Justin Foulkes

The Western Fjords

Scoured and gouged by glaciers, ancient and modern, Western Norway's deep, sea-drowned valleys are covered by steep, rugged terrain. It's a landscape that is so utterly unique and so profoundly beautiful that it is one of the most desirable destinations in the world.

Although overshadowed by the sublime fjords, the coastline is none the less extraordinary, blasted by an often ferocious ocean and backed closely by deep green mountain peaks.

Ferries are a way of life in the west. These reliable workhorses make navigating the insane geography possible, but are also an enjoyable part of your journey as they offer staggering, otherwise inaccessible, panoramas.

This is great hiking country, whether wild walking, following one of the many signed trails or lumbering along in a guided glacier-walking group. And if, after so much fresh air, you crave some small-town sophistication, the bijou art-nouveau settlement of Ålesund has that in spades.

Top attractions

These are our favorite local haunts, touristy spots, and hidden gems throughout The Western Fjords.