The Classic Roundtrip Voyage
As we follow our scenic route and cruise Norways coastline, most of the ports we visit by night northbound are revisited by day southbound, allowing you to discover majestic fjords, mountains, cosmopolitan cities, market towns, and isolated hamlets.
Remember you also have our full range of more than 70 optional seasonal excursions to tailor each day of your journey the way you want.
DAY 1 : Bergen
Your voyage starts inBergen, the second largest city in Norway and gateway to the fjords. Founded in 1070 AD, Bergen boasts architecture influenced by prosperous 14th century German trading organisation, the Hanseatic League.
If youve time before your ship departs, visit the UNESCO-listed wharfs of the colourfulBryggendistrict, now an artisan quarter complete with cobblestone streets. Just across the street is the famousFish Marketwhich serves delicious seafood. Theres also theFlibanen funicularwhich whisks you up MountFlyenfor lovely views of the city.
To get the most out of your visit to Norway, dont forget that we can also help you to arrange tours before or after your voyage, such as theNorway in a Nutshellprogramme.
Your voyage begins
Before boarding, you can relax in our comfortableguest loungeat the terminal. Once aboard, enjoy the first of many delicious meals made from fresh coastal produce as we depart Bergen and sail the old Viking route along Hjeltefjord.
Youll also meet your shipsCoastal Expertswho will be your guides as we cruise Norways coastline, organising lectures, onboard activities, and optional hikes.
DAY 2 : Flor – Molde
Iconic Architecture and Fantastic Fjords
Enjoy early morning in the breathtaking Nordfjord near Torvik. We then sail past West Cape for our approach to lesund.
Art Nouveau city
lesundis renowned for its beautifulArt Nouveau architectureand Atlanterhavsparken, one of Northern Europes largest saltwater aquariums. If youre travelling with us in spring or winter, youll have most of the day to explore this picturesque town.
Into the fjords
In the summer, we set our course for thespectacular UNESCO-listedGeirangerfjord, passing some of the most magnificent scenery Norway has to offer. Once in the fjord, you might get to see the famous Seven Sisters waterfalls cascading down the cliffs.
In autumn, we exploreHjrundfjord, hidden away in the Sunnmre Alps. Therell also be a call at the scenic village of Urke to gaze at the view of thousand-year-old farms, the fjord, and the lush mountainsides.
Mountains and roses
The last port of the day isMolde. In summer, there might just be enough daylight to see the amazing view of 222 mountain peaks across the fjord, called theMolde Panorama.
From mid-June to late August, the streets and gardens here will be adorned with the sight and scent of roses of all shades, living up to Moldes nickname as The City of Roses.
DAY 3 : Kristiansund – Rrvik
City of Kings and Palaces
This section of the voyage lets us enter the Trndelag region of Norway, marked by crumpled hills, fields dotted with farmsteads, and low-loying coastal settlements.
Magical, medieval, and modern
Founded by Viking king Olav Tryggvason in 997,Trondheimtoday is Norways third largest city and a mix of historic buildings and a buzzing student population.
Youll have three hours to explore Trondheim and its array of highlights, either by yourself or on one of the optional excursions we offer.
A must-see site of the city isNidaros Cathedral, nicknamed Norways Notre Dame for its Gothic style and considered the most sacred building in all of Norway. Next door to the cathedral is theArchbishops Palacewhere Norways crown jewels are on display.
Nearby, the old city bridgeGamle Bybrosits over Nid River, marking the entrance to the old Hanseatic district ofBakklandet. The neighbourhoods colourful wooden wharves propped up on stilts by the rivers edge now house trendy eateries. Up from Bakklandet isKristiansten Fortwhich affords beautiful panoramas of the city and fjord.
Back on board
In the afternoon, the ship sails northwest, passing the ochre-colouredKjeungskjr Lighthouse, islets, and rocky reefs. After that, we head towards charmingRrvik.
DAY 4 : Brnnysund – Svolvr
Into the Arctic
We cross theArctic Circleearly in the morning, beginning your Arctic tour of Norway. We mark the moment with a traditional ceremony thats sure to wake you up!
Above the Arctic Circle, you can see the sun 24 hours a day in summer, while in winter, your chances of seeing theNorthern Lightsgreatly improve.
Forces of nature
At 10am, we call intornes, near to Norways second-largest glacier,Svartisen. The pier here is popular for theLove Benchwhere sweethearts have declared their lasting romance with a padlock.
We then sailtoBod, the second largest city in Northern Norway, overlooked by the Brvass peaks. Admire fabulous street art or join an optional boat excursion toSaltstraumen, the worlds most powerful maelstrom.
Welcome to Lofoten
That afternoon, the ship enters the Lofoten archipelago. The 1,000 metre-highLofoten Wallis a stunning sight on the horizon, as if there to welcome us.
Stamsundis home to one of the largest fishing fleets in the islands and busiest between January and April when Arctic cod, known locally asskrei, swim from the Barents Sea in the north down to Vestfjord to spawn.
Come evening, when you see rows of traditional fishermans huts on stilts, known asrorbuer, youve arrived in the pretty harbour ofSvolvr, the main town of the Lofoten Islands.
DAY 5 : Stokmarknes – Skjervy
Capital of the Arctic
We dock intoHarstadjust after 7am. You can go for a peaceful early morning stroll around town.
The ship will then continue toFinnsneswhich connects the beautiful island of Senja via the impressive Gisund Bridge.
Keep on the lookout for a variety of seabirds with several colonies nearby, including puffins. Whales can also be spotted in the waters here, especially during the winter season.
Gateway to the Arctic
We then sail to the historic Arctic exploration capital ofTromswhere youll have four hours to explore the city or join an optional excursion.
Youll findPolaria, the worlds northernmost aquarium, o the waterfront. Take your pick from the many shops and restaurants in the city centre, includingMack Breweryand favourite local watering holelhallen pub. There are also trendy cafs plying delicious cinnamon buns and where baristas create innovative coffee art. Across the fjord from where the ship docks, you should be able to see the iconicArctic Cathedralwith its beautiful stained-glass mosaic.
Leaving Troms in the early evening, we head north for the trading post ofSkjervy, founded in 1622. On our way, well pass theLyngen Alpswhich rise majestically from the sea.
DAY 6 : ksfjord – Berlevg
Norways Northern Frontier
The ship reaches the town ofHammerfeston the island of Kvalya early in the morning. In summer, the island has herds ofreindeermigrating here in their thousands.
Youll know weve reachedHavysundwhen you see the wind turbines of the landmarkHavyglaven wind farmwhich produces enough electricity to power 6,000 local homes.
At the top of Europe
We arrive at Honningsvg mid-morning, portal to theNorth Capewhere a globe monument marks the top of continental Europe. The optional excursion up to the dramatic promontory is very popular, so youll want to book early.
Near the entrance ofKjllefjordvillage, look out for the striking, building-like rock formationFinnkirka, an ancient sacrificial site once used by the indigenous Smi. You can join an optional excursion to meet local Smi, learn about their life reindeer herding, and listen tojoikfolk songs.
We reach our northernmost port of call,Mehamn, in the evening. If visiting in the months of February and March, you might spot tons of cod drying on outdoor wooden racks calledhjell, mainly destined for export.
The ship then sets off forBerlevg. On the way, we pass the tallSlettnes Lighthouse, the northernmost mainland lighthouse on Earth.
DAY 7 : Btsfjord – Berlevg
We call at Btsfjord and Vard in the night, before docking at Vads early in the morning.
Looking to the skies
The area aroundVadsis one of the most scenic and popularbirdwatchingspots in the Arctic, lying directly under the migration path of birds flying from east to west. Watch for hooded crows and sea eagles.
Journeys turning point
Kirkenes is where your Norwegian coastal cruise changes direction and the ship heads south. Several of the places we sailed to during the night well now see during the day.
Back inVard, you can visit the solemnWitches Monumentand the star-shapedVardhus Fortress, built in 1737. The northernmost fortification of any kind, it remains a part of the military to this day.
We return to the small, bustling port ofBtsfjordand then make for Berlevg for late evening, crossing paths with the northbound ship.
DAY 8 : Mehamn – Troms
From the Top of Europe
We make stops atMehamnandKjllefjordduring the night before early morning visits toHonningsvgandHavysund.
Almost the northernmost
In the early afternoon, youll spend time inHammerfest, once the northernmost town in the world until Longyearbyen in Svalbard claimed the title.
Check out the UNESCO-listedMeridian Column, shop for souvenirs at thePolar Bear Society, or take the path behind the town to the viewpoint onMount Salen.
Mountains and marine mammals
We continue cruising Norways coastline south toksfjordand then toSkjervy, surrounded by mountain peaks. Weve been docking at this vital fishing port since 1896.
If youre visiting in winter, you might spot orcas and humpbackwhalesthat gather here to feed on herring.
As we make our way toTroms, you might also glimpse views of theLyngen Alpswhich boast some of the highest peaks in all of Norway.
We dock at Troms just before midnight. In the summer months, you can stroll around the still busy city in glorious 24-hour daylight.
There are also optional excursions for a midnightboat ridearound the city or a candlelit classicalconcert at the Arctic Cathedral.
DAY 9 : Troms – Stamsund
High Peaks and Idyllic Islands
Today, youll be exploring the archipelagos ofLofoten and Vesterlen, real highlights of our Norway scenic route.
AfterFinnsnesearly in the morning, the ship calls atHarstadwhere the white-washedTrondenes Church, the worlds northernmost medieval stone church, sits on the peninsula.
Next is our smallest port of callRisyhamnand thenSortlandwhere the landscape slowly transforms from hills to 1,000-metre-high mountains.
Stokmarknesis where Captain Richard With began The Coastal Express in 1893. VisitHurtigrutemuseet, a ship-in-a-bottle building that chronicles our legacy, centred around retired ship MS Finnmarken from 1956.
A ship-size fjord
Sailing alongRaftsund, the Captain may choose to take the ship into tinyTrollfjord. The mountain walls will look so close youll think you can reach out and brush them! To exit the fjord, the ship will rotate 180 degrees on the spot, then sail back out. Remember to look out forsea eagleshere too.
We reachSvolvrin the evening. The huge mountain that sits above the town is named theSvolvr Goatdue to its supposed resemblance. See if you agree!
The ship then sails forStamsund, eventually passing the giant granite cliffs of theLofoten Wall.
DAY 10 : Bod – Rrvik
A Landscape of Trolls
The ship calls atBodin the small hours of the morning and thenrnesat 7am. We then cross over theArcticCirclejust after breakfast. Commemorate the moment with a tradition of tasting a spoonful of good ol cod liver oil!
We make a short stop atNesnabefore sailing on toSandnessjen, gateway to the magnificentHelgeland Coast.
Legend has it
Admire the stunning landscape of theSeven Sisters mountain range, with peaks up to 1,100m high. The tale goes that seven beautiful troll princesses, fleeing from an unwanted suitor, got caught out as the sun rose, turning them into the seven beautiful mountains you see today.
Youll also not want to miss views ofTorghatten Mountain, with the distinctive hole in it. There is a local legend as to why and how this mountain came to have such a hole. Make sure you ask your Coastal Expert about it!
We reachBrnnysundmid-afternoon. Explore the bustling marina on a walk alongHavnegata. In the centre of town isBrnny Church: a stone church in the Neo-Gothic style dating back to 1870.
Our last stop of the day is the cosy fishing port ofRrvikin the picturesqueVikna archipelago.
DAY 11 : Trondheim – lesund
Coastal Communities and Klippfisk
Spend the morning in Trondheim, then sail past beautiful island scenery and some of Norways smallest communities before exploring Kristiansund and Molde.
Capital of the Viking Age
Stroll aroundTrondheimin the early morning as the city wakes. Visit the sacredNidaros Cathedral, resting place of St. Olav. Then, walk toGamle Bybrobridge for a photo opportunity overNid River.
Treat yourself to quality coffee and a Nordic patisserie in one of theBakklandetdistricts many chic cafs then walk up toKristiansten Fortfor great views of Norways third largest city.
Dealing in dried cod
We dock atKristiansundsharbour in the late afternoon. The town is spread over three islands and known for being Norways Bacalao Capital for the salted cod thats dried on the surrounding cliffs, calledklippfiskin Norwegian.
Take a walk around the cobblestone streets of the old town and tour the lively port. You can also head up to the old watchtower atVarden viewpointfor a lovely panorama.
Peaks and petals
The penultimate port of the day isMoldewhere you can spot the tops of theRomsdal Alps. Nicknamed The City of Roses, flowers should be in bloom between mid-June and late August.
DAY 12 : lesund – Bergen
Until Next Time
Our Norwegian coastal cruise together, at least this time, will reach its end later today. During the previous night, well call atlesundandTorvik. On our approach toMly, you might catch a glimpse of the northbound Coastal Express if youre up early enough.
Youll have a chance to glimpseNordfjord, under the enormousJostedal Glacier, mainland Europes largest.
The ship then docks atFlorin the morning where you can take in the harbour and marina.
The home stretch
Leaving Flor, youll spotStabben Lighthouse, a favourite subject for photographers. Theres also stunning views to enjoy as we cross the mouth ofSognefjord, the longest and widest fjord in the whole of Norway.
As we reach our final port in the afternoon, the ship will navigate through the last islands and skerries of our Norway scenic route, and sail downHjeltefjordto arrive into Bergen.
Explore more of Norway
Sadly, its time to say farewell to the Captain, crew, and fellow guests.
But your journey doesnt have to stop after disembarkation. We offer aBergen sightseeing touras well as a range of post-voyage programmes that you can add to your trip, including seeingSognefjordby train or a tour ofOslo.
Included in your voyage
Engaging onboard activities and lectures:
Not included in your voyage