If you know where to look, the gems are not difficult to find. The adventurous will find exciting caves, perfect surfing waves and lush gardens – all it takes is a little detour off the beaten track. Make unique summer memories and enjoy the nooks and crannies of Sunnmøre, Romsdalen and Nordmøre. Start off in Ålesund, and finish the trip in Kristiansund.
Ålesund – Syvde, 90 km, 2 ferries, 2 h 30 min.
Start off in Ålesund and head south. In the southern part of Sunnmøre, in Vanylven municipality, you will find Syvde. This village is still called ‘Kosterikjet’ by the locals, an expression dating back to the time when the locals made brooms out of birch, which they sold to the people on the islands.
If you love mountains and suffer from ‘summit fever’, you’ll have lots of opportunities in this area. Sign up for a three-day tailored trip including a summit tour, a trip on the fjord and a farm visit. You can also hire a guide of your own.
Take a 15-minute drive to Rovde, where you have the chance to abseil down a cliff with a beautiful view over the Syvdefjord. This trip starts with a moderately challenging climb of about 20 to 30 minutes. Equipment and instructions are provided before you descend the 16-metre cliff. The trip is suitable for both families and larger groups.
Would you like to try a different kind of nature experience? Only an hour’s drive from Syvde, you’ll find the cave Dollsteinhola on the island of Sandsøya. The 180-metre-long cave, which is steeped in legend, is one of the most curious caves in Norway. It’s definitely worth the detour!
Syvde –Tafjord, 158 km, 2 ferries, 3 h 30 min.
Tafjord is heaven for both kayakers and summit tour enthusiasts. If you want to spend lazy (or active?) days, you’ll have absolutely no problem filling them here. Try your luck at fishing in the mountains of Tafjord. With a fishing permit in your pocket, you’re allowed to cast your rod in all the lakes and rivers in this 150 km² area.
A bit further up in the valley lies the Zakarias dam, a 96-metre-high concrete dam. You can drive all the way up to the dam, which was built in the 1960s and represented one of the biggest encroachments in the natural environment in Møre og Romsdal. Three farms were flooded during the construction of the dam. The dam can hold 70 million cubic metres of water and is used for producing electric power. It is possible to walk on top of the dam, which is still a very impressive sight.
In these mountains, you’ll find an extensive network of paths and 14 cabins run by the Norwegian Trekking Association, such as Reindalseter, Fieldfarehytta and Danskehytta, all equipped with beds and provisions so you’ll have everything you need for a pleasant stay in the area. Several of these cabins were important hiding places during World War II, and will give you a taste of the history of the resistance movement in this county.
You can also visit the Hydropower and Landslide Visitor Centre with its exhibitions and information on landslides and rock falls, which also monitors geological activity in the area. Here you can climb a 12-metre-high climbing wall, try abseiling or a 20-metre-long tube slide.
Tafjord – Eresfjord, 145 km, 2 h 30 min.
In the cycling village of Eresfjord, more than one hundred colourful bicycles await you, scattered across the village, with its beautiful scenery, towering mountains and charming village life. You can start the day by going for a walk or hunting in the mountains, and end it at sunset with a fishing rod in your hand beside the fjord or the river Eira.
If you enjoy cycling, you have many options, both on tarmac and off-road. Kurt Asle Arvesen, who is one of Norway’s most high-profile professional cyclists and from the area himself, has four hot tips if you want to do some cycling.
During summer, this village is the perfect starting point for a kayaking trip, but it is also a favourite area for base jumping. Goksøyra is many locals’ and visitors’ favourite mountain. From the top, at a dizzying 1,315 metres above sea level, you can look straight down the almost vertical cliff. You can see all the way to Eikesdalsvatnet lake, to the Øksendalfjellene mountains, to Eresfjord and the Romsdalsfjellene mountains and finally to the Atlantic Ocean on the horizon. In winter, the area is heaven for skiers who love to climb summits on skis. The summits of Ågottind and Trolltind are both magnificent, with fantastic views over the Romsdalen area.
Eresfjord – Eikesdal, 26 km, 30 min.
Wonderful Eikesdal is a hidden gem half an hour’s drive further up the valley from Eresfjord. Here you’ll find the Eikesdalsvatnet lake, surrounded by impressive mountains that will make many hikers’ feet twitch.
Eikesdal is a popular destination in winter, for both mountain hikes and summit tours. The mountain Katthammaren at 1,260 metres above sea level is well-known among base jumpers. They come from Norway and abroad, and make their way up before taking the shortcut down through the air. This is also a great destination for those with only a thermos flask and biscuits in their rucksack. Once you’ve reached the summit, make a small detour north and climb the last metres up to 1,276 metres above sea level to enjoy the magnificent view of the northern shore of the lake in the valley down below.
The Mardalsfossen waterfall at the end of the Eikesdalen valley is also definitely worth a mention, plunging 657 metres, making it the world’s fourth highest free-falling waterfall. The new road leading up to the waterfall is adapted for both wheelchairs and prams. If you’ve brought rainwear, walk just past the end of the path and enjoy a truly refreshing experience!
If you want a more relaxing experience of the village, you can hire MS Mardøla for an unforgettable cruise on the Eikesdalsvatnet lake. This trip is only available for charter and is tailored to individual wishes. Duration: 1.5 to 5 hours.
Eikesdal – Svinvik, 117 km, 1 ferry, 2 h 15 min.
Svinvik in Nordmøre is only 15 minutes from Kvanne ferry quay. Enjoy quiet days in lush surroundings and really wind down.
Visit the Svinvik arboretum, with its rich collection of plants and, above all, its marvellous collection of rhododendrons. The magnificent spring flowering is an incredible experience. The garden with its exotic collection and lovely walking trails attracts visitors all through the summer. We can also recommend ‘Svinvikrunden’, a lovely round trip of 4.5 km on the old roads to the Todalen valley.
For a culinary experience out of the ordinary, stop at the farm restaurant at Svinvik Gard. The produce is local and you never know in advance exactly what you’ll be served. The menu is seasonal and depends on the produce available on the day of your visit. All its dishes are however made from fresh, local produce.
Svinvik – Veiholmen, 144 km, 2 ferries, 3 h 10 min.
Veiholmen is the biggest fishing village south of Lofoten. The road to Veiholmen crosses bridges, rock-fills and protective breakwaters and makes for a fantastic journey in itself.
Today, the village has around 300 inhabitants who make a living from fishing and tourism on this little island, or ‘the skerry’, as the locals call it. With its mix of old and new houses scattered around in huddled clusters, and several small museums and galleries, the village is a popular destination. Veiholmen also has several nice restaurants and bars with a maritime theme.
If you want to experience Veiholmen from the sea, kayaking courses, kayak hire and guided daytime or evening kayaking trips are available during the summer. Although it is situated out in the ocean, Veiholmen is well protected by islets and skerries, which makes it perfect for sea kayaking. Here on the inside of the archipelago, the waves are at a safe distance, making the area perfect for beginners and children. Once you’ve gained some confidence, you can venture a bit further out towards the ocean. Maybe you should try GPS-assisted kayaking? You can pick your own deserted spot to enjoy your picnic from among 6,000 islets and skerries.
Veiholmen – Kristiansund, 80 km, 2 ferries, 2 h 25 min.
After a visit to Veiholmen, we recommend finishing your trip in Kristiansund, where you’ll quickly realise that you’re in a city of culture. The opera, klipfish and the Sundbåten ferry are three things you shouldn’t miss in Kristiansund.
The local tourist offices can give you good and useful information.