Riding the Flåm Railway: A Scenic Norwegian Adventure

Riding the Flåm Railway
Photo: Jan Danek jdm.foto

Have you ever been riding the Flåm Railway? In the heart of the Norwegian fjords, nestled amidst towering peaks and cascading waterfalls, lies one of the world’s most scenic train journeys—the Flåm Railway. We will take you on a train journey and discover the magic of this railway and the breathtaking landscapes it unveils along the way.

Read more about the Sognefjord and how to get there

What is The Flåm Railway?

Riding the Flåm Railway

1. The Route

The Flåm Railway is a 20,3 kilometres or 12.6-mile-long railway line that connects the village of Flåm in Aurland with the high mountain station at Myrdal. Riding the Flåm Railway is an unforgettable visual feast.

2. Dramatic Landscapes

As the train ascends from the fjord, it traverses rugged terrain, meanders through dense forests, and offers panoramic views of the Aurlandsfjord, cascading waterfalls, and the lush Flåm Valley.

3. Engineering Marvel

The Flåm Railway is celebrated for its engineering brilliance. It boasts steep gradients, numerous hairpin bends, and tunnels, making it one of the steepest standard-gauge railways in the world.

Jotunheimen National Park: A Hiker’s Paradise

Exploring the Flåm Railway

Riding the Flåm Railway
Kjosfossen Waterfall

1. Scenic Stops

The Flåm Railway journey includes a stop at the Kjosfossen waterfall, where passengers can disembark and marvel at the cascading water, adding a touch of magic to the journey.

2. Hiking Opportunities

The Flåm Railway is more than just a train ride; it’s a gateway to hiking trails and outdoor adventures. Hikers can disembark at various stations and explore the beautiful landscapes on foot.

3. Myrdal

At the top of the railway line, Myrdal is a hub for rail connections. Visitors can explore the region further by taking the Bergen Line, which offers stunning mountain views and leads to the city of Bergen.

How to Plan Your Flåm Railway Experience?

Tickets and Timings

Booking your tickets in advance, especially during the high tourist season, is advisable to secure a spot on this sought-after railway journey.

Check the timetable or book tickets on the Flåm Railway here

What is the best time to visit the Flåm Railway?

Photo: Manida Thiensiripipat

The best time to visit the Flåm Railway depends on your preferences and desired experience. Here are some considerations for different times of the year:

Summer (June to August)

Summer is the high tourist season in Norway and the most popular time to visit the Flåm Railway. The weather is generally mild during this period, and the landscapes are lush and vibrant. The long daylight hours provide ample time for exploring the area. However, it’s also the busiest season, so expect larger crowds. Make reservations for tickets and accommodations.

Autumn (September to October)

Autumn offers a quieter and more serene experience on the Flåm Railway. The lush greenery of summer transitions into stunning fall foliage, with trees and landscapes painted in shades of red, yellow, and orange. The weather can be crisp, and you’ll find fewer tourists, making it an excellent time for a more peaceful visit when exploring the Flåm Railway.

Winter (December to February)

For a unique and snow-covered experience, visit the Flåm Railway in winter. The landscape is transformed into a winter wonderland, and the train ride offers different beauty. Consider the famous “Norway in a Nutshell” tour that combines the Flåm Railway with winter activities like snowshoeing and fjord cruises.

Spring (March to May)

Spring is a transitional period with melting snow and the return of greenery. It’s a quieter time to visit, and you can witness the renewal of nature. The weather is milder than winter but be prepared for variable conditions.

Flåmsbrygga Hotell. Photo: Philippa Taylor

There are several accommodation options in Flåm, Myrdal, and nearby villages to suit various preferences and budgets. Here are some recommended accommodations in the region:

Flåm

1. Flåmsbrygga Hotel  

This waterfront hotel offers comfortable rooms with stunning fjord views. It’s centrally located and provides easy access to the Flåm Railway, fjord cruises, and local attractions.

You can visit Flåmsbrygga Hotel here

2. Fretheim Hotel

A historic hotel in the heart of Flåm, Fretheim offers a blend of traditional charm and modern amenities. The hotel features a restaurant serving local cuisine and a relaxing atmosphere.

You can visit the Fretheim Hotel here

3. Flåm Camping and Hostel

Ideal for budget travellers, this campground and hostel provide a range of accommodation options, from camping spots to dormitory-style rooms.

You can visit Flåm Camping and Hostel here

4. Flåm Marina & Apartments

The Flåm Marina offers fully equipped apartments with fjord views for those seeking self-catering accommodations. It’s an excellent choice for families and larger groups. Flåm Marina is a 6-7 minute walk along the boardwalk from the Flåm railway station and is a perfect base for riding the Flåm Railway.

You can visit the Flåm Marina here

Nearby Villages:

1. Aurland

The nearby village of Aurland, just a short drive or ferry ride from Flåm, offers charming accommodation options. The Aurland Fjordhotel, for example, provides a tranquil setting with fjord views.

You can visit the Aurland Fjordhotel here

2. Gudvangen

Another nearby village, Gudvangen, offers accommodations like the Gudvangen Fjordtell & Apartments. It’s an excellent base for exploring Nærøyfjord and the surrounding area.

You can visit the Gudvangen Fjordhotell Here

When choosing your accommodation, consider your travel itinerary and activities. For convenience, staying in Flåm provides easy access to the Flåm Railway, fjord cruises, and local amenities. Myrdal is suitable for exploring the Bergen Line or starting your journey from the top of the railway line. Nearby villages like Aurland and Gudvangen offer a more tranquil atmosphere and a chance to explore the broader fjord region. Book accommodations in advance, especially during the peak summer season, to secure your preferred choices.

Weather Awareness

Riding the Flåm Railway

The weather can be unpredictable in mountainous regions, so be prepared with appropriate clothing and check the timetable for train departures.

Tours and Packages

Many tour operators offer comprehensive packages that include the Flåm Railway journey, fjord cruises, hiking adventures, and more.

In Conclusion

The Flåm Railway is more than a mode of transportation; it’s a mesmerising journey through some of Norway’s most breathtaking landscapes. Whether you’re a nature enthusiast, a train fan, or simply seeking an unforgettable travel experience, this scenic railway is a must-do when exploring the Norwegian fjords. Hop on board, and let the Flåm Railway unveil the wonders of nature’s grandeur.

Read more about the Sognefjord and how to get there