The Norwegian Fjords
UNESCO World Heritage Sites, named among the “Best unspoiled travel destinations in the World” and “Seven wonders of nature”. The Norwegian Fjords make an impression on everyone who visits them.
Cutting in from the sea, through steep mountains rising up to 2000 meters high, creating lush, fertile soil along the shore. Mild, salty waters up to 1300 meters deep. Passages so narrow that when the ship sails in, you can sometimes touch the mountainside with your fingertips up on deck.
The Norwegian Fjords have always given people memories for life - and temporary neck aches from gazing at the sights. For example, mountainside farms once accessible only by steep ladder trails, small villages, seals, porpoises, schools of fish swimming in the waters, with eagles and other birds looking down from above.
A fjord is a deep, narrow and elongated ocean inlet, cut into the landscape, with steep mountains on three sides. The fourth side, called the mouth of the fjord, is open towards the sea. The fjords were formed when the glaciers retreated and are a prominent feature if you travel through Norwegian coastal landscape – from Hurtigruten's southernmost port of Bergen all the way north to Kirkenes.
Photo: Paffy/Shutterstock and Trym Ivar Bergsmo
What is a fjord?
But what is a fjord? The fjords formed when the glaciers of the Ice Age retreated. Seawater rushed in to replace the ice, flooding the u-shaped valleys and creating the memorable geography we now see. Norway is fortunate enough to have a warm sea current running along its coastline. As a result, the fjords are virtually ice free – and ready to be explored.