleep by the sound of lapping waves and an occasional bell ringing from a fishing boat somewhere offshore.
Our guided hiking tour begins in Henningsvær, Lofoten. you’ll meet your guide and the rest of the tour group, dinner, and drinks.
It connects tiny villages on the islands of Moskenesøya, Nusfjord, and Sakrisøy. We will use visit secluded beaches, hike across remote mountain ridges, and explore tiny hamlets with vibrant, seaside wooden fishing cottages.
We’ll hike along the shore to see a beautiful lighthouse right below a 2,139-foot peak. Take in the sweeping vistas of Lofoten’s dramatic landscapes. Later in the day we’ll travel to Nusfjord, one of the most idyllic and authentic fishing villages in Lofoten. Tonight you’ll stay in a refurbished nineteenth-century seaside rorbuer cottages.
In Nusfjord We’ll do a day-hike to Nesland along an old fisherman’s path, connecting the villages. We have a picnic in Nesland before returning to Nusfjord.
We’ll transfer to Ytresand and hike a stunning mountain plateau before descending to a secluded beach. In the afternoon, we travel to the fishing village of Sakrisøy. Stay in an authentic, family-run rorbuer-hotel, Sakrisøy Rorbuer (fisher huts), located on the waterfront.
We will transfer by boat into Kjerkfjorden and hike to Horseidvika, another stunning beach on the north shore of the archipelago. Depending on the weather, we may continue onto a mountain saddle with expansive views across the fjords. Return to your rorbuer hotel in Sakrisøy.
After a short transfer to the village of Sorvågen, we will hike over three peaks to reach our lunch spot at Munkebu. Enjoy vast views of Lofoten and its many fjords and peaks, before returning to Sorvågen to settle into our cozy, waterfront rorbuers. Distance up to 10 miles.
Hike from sea level to Hellsegga at 1,949 feet. Hellsegga is the highest peak on the southwest end of Lofoten, and it will give us the chance to view the most southern islands of the Norwegian archipelago, Værøy, and Røstlandet.
You’ll witness the most revered landscapes in all of Norway. This tour crosses the summits of Kollfjellet, Merraflestinden and Munken, and also includes whale watching from the harbor in Reine, one of the most gorgeous seaside villages on the planet.
From misty mountains to island-studded inlets, Norway’s mountains and fjords will have you mesmerized, and I’m completely hooked.