If you have a travel wishlist, the fjords of Norway are most likely on it. This Scandinavian country is one of the most beautiful, but also, one of the most expensive places to visit in Europe.
However, believe it or not, there is a way to see and experience the fjords of Norway without going bankrupt. The tips below will help you save some money and fully enjoy the trip at the same time!
How To Explore The Fjords Of Norway On A Budget
The first step is actually getting there and getting around. There are many different ways to cut the prices of your transportation. Let’s talk about air travel first.
If you plan on traveling through the rest of Norway as well, not only the fjords, consider buying the Explore Norway Ticket.
This gives you the opportunity to fly as much as you want inside Norway for a period of 2 weeks. You can use the Ticket in July and August, which happens to be a great time to see the fjords. For more information on prices and dates, visit the Widerøe official website.
Train travel is very popular among tourists. Not only because it’s not as expensive, but also because many routes take you through the most picturesque parts of Norway, fjord areas included. Make sure you plan ahead, so you can score some extra discounts.
For example, every month, at off-peak times, you can buy Minipris (“mini-price”) tickets. They will take you from Oslo to any Norwegian city for 30-40 euros. Therefore, you can go to Bergen, which is rightfully called the “gateway to the fjords”, without spending a fortune.
Wherever you choose to travel, food is always a large expense. When it comes to Norway, it can even consume the biggest part of your budget if you’re not careful with where you spend your money.
It’s extremely expensive to eat in Norwegian restaurants, so if you’re trying to save up, avoid them completely. Our recommendation is buying groceries in local supermarkets and cooking your own food since this will make a huge difference. Some of the low price stores are REMA 1000, Kiwi and Rimi.
The good news is that tap water is good to drink all around Norway, so buying bottled water won’t be a problem. However, if you buy anything in a plastic bottle, remember you can return the bottle and get some money back! Little by little, you’ll end up saving some much-needed cash.
See The Fjords From Your Feet
If you’re an active person, the fjord regions are a perfect opportunity for a hiking holiday! Instead of spending hundreds and even thousands of euros on boat tours, choose this much cheaper approach.
Wherever you turn, you’ll see photo-worthy views and you’ll be able to admire the fjords from a different standpoint. Even if you’re not the fittest or if you’re traveling with children, you can enjoy some of the more gentle trails.
Find your perfect hiking trail here.
We recommend Mount Skåla, Norway’s highest mountain with its foot in the fjord, for more experienced hikers. Even though it’s very difficult, it would be a shame to miss it. You’ll know why when you see the stunning fjord and glacier landscapes everywhere around you. A fun fact is that the tower built here was once a sanatorium, which shows how therapeutic these views can be.
Other than that, consider visiting Nærøyfjord (a UNESCO World Heritage Site, as well as the narrowest fjord in the world) or Trolltunga, which you might recognize from photos you’ve seen online.
Depending on what you’re into, there are a couple different options when it comes to accommodation. The biggest advice is same as everywhere else – avoid large hotels and try to book in advance.
If you like or don’t mind camping, Norway is perfect for it. There’s something called “freedom to roam” or “allemannsretten”, which means you can put up a tent anywhere in the countryside or mountains, as long as you keep at least 150 meters away from the nearest inhabited house.
This means that as long as you have a tent and necessary camping gear, you won’t have to look for campsites, you can sleep anywhere in nature for free!
Also, there are over 500 lodges and cabins along the trails all over the country. They are the property of the Norwegian Trekking Association. If you’re a member of the Association, you’ll get a discount, but you can use them even if you’re not.
You can choose between self-service cabins, no-service cabins, and staffed lodges. You’ll have everything you need in all of them (firewood, gas, duvets, pillows), but there are certain differences such as the possibility of serving meals in staffed lodges. You can find the necessary information about the cabins on their website. Booking.com is another good place to take a look at accommodation options.
Couchsurfing is another option. You might meet some friendly locals who will give you even more tips on how to spend less and see more. And who’s more trustworthy than a local?
Don’t forget to check these 9 quintessential Norway experiences as well!