Climbing up the hills surrounding Balestrand is pretty hard work, but once you get up there, the views are fantastic! Unfortunately, there are just pathetic small signs at the bottom of the path that lead up to the hills and there is absolutely zero info at the village's tourist office and they have no maps or guides to help you get there. Head...more
Following the route on the Balestrand Map (available free at the tourist info), take the descriptive walking tour of town, the "Culture Track". This self-guided two-mile information trail takes anywhere from 20 minutes to an hour, along a lightly-traveled paved road punctuated with benches (some with great fjord views), perfect for a break or...more
The church was built in 1897 by the wife of Knut Kvikne (the famous Kvikne's Hotel family). This devout Englishwoman wanted a church in Balestrand where English services were held. And indeed they still are. During the summer, British clergy hold services here, as the church is part of the Diocese of Gibraltar. It was modeled after the stave...more
Balestrand has been an extremely relaxing experience. Just laze and soak the scenery. There are a whole lot of walking and hiking trails (for the serious outdoor types). All these trails are well marked in English sign posts and enroute the views are enchanting. Biking, Boating, Fishing etc are other options.more
There are some very good hiking opportunities around Balestrand. Hiking trails are color-coded based on difficulty, with red being the most difficult. We took a yellow-colored trail (the second hardest) and felt we got good exercise. The fjord views were excellent -- unfortunately, most of our pictures did not come out very well. Take a look at...more
The family-run Balestrand Hotell operates on a bed & breakfast basis. It is a very cozy, welcoming...more
This family run fjord hotel was one of the first of its kind in Norway. Its luxurious and extremely...more
Kong Belesveg 33, Balestrand, 6898, Norway
Satisfaction: Very Good
Good for: Solo
We had AMAZING fresh fish soup for around 9 EUR / person, hot bread included! Highly recommended!
Favorite Dish: Fish / vegetable soup
The best way to travel to Balestrand is by a speed boat. The operator called "Norled" runs express boats from Bergen to Sogndal (and back) daily throughout the year. On their way from Bergen, the boats call at several villages along the fjord, including Leikanger, Balestrand and Vik. From 1 May to 30 September express boats also run daily from Flåm...more
The most common way to get to or from Balestrand is by express boat. Boats run daily to and from Bergen, more often June-August. Additionally, from June - August, boat service continues to Flåm with connections to Gudvangen sometimes possible. In 2009, 1-way fare from Balestrand to Flåm is NOK 220. 1-way fare from Balestrand to Bergen is NOK 470...more
It may sound funny, but many people don't quite realize that the fjords are fed by melting snow and ice. In fact, my Mother-In-Law relates a childhood story where she and her cousin were visiting Balestrand and thought it would be a nice idea to wash their hair in the fjord. They had quite a surprise!
Seriously, though, hypothermia can be a very real threat in such cold water. Use caution when around the fjord, especially if you're traveling with young children.
Our hotel's owner told us the rule she was told as a child: "If there's still snow on the mountains, don't go in the water." (I'm not even so sure it's such a good idea when the snow's melted, but that's just me...) When in doubt, ask at your hotel, or at the tourist office.