Hiking in Norway – Hemsedal mountains
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Norwegian mountains are beautiful! Sounds like a cliché? Might be! But besides being mighty, raw, and sublime, anyone can go hiking in the Norwegian mountains. Whether you are an experienced hiker who has walked all the famous trails in
Norway or an amateur who has never been in the hills this post is for you. Norway is a gorgeous country with blue and green fjords, green valleys, and snow-white mountains. And you can hike in any area of Norway. Last years’ tourism has extended from day-trippers from cruise ships to hikers vacationing in tents and RVs all over Norway. But if you want to get off the tourist trails and human queues piling up you should visit Hemsedal.
So I don’t sound super nationalistic I love many other countries too, and if you are into the same type of nature as in Norway, the Interlaken in Switzerland is a perfect place for you. Unfortunately, I haven’t been there myself yet, but it is high up on my bucket list. If, you want to know more about the place, check out Carolyn’s post from Holidaystoeurope on Interlaken by clicking on the link.
Best time to hike in Norway
The best time to hike in Norway is from May and through September unless you are into skiing, downhill, and ice-climbing. The high season for hiking in the mountains in Norway is from July to September. Norwegians have summer holidays throughout July and first two weeks of August. Many Norwegians choose to spend their summer vacation in a cottage by the sea or in the mountains. The least crowded time for hiking Norwegian mountains is weekdays in May, July, end of August and September. During the high season, there are lots of activities you can do in the mountains, and some of the most popular are hiking, biking, rafting, running, fishing, etc. During wintertime snow activities are a huge deal. You can experience cross-country skiing, downhill, dog sledding, sleigh rides, snowshoes walks, etc. Many ski centers offer ski instructor hire. The snow season starts around the end of November, and artificial snow is made for both cross-country and slalom slopes. If you don’t want to travel far, you can do many of the summer and winter activities in Oslo.
Few facts about Norway
A few facts about the country I call home.
- A few years ago, we passed the population of 5.000.000 people.
- Norway is a long and narrow country (check the map, and you’ll see what I mean :)). It takes the same amount of time to go from Oslo to the northern point of Norway as it takes to go from Oslo to Rome.
- Norwegian people are the second happiest nation in the world (2017). Finns (Finland) er the happiest.
- Oslo (the capital) is the third most expensive city in the world (July 2018, and no matter what is measured in these kinds of surveys Oslo is always in top 10 for being most expensive)
Norwegians er very proud of their country, especially its nature and its landscapes. People love to be outdoors – hiking, skiing, biking, running, etc. Most of us leave big cities and move into suburbs when we get kids – to be closer to nature. Many of us own cottages or mountain huts and leave the town for the weekends as soon as possible. These charming cabins can be in the mountains, in the woods or by the sea. They can be brand new, or they could have been inherited through generations. The mountain huts can be everything from a modern apartment to an old wooden cabin with an outside toilet and no electricity. You can rent a cottage in the mountains, in the woods or by the sea and you can rent all the equipment you need for the activities on the spot at a ski resort.
Hiking in Norway – hut to hut
The Norwegian Trekking Association – DNT offers an overview of an extensive amount of trails and cabins, both with and without service. Many people choose to hike from hut to hut, planning their trip by the huts they can stay in. The association offers guided tours and planning tools. I suggest you check them out here. Hut to hut hiking is a great way to see mountains but is an option for people who are used to walking in the mountains. If you are an amateur guided tour is a safe and great experience. You will find most of the huts and trails in the mountains between Oslo and Bergen. Hemsedal mountains are located 3,5 hours drive from Oslo and 4 hours drive from Bergen.
Hemsedal – going from Oslo
Hemsedal area is located approximately a 3,5 hours car drive westbound from Oslo. It is situated about halfway between Oslo and Bergen. You can also reach it by train from Oslo to Bergen and get off at Gol station. You can get your tickets online from VY (Norwegian Railway) here. Alternatively, you can take a bus, and get your tickets online here. The area is trendy for both young party people, families with kids and couples. Hemsedal has trails and peaks for any levels and skills for summer and autumn, as well as slalom slopes for a different level of skills in winter. Hemsedal top 20 hiking peaks is a very popular activity during summer months. The hikes are ranged by the difficulty level and hike’s length. Some of the trails are so easy that you can push a baby stroller while others are very demanding. You can read more about it here.
Hemsedal offers many different ranges of accommodation from a high-class hotel, modern cottages, and apartments, to the more authentic and straightforward mountain huts and lodges. The most popular mountain huts are the ones with ski-in-ski-out and close to “after ski.” You can book your accommodation here
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