This stunning adventure travels to the heart of the Sunnmøre region in northwestern Norway. Start in up-and-coming Oslo and check out this exciting capital before boarding a train that runs along the emerald-green Rauma River. From Åndalsnes, begin the ultimate road trip through mountains, fishing villages, and dramatic fjords with a slew of outdoor activities, not to mention 11 hairpin turns on the 'Troll's Ladder'.

Highlights

  • Walk or bike along Oslo's new waterfront path for modern architecture and cafés
  • Take a scenic train journey to northwest Norway passing through Lillehammer
  • Drive along the world-renowned Atlantic Road, packed with coastal views
  • Stay two nights each on a fishing island and fjord-side town with time to explore
  • Snap photos of the UNESCO-listed Geirangerfjord on your way back to Oslo

Brief Itinerary

Day Highlights Overnight
Day 1 Arrive in Oslo Oslo
Day 2 Train to Åndalsnes - Pick-Up Rental Car Åndalsnes
Day 3 Drive to Håholmen, via Kristiansund Håholmen
Day 4 Explore Håholmen Håholmen
Day 5 Drive from Håholmen to Øye, via the Hjørundfjord Øye
Day 6 Explore Øye & the Norangsfjord Øye
Day 7 Drive to Åndalsnes, via Trollstigen - Train to Oslo Oslo
Day 8 Depart Oslo  

Detailed Itinerary

Day 1: Arrive in Oslo

Akrobaten pedestrian bridge in downtown Oslo
Akrobaten pedestrian bridge in downtown Oslo

Welcome to Oslo! Norway's rapidly growing capital is still considered a small city, helped by the fact that it's surrounded by mountains and sea. Not only is the city center made for walking, but outlying neighborhoods—filled with charm and character—are easily accessible by public transportation, so jump on a tram, train, or bus and explore all of what Oslo has to offer.

Suggested activities include: 

  • Take a half-day and wander around Aker Brygge, an area on the Oslofjord made up of beautiful, modern buildings where you can find bars and abundant nightlife. It acts as a sort of courtyard for the city of Oslo and brings together both tourists and locals alike to enjoy the great food, atmosphere, and entertainment.
  • Spend the afternoon visiting the Viking Ship Museum and the Norwegian Open-Air Folk Museum by way of public transportation. Both museums are in the same area, so they pair well together! 
  • Walk along the Havnepromenaden (harbor promenade)—a new five-and-a-half-mile waterfront park, which combines sightseeing, history, art, architecture, and a little bit of adventure.
  • Visit the Vigeland Sculpture Park, where 200 larger than life sculptures are placed throughout this green lung in the middle of the city. 

For dinner, explore the city's historic core buzzing with restaurants and cafés that stay cozy in cold weather, with several options that offer outdoor seating during summer months.

Day 2: Train to Åndalsnes - Pick-Up Rental Car

Enjoy the train journey to Åndalsnes!
Enjoy the train journey to Åndalsnes

Today you'll take an epic train journey from Oslo towards the mountaineering base of Åndalsnes, a scenic town located in Romsdalen glacial valley. Along the route, you'll pass some of Norway's most dramatic landscapes including a beautiful river (Rauma), steep mountains, waterfalls, and famous bridges. 

The train journey starts with a 4-hour ride through Lillehammer to Dombås, where you'll switch to a 1-hour, 20 minute-ride from Dombås to Åndalsnes. In this particular section, the train conductor slows down to give passengers views at Kylling Bridge and Trollveggen, Europe’s highest perpendicular mountain wall. The beautiful emerald-green Rauma River follows the train route for much of your trip—you can watch it shift between gentle sections and fierce rapids.

Upon arrival in Åndalsnes, pick-up a rental car and take the rest of the day to explore the breathtaking surroundings at your own pace.

Day 3: Drive to Håholmen, via Kristiansund

Drive on the Atlantic Road to get to Kristiansund
Drive along the Atlantic Road to get to Kristiansund

This morning, you can enjoy a traditional Norwegian breakfast at your hotel before driving to Kristiansund. This road trip is truly unique as you have an option to drive along the famous Atlantic Road—a route that includes a ferry between Molde - Vestnes. The entire stretch of the Atlantic Road is one continuous experience packed with coastal scenery, culture and history. Keep your camera close for this once-in-a-lifetime driving experience!

Stretch your legs and grab a late lunch or snack when you get to Kristiansund. This is an interesting city consisting of four main islands, as well as a number of smaller ones. The colorful city has a rich cultural life and mainly made its living from the sea. Have a stroll around in the Bacalao Museum and the beautiful Grip Stave Church.

From here, continue the journey to an island nearby called Håholmen for a unique overnight experience. Upon arrival, walk around this 18th-century fishing village, which offers original wharves and traditional fishermen's shacks across 10 acres.

Day 4: Explore Håholmen

Learn more about the local salted codfish called bacalao
Learn more about the local salted codfish called bacalao

Today you have the entire day to choose between optional activities in and around the fishing island of Håholmen. A few suggestions include:

  • Pick from a number of kayaking, biking, hiking, fishing and golfing opportunities in the area. You can also take a boat trip to a fantastic archipelago consisting of 20 larger and smaller islands for some of these activities.

  • Sign up for a beer tasting and learn about the history of local beer while tasting dry salted codfish, an essential ingredient for making bacalao—the regional specialty!

  • Join a Sea Eagle Safari with a local guide and get up close to nature and rare bird species. 

  • If the seas are calm, tour the surrounding islets on a RIB (rigid-hulled inflatable boat).

Following your adventures, return to Håholmen and enjoy one more night on this charming and peaceful little island.

Day 5: Drive from Håholmen to Øye, via the Hjørundfjord

Fjord views on your way to Øye

After breakfast, it's time to hit the road again! Get ready for more glorious views as you make your way to the  Hjørundfjord and its peaceful countryside. This driving route (with a ferry crossing) takes 4 hours, which brings you to Øye. This stunning town is located on the Norangsfjord, an arm of the Hjørundfjord surrounded on all sides by the Sunnmørsalpene mountains.

In the afternoon, take your pick between a range of activities. You can either explore the area by car, fjord cruise, boat charter (express or high-speed boat), or simply on foot.

Later in the evening, savor panoramic views and the changing colors of the fjord at sunset with dinner and drinks in town.

Day 6: Explore Øye & the Norangsfjord

Jaw-dropping views of the Geirangerfjord
Jaw-dropping views of the nearby Geirangerfjord

After breakfast at your hotel, you'll have the entire day to explore the area. Øye is a paradise for outdoor lovers, but also for those who would like to relax and enjoy the wonderful surroundings!

The town is located in the middle of the world's most breathtaking scenery including Geirangerfjord, now on UNESCO's World Heritage List, Hjørundfjord, and the majestic Sunnmøre Alps. And during summer months, daylight hours in Øye last until midnight, giving you extra time to explore the beautiful mountains nearby.

In addition to a range of hiking trails, boat tours, and fjord cruises, you can also rent bikes and sign up for kayaking tours.

Day 7: Drive to Åndalsnes, via Trollstigen - Train to Oslo

Drive the Trollstigen and then stop at the viewing platform
 Stop at the viewing platform after driving Trollstigen

Make sure to enjoy a long and relaxing breakfast in Øye before you get ready for a day of stunning views. You'll first drive past the UNESCO-listed Geirangerfjord and onwards to get to the steep and narrow turns of the famous Trollstigen, or 'Troll's Ladder'. Be sure to stop at the viewpoint to appreciate the jagged climb and the long view of the valley below. There's also a café and gift shop for lunch and souvenirs. 

From here, continue the drive to Åndalsnes where you'll return your rental car. Then take the afternoon train back to Oslo for your last night of the trip. 

Day 8: Depart Oslo

Modern waterfront architecture in Oslo
Modern waterfront architecture in Oslo

It's time to say farewell to Norway! Enjoy your last few hours walking around Oslo's neighborhoods, relaxing in a café, or visiting local boutiques for one-of-a-kind souvenirs.

Map

Map of Oslo & the Sunnmøre Region - 8 Days
Map of Oslo & the Sunnmøre Region - 8 Days