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Introducing Valldal & Around

Valldal is a place that people tend to pass through, having driven over the famous Trollstigen pass from Åndalsnes or savoured the exquisitely beautiful ferry journey from Geiranger. Perched in a nick of Norddalsfjord, its agricultural surrounds lay claim to being Europe’s northernmost orchards. Here apples, pears and even cherries thrive – and you’ll also find strawberries in profusion, commemorated in an annual Strawberry Festival, usually on the last weekend in July.

To sample the goods, whatever the season, call by Syltetøysbutikken (70 25 75 11; Syltegata), on the road leading to the church. It has a healthy selection of jams and juices, pressed and simmered in the small factory behind the shop and sourced in the main from local farmers.

The tourist office (70 25 77 67; www.visitnorddal.com; 10am-7pm mid-Jun–mid-Aug, 10am-5pm Mon-Fri rest-of-year) rents bikes (Nkr25/100 per hour/day) and can also arrange motorboat hire (Nkr85/400 per hour/day). Invest Nkr20 in its useful booklet of signed walks, ranging from Geiranger to Trollstigen and lasting from 15 minutes to three hours. Each one sets out from a public car park.

From Valldal you can experience a four-hour white-water rush (Nkr590; 11am daily May to September) down the Valldøla River. Contact Valldal Naturopplevingar (90 01 40 35; www.valldal.no), whose headquarters is 200m from the tourist office. It also offers kayak hire and a variety of other outdoor activities such as wilderness camping and, in winter, moonlight ski trips.