Bergen to Trondheim – An Unforgettable Road Trip

Bergen to Trondheim – An Unforgettable Road Trip

Bergen to Trondheim Road Trip

Do the names Trollstigen, Wild Atlantic Road and Seven Sisters Waterfalls sound familiar? These internationally acclaimed bucket list attractions are all found north of Bergen, making this city the perfect launch point for the journey north into scenic Norway. Our aim was to not only visit the best attractions but to drive as many of the panoramic Norway Scenic Routes as possible. 

This Bergen to Trondheim Road Trip Includes:

  • Mind-boggling viewpoints
  • Driving world-famous roads
  • 5 of Norway’s sensational Scenic Routes
  • Intricate architecture and thought-provoking sculptures
  • An abundance of Norway’s stunning landscape and beauty.
road and norwegian flag

Norway is certainly one of those ‘wow’ countries with its pristine scenery and fairytale landscapes. To be able to drive the Scenic Routes we mention in this article,  you’ll likely need to road trip between late spring and autumn when the probability of roads being blocked by snow is less likely.

We’ve spent over 12 months living and travelling through Norway over the summer and autumn seasons for the last few years, with our base in the historic village of Skudeneshavn, and never tire of Norway’s charm.

To help you out, at the end of this article, we’ve included handy travel information including what to pack, Norwegian emergency numbers, super-handy travel apps for Norway and hire car/hire motorhome options.

This article is No.2 of 4 of a series where we began our road-trip in Stavanger and ended in the Lofoten and Vesterålen islands of northern Norway.

wind road ascending from a long valley

Trollstigen – seeing is believing!

Bergen to Trondheim 9 Day Road Trip

We took 9 days to complete this 1100 km trip from Bergen to Trondheim without rushing any of the experiences. You may just as easily extend your stay at any spot based on how much time you have for your itinerary.

Below is the driving route from Bergen, in the south, to Trondheim in the north. A map with the list of attractions and scenic routes can be found further down in this article.

Map showing the road from Bergen to Trondheim

Bergen To Trondheim: Quick Look

You can jump to a particular day in the itinerary by clicking on any of the icons below.

Planning Your Bergen to Trondheim Road Trip

A summer or autumn Bergen to Trondheim road trip promises the possibility of better weather. It also gives you a lot more daylight. A word of warning though, summer days can still be quite cold so pack to cover all bases – more on this below.

Bergen and Trondheim both host international airports and are major travel centres in their respective parts of the country making these two locations the best start and stop points on your journey. This road trip is best enjoyed as a self-drive and can just as easily start in either of these cities.

If you’re visiting Norway to gaze at the Northern Lights, you’ll need to head north, as we did, to at least the latitude of the Lofoten islands (66ºN).

This road trip ends in Trondheim but you may choose to continue North in which case there’s plenty more to be seen.

Car and Motorhome Rental

Rentalcars.com gave us the best car rental deals in Europe

Motorhome Republic found us the best hire deals for campervan hire for our year-long road trip around Europe. They found better pricing than we could find going direct ourselves therefore making the process so much easier.

Bergen to Trondheim Roadtrip Map: Scenic Routes and Attractions

To use this map, expand it using the square symbol on the top right-hand side and then look to the key on the left-hand side. By clicking each location you will find the corresponding position on the map. 

  • Red lines denote the different Norway Scenic Routes;
  • Blue circles with a star denote an attraction;
  • Green circles denote waterfalls;
  • Black circles denote hikes;
  • Purple circles denote main towns;
  • Yellow circles denote alternative options.

Norway Event Calendar

There are many different festivals and events in Norway, especially in the Summer months.  You can find out more by clicking on:

Keep your eye open for these events:

  • Tall Ships race (Another option, which we didn’t do, is to consider joining a tall ship to sail the Norwegian coastline)
  • Norway National or Constitution Day held in nearly every Norwegian village, town and city (17th May)
  • See the King and Queen of Norway – Every year King Harald and Queen Sonya pay a visit to a Norwegian county (the Queen visited Rogland county and included Skudeneshavn on her schedule whilst we were there)

We were honoured to see the Queen of Norway in Skudeneshavn, 2018

Road Trip Itinerary – Bergen to Trondheim

Travelling ever more north from Bergen, the villages become more remote, the traffic thins, the landscape takes on a wild untamed look and you begin to feel the vastness of  Norway’s panorama. We road tripped well over 2,500 kilometres of the Norwegian west coast from Skudeneshavn all the way to the magical Lofoten islands and have so many unforgettable moments.

In this article, we not only include well-known attractions, but also some of our hidden off-the-beaten-path discoveries. Additionally, we use the Geocache app which has taken us to amazing places along the way that you just won’t find mentioned in any travel guide.

If you’re not familiar with geocaching, then check it out because most of the locations you seek are a ‘local’ knowledge only type of place and there you’ll likely see something few other visitors have. Not only is it great fun but also a great travel resource.

Day 1, 2 – Bergen

Bergen is known as the gateway to the fjords and joining a fjord cruise to experience one of Norway’s biggest scenic attractions is the best way to do it. Not only is Bergen the perfect place to launch a road trip north, but also gives you an opportunity to visit numerous attractions both within the city and within a day’s drive of Bergen. There’s so much to fill your itinerary in this area. 

Within Bergen

  • Bergen Fish Market
  • Bryggen
  • St. John’s church
  • Musikkpaviljongen
  • Lille Lungegårdsvannet
  • Mt. Fløyen
Bergen buildings

Within a days drive of Bergen

  • Borgund Stave Church (driving the Aurlandsfjellet Scenic Route along the way)
  • Kongevegen (King’s Road)
  • Lærdal Tunnel (the world’s longest road tunnel)
  • Hopperstad Stave Church
  • Vangsnes historic village sites alonside Sognefjord
  • Steinsdahlsfossen (one of the most visited waterfalls in Norway that you actually walk behind)
  • Visit the town of Kinsarvik to launch your assault on Dronningstein or HM Queen Sonja’s panoramic hiking trail
pretty flowered streets of white homes in Stavanger

Viking figure at Gudvangen keeping vigil over Nærøyfjord

Day 3 – Gaularfjellet Utsikten Lookout, Vallestadfossen

Join the Gaularfjellet Scenic Route.

Gaularfjellet Scenic Route

Arrival at Dragsvik, on the northern shore of Sognefjord, heralds the start of the Gaularfjellet Scenic Route and an hours drive from here will place you at the parking bay right by the Gaularfjellet Utsikten Lookout. This somewhat futuristic concrete viewing platform reaches out into the void, at a height of 700 masl, offering spectacular views of the winding ascent and the valley far below.

Concrete viewpoint overlooking a valley
concrete lookout with triangular wings

Gaularfjellet Utsikten Lookout

Vallestadfossen

Surrounded by mountains, you can hardly expect that you won’t drive past a waterfall or two. About 30 minutes drive from the Utsiken viewpoint is the wide and powerful, Vallestadfossen, that flows down in a series of cascades and is easily visible from the road. If you’re keen on hiking to other waterfalls in the area then you should consider ‘The Waterfall Path’; a 21-kilometre medium difficulty hike passing 14 waterfalls and 7 lakes. We didn’t hit this trail but you can read more about this on here.

Cascading waterfall between green forested trees

Vallestadfossen

Day 4 – Gloppen Skulpturpark, Dispaholmen via Loen

Byrkjelo

Byrkjelo is a village lying 20 kilometres north of the town of Skei. Right by the roadside, and impossible to miss, is this interesting and eclectic mix of sculptures in the Gloppen Skulpturpark. The many sculptures are hand-crafted by only one artist. Adding to its allure is the fact that the park and the sculptures span the bubbling little Storelva river.

Park of concrete human figures
Bubbling river with concrete sculptures beside it

Gloppen Skulpturpark, Byrkjelo

Loen

Byrkjelo backs onto the Jostedalsbreen National Park and the mighty Jostedalsbreen Glacier. To get the best view of the glacier,  surrounding lakes and mountains, drive further north to the town of Loen.

Here, you can ride one of the world’s steepest cable-cars to the 1100m Mt. Hoven in only 5-minutes. We didn’t treat ourselves to this adventure but if this sounds interesting to you, then find more details here.

Strynevatnet

We nearly drove past the unmarked access road to a small rocky islet to Strynevatnet which can be accessed via a narrow stony beach. Be sure to make this a stop in your itinerary. The islet is lightly wooded with a rocky shoreline that plunges into the deep depths of the lake with the mirrored reflections of the surrounding mountains on the water. It is a stunning location.

Looking over a white stony beach to the green fields beyond
mountain reflection on a mirrored lake

A hidden treasure, Strynevatnet

Gamle Strynefjellsvegen

Leaving Strynevatnet, driving a further 26 kilometres will bring you to a decision point. You may be tempted to continue on the main route (road number 15) which swings north and is the most direct route north – but don’t miss the Gamle Strynefjellsvegen.  Look for the signed road (road number 258), Gamle Strynefjellsvegen, to start a short but magical 27 km drive of this historic Scenic Route.

Join the Gamle Strynefjellsvegen Scenic Route.

This route is special. The road was built in the late 19th century using only manual labour and is distinctive with its rows of guard stones marking the road edges along with the fitted-stone wall barricades. The initial part of the climb begins on a paved road and later reverts to gravel when nearing the top at around 1100 masl. It’s here that you’ll pass the gorgeous lake, Langvatnet.

guard stones on foggy road
gravel road amongst snowy mountains
old wooden hut on a green watered lake

Langvatnet

Most of the ascent was driven in fog and mist which created a moody and mystical atmosphere. It wasn’t until we reached the summit that we broke through the low cloud barrier and the skies somewhat opened up.

Day 5 – Dalsnibba Viewpoint, Geiranger Church, Ørnesvingen Viewpoint

From the eastern end of the Gamle Strynfjellsvegen Scenic route, you can re-join the main road 15 and head north again. A short 15 kilometres away, is the start of the Geiranger-Trollstigen Scenic Route and right on the doorstep in the Dalsnibba viewpoint and the famed Geiranger Skywalk.

Join the Geiranger-Trollstigen Scenic Route.

Dalsnibba

A winding, inclined drive with an altitude gain of just over 1000m has you arriving at Dalsnibba, Europe’s highest fjord view from a road so you can probably guess that it also comes with magical views of the surrounding mountains. Unfortunately for us, the low altitude clouds hid the panorama but we grabbed a photo on the way up and at the top viewpoint.

winding road overlooking a fjord
viewpoint with a cloudy outlook

Dalsnibba

Geiranger

Driving into the town of Geiranger, keep a lookout for the turnoff to the Geiranger Church. Built in 1842, this church sets itself apart from others due to its unique octagonal-shaped design. This bright, white, wooden church has claimed the best position on the hill with stunning views down into Geiranger fjord and the many cruise ships that dock alongside Geiranger. The views are so good that Geirangerfjord has also claimed a spot on the UNESCO World Heritage List.

white octagonal church overlooking a fjord

Geiranger Church

Ørnesvingen viewpoint

Heading north from Geiranger on Ørnesvegen (or Eagle Road), named for the eagles that once called the mountain peak home, a twisty ascent through 11 hairpin bends rewards with a stop at the Ørnesvingen viewpoint. From here, you can gaze out onto a magnificent panorama: Geiranger, Geirangerfjord, cruise ships plying the fjords and the famous Seven Sisters Waterfalls.

The Seven Sisters Waterfalls, with an average fall of 250m, were said to resemble the hair of seven women. The image below and on the right shows the Seven Sisters Waterfalls in the background at the farthest point of Geirangerfjord.

viewpoint of the fjord and distant waterfall
llooking down into a fjord from a viewpoint

Ørnisvegen viewpoint with its UNESCO World Heritage Listed panoramic views 

Day 6 – Trollstigen, Trollkiosken

Continue on the Geiranger-Trollstigen Scenic Route.

Trollstigen

It’s only a ferry crossing at Eidsdal that breaks up the drive on the world-renowned Trollstigen Scenic Route, Norway’s most visited tourist road. You must stop at the top of Trollstigen that disappears between distant mountains and the 11 hairpin bends that ascend to the viewpoint at an altitude of 858 masl.

Adding to the fairytale effect is the Stigfossen waterfall which plunges down the mountainside and is most dramatic when seen during the actual drive of Trollstigen. There is a huge parking area here at the top, a restaurant with huge glass windows, toilet block and souvenir shops that are a testament to how popular this attraction is.

road trip on trollstigen

Needing little introduction … Trollstigen.

At the bottom of the descent is the Troll Kiosken and camping site where you can grab some great photos of trolls in all sorts of hilarious poses.

troll on a motobike sculpture with mountains in the background

Day 7 – Bike Art, Stone Age Rock Carvings, The Atlantic Road

Completing the Geiranger-Trollstigen Scenic Route is a  warm-up for yet another of Norway’s scenic routes. Heading towards the coastal town of Molde and roughly 100 kilometres away is The Atlantic Road.

Scenic Cycles

On the way and before reaching Eidsvåg, you can see a lot of old bicycles that have been brought back to life with bright paint and can be found hanging from street posts, parked close by the road and in precarious positions. It’s something different and colourful, adding an artistic touch to the green landscape.

Bogge Petroglyphs

Another surprise is the petroglyphs (signs and symbols) depicting animals and fishing that are painted on a large flat-surfaced rock face near the village of Bogge. These carvings/paintings date way back to the Stone Age.

roadside colourful hanging bike displays
stone age art depicting animals

Join the Atlanterhavsvegen Scenic Route.

The Great Atlantic Road

The Atlanterhavsvegen or Atlantic Road is a 36 km stretch that will have you island-hopping across the Atlantic Ocean, on some beautiful, arching bridges and sweeping stretches of tarmac.

A must is to stop at Eldhusøya island, more or less the central island on this chain, which has an elevated walking path around the island, cafe and toilets.

If you are lucky enough to experience wild weather, then the seas are said to crash into the islands creating a dramatic effect.

road rising over an island across the sea
winding road and walking path under a cloudy, moody sky beside the sea

Day 8, 9 – Trondheim

Leaving Atlanterhavsvegen, it’s now time to sit back for the 200km drive to the final stop, the charming city of Trondheim. It’s best to find parking around the centre of the city as this ensures you are within walking distance of the best sights which are mentioned below.

The Wharf – the old colourful wharves date to the 18th century and front each other across the Nidelva River. Walk the streets and find paths that head to the waterfront for some close-up and grand views.

old colourful wharfs overlooking a river with their reflections on the water

Trondheim Wharf

Gamle Bybro – The Old Town Bridge was constructed in 1681 with sentry posts at each end of the bridge. Locals have nicknamed Gamle Bybro “Lykkens Portal”, which means “Portal of Happiness”.

old bridge spanning a river with gate portals

Gamle Bybro

Stiftsgardsparken – is the largest wooden palace in Scandinavia and is the king’s summer royal residence. The palace does have gates at the front of the property but you can walk right past the windows of the residence on the adjacent streets. You can’t say that about many palaces.

Bakklandet – (the old city of Trondheim) these old 17th-century wooden houses were once the homes of the working class but have since been restored. It is a buzzing area of houses, boutique shops and cafes. This is a popular part of town.

large wooden house with white fence and green trees on the outside

Summer Palace

cafe's on a cobble stoned street

Bakklandet – an inviting part of town

Den Siste Viking – The Last Viking sculpture, fittingly, stands in the centuries-old part of Trondheim port amongst wooden fishing boats, cobble-stoned roads and seagulls.

Nidaros Cathedral – this grand cathedral has its origins dating back to the 11th century and tradition says that the Norwegian King Olav Haraldsson, who was later a saint, is buried under the altar. The cathedral has been damaged many times and re-built in different styles but this has not at affected its attractiveness.

sculpture of a fisherman
white cathedral

Nidaros Cathedral

Kongens Gate – this is one of the main streets in Trondheim that has many of the old, styled 18th-century buildings.  It’s definitely worth a stroll. 

Var Frue Kirke – (Our Lady Church) is located in downtown Trondheim and was built in the 12th century. This stone church has weathered many disasters and undergone many re-constructions which is evident with the different styles and colours on its exterior. There are some interesting grave-stones in the church grounds.

stone church in green trees

Var Frue Kirke, Trondheim

Central Trondheim is also a mecca for street sculptures. They represent nature, important events and mythical creatures from Norway’s medieval past. It’s all tastefully done and really add to the allure of this beautiful town.

Bergen to Trondheim Road Trip Round-Up

We hope you enjoyed this trip of attractions along many of Norway’s Scenic Routes. Sure, Bergen to Trondheim involved a few kilometres of driving but to see the best of what Norway has to offer, a bit of time has to be spent at the wheel.

The timeline for the trip is a week but you could easily expand this to give yourself more time at the places that you fall in love with.

If you have discovered any places or attractions on your travels on the Bergen to Trondheim route that we haven’t included then we’d love to hear about it.

Norway Travel Information

Car and Motorhome Rental

Rentalcars.com gave us the best car rental deals in Europe, especially during our road trip around Iceland.

Motorhome Republic found us the best hire deals for campervan hire for our year-long road trip around Europe. They found better pricing than we could find going direct ourselves therefore making the process so much easier.

What to Pack For Your Norway 2-Week Trip

  • Even in Summer, there is a fair bit of variability in temperatures and the weather can change quite quickly. It can be quite cold and wet in the morning but turn into a blistering hot day. Layering your clothing is the best option and having waterproof top and bottom means you won’t have to hike in wet clothes.
  • We strongly recommend waterproof hiking shoes/boots
  • If you have weak or sore knees then consider using walking poles to prevent shock loading on your joints. Some of these hiking downhill descents are quite steep and can cause jarring which is not pleasant
  • A backpack with a waterproof cover is super handy to carry water, food and any camera accessories

We’ve been on the road for over three years now and have added some useful travel items to our Lifejourney4two page on Amazon.

Driving in Norway

  • Most of Norway has a maximum 80km/hr speed limit on the open roads. Speed and trip (average speed between locations) cameras are in abundance, so driver beware.
  • Norway has an electronic road toll system. We owned a non-Norwegian registered car (U.K. plates), so needed to register our vehicle on the Norwegian PLC site with our credit card details. Every 3 weeks to 4 weeks we were invoiced. It’s quick to set up and hassle-free.
  • Summer and Autumn are the busy tourist seasons and the best time to travel Norway as you’ll find pretty much all of Norway’s roads open and not closed due to snow.
  • Norway’s traffic rules can be found on the Norwegian Public Roads Administration site vegvesen.no or you can make direct contact with the Traffic and Road Information on +47 815 48 991.
  • To check to see if any of Norway’s Scenic Routes are closed, follow this link to the Norway Tourist Routes site.

Handy Phone Apps and Emergency Phone Numbers

  • yr app (as in the 2 letters y and r) This is an accurate Norway weather app for both IOS and Android devices
  • outtt app provides detailed trail maps for Norway for both IOS and Android devices
  • maps.me app is an off-line map for both IOS and Android devices
  • Smart Parking app is available for both IOS and Android phones and allows you to pay for parking online and not have to worry about carrying around coins or credit cards
  • Emergency Phone Numbers – Fire: 110Police: 112; Ambulance: 113

Where to Stay in Norway

We found AirBnB to have the best priced and available accommodation options. You can, of course, opt for booking a hotel but expect to spend a little bit more. When booking accommodation, some of the cheaper establishments do not include sheets and pillowcases as part of the standard booking and needs to be added at an extra charge. Make sure to check the booking details carefully.

Book Your Accommodation

Use our Airbnb link and get up to €34 credit for your first Airbnb stay.

We use Booking.com as we can find a variety of cheap and budget accommodation such as local guesthouses and cheap hotels.

Have you travelled to Norway before? What’s on your Norway bucket-list? We’d love it if you shared your thoughts in the comment section below.

This post may contain affiliate links. This means that we may earn a small commission from purchases you make through our links, at no extra cost to you. Thank you for supporting us. For more info, read our Disclosure Policy.

Pin and Save for Later

Bergen to Trondheim Pinterest pin

Related Posts

Dronningruta Hike – The Queen’s Route

Dronningruta Hike – The Queen’s Route

The Dronningruta hike (The Queen’s Route) is a challenging hike with dazzling, majestic landscapes. Located in remote Vesterålen, Norway, it awaits discovery.

About The Author

Lars

Being an Australian brought up in the country, Lars learnt at an early age to enjoy the freedom and beauty of nature. Leaving Australia at the age of 20, although he didn’t know it then, would be the start of a life filled with adventure. Join him here and see the world through his lens.

2 Comments

  1. Lifejourney4two

    Hi,
    Thanks for the comment. Lucky that the attractions listed in our article don’t involve hiking, are quite accessible enabling you to drive close by meaning you won’t require a high level of fitness. Not sure that swimming in September is such a good idea as it can be quite cold at that time of year. Are you familiar with geocaching? Have a look at geocaching.com. Basically, it’s a type of treasure hunting and really good family fun. We are geocachers and it really adds a fun element to travelling anywhere in the world. Let me know how you get on!
    Regards,
    Lars

  2. Abigail Widdowson

    Hi, I am planning to do this road trip in mid September ’21. We will be having my 2 daughters with us aged 12 and 9. Are there any fun things to do throughout the trip for them? We are not a family of hikers since we are from Malta, we are not used to the outdoors. So I need to entertain the girls in some way or another, maybe with a theme park or water park along the way.

Leave a reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.

Lifejourney4two - Lars and Shelley

Welcome to Lifejourney4two

We’ve sold up and are road tripping around the world. We hope our travel info, photography and stories help you in your own travel planning and inspire you to visit those places you have on your ‘…one day list’

Lars & Shelley

Read more about us here

Follow Along

Our Etsy Printables

Etsy store link image

Book Accommodation



Booking.com

Need Car Rental?

rental cars ad

Travel Insurance

Amazon Affiliate

As an Amazon Associate, we earn from qualifying purchases.

Motorhome Travel Planner images

FREE 23-page Travel Planner, Phone Wallpaper, travel guides and more...

 

Sign up today and download your goodies! Sign up today!

You have Successfully Subscribed!

Pin It on Pinterest

Share This