While it is a bit of a trek to get to Balestrand from Oslo—which are 224 miles (362 km) apart—there are many different scenic routes that will allow you to enjoy the unique sites of Norway along the way.
Flying to Sogndal Municipality from Oslo and then renting a car or hiring a private transfer is going to be the fastest way to get to Balestrand. This route will also give you views of the mountain ranges and fjords you wouldn’t otherwise get from ground level. The option of driving directly before hopping onto a ferry is also a great option for anyone looking to do some exploring along the way.
The 5-day itinerary from Oslo to Bergen encompasses a ferry to Balestrand, along with an unforgettable fjordcruise to Fjærland and a ride on the Flåm Railway that's filled with incredible panorama views.
By Plane/Car or Private Transfer/Ferry
Duration: 2.5 hours
The flight is only a 55-minute jaunt over to Sogndal Municipality. It’s quick and feels like as soon as your plane takes off, it’s descending into your destination. It’s highly suggested that you get a window seat because if the day is clear, you will see some beautiful sites of Norway below.
After landing in Sogndal Municipality and grabbing your rental car or meeting with your driver, head out from the airport towards Balestrand. Following the Fv55 will also take you to the Hella-Dragsvik ferry. The entire drive on the Fv55 offers views of the Sognefjord, also known as the King of the Fjords, as it is the largest and deepest fjord in Norway. When on the ferry, enjoy floating on the Sognefjord, known for its stunning beauty. If it's a warmer day, step outside onto the deck to take incredible photos of the Sognefjord.
When you arrive on the other side, continue onto the Fv55 until you reach Balestrand. On the way to Balestrand, you’ll drive along the Esefjord. This arm of the Sognefjord will be hard for you to stop staring at due to its picturesque nature.
By Car or Private Transfer/Ferry
Duration: 6 hours
If you’re interested in winding through the mountains of Norway and seeing its smaller towns and villages, driving most of the way is the perfect travel choice for you. There are so many wonderful hidden gems in Norway and being able to stumble upon them along your drive is one of the perks of renting a car.
When you leave Oslo you'll take the E16, you’ll pass over a bridge that has a clear view of the Steinsfjorden on the right side and Tyrifjorden on the left. These views alone make the drive extremely worth it.
Just past Tolpinrud, you will take the Rv7. In Norway, this route is known as one of the most scenic routes to take. A great resting place to include is Hallingdalselva, which is a river in Norway that's often called 'The Great River.' You won't be able to miss this river on the right side of the highway and is a great place to grab some pictures.
The Rv52 highway includes a lot of winding roads, but they never lack in beauty. You'll also catch glimpses of Hemsila, a beautiful river that will be on your left-hand side. Be careful of the time of year you drive, as Norway is known for its blustery and snowy conditions, especially the further north you go.
The Rv5 will then take you to the ferry to cross the Sognefjord. Taking this route as well offers views of the Sognefjord, the King of the Fjords.
Keep in mind that this trek does include toll roads, so ensure you know how to pay your tolls by checking with your rental company. If you'd rather, you can hire a private transfer and you can focus on relaxing on the drive.
Duration: 1-2 Days
When taking the train and ferry to Balestrand from Oslo sometimes the timetable can be a little difficult to match up to get to your final destination. While it's not impossible to travel continuously, it's recommended to plan a night or two in Flåm to break up the travel and explore the wonderful village of Flåm.
Taking the train, is a great way for you to kick back and see the Nordic countryside you can't see from the road. At the start of your travels, you'll catch a train from Oslo to Myrdal. This train will pass by the unique Hallingskarvet National Park, so ensure that you're sitting on the right side of the cabin order to get the best view.
From Myrdal, you'll transfer onto the Flåm Railway, which has been described as one of the most mesmerizing and beautiful train rides in the world. Not only that, the Flåm Railway climbs the steepest train tracks in the world. You'll go from mountain ranges to sea level as you descend into Flåm.
After exploring Flåm, the passenger ferry from Flåm to Balestrand has two different sailing times, one leaving in the early morning and one in the afternoon. While on the ferry, you'll float down the Aurlandsfjord and see all of the beautiful little small towns built around the waterfront.
This way to travel might take a bit of time, but the amount of Norway you can cover and see makes this a great option to get to Balestrand.