The Norwegian Fjords won Best Destination (Europe) in the Cruise Awards 2016. Here we list five great reasons to visit this spectacular area
1. The landscapes
Wherever you go in the Norwegian Fjords you are bound to come across breathtaking scenes of nature. From snow-capped peaks to cascading waterfalls, you won’t help but feel mesmerised by the raw beauty of the landscapes. The Geirangerfjord, a UNESCO World Heritage Site, is an especially picture-perfect place to soak up verdant surroundings and affords many hikers fantastic vantage points to view cruise ships sailing in and out of the majestic fjord.
2. The cuisine
Norway has a long fishing history owing to its coastal location and today it has built up a formidable reputation as being the second largest exporter of seafood in the world. A Norwegian Fjords cruise will allow you to embark on a fantastic foodie journey, sampling the tastiest seafood – from cod, salmon and shellfish – freshly caught from the sea. Larger fish markets are fantastic places to see the array on offer, but for local delicacies such as king crabs or smoked arctic char, try venturing to more northerly locations.
3. Variety of wildlife
Exploring the Norwegian Fjords as part of a cruise expedition can uncover a wealth of species. You can spot rare birds – such as Steller’s eider, a type of sea duck – seals and even sperm whales. One of the easiest animals to spot is the elk or moose, which tend to roam in central and southern Norway. While you’re cruising along the fjords and admiring the scenery, keep a lookout for puffins that nestle in the crags of the cliffs. They’re more commonly seen in fjords in the Svalbard archipelago in summer.
4. The activities
Adventurers will delight in the wide variety of excursions available in the Norwegian Fjords. For example at popular port of call Flam, you can get closer to the beautiful scenery on a Rigid Inflatable Boat through Aurlandsfjord to Beitelen and back, or go hiking through picturesque mountain roads to the Stegastein Viewpoint, a viewing platform made from pine and steel that affords breathtaking vistas of the Aurlandfjord.
5. The Midnight Sun and the Northern Lights
During the summer months experience the ethereal phenomenon that is the Midnight Sun, when the light remains visible throughout the night, bathing the rugged landscape in a warm after-glow. In winter you are more likely to witness the swirling, colourful light show of the world-famous Northern Lights, or aurora borealis. Both will no doubt help to create unforgettable memories of your Norwegian Fjords cruise.
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