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Fjord trip, Helleslyt to Geiranger, stay on boat, or full-day land tour?


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Next July we're doing Regent's Splendor, which is a combined Fjord and Baltic 18-day cruise.

 

I've been to fjord country once myself, on land, but it was decades ago--I did manage to see Geiranger Fjord from land.

 

The first actual stop of the cruise is a brief one at Helleslyt, simply a technical stop to let passengers off to do an all-day overland tour that ends in Geiranger.  The ship then continues on to Geiranger, apparently doing 'scenic cruising' from 9am to 11am.  What I'm wondering is what that two-hour trip would be like, onboard the (smallish) ship?  We are not terribly mobile so are probably going to be doing mostly bus tours on land, but I'm wondering if that leg from Hellesylt to Geiranger would be particularly scenic, and therefore memorable.

 

There are then a variety of shorter excursions from Geiranger, we're there until 10pm.

 

Here's the description of the all-day land trip from Hellesylt--it's quite expensive, over $200, but it's all day, including lunch.  Many of the shorter excursions from Geiranger itself are free.  Thanks for any advice.  : 

 

"Spend a day immersed in the majesty of the Geirangerfjord landscape on this wide-ranging excursion that covers it all. You’ll encounter waterfalls, rivers, fjords, glaciers, villages, mountain summits and too many thrilling hairpin curves to count. For centuries, the primary mode of transport around this region was the stalwart fjord horse, but your modern journey will be via comfortable panoramic coach on a network of scenic roadways. Barely having left the pier, the first of the showstoppers appears: Hellesylt Waterfall. Soon you’ll be admiring farms tucked between towering peaks and deep glacial lakes like Hornindalsvatn. The salmon-rich River Stryn shimmers emerald green from the ice-melt of Jostedalen Glacier. The road up into the Stryn Mountains is an impressive feat of early engineering, built in 1895 for horse-drawn carts. A relaxed lunch is served at Hotel Alexandra, overlooking an idyllic Nordic setting. Your afternoon of travel reveals an ever-changing kaleidoscope of stunning natural landmarks, including Lake Djupvatn and the famously twisting road ascent to the summit of Mount Dalsnibba – where the jaw-dropping views of Geirangerfjord are second to none. The descent to Geiranger and your repositioned ship includes a stop for still more awe and photos at Flvdalsjuvet viewpoint."

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I did a cruise that included Geiranger in June 2019. I did not do a tour from Hellesylt so can not comment but I cruised from there to Geiranger. The cruising is very scenic and you cruise past a number of waterfalls including the Seven Sisters and Suitor waterfalls. However, when you leave Geiranger you sail back the same way, past the same waterfalls. As you will be cruising in July there may be enough light for you to see the scenery when you leave at 10pm, so you could check to see what time sunset will be when you are there. We did a bus tour which included Mt Dalsnibba where the view was spectacular and Lake Djupvatn which was still frozen in June and beautiful. The scenery in the area is simply breathtaking! 

 

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The sail between Hellesylt and Geiranger is splendid and not to be missed. If you do not want to stay up for the sail-out, I would skip the all-day excursion and choose the sail-in. There is some beautiful land around Geiranger, but the highlight really is the fjord. I’d personally plan to enjoy the sail-in and then opt for an excursion that will get you up to the hills for the higher vantage point (Dalsnibba or one of the other overlooks). The fjord is beautiful in a very different way from these higher perspectives.

 

I’ve cruised into Geiranger multiple times now, and I never get tired of it. I typically take photos from the upper decks where I can easily move from one side to the other. But I like to enjoy the sail-out from an aft hot tub leaning back and looking up at the towering fjord walls! It’s a beautiful way to relax after a full port day getting up into the hills!

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1 hour ago, kaisatsu said:

The sail between Hellesylt and Geiranger is splendid and not to be missed. If you do not want to stay up for the sail-out, I would skip the all-day excursion and choose the sail-in. There is some beautiful land around Geiranger, but the highlight really is the fjord. I’d personally plan to enjoy the sail-in and then opt for an excursion that will get you up to the hills for the higher vantage point (Dalsnibba or one of the other overlooks). The fjord is beautiful in a very different way from these higher perspectives.

 

I’ve cruised into Geiranger multiple times now, and I never get tired of it. I typically take photos from the upper decks where I can easily move from one side to the other. But I like to enjoy the sail-out from an aft hot tub leaning back and looking up at the towering fjord walls! It’s a beautiful way to relax after a full port day getting up into the hills!

Thank you so much, we will do so.  We're limited in our excursions because mobility is not great, so a couple of hours of scenic fjord cruising sounds perfect--hot tub also sounds like a great idea. 

 

There is a trip up to Dalsnibba that we can take from the ship: "Enjoy an excursion into Geirangerfjord’s spectacular mountain and waterfall landscape and visit the Norwegian Fjord Center, where the history of this distinctive UNESCO-listed region is illuminated. You’ll travel by coach into a setting of snowy mountains, cascading waterfalls and farms clinging precariously to steep hillsides. Pass through the wild Flydal valley, climbing a series of hairpin bends to Lake Djupvatn some 3,400 feet above sea level. Travel higher still on a mountain road pioneered in 1939, with the summit of Mount Dalsnibba as your breathtaking destination. Gazing down on a picture-book panorama far below, you may even see your ship – appearing like a miniature model afloat on Geirangerfjord’s waters. Stop to wonder at still more amazing scenery at Flydal Gorge and traverse a historic road that first threaded its way over 9 stone bridges back in the 1880s. At the sleek, glass-walled Norwegian Fjord Center, wander among fascinating exhibits themed around the nature, culture and history of this uniquely beautiful and challenging environment – and learn the stories of the people who have figured out how to live and farm here."

 

...or another one that looks intriguing: "Enjoy stunning scenery and get a glimpse of Norwegian rural life on this tour that travels inland to visit western Norway’s farm country. Tendering ashore, you’ll get a close-up look at tiny Geiranger village, then board your coach to begin ascending aptly-named “Eagle’s Road” – 11 thrilling hairpin bends with a stop en route to savor jaw-dropping views of the famous Seven Sisters waterfalls and your ship anchored far below. Reaching the road’s top, and series of high green valleys and snowy peaks leads to the village of Eidsdal on the Storfjord. Here, you’ll make your way to one of the rustic summer mountain farms that operate in the area: Herdalsetra. Until 1960, Herdalsetra and its 30 turf-roofed wooden houses sitting some 1500 feet above sea level were without a road connection in winter. Built on a safe spot away from the annual avalanches, the farm is home to 450 goats as well as cows, sheep and Norwegian ponies. During your guided tour, you’ll be introduced to the people who work here as well as sampling some of the goat cheeses produced on the farm. You might even make fast friends with one of the hoofed inhabitants."

 

What do you think?

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 Mt Dalsnibba where the view was spectacular

 

We did the same shorex to Mt Dalsnibba where the view was indeed spectacular as we were fortunate to have the most wonderful weather that day.  And it isn't only the views as the drive was also spectacular..

Edited by edinburgher
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