Nestled in the inland mountains of Norway is the charming village of Flåm. The town is world-renowned for its breathtaking setting, but also as the starting point of the Flåm Railway, a 12-mile train journey that takes travelers into the stunning Norwegian wilderness, past mountains, rivers, waterfalls and farms that embody the beauty of the country. It’s an ideal destination for travelers who love quaint countryside and awe-inspiring natural wonders.
Flåm Sights and Landmarks
Flåm is famed for its historic railway, Flåmsbana, which offers a 12-mile train ride through some of Norway’s most magnificent scenery in approximately two hours. The rails of Flåm Railway pass cascading waterfalls, deep ravines, lush greenery and splendid snowcapped mountains. Traveling from sea level in Flåm to the mountaintop station at Myrdal, the Flåm Railway is one Norway’s most picturesque train rides.
The fjords of Norway are some of the most serene and awe-inspiring natural sights in the world. From Flåm, you can explore the Aurlandsfjord and Naerøyfjord, spectacular branches of the Sognefjord that provide a glimpse of rich wildlife and pristine nature. The Naerøyfjord was recently recognized as a UNESCO World Heritage Site.
A local favorite, the Brekkefossen waterfall is just outside the city center. It is visible from the Flåm Railway, but also accessible by foot via a beautiful 30-minute hike. Hikers are rewarded with views of Flåm and the magnificent Sognefjord.
A lesser-known train called the Rallartoget, or “Troll Train,” is another favorite. This fairy-tale train escorts travelers past the sights of Flåm’s countryside. A roundtrip ride takes about 45 minutes and runs past the river, the waterfall, the fjord and the old church, and through the quaint village, all with an informative narration.
Otternes Farm rests in the hills among splendid mountains. This museum comprises 27 buildings preserved from the 18th century. Here, you can take in spectacular fjord views and learn about old rural handicraft techniques and traditional food preparation. Shops offer some tastings of freshly prepared jam, flatbread, juices, cheeses and more.
Flåm Entertainment and Activities
The mountains around Flåm hold an inviting array of villages and farms that open their doors to travelers. The tiny village of Aurland is a favored spot for walkers, thanks to its path along the Aurland River, a breeding ground for salmon and a fantastic fishing site. In Gudvangen, which lies at the head of the UNESCO World Heritage Site of Naerøyfjord, hikers can ascend the slopes of the valley to admire the Tvindefossen waterfall.
In the tiny village of Undredal, goats outnumber humans five to one. Once only accessible by boat, Undredal was joined to the national road network in the late 20th century. This mountain hamlet is home to cheese producers who are eager to share their craft.
In the lovely Aurlandsdalen Valley, Østerbø Mountain Farm also welcomes visitors. This isolated farm, once a popular camping stop for the itinerant, used to be cut off from civilization for eight months of every year. Today, visitors are welcomed with a tour, coffee, waffles and breathtaking views.
Bicyclists can board the Flåm Railway for an ascent by train and an invigorating descent by bike with a cycling guide. The seven-mile coast skirts the valley and is one of the most enjoyable ways to see the pristine countryside.
Adventurous travelers will want to take an RIB speedboat tour of the fjords. These inflatable crafts skim across the waters at sometimes thrilling speeds, passing the cliffs and mountains that line the shores. The UNESCO World Heritage Site of Naerøyfjord especially takes the breath away with its emerald shores and soaring rock walls.
For a gentler, more intimate experience, tours in a two-seat kayak through Sognefjord show travelers Norway’s deepest and longest fjord up close.