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Thursday, 20 September 2012

Eidfjord, Norway

Welcome back to my blog! I'm now back at home and catching up with the backlog of places to tell you about! Today we go back to Norway with Eidfjord!

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Above: The view of Eidfjord from the ship.

Situated where the Hardangerfjord ends, Eidfjord is at the centre of a region that is sometimes referred to as the orchard of Fjord Norway (Norway’s westernmost region). The mild climate along the 111-mile long Hardangerfjord sees apples, plums, pears and cherries being grown here.

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Above: A meadow on top of a nearby hill with a beautiful circular walk.

The blossom season in May and June is unique: The white, pink and red flowers of the fruit trees practically cover the mountain sides – all the way down to the blue fjord.

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Above: Lake Eidfjordvatnet, a short walk from Eidfjord.

The town itself is fairly small with another settlement further down the valley. A short drive past lake Eidfordvatnet brings you to the Hardangervidda Natursenter (Nature Centre), a building with a turf roof and resident goats!

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Above: Goats on the roof of the Nature Centre. There is a fence to stop them falling off and a small shelter in the centre of the roof.

Eidfjord’s 1000 or so inhabitants have at their doorstep one of Europe's best-known National Parks. Covering 2,500 square miles the Hardangervidda is also Europe's largest mountain plateau. One of Norway’s largest glaciers can be found on the plateau, which is entirely above the tree line.

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Above: The Hardangervidda as seen in May, with the Sysendam on the right of the picture.

Many hikers like to walk across the plateau in summer and there are small hiking cabins available with supplies and basic living quarters for explorers to spend the night!

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Above: On the Hardangervidda!

The Vøringsfossen waterfall has for a long time been Norway’s most visited natural attraction with its fall of 600 feet. Bjoreia, the small river that flows into Vøringfossen, has a hydroelectric dam in the Sysendalen valley above the falls, reducing the flow of water (see previous picture). In summer, the flow is increased to 12 m3/s, above its natural rate, not least to benefit the tourist trade.

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Above: Vøringsfossen waterfall. On my second visit to the falls with my family, you could not see the falls due to the cloud!

Thanks for reading! More Norway coming soon.

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