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Jostedalsbreen National Park covers an area of 1310 sq. km. The glacier itself covers 487 sq. km of the park, which was founded in 1991. The National Park also has several other larger and smaller glaciers, and the landscape varies from lush valleys to snow covered mountains and Arctic climate.

Jostedalsbreen glacier separates two of the longest fjords in the world, the Sognefjord and the Nordfjord.

The glaciers in the park are "natural laboratories" and can teach us many things about climate, geology and vegetation. The landscape is ever changing, and one of the most eye-catching qualities about Jostedalsbreen National Park are the green, almost turquoise rivers and lakes from the melting glacier ice.

At the heart of the National Park, you will find untouched landscape which can only be reached on foot. In the villages nearby you will see many farms, due to the fertile soil near the glacier. The best way to explore Jostedalsbreen is by taking a glacier walk with an experienced guide.

The many people who visit Jostedalsbreen National Park every year can also enjoy three museums and centres built around the glacier.

Briksdalsbreen glacier

Briksdalsbreen is a glacier arm of Jostedalsbreen, and is set in Briksdal Valley, at the end of Oldedalen Valley.

This famous glacier arm lies in beautiful surroundings between high peaks and roaring waterfalls, dropping 1200 meters into the narrow Briksdal valley below. It is a spectacular sight attracting visitors from all over the world.

In the summer you can either drive your own car, or take the "glacier bus" from Stryn to the Briksdalsbreen mountain lodge. From there, you can either walk approx. 3 km to reach the glacier, or take a "Troll Car", which is a small, open car with a capacity of seven people.

The road to the glacier is surrounded by beautiful scenery along waterfalls and rivers in Briksdalen. On the way, do stop to see the Kleivafossen waterfall - probably one of the most photographed attractions in Norway!

There are many hiking possibilities in Briksdalen valley and Oldedalen valley. The challenging hike to Mt Kattanakken starts from the parking lot in Briksdal. From the top you will see the glacier in all its glory far down below. If you want to try a guided glacier hike, though, you have to go to Tystigbreen glacier.


Nigardsbreen is one of the most accessible branches of the glacier Jostedalsbreen and it is situated in Luster municipality. You can get close to the blue ice on your own via a short boat trip or you can walk on top of the ice with a certified guide.

The name Nigard is derived from the farm by the same name. In 1748 the farm was shattered off the glacier when it grew approximately three kilometres from 1700 – 1748. The glacier finally stopped expanding 4.5 kilometres from where its edge is today.

To get here you can drive your own car: drive towards Breheimsenteret visitor centre by following Road RV 55 and take off at Gaupne. Continue along Jostedalen to Nigardsbreen. Or you can take the bus: There is a daily bus from Sogndal to the visitor centre from the end of June to end of August.

Guided hikes on the glacier

Several companies offer guided tours on the glacier every day during summer. You do not need to be experienced to participate and most of the tours are not too challenging. In the main season you need to book at least a whole day in advance.

The branches of the Jostedalsbreen glacier

It is possible to get to the glacier Jostedalsbreen from different directions and starting points, as the area of the glacier is large and has several branches.

Glacier branches in the area of Stryn and Nordfjord

  • The Kjenndalen glacier lays at the end of Lodalen valley, 17 km from Loen and a 15-minute walk from the Jostedal Glacier's lowest glacier arm.
  • The Bødalsbreen glacier is situated in the valley of Lodalen. Drive towards Bødalen and Bødalssetra.
  • The Brenndalsbreen glacier is an arm of the great Jostedalsbreen Glacier and is situated in a side valley in Oldedalen.

Glacier branches in the area of the Sognefjord

  • The Austdalsbreen glacier is a North-Eastern outlet from Jostedalsbreen. The glacier is east facing and ranges in height from 1200 to 1760 metres above sea level.
  • The Bergset glacier, only an hour's easy walk from the road and is one of the most beautiful and impressing glacier arms.
  • The Bøyabreen glacier is one of the most spectacular of the glacier branches. You can see this glacier at quite close range from the main road in the village of Fjærland.
  • The Flatbreen glacier can be seen from the fjord and can be reached on foot. The beautiful walk up to the glacier and the Flatbrehytta cabin takes about three hours.
  • The Fresvik glacier is a glacier on the south side of Sognefjord in Vik, Sogn og Fjordane. Close to the village of Fresvik, it lies between the valley of Setjedalen in the west, and the valley Storedalen in the east.
  • The Nigards glacier is one of the most accessible glaciers and everyone above the age of five can join guided glacier walks.
  • The Tunsbergdalsbreen glacier is the longest glacier arm in Norway, situated 500 metres above sea level of Leirdalen, which is a side valley to Jostedalen valley.

Please note: It is highly dangerous to go close to the glacier and everyone must respect barriers and warnings. The glacier moves and there can be avalanches.