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The king of the Norwegian fjords — Riding Sognefjorden

Hans Flensted-Jensen

The king of the Norwegian fjords — Riding Sognefjorden

Road Cycling Collection by Hans Flensted-Jensen



09:52 h

137 mi

12,775 ft

Sognefjorden is the largest and deepest fjord in Norway, stretching 205 kilometres inland from the Atlantic Ocean, and is also known as the 'King of the Fjords'.

As is typical on the Norwegian west coast, the fjord is surrounded by mountains. It's a spectacular feeling to ride along the fjord right next to these massive rock mountains reaching straight towards the sky, making you feel very small.

We stayed at a small guest house, named Nes Gard, in the innermost part of Sognefjorden. Nes Gard is very picturesque and sits right on the edge of the fjord giving you a great view of Feigefossen, a massive waterfall, across the fjord.

Our rides took us around Lusterfjord, which is the inner part of Sognefjorden. It included a lovely little ferry ride from Solvorn to Urnes, where you’ll find Norway’s oldest stave church with a wooden construction dating back to 1130, and a beautiful road along the edge of the fjord right on the waterfront. It certainly isn’t just riding in flat terrain around the water though!

Sognefjellsvegen goes straight up into the air from the innermost point for the fjord, where it’ll take you up to Sognefjellet at 1.400 meters. The road opens at the start of May and you’ll find snow walls along the road for many weeks after opening.

Sognefjellsvegen is one of the most scenic routes you can ride in Norway. But beware of weather changes. You don’t want to be caught in the mountains in bad weather, which can shift very quickly.

We also found some smaller hidden climbs off the main roads, as well as an old abandoned sanatorium: a real ghost house! It was quite a feeling to ride 5 kilometres on a 10% climb of mixed road and gravel and then suddenly find this massive empty building in front of you. Apparently, a couple of horror movies have been filmed there.

On The Map


Tours & Highlights

  • Lusterfjord, Feigumfossen and Urnes stave church

    46.7 mi
    17.2 mph
    2,650 ft
    2,750 ft

    A fantastic ride around the fjord, at the innermost part of Sognefjorden. There wasn't much climbing, but we enjoyed a nice, flat road at the edge of the water.


    Make sure to make a stop at Urnes Stave Church if you try this Tour yourself. It's the oldest stave church in Norway from 1130.


    Bring lights

    by Hans Flensted-Jensen

  • 04:44
    58.1 mi
    12.3 mph
    7,425 ft
    7,475 ft

    The plan was to cross Sognefjellet and return, but at the top we didn't take any chances as the weather was changing.


    Take no chances in the mountains they say - and we didn't.


    Instead we returned to the fjord and found an amazing little secret gem of a climb up to an abandoned sanatorium, a real ghost

    by Hans Flensted-Jensen

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  • 02:25
    32.5 mi
    13.5 mph
    2,725 ft
    2,725 ft

    We went up Jostedal towards the glacier, but instead of continuing through the valley we turned right up to Vigdal after about 15 kilometers from Gaupne.


    What an epic climb this was, pretty much a wall we had to climb! There is a short tunnel with bend, so lights are good to bring.

    by Hans Flensted-Jensen

  • © OSM

    Songnefjellet climb

    Road Cycling Highlight

    The climb from Sognefjorden up to Sognefjellet at 1,400 meters elevation is amazing and tough.

    Make sure to check the weather forecast as it can be quite different at the top than in by the fjord.

    Tip by Hans Flensted-Jensen

  • © OSM

    Urnes Stave Church

    Road Cycling Highlight

    Norway's oldest stave church from 1130. It's a beatiful church sitting on the mountain slope with a nice view of the fjord. Make sure to buy a ticket before entering the church yard. It's expensive to maintain such old woodwork, so it's nice to support that.

    Tip by Hans Flensted-Jensen

  • © OSM

    Luster Sanatarium - Harastølen

    Road Cycling Highlight

    An abandoned sanatorium that has been empty for decades. They say that two horror movies have been filmed here.

    The climb from the fjord up is a combination of gravel and bad asphalt and a bit steep, but it's such little secret gem that it's just lovely.

    Tip by Hans Flensted-Jensen

  • © OSM

    The secret Vigdal climb

    Road Cycling Highlight (Segment)

    A steep climb up to Vigdal. It's a quiet little road and it takes you all the way up. The tunnel after about 500 meters has lights, but it is still a bit dark in there.

    Tip by Hans Flensted-Jensen

  • © OSM


    Road Cycling Highlight

    Nice view of the impressive waterfall with 218 meters of free fall. If you want to get real close you'll have to hike up there, but from the road you get a good impression of it as well.

    Tip by Hans Flensted-Jensen

  • © OSM

    Nes Gard guesthouse

    Road Cycling Highlight

    Cosy little family owned guesthouse, with stunning views of the fjord, mountains and Feigumfossen in the background.

    It is very picturesque with a little church as a neighbour and the beautiful nature. Good atmosphere and a very cyclist-friendly place to stay. :-)

    Tip by Hans Flensted-Jensen

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Collection Stats

  • Tours
  • Highlights
  • Distance
    137 mi
  • Duration
    09:52 h
  • Elevation
    12,775 ft

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The king of the Norwegian fjords — Riding Sognefjorden

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