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A portion of this tour runs as a group tour where you will be escorted by an expert tour leader. Another portion is self-guided, whether conducted by rail, cruise or land, and you will travel between destinations on your own, with free time to explore at your own pace.
This itinerary will be conducted at a relaxed pace. You will typically spend several nights at one location which means less time spent packing and unpacking, and more sightseeing. You will be required to move about unassisted, including getting on and off vehicles, walking up and down stairs and handling your own luggage.
Make the most of your cruise and travel independently, with everything organised for you. Your international flights, pre-cruise stay, and cruise are organised so all you have to do is relax and enjoy your time at sea. Of course, there is the option of extending your tour if you don’t want to head straight to the airport upon disembarkation.
Travelling with Inspiring Vacations allows you to explore the wonders of the world in a variety of different ways. We have partnered with a worldwide network of local travel experts to bring you culturally unique and delightfully unforgettable travel experiences. Whether it is meandering through narrow canyons by rail, cruising the idyllic waters of the Mediterranean or touring through the backroads of provincial towns, Inspiring Vacations trips offer amazing value and will leave you inspired.
Welcome to Norway! Your journey to the top of Europe starts today as you arrive in the capital, Oslo. Upon arrival at Oslo International Airport, you will need to make your own way to your hotel.
The most convenient and cost-effective way to get from the airport to the city centre is the Flytoget Express train. The journey itself takes 20 minutes and costs approximately 200NOK.
After check-in, your evening is at leisure to explore the many bars and restaurants the city has to offer.
After breakfast this morning, you’ll embark on the famous Norway in a Nutshell. This now legendary tour, and easily one of the most popular tourist routes in the country, takes you through a UNESCO-listed fjord, mountainous scenery, and a trip on the world-renowned Flåm Railway.
While some do the entire tour in one day, you will experience a more leisurely version across the next two days. First up is a train departing from cosmopolitan Oslo to the small village station of Myrdal. Sitting at 867 metres above sea level, you will notice the dramatic difference in scenery on your way.
Fjords themselves were formed by moving glaciers in the last ice age, cutting through the landscape to leave mighty cavernous valleys boasting incredible natural beauty. To journey back down to reach the fjords, you will need to travel to the remote village of Flåm, a once cut-off remote village, sitting on the banks of the Aurlandsfjord. The railway was built to connect the people living in the remote villages along the fjords to Bergen and Oslo. What was created in the process is one of the steepest and scenic rail journeys in the world. You will take the journey down to the village of Flåm, where you will be truly stunned by the mighty beauty of the fjordlands of Norway.
Upon arrival in Flåm, check into your local hotel where you spend the night. This evening, be sure to check out some of the local breweries for local delicacies for dinner.
With gorgeous views of the surrounding mountains to greet you in the morning, spend some time exploring Flåm on foot before catching your fjord cruise to Gudvangen. The journey itself takes you along the Aurlandsfjord to the connecting Nærøyfjord, a UNESCO World Heritage Site. A relaxing cruise along the two fjords will take you to the tourist village of Gudvangen, where a local bus will take you to the village of Voss. Upon arrival, complete your Norway in a Nutshell tour by train from Voss to the gateway to the fjords, Bergen.
Upon arrival in Bergen, make your own way from the train station to your centrally located hotel where the rest of your evening is spent at leisure. Depending on how much time you have, try and take the funicular to the top of Mount Fløyen. At the summit, take in spectacular views of Bergen, its neighbouring fjords and surrounding mountains. For dinner ideas, you can’t go past the Bergen fish market, positioned on the waterfront offering a highlight of Norwegian cuisine – fresh fish!
Today, enjoy a guided sightseeing tour of Bergen after breakfast at the hotel. Enjoy visiting well-known sites such as Nordnes peninsula, medieval Håkon’s Hall, the Renaissance-era Rosenkrantz Tower, and 12th-century St Mary’s Church, known as Mariakirken.
Your tour will also take in UNESCO-listed buildings in the Bryggen district. Once the haunt of 14th-century Hanseatic League traders, these colourful wooden wharves now house artisanal boutiques and galleries ideal for souvenir shopping.
The tour also includes a visit to the 7 Fjell brewery, Bergen’s first microbrewery. Look forward to a relaxed tour of the brewery and sampling a range of delicious beers in a tasting session.
Today you’ll have the chance to explore Bergen at your own pace before you board the ship. If you want to learn more about the city’s history, visit the Old Bergen Museum. Go back in time as you stroll around this open-air museum featuring around 50 reconstructed wooden houses from the 18th, 19th and 20th centuries.
Fantoft Stave Church is another cultural highlight you’ll want to make time for. Set against woodland, this unique building blends Pagan and Christian architecture and has a fascinating history to boot.
A transfer will take you from the hotel to MS Trollfjord, which will depart by mid-afternoon. Once we’ve welcomed you aboard and you’ve settled into your cabin or suite, you’ll meet your Coastal Experience Team. You’ll get to know each member of the team well as they give lectures and organise onboard activities for you throughout your voyage.
Grab yourself a drink in the ship’s two-storey panorama lounge and meet your fellow guests. As the ship sails from Bergen and into Hjeltefjord, your scenic adventure along Norway’s coast is underway.
Molde is the capital and commercial centre of Romsdalen, which sits on the southern coast of the Romsdal Peninsula. We’ve stopped at this port many times before on our Coastal Express route, but this time we’ll be making a much longer stop, so you’ll have all the time you need to get your fill of the town.
To get the best panoramic views of the area, join us on a hike to Varden viewpoint, following the trail from the town centre. Once you’re there, you can gaze at the town from above at the height of 402 metres above sea level and admire the 222 snowy peaks across Moldefjord.
If you prefer to stay closer to the ground, you can pop into the Romsdal Museum, one of Norway’s largest folk museums about ten minutes away from the town centre.
The Vikna archipelago is a chain of around 6,000 islands, islets and skerries. The largest of the chain, Inner-Vikna, is where we’ll make our next stop. We aim to dock at the port town of Rørvik around mid-morning, remaining there most of the day.
The town and its surrounding areas have a long history, with burial mounds found there that date back to ancient times. The area’s maritime legacy is well-documented across Rørvik’s many museums, particularly The Norwegian Coastal Museum.
Similarly, at SalmoNor visiting centre, you can take a tour of a modern salmon farm and find out more about the Norwegian aquaculture industry that supplies the world with tasty Nordic salmon.
Another major export is cod, and the town even has an annual Cod Festival in March. This species of fish is especially common in the waters of the archipelago during winter, so why not indulge yourself in some fresh cod cakes while here.
The administrative centre of a municipality with the same name, Lødingen is a village on the southwestern shore of Hinnøya, with a population of under 2,000. This is a port that Hurtigruten ships used to visit on an earlier coastal route and returning here is a kind of homecoming.
We’ll dock at around midday, using Lødingen as a base for a few hours to explore more of Hinnøya island, Norway’s largest island south of Svalbard. Wander the streets near the port and admire the traditional red fishing huts, or rorbuer, that line the shore. As you walk, you’ll likely notice the calming atmosphere that village life brings.
The highlight of this visit has to be the breathtaking fjords and mountains that the Norwegian coast is so famous for. Branching off of Andfjord, Gullesfjord cuts into the north side of Hinnøya, bordered by pristine mountain ranges. The area is popular among campers, who stay on the campsite or in cabins and fish for cod in the fjord during winter.
Alta is one of the bigger coastal towns we visit, with a population of over 10,000 people. A particularly famous part of the town is Alta River, one of Norway’s best salmon rivers. Here, large salmon are regularly caught, with some even weighing up to 24kg. You won’t regret trying some fresh grilled salmon in one of the local restaurants.
At 70 degrees north, this town is still far above the Arctic Circle. The area is known for particularly good Northern Lights visibility, so keep your camera ready. If the skies are clear and the conditions are right, you should be able to get some amazing shots of the lights dancing above you.
You can learn more about this incredible natural light show on a guided tour of the town. The Northern Lights Cathedral even has an exhibition showing how Alta became the epicentre for ground-breaking research of the Aurora Borealis between the 19th and 20th centuries.
Increased snowfall in the winter allows for some truly authentic Arctic excursions, like dogsledding. The snow and climate of Alta also creates the perfect conditions to build and maintain the Igloo Hotel, located on the banks of river Alta.
You’ll have the chance to visit and tour the world’s northernmost ice hotel, built out of snow and ice every winter and carved with different artistic themes by local sculptors. Head to the hotel’s ice bar, decorated with handcrafted ice sculptures and order a drink in an ice glass – no ice cubes needed.
Arriving early in the morning, you’ll have a full day in Honningsvåg. The northernmost city on the mainland, Honningsvåg’s landscape is quite distinctive, with barely any trees or bushes. This far north, winters are long and snowfall is high, so get ready for some fantastic winter scenery and activities.
Feel the snow crunching under your snowshoes as you hike across the plains. You might even be able to try your hand at ice fishing, a beloved winter tradition in the far north. Get a taste of the local delicacy, king crab, which is caught in the waters around Honningsvåg and served year-round. Admire local art in the Once Upon a Dream art gallery, and don’t miss the Honningsvåg Church. This is the oldest building in the area, dating back to 1885.
The highlight of any trip to Honningsvåg is a visit to the North Cape. This is one of the northernmost points of mainland Europe, and as we’re visiting in winter, we can get there by snowmobile. Standing near the northern edge of Norway and looking out over the Barents Sea under the polar night sky is a truly special experience. Add the ethereal Northern Lights dancing in the sky above, and you’ve got a sight you’ll never forget.
The cape is marked with a famous globe monument, which demands a selfie or two… or five. When you’re ready, head inside North Cape Hall to warm up, and learn about life in the High Arctic through a short film and a variety of exhibits.
Having reached the northernmost point of our voyage, we’ll turn around and begin going south as we sail away in the evening.
Today you’ll get the chance to see the Arctic capital itself. Often called the “gateway to the Arctic”, Tromsø is Norway's northernmost university city, and the ideal place to enjoy some proper winter activities, like dog sledding and snowshoeing.
Sitting around 217 miles north of the Arctic Circle, Tromsø experiences Polar Night for just over a month in the winter, and will give you a great chance of seeing the Northern Lights.
This urban city is buzzing with life, with everything from trendy restaurants and cafés to boutique shops selling local crafts and produce, and even high fashion. MS Trollfjord will be in port here for 13 hours, giving you plenty of time to explore the city yourself.
Among the activities on offer is a guided tour of the Polar Museum which chronicles the city’s legacy of Arctic hunting and trade. For live animals, head to the Polaria centre, an aquarium home to a variety of Arctic marine species, including seals.
Across the water from Polaria, you’ll find the Arctic Cathedral, standing out in the cityscape due to its striking design and impressive stained-glass window. There may also be an opportunity to visit some of Tromsø’s surrounding fjords and possibly the rugged island of Senja.
Today, we explore Lofoten, a striking group of islands that rise out of the Norwegian Sea. As soon as you see the towering peaks around you with fishing villages clinging to their sides, you’ll understand why this island chain is so often praised as one of Norway’s most stunning locations.
We can’t visit the area without spending some time in Stokmarknes. This historic town is part of Vesterålen, an archipelago just northeast of Lofoten. Of all the places we visit, this one is particularly special to us. It was here that the Original Coastal Express was founded in 1893 by shipping pioneer Richard With.
The Coastal Express soon became a lifeline for Norway’s remote coastal communities, and fittingly, our legacy has been immortalised in the place where it all began. Standing on the waterfront, you’ll find our 1956 ship MS Finnmarken, encased in a glass building like a ship in a bottle.
This is Hurtigrutemuseet, the museum that chronicles our history as Norway’s leading expedition cruise line from start to now. On a guided tour, you can explore the retired vessel and experience the atmosphere of a past era.
We’ll dock in the town of Svolvær in the afternoon. Located on the island of Austvågøya in the south of Lofoten, Svolvær is the biggest town of the archipelago, humming with shops, restaurants, galleries, and cafés to enjoy. You can also admire views of the Svolvær Goat, a nearby mountain named for resembling a goat and its horns.
Surrounded by islands and water, Brønnøysund sits on a narrow peninsula that juts out of the mainland. Around 5,000 people live in this small town, many in colourful houses against a backdrop of gentle slopes and dramatic mountain peaks.
Enjoy the bustling atmosphere of the harbour and take a walk along Havnegata. Drop into one of the pubs for a snack, or treat yourself to a meal in a local restaurant. Wander the visitors’ marina, or visit an 1870 Neo-Gothic stone church. For some extra excitement, you may be able to go kayaking, or island-hopping on a RIB safari.
You can also look forward to visiting the Vega Islands. Made up of over 6,500 islands, reefs, and skerries, this island chain has apparently been inhabited since the Stone Age. The archipelago received status as a UNESCO World Heritage Site in 2004, in recognition of the sustainable lifestyle led by generations of islanders and their practice of farming eiderdown.
On an island south of Brønnøysund, you’ll find Torghatten mountain, recognisable by a natural tunnel that runs through the centre. According to local lore, the hole is the result of a troll who fired an arrow at a young woman who had rejected his advances. As the Troll King threw his hat to protect her, the sun began to rise, turning the hat to stone with a hole in the middle from the arrow.
After a hearty breakfast on the ship, we’ll dock mid-morning at Ålesund, a town that spreads out across a string of islands.
As we approach the shore, you might first notice the distinctive style of architecture. Every detail of the buildings, from the bright colours to the rounded spires, was inspired by the Art Nouveau style, which was popular in the early 1900s. Almost the entire town received a makeover in the style when it was rebuilt after a major fire in 1904.
As you leave the waterfront, you’ll find yourself in a fairy-tale town, wandering narrow streets lined with unique houses. If your camera’s memory card isn’t already full after this, you can get impressive photos of the archipelago from the nearby Mount Aksla viewpoint. The 418 steps leading there might look intimidating, but the views are well worth the effort.
You can also visit the Atlantic Sea Park, Norway’s first marine science centre. This is one of Northern Europe’s largest saltwater aquariums, providing a home to seals, otters, and crabs, as well as many other kinds of marine life. You can even see Humboldt Penguins here, a species otherwise absent north of the equator.
Journeying south along Norway’s west coast, we sail past some of Norway’s most famous fjords, none more so than Hardangerfjord.
At 179 kilometres in length, it is the second longest fjord in the country, and fifth longest in the world.
The stunning waterway is one of Norway’s finest. See mountain scenery everywhere you look, with the white peaks that tower over the fjord being reflected in the shimmering water below.
The region is famous for its apple products, from jams and juice to its award-winning cider, which one food writer described as ‘Nordic champagne’.
Weather permitting, we may be able to dock at Rosendal or one of the other picturesque settlements that cling to the shores by the fjord. A small, charming village, Rosendal’s main highlight is the 16th-century Barony, a manor famous for its beautiful rose garden and landscaped grounds.
We’ll reach Haugesund, the ‘Home of the Viking Kings’ in the afternoon. The nickname is inspired by sites such as St. Olav’s Church, built in 1250 by King Håkon Hå. There’s also Haraldshaugen, a national monument reputed to be the first king’s burial site.
Why not step back in time to the Viking Age at Nordvegen Visiting Centre which features exhibitions presented by a fictional Harald Fairhair himself?
In the early morning we’ll reach Farsund. There, you’ll get the chance to hike the sandy beaches of Lista and see Lista Lighthouse.
You may also be able to visit a German fortress. This fortress was used in World War II and is remarkably well-preserved with many of the original barracks still intact. Learn all about the war history of the area on a guided tour of this historic site before we sail to Kristiansand.
Sitting along the southern tip of the country, Kristiansand is Norway’s fifth-largest city, with a population of 112,000 people. We aim to be alongside late afternoon, giving you a few hours to explore.
As you enjoy a guided walk, you might notice that the city is built on a very uniform grid plan, with several straight roads running from the harbour all the way through the city. Along these roads, you’ll find architecture from different eras, speaking to the extensive rebuilds the city had to go through after major fires in the 18th and 19th centuries, and even a World War II attack.
Back on the boat, we’ll end our voyage on a high note with an end-of-trip farewell dinner. Take this opportunity to trade photo highlights and experiences with your fellow travellers one last time.
From the south to the north, and back down to the south, reflect on your journey as you watch our approach to our last port of call, Oslo, in the early morning.
Say your goodbyes to the crew and disembark for a transfer to your hotel in Oslo. The rest of the day is spent on your own at leisure.
Why not make your way to the city centre? Be sure to take snaps of the architecturally distinct Rådhuset town hall, Royal Palace, and Oslo Cathedral.
Along the waterfront, there’s Aker Brygge for popular eateries, the imposing Akershus Fortress, and the gleaming new buildings around Bjørvika waterfront. The latter is where you’ll find modern attractions such as the Oslo Opera House and landmark new Edvard Munch Museum which, as you’d expect, has the world’s largest collection of works by the iconic Norwegian artist.
Or, if there’s enough daylight left, you could even jump on the metro from Central station. A short 20-minute ride is all it takes to bring you to the edge of a tranquil alpine forest that overlooks the city.
Checking out of your hotel in Oslo after breakfast marks the end of your travels with us.
You’ve sailed on The North Cape Express, exploring Norway’s coastal cities and villages all the way to the top of the European continent. During the journey, you’ll have experienced Norway’s varied climate, seen majestic mountains and fjords, and hopefully gazed up in awe at the Northern Lights once or several times.
We hope you’ll cherish each of the memories of The North Cape Express that you’ll take home with you. Come sail with us again soon on another iconic voyage of our spectacular home: the Norwegian coast
Oslo - Explore the Norwegian capital
Flåm - catch the iconic Flåm Railway and cruise on the UNESCO listed Nærøyfjord
Bergen - see the UNESCO heritage listed Bryggen
Lofoten - explore the stunning Lofoten Islands and surrounding communities
Tromsø - see the cosmopolitan hub of the Arctic Circle
Honningsvåg - stand on top of the world at North Cape
Ålesund - Explore the Art Nouveau city
Experience a premium voyage aboard the newly refurbished MS Trollfjord. The style of décor is classic, timeless, and unique within the Hurtigruten coastal fleet. Details and flourishes evoke a sense of nostalgia, harking back to a golden era of exclusive small-ship sailing. Onboard facilities include fjord-to-fork Norway’s Coastal Kitchen concept, Hurtigruten’s first ever Show Kitchen where talented chefs impart their culinary skills and prepare tastings for you to enjoy, luxurious cabins to retreat to and so much more. Throughout your voyage aboard MS Trollfjord, you’ll be accompanied by local knowledge and expertise from the Hurtigruten Coastal Experience team.
For detailed information on your ship, click HERE.
Personal Questionnaire - This form must be received by Hurtigruten at least 8 weeks prior to your voyage departure.
Medical Certificate - If applicable, the cruise Medical Certificate is to be completed and approved by your personal physician not more than 8 weeks before your departure date. The completed forms must be presented to the ship’s doctor upon boarding. Boarding will be denied if part III of the Medical Certificate is not approved by your personal physician. Even if the forms have been duly submitted and approved by your personal physician, the ship’s doctor and the captain reserve the right to deny the boarding of guests who do not seem to be sufficiently fit for travel.
Inspiring Vacations has been globally recognized and awarded for its handling of COVID-19 during the pandemic. The safety and well-being of our guests are our highest concern during this time of uncertainty, and we are continuously monitoring the evolving COVID-19 situation.
We have adopted the advice of the WHO to ensure all customers can travel with the knowledge of how to travel safely and with confidence.
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We are proudly 100% Australian-owned and now operating across Australia, New Zealand, the United States, and Canada. Our head office is located in Melbourne, Victoria, with offices around the globe to provide you with 24/7 support while you travel. When you book with Inspiring Vacations, you'll receive the support of travel professionals who are committed to the mission of inspiring people everywhere to experience the world.
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Due to COVID there maybe disruptions to standard operating schedules of particular components of this itinerary. Should a component be effected a substitute will be confirmed prior to departure.
While the tour itinerary should give you some guidance and overview to the expected requirements, to determine if this tour is right for you we categorise each of our tours in terms of their intensity. These guidelines are to ensure that each tour group is conducted as expected and to ensure the overall satisfaction of all Inspiring Vacations customers.
As a general rule, porterage is not included, therefore at all times you are expected to handle your own luggage where help may not be available.
This particular tour is categorised as a ”Leisurely”
Leisurely Paced Tour: This itinerary will be conducted at a relaxed pace. You will typically spend several nights at one location which means less time spent packing and unpacking, and more sightseeing. You will be required to move about unassisted, including getting on and off vehicles, walking up and down stairs and handling your own luggage.
A friendly reminder that tipping is not included in your package. While tipping is not customary, it's of great significance to the people who will take care of you during your travels, inspires excellent service, and is an entrenched feature of the tourism industry across many destinations.
You may also consider tipping your tour leader and driver for outstanding service throughout your trip. Remember, a tip is not compulsory and should only be given when you receive excellent service.
The accommodation listed is subject to change. Any changes will be of an equal or higher standard. Bedding configurations (double or twin) are requests only. All efforts will be made to meet your preferences, however, any changes are beyond our control.
Single supplement is ₹248,795.00 per person, in addition to the twin-share price.
The total length of the tour in days includes time spent in flight and is subject to change depending on the flight schedule, please refer to the day by day itinerary for the time spent on land.
Travel insurance is recommended to protect yourself against the unexpected. In addition to the support that a policy may provide, you may be asked to present a copy of your travel insurance documentation while traveling.
Visa & Passport information
It is the traveller's responsibility to ensure they have a valid passport. The passport must be valid for a minimum of six months from the intended date of return.
Visas may be required.
Please note that these details are subject to change without notice. We recommend visiting https://www.vfsglobal.com/ for up to date information in terms of entry requirements.
Final documentation including e-tickets and hotel details will be provided approximately 30 days prior to travel.
2-16 people for the land touring. Up to 822 people on the Hurtigruten cruise.
Children must be 5 years old or above and share a room with parents at all times. Children are charged the same price as adults.
To meet the needs of various types of travelers, we choose to operate various types of tours, and depending on your selected package will mean different services are provided throughout your trip. The following descriptions of each tour style we hope will ensure that each traveller has appropriate expectations before they start their travels:
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