Sitting at the end of Aurlandsfjord, a branch of the vast Sognefjord, Flåm is another village in southwestern Norway that is famed for its fjords. The tiny village, home to just 350 inhabitants, is known for its unique mountain railway, which offers unrivalled views of valleys and waterfalls as it climbs to a station on the Hardangervidda plateau. Cruise passengers visiting Flåm on a Norwegian fjords sailing can expect some of the world’s most spectacular and dramatic scenery.
Why cruise Flåm
The fairytale village of Flåm is in the innermost sidearm of the world’s deepest and second-longest fjord, the 1,308m deep Sognefjord. Nature lovers are in their element in Flam, which boasts towering mountain cliffs, cascading waterfalls and narrow valleys, all of which can be enjoyed either by boat, scenic rail or hiking trail.
What to see and do in Flam
By far the most popular attraction in Flåm is its famous mountain railway. Located a few minutes from the harbour, the Flåm Railway follows a picturesque route through the beautiful valley to the Myrdal Mountains, an elevation of up to 2,841ft above sea level. The majority of cruise lines which sail to Flåm – including P&O Cruises, Royal Caribbean and Norwegian Cruise Line – will offer this as an excursion and to avoid disappointment, make sure you book your ticket with your operator as soon as you get on board.
Another popular and worthwhile excursion (particularly if you miss out on the train ride) is a cruise up Næroyfjord. The 11-mile long Unesco-listed fjord, another branch of the large Sognefjord, is burrowed between towering, majestic cliffs and in some parts is just 1,600ft wide, which is why only small ships can make this scenic journey past cascading waterfalls and picturesque farms. MSC Cruises offers this cruise as an excursion, which also includes a bus ride through the narrow Nærøydalen Valley to the Stalheimsfossen and Sivlefossen waterfalls.
If you prefer to stay on dry land, there are plenty of options, too. The historic Lærdal village is made up of heritage buildings dating back to the 18th century. Lærdal is also well-known for its salmon fishing, with the Lærdal River often referred to as ‘Queen of the Salmon Rivers’. Both MSC Cruises and Costa visit Laerdal by coach on an excursion that also includes the world’s longest tunnel at Lærdal, the ‘Snow Road’ back to Flåm, and the historic wooden Borgund stave church.
This spectacular viewpoint overlooking Aurlandsvangen and the Aurlandsfjord is an absolute must on your visit to Flåm. Built in 2006 as part of a project to promote national tourist trails, the steel and laminated pine platform juts out almost 100 feet from the mountainside, thereby giving visitors a completely unobstructed panorama of the fjord. Costa is one of the many cruise lines that goes to Stegastein Viewpoint on a coach excursion that also includes a tour of the village of Aurland, which can be spied 650 metres below the viewpoint.
Otternes Farm Village
Located just three miles to the north of Flåm, this charming farm village is home to a cluster of 27 houses dating back to the 17th century. Both P&O Cruises and Royal offer to Otternes, which also boasts serene landscapes and lush rolling hills.
Need to know when travelling to Flåm
Getting around in Flåm
Only one cruise ship can dock at the village at a time, while another ship can anchor in the fjord and passengers can be brought over by tenders. The rail station, along with some shops and cafes, are situated close to the quayside.
When to go to Flåm
Late spring is typically the driest in Flåm, but if you value warmer weather, then head there in July.
Flam uses the Norwegian krone.
If you hold a British Citizen passport, you don't need a visa to enter Norway unless you're planning to stay longer than three months.
The pretty village of Flam nestles in the Norwegian Fjords – and it’s within easy reach on a bargain cruise from the UK
Holland America Line Releases 2022 Europe Programme with Amazing Sailings, from the Med to the Atlantic
Celebrity Cruises: Why Sailing From Southampton Has Never Been More Luxurious
Why a Cruise with Holland America Line is the Best Way to See Asia
Meet the Captain: Marella Cruises' Captain John Clarke
The Future's Bright: Why Cruise Will be Back With a Bang in 2021
Oceania Cruises: All-New Destinations, Small Ship Sailings and the Finest Cuisine at Sea
Inside Fred. Olsen Cruise Lines' Two Enticing New Ships – Bolette And Borealis
Carnival Corporation President Arnold Donald Opens Up About the Future of Cruising
Grape Expectations: A Post-Lockdown Bordeaux River Cruise with CroisiEurope
Fred. Olsen Cruise Lines Has Launched An Incredible Cruise Sale With Fares From £599pp
21-Day Baltic & Scandinavia Medley
- 21 nights, departs on the 14 May 2022
- Princess Cruises, Sky Princess
- Southampton, Gdynia, Visby, + 13 more
28-Day Baltic & North Cape Explorer
- 28 nights, departs on the 01 May 2022
- Holland America Line, Volendam
- Rotterdam, Copenhagen, Warnemünde, + 17 more
14-Day Search for the Northern Lights
- 14 nights, departs on the 07 Oct 2022
- Princess Cruises, Island Princess
- Southampton, Stavanger, Tromsø, + 5 more
The Classic Voyage South: Kirkenes to Bergen
- 5 nights, departs on the 29 Jan 2022
- Hurtigruten, MS Richard With
- Kirkenes, Vardø, Båtsfjord, + 30 more