The village of Flåm, 111 kilometers as the crow flies northeast of Bergen, can be reached by car, train, ferry or cruise ship. The cruise ships cover the longest way. You drive through the Sognefjord and the Aurlandsfjord. At the end of this fjord is Flåm. By the way: At 204 kilometers, the Sognefjord is Europe's longest and deepest fjord.
Flåm - cruise ships in the Aurlandsfjord
Flåm - idyllic village on the Aurlandsfjord
The origins of the village with a few hundred inhabitants go back to the 17th century. The proof: The church in the center of the village dates from 1667. For centuries, agriculture and alpine farming were practiced in Flåm. The location and the breathtaking nature have made the village, surrounded by high mountains, one of Norway's most popular travel destinations since the 19th century. Steep mountain walls, the Flamselvi River, abundant waterfalls and a fantastic railway line attract countless visitors every year.
Flåm - near Kjosfossen waterfall
Even a quay has been set up for easy disembarkation of visitors arriving by cruise ship. Next to the quay are the tourist information, the bank, the post office, a hotel, a bicycle rental, the railway museum and the train station.
The Flåmsbana - one of the most beautiful train routes in the world
Tourists visit Flåm not only for the beautiful scenery. Many visitors come to ride the Flåmsbana. The Flåmsbana is one of Norway's major tourist attractions, and the village is the starting point for the railway line. In 2013 alone, more than 700.000 people took the year-round train.
Flåm - in the center
Flåm - Flåmsbana Train
It runs on the world's steepest normal-gauge railway line. The exactly 20,2 kilometer long stage from Flåm to the terminus and railway junction Myrdal leads from 2 meters above sea level to 866 meters above zero. Myrdal is also a stop on the Oslo-Bergen Railway.
It took 20 years of construction to complete the route. Over 80 percent of the route, the trains manage gradients of up to 5,5 percent. During the journey you will pass 20 tunnels. One of the tunnels is designed as a turning tunnel. It leads in and out of the mountain in loops on several levels. The train travelers can enjoy breathtaking views down into the valley during the entire journey.
Flåmsbana - Galleries against falling rocks
When traveling up to Myrdal, the trains travel at a maximum speed of 40 km / h. For safety reasons it goes downhill at a maximum of 30 km / h. It's strange: the train takes less time to go uphill than it does to go downhill.
In 2020, a return ticket will cost 630 Norwegian kroner (60 euros) per person. In 2009 the fare was NOK 165. Despite the significant price increase, the train journey is money well spent. Cruise lines offer the excursion for a lot more money. The train journeys offered by the shipping companies end in Vatnahalsen, a station before Myrdal. In the Vatnahalsen Hotel, the ship's guests are given a drink and a waffle to "strengthen".
Kjosfossen waterfall stop - the natural phenomenon
At the Kjosfossen waterfall, four kilometers from Myrdal, the train makes a ten-minute photo stop. From a viewing platform, travelers marvel at the mighty waterfall. It is one of the most visited cataracts in Norway. The fall height is 93 meters.
Flåm - the Kjosfossen waterfall
Take the boat from Flåm to Gudvangen in the Nærøyfjord
A nearby popular tourist destination is Gudvangen. The place is at the end of the Nærøyfjord in the municipality of Aurland. The fjord landscape has been a UNESCO World Heritage Site since 2005. The arm of the water is considered to be one of the narrowest fjords in Europe. Smaller cruise ships head for Gudvangen. Under Gudvangen / Naerofjord we report on this place.
Update June 2020