Northern Lights Tours

Grand Winter Tour of Norway - 16 days

Scandinavian Cruises, Start in Oslo

Start your winter tour of Norway in Oslo, travel on the Bergen- & Flåm Railway through the Norwegian winter scenery, enjoy a fjord cruise and embark on a 10-day cruise with Hurtigruten along the coast of Norway (Bergen–Kirkenes-Trondheim). Return to Oslo by train across the Dovre Mountain. This is an independent tour.

Tour details

This tour can commence in: Oslo

Day 01: Arrival in Oslo

  • Arrival in Oslo according to your own itinerary.
  • Recommended attractions:
    • Vigeland Sculpture Park
    • Viking Ship Museum
    • Oslo Opera House
    • Kon-tiki Museum
    • Munch Museum
  • Accommodation in Oslo.

Day 02: Travel with the Bergen- & Flåm Railway

  • Breakfast at the hotel.
  • Bergen Railway from Oslo to Myrdal.
  • Flåm Railway from Myrdal to Flåm.
  • Accommodation in Flåm.

Day 03: Fjord cruise; by bus & train to Bergen

  • Breakfast at the hotel.
  • Morning at leisure in Flåm.
  • 2-hour fjord cruise on the Nærøyfjord.
  • Bus from Gudvangen to Voss (Stalheimskleiva).
  • Bergen Railway from Voss to Bergen.
  • Accommodation in Bergen.

Day 04: Bergen – evening cruise departure

  • Breakfast at the hotel.
  • Day at leisure in Bergen.
  • Recommended attractions:
    • Bryggen Wharf
    • Fløibanen funicular
    • Edvard Grieg’s home Troldhaugen
    • The Fish and Flower market
    • Old Bergen Open Air Museum
  • Hurtigruten cruise departure:
    • Baggage delivery available from 13:00 hrs
    • Check-in commences at 15:00 hrs (latest 1 hour before departure)
    • Embarkation commences at 16:00 hrs
    • Evening buffet onboard from 18:00-21:30 hrs
    • Departure from Bergen at 22:30 hrs.
  • Shore excursions can be booked in advance (see add-ons).
  • Accommodation onboard Hurtigruten.

Day 05: Cruise to Ålesund – Norway’s only Art Nouveau city

  • Hurtigruten Cruise.
  • Attractions along the coast:
    • Stathavet, a stretch of open sea
    • Ålesund, the art nouveau town
    • The Romsdals Alps
    • Hustadvika, a stretch of open sea
  • Hurtigruten Cruise to Hjørundfjord = no time in Ålesund
    • Available from September 1 – October 31
  • Optional Shore Excursions:
    • Art Nouveau Tour of Ålesund (Sep 16-Apr 15)
    • Atlanterhavsparken & Mount Aksla (Sep 16-Apr 15)
  • Breakfast buffet & dinner onboard.
  • Accommodation onboard Hurtigruten.

Day 06: Cruise to Trondheim – Norway’s first capital

  • Hurtigruten Cruise.
  • Attractions along the coast:
    • Trondheim
    • Stokksundet
    • Kjeungskjæret, Norway’s most charming lighthouse
    • 6000 islands and skerries along this leg.
  • Optional Shore Excursions:
    • Trondheim with Nidaros Cathedral (Oct 3-Apr 16)
    • Trondheim city walk (all year)
  • Breakfast buffet & dinner onboard.
  • Accommodation onboard Hurtigruten.

Day 07: Cruise across the Arctic Circle to Lofoten Islands

  • Hurtigruten Cruise.
  • Attractions along the coast:
    • The Arctic Circle
    • Vestfjorden
    • Lofoten Wall (mountain chain)
    • Svolvær
    • Raftsundet (during the night)
  • Optional Shore Excursions:
    • Lofotr Viking Feast (all year)
  • Breakfast buffet & dinner onboard.
  • Accommodation onboard Hurtigruten.

Day 08: Cruise via Vesterålen Islands to Tromsø

  • Hurtigruten Cruise.
  • Attractions along the coast:
    • Gibostad, historic trading post
    • Tromsø, the Northern Lights city
  • Optional Shore Excursions:
    • Tromsø Sightseeing (all year)
    • Dog Sledding, Tromsø (Nov 1-Apr 30)
    • Polar History Walk, Tromsø (Oct 15-Apr 15)
    • Wilderness adventure camp, Finnsnes (Nov 1-Apr 15)
  • Breakfast buffet & dinner onboard.
  • Accommodation onboard Hurtigruten.

Day 09: Cruise to Honningsvåg/Optional North Cape Excursion

  • Hurtigruten Cruise.
  • Attractions along the coast:
    • The North Cape (only on shore excursion)
    • Fishing station
    • Sværholdtklubben, bird cliffs
    • Finnkjerka, mountain formation
  • Optional Shore Excursions:
    • The North Cape (all year)
    • Lapland Snowmobile Safari (Dec 15-Apr 30)
  • Breakfast buffet & dinner onboard.
  • Accommodation onboard Hurtigruten.

Day 10: Cruise arrival/departure in Kirkenes

  • Hurtigruten Cruise arrival in Kirkenes at 09:45 hrs.
  • Attractions along the coast:
    • Kirkenes, the turning point of the journey
  • Optional Shore Excursions:
    • The Russian Boarder (all year)
    • Barents Snowmobile Safari (Dec 15-May 5)
    • Kirkenes Snow Hotel (Dec 15-May 1)
    • Husky Adventure Kirkenes (Dec 15-May 1)
  • Departure from Kirkenes at 12:45 hrs
  • Attractions along the coast:
    • Vardø, Norway’s most easterly town.
    • Vardøhus Fortification
  • Optional Shore Excursions:
    • None
  • Breakfast buffet & dinner onboard.
  • Accommodation onboard Hurtigruten.

Day 11: Southbound cruise: Hammerfest - Tromsø

  • Hurtigruten Cruise.
  • Attractions along the coast:
    • Hammerfest
    • Tromsø by night
  • Optional Shore Excursions:
    • Arctic Energy Hammerfest (Nov 15-March 15)
    • Snowmobile trip in the polar night (Dec 15-May 10)
  • Breakfast buffet & dinner onboard.
  • Accommodation onboard Hurtigruten.

Day 12: Cruise via Harstad and Lofoten Islands

  • Hurtigruten Cruise.
  • Attractions along the coast:
    • Risøyrenna, narrow channel
    • Vesterålen and Raftsundet sound
    • Hurtigruten Museum in Stokmarknes
    • Lofoten Wall (mountain chain)
    • Vestfjorden
  • Optional Shore Excursions:
    • A Taste of Vesterålen (all year)
    • Lofotr Viking Feast (Oct 15-Apr 15)
  • Breakfast buffet & dinner onboard.
  • Accommodation onboard Hurtigruten.

Day 13: Cruise along the Helgeland Coast

  • Hurtigruten Cruise.
  • Attractions along the coast:
    • The Arctic Circle
    • The Helgeland coast during daytime
    • Torghatten, the mountain with a cave/hole
    • The Seven Sisters, mountain formation
    • The coastal museum in Nord-Trøndelag
  • Optional Shore Excursions:
    • None
  • Breakfast buffet & dinner onboard.
  • Accommodation onboard Hurtigruten.

Day 14: Cruise arrival in Trondheim

  • Breakfast buffet onboard.
  • Cruise arrival in Trondheim at 06:30 hrs
    • Morning at leisure onboard until dep. at 10:00 hrs.
  • Day at leisure in Trondheim.
  • Recommended attractions:
    • Nidaros Cathedral
    • Kristiansten Fortress
    • Trøndelag Open Air Museum
    • Ringve Museum
    • Bakklandet
  • Accommodation in Trondheim.

Day 15: Travel by train to Oslo

  • Breakfast at the hotel.
  • Dovre Railway from Trondheim to Oslo (7 hours).
  • Accommodation in Oslo.

Day 16: Departure from Oslo

  • Breakfast at the hotel.
  • Departure from Oslo according to your own itinerary.

Day 01: Arrival in Oslo

Arrival in Oslo according to your own itinerary. The Norwegian capital is beautifully situated at the head of the Oslo Fjord and surrounded by forested ridges. Oslo offers many well known sights such as the Vigeland Sculpture Park, the Viking Ship Museum, the Munch Museum and Oslo Opera House. With the hop-on/hop-off Oslo cruise you can easily go from the city of Oslo to Bygdøy peninsula where the Kon-tiki and Fram Polar Museum is located (please see add-ons for further details). Accommodation in Oslo.

Day 02: Travel with the Bergen- & Flåm Railway

Breakfast at the hotel. Departure from Oslo by train. The 5-hour train journey from Oslo to Myrdal is part of the Bergen Railway, classed as one of the finest train journeys in the world. The train journey will bring you across Hardangervidda Mountain Plateau, with Finse as the highest train station at 1222 meters above sea level. During wintertime the scenery is quite spectacular with its pure white snow, colourful skiers and perhaps even with clear blue sky. In Myrdal you will change to the Flåm Railway, connecting the Bergen Line to the Sognefjord. You will pass through wild and beautiful mountain scenery with waterfalls and steep mountain sides before reaching the fjord village of Flåm. Flåm is Norway's only fjord village with train connection. Accommodation in Flåm.

Day 03: Fjord cruise; by bus & train to Bergen

Breakfast at the hotel. Today you have the opportunity to experience the tranquility of the spectacular Norwegian fjord region outside the main tourist season. The morning is at your own leisure in Flåm before you will depart on a 2-hour fjord cruise on the Nærøyfjord to Gudvangen. The Nærøyfjord is the narrowest fjord channel in Europe, and has recently been added to UNESCO’s World Heritage List. During the winter the boat sometimes has to break its way through the ice; the cracking of the ice makes this an even more magical experience. From Gudvangen the journey continues by bus through Nærøyfjord Valley to Voss, where you will continue by train to Bergen. Bergen is Norway’s second largest city and the world’s only city surrounded by 7 mountains and 7 fjords. Accommodation in Bergen.

Day 04: Bergen – evening cruise departure

Breakfast at the hotel. This day is at your own leisure in Bergen. Take a stroll along Bryggen Wharf before heading to Mount Fløyen with Fløibanen funicular for a spectacular view of the city. Other sights of interest include Edvard Grieg's home Troldhaugen, the Fish and Flower market, Bergen Aquarium and Gamle Bergen (Old Bergen Open Air Museum). Your winter cruise with Hurtigruten begins in the late evening from Bergen, heading north along the western coastline of Norway to Kirkenes. During the cruise you will experience everyday life along the coast, and the mix of tourists, local travelers and transported goods make this a unique experience. Breakfast buffet, lunch buffet and 3-course dinner are included during the entire cruise. In addition you can choose between a wide selection of optional shore excursions (please see Add-ons for further information and prices). Accommodation onboard Hurtigruten.

Day 05: Cruise to Ålesund – Norway’s only Art Nouveau city

Breakfast onboard Hurtigruten. Today you have the choice between exploring the Art Nouveau city of Ålesund or to follow Hurtigruten on a cruise along the well known Hjørundfjord(the detour is possible from September 1 - October 31). Ålesund was completely destroyed by a devastating town fire in 1904, and rebuilt again in the Art Nouveau style, making it a truly unique town in Europe. The town centre reveals a lively urban scene with pleasant restaurants and cafés, and the picturesque Brosundet canal with its fishing boats. Sights of interest are the Atlantic Sea-Park, one of the largest aquariums in Northern Europe and the Sunnmøre Museum, an open air museum with an impressive boat collection and more than 50 old houses in beautiful surroundings (entrances not included). The beauty of the town can be appreciated from Mount Aksla, with a breathtaking view of the town. If you take the detour to the Hjørundfjord, you will cruise along the majestic Sunnmøre Alps with unpolished nature and steep rock walls. the Hjørundfjord is one of the most long-standing and stunning fjords in Norway. Evening departure from Ålesund. Accommodation onboard Hurtigruten.

Day 06: Cruise to Trondheim – Norway’s first capital

Today you will arrive in Trondheim, Norway’s third largest city. The city was founded by Viking King Olav Tryggvason in 997 BC, and occupies a special place in Norwegian culture and history. Trondheim was Norway’s first capital and continues to be the coronation city where Norway's Kings from Harald Hårfagre (10th century BC) to King Harald V (1991 -) have been crowned and blessed. During wintertime Hurtigruten will dock in Trondheim for six hours. We recommend a visit at the Nidaros Cathedral, built over the grave of St. Olav. Next to the cathedral you will find the Archbishop’s Palace, the oldest secular building in Scandinavia. In Trondheim you have the possibility to join an optional sightseeing tour. The winter cruise then continues along the Helgeland coastline.

Day 07: Cruise across the Arctic Circle to Lofoten Islands

In the morning you will cross the Arctic Circle, entering the Land of the Northern Light. In Bodø you will have 2,5 hours at leisure before the journey continues across the Vestfjord to the Lofoten Islands. Lofoten stretches like a wall of mountains to the southwest in the sea. The archipelago consists of mountains and peaks, wide open ocean, sheltered inlets, stretches of seashore and large virgin areas. For centuries, catching cod and drying them has been a way of life and Lofoten’s largest industry. Two of the most recognizable sights are therefore the fishermen’s cabins and the Stockfish which is cod that has been hung to dry on a wooden frame. This evening you have the opportunity to join a Viking Feast on the Lofoten Islands.

Day 08: Cruise via Vesterålen Islands to Tromsø

Your cruise will continue during the night and morning, passing Vesterålen Islands before arriving in Tromsø in the early afternoon. In Tromsø you will have four hours at leisure, or you can join one of the shore excursions; dog sledding or sightseeing in Tromsø. The arctic city of Tromsø is the world’s most northern university town and the largest city in the Nordic countries north of the Arctic Circle. The city lies between the sharp craggy peaks of the Lyngen Alps, and combines wild scenery with urban life. Due to Tromsø's location right in the middle of the planet’s Northern Light’s belt, the city offers the world’s best chances of spotting the Northern Lights. Sights of interest include the Polar Museum, Northern Light Planetarium and Tromsø Museum. Your Norwegian coastal cruise continues in the evening from Tromsø.

Day 09: Cruise to Honningsvåg/Optional North Cape Excursion

This morning you will spend at sea before arriving in Honningsvåg around noon, where you have 3 hours at leisure. Excursion possibility to the North Cape Plateau where you can admire the panoramic view of the open wide expanse of the Arctic Ocean. Entrance to the North Cape Hall with viewing platform, souvenir shops, cinema, cafeteria and restaurant, is included in the excursion. The cruise continues in the afternoon towards Kirkenes.

Day 10: Cruise arrival/departure in Kirkenes

While you sleep, the ship continues sailing east along the Varanger peninsula, past Båtsfjord and Vardø. At breakfast time, you will pass by Vadsø, the administrative centre of Finnmark. It was from here that the Arctic explorers Roald Amundsen and Lincoln Ellsworth began their flights over the North Pole in the airship, Norge. At 10 am you will arrive in Kirkenes, the last stop on the northbound journey with Hurtigruten. The town lies between two time lines, Helsinki and Moscow. Here you have the opportunity to choose between several shore excursions. Departure from Kirkenes for the southbound journey around noon.

Day 11: Southbound cruise: Hammerfest - Tromsø

Cruise arrival in Hammerfest, the first town in Norway to have electric street lighting. As early as 1891, residents could enjoy fully lit streets during the winter darkness. The journey continues south-west towards Tromsø, where you arrive late in the evening.

Day 12: Cruise via Harstad and Lofoten Islands

Morning arrival in Harstad, where you can join the optional shore excursion, A Taste of Vesterålen, where you will discover Viking history, breathtaking scenery and wonderful sights. While you are on the excursion Hurtigruten cruises along Vesterålen Islands to Lofoten Islands. When choosing the excursion, you will be brought to Sortland by bus, where you will rejoin Hurtigruten. Before arriving in Svolvær you can join a 2-hour sea eagle safari, where you may observe up to five or six majestic birds within an hour. Arrival in Svolvær before dinnertime. Svolvær, the undisputed capital of the Lofoten Islands, is easily identified by the towering Svolværgeita Mountain. Spend the hour-long stop exploring the quays. Our last stop for the day is Stamsund, a fishing station built into the rock, almost in defiance of nature. It is now one of the largest fishing stations in Lofoten.

Day 13: Cruise along the Helgeland Coast

Cruise along the Helgeland coastline. Numerous legends and stories are associated with this coastline. One such story is about the Seven Sisters and Torghatten Mountain and how they came to be such unusual shapes. A myth about the beautiful sisters tells of how they ran away from their father, Suliskongen, and danced naked in the waters of the fjord. Unfortunately, the sisters forgot that when the sun rose they would all be turned into stone. Now they stand there, all in a row, as captivating and lovely as ever before. You spend the day at sea and can enjoy the spectacular views of this cruise in one of the cafés, restaurants or panorama lounges. To get the real winter feeling you should put on your winter clothes and go outside to the sundeck. From there you can admire the wildlife of the Norwegian coast.

Day 14: Cruise arrival in Trondheim

Early morning arrival in Trondheim. The day is at your own leisure. We recommend a stroll in Bakklandet, located on the east bank of the river Nid. Here you will find old wooden buildings which were formerly worker’s dwellings but are now partly restored as homes or charming shops and restaurants. Accommodation in Trondheim.

Day 15: Travel by train to Oslo

Breakfast at the hotel. Morning departure by train from Trondheim to Oslo. During the 7-hour train ride you will travel on the Dovre Railway, which brings you across the Dovre Mountain and through the Gudbrandsdal Valley to Oslo. Accommodation in Oslo.

Day 16: Departure from Oslo

Breakfast at the hotel. Departure from Oslo according to your own itinerary.

Grand Winter Tour of Norway

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