This spectacular summer holiday to Norway’s fjords makes for an exceptional self-drive adventure. From Alesund’s pretty peninsula setting set out on a road trip deep into Norway’s western fjords. You’ll be able to take in some of the world’s great natural wonders from some of Norway’s most exciting routes, descending to Geirangerfjord via the vertigo-inducing switchbacks of the Eagle Road. We’ve selected a hip town centre property, a secluded stylishly Scandinavian woodland retreat and a venerated luxury chalet-style stay that’s been captivating adventurers, royalty and writers for more than a century and suggest you immerse yourself in the stunning locations. Perhaps take a ramble or head into the hills, back off the pace and allow the matchless peace and privacy to wash over you.
Following a complimentary chauffeur-driven trip to the airport, board a flight to Oslo before transferring to Alesund. On arrival, we will arrange a private transfer to take you to Hotel Brosundet, a design gem in the heart of the town, set right on the water’s edge. For a seriously special occasion, ask us about securing the Molja Lighthouse as your room, a 150-year-old, converted lighthouse stood on the pier at the entrance to the port that looks out over the Atlantic Ocean from a very special vantage point. Having settled in, venture into Alesund, a beautiful small port with an eclectic vibe where you can soak up Art Nouveau architecture and Norwegian culture while sampling the best coffee in the country.
Alternatively take to the water; borrow a kayak from the hotel’s private dock and get a different perspective on the town. Ease into the evening with a drink in the atmospheric hotel bar, celebrated for its vast wine cellar, before letting the chefs in the restaurant woo you with an exciting tasting menu.
Stay: Hotel Brosundet
Collect your hire car and, under your own steam, make the short journey to Hotel Storfjord. Overlooking the stunning fjord of the same name and looking like something from a Scandinavian folk story, this hotel is an insider’s address hidden in the Sunnmore Alps. Here, join a food safari at an authentic fjord farm in the village of Glomset to gain insights into how food is hunted, fished and foraged and taste the seasonal berries, mushrooms, plants and herbs. Let a local family teach you traditional baking methods and enjoy the fruits of your labours.
Back at the hotel, evening drinks can be enjoyed on the galleried landing overlooking Glomset Bay, Storfjord and the Alps, or you can snuggle up by the open fire with a glass of Storfjordbrygg, a locally brewed ale exclusively served at the hotel. Then make your way to the candlelit timbered hall to take your place on the grand table for a sumptuous three-course dinner.
Hotel Storfjord, with its homely atmosphere bills itself as a ‘slow life hideaway’. While there’s plenty to satisfy an adventurous spirit, slow down as well and let the day drift by in languid luxury. Step outside and take in the fresh mountain air. Stroll the six acres of private grounds and venture into the neighbouring forest.
You can then choose to explore the fjord and mountain scenery on a hiking tour or private kayaking safari; you may even have seals and puffins for company. Conclude your stay by slipping into the outside Jacuzzi or treating yourself to a wellness treatment tailored to you.
From Hotel Storfjord make the scenic, 100-kilometre drive to the UNESCO-heritage listed Geirangerfjord, a region famed for its towering cliffs and powerful waterfalls. Consider the longer route via Trollstigen, a series a of tight switchbacks that ascend a high mountain pass. Descend to the fjord shore on the thrilling switchbacks of the Eagle Road. Next, board a car ferry to cruise along the fjord from Geiranger to Hellesylt, soaking up the stunning views of the famous waterfalls: the Seven Sisters, The Suitor, and the Bridal Veil.
Your hotel, Union Oye, is stood by the Norangsfjord, held to be among the most majestic and secluded fjords in Norway. Ever since 1850 it has been a favourite venue of royalty, writers and romantic couples. Enjoy the heady ambience, mix with other guests and listen to tales of days long gone in the Sun Lounge as you gaze out onto towering peaks, tranquil fjord waters and hushed forests.
Make the most of your day and spend your time exploring further. Set out by car or choose to uncover the countryside on foot or by bike. Explore what many believe to be the most beautiful valley in Norway and trek through the Norangsdalen or take the challenge and hike to the summit of Slogen. Paddle the still waters of the fjord or feel the spray on your face on a high-powered sea safari.
Slip below the gin-clear waters of Lake Lyngstoyl to snorkel or dive among the drowned farm buildings that were flooded after an avalanche here a century ago. Or spoil yourself and experience fjord Norway from the air on a helicopter flight. In winter, enjoy superb skiing at the Stranda Ski Centre. Treat yourself at the end of the day to a lavish multi-course dinner in the elegant dining room.
Make the return journey to Alesund. After the scenic drive, and having dropped off your car, settle back into the hip Hotel Brosundet. Freshen up and enjoy a stroll to explore the town’s atmospheric corners. Discover the town’s history and resurrection after a devastating fire. Climb to the Akslafjellet and admire the panoramic view over Alesund and its fishhook-shaped peninsula as well as the mountains and islands beyond from the hilltop.
Contrast the traditions showcased at the fishing museum and KUBE, Alesund’s leading contemporary art space. Retreat to the hotel’s own restaurant, Maki, to enjoy a delicious multi-course meal at this first-rate seafood specialist for an innovative fine-dining dinner.
Stay: Hotel Brosundet
After a final leisurely breakfast, make your way to the airport in order to catch your flight home.
"This itinerary showcases Norway's summer scenery at its very best. With such vast and varying landscapes the most rewarding way to experience Norway's fjords is by car, but for that extra bit of luxury on your summer holiday, I recommend opting for a helicopter excursion so that you can witness the spectacular peaks and troughs of this country's dramatic landscapes in all their glory. "
Summer & Autumn 2020 from: £2,910 pp