ETR // Stage 15 // Geiranger - Lillehammer

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  • Geiranger - Lillehammer

  • Radius 100 km
  • 268 km


  • Geiranger Fjord
  • Lom National Park Village
  • Jotunheimen National Park
  • Galdhøpiggen
  • Jostedalsbreen Glacier
  • Sognefjellet National Tourist Route
  • Smørstabbreen Glacier
© ETR // European Touring Route AS
© ETR // European Touring Route AS
© ETR // European Touring Route AS
© ETR // European Touring Route AS

Over the hills from Geiranger

Reluctantly leaving Geiranger one more time, we head southeast though Geiranger-Herdalen Landskapsvernområde (protected area). Time passes all too quickly inside your helmet on this breathtaking ride over the hills from Geiranger, and before you know it, you're in the cultural history center of Lom.

Lom National Park Village

Lom National Park Village is a well-known cultural history center in Norway, where you can find a magnificent Stave church from 1150, one of the largest in the country. With Lom as your base, you can spend some great days hiking in lush valleys, exploring the variety of lakes and landscapes. The area is an eldorado for nature and outdoor lovers, with countless opportunities for new experiences, activities and challenges, so park the motorcycle for a while and get out into the nature.

© ETR // European Touring Route AS
© ETR // European Touring Route AS
© ETR // European Touring Route AS

Jotunheimen National Park

While you're in the area you could spend some days in and around Jotunheimen National Park. It's a great feeling when Galdhøpiggen, Norway's highest mountain suddenly somes into view, meaning you have arrived at Jotunheimen National Park. The region is an eldorado for great nature experiences with the two highest mountains in Norway; Galdhøpiggen (2469m) and Glittertind (2464m). You will ride through lush, flowering vegetation and experience the magic of the blue glacier, or maybe go hiking for days in the beautiful scenery.

We usually find a good place to set up camp just across from Norway's largest glacier, the Jostedalsbreen Glacier. From here, you can explore the surrounding mountains on foot. Jotunheimen National Park has 24 mountain peaks of over 2,000 metres in height, and is one of the oldest traditional hiking areas in Norway. This rugged mountainscape we had landed in, probably hasn't changed very much since the last ice-age, and some of the surrounding glaciers still contain water and minerals from back then.

© ETR // European Touring Route AS
© ETR // European Touring Route AS
© ETR // European Touring Route AS

Sognefjellet National Tourist Route

Before you rejoin the ETR heading south (or north) you should take a detour along Sognefjellet National Tourist Route, the highest mountain pass in Northern Europe, at 1,434 metres above sea level.

From the top of the Sognefjellet National Tourist Route, you have a great view over towards the Smørstabbreen Glacier with its surrounding mountain range. In some areas, this wild mountainous region seemed completly untouched by humanity, with undisturbed mosses covering the rocks, and mountain trails with no human footprints... until we came to a timber sign, pointing in all directions at once. That looked man-made.

After a few hours wandering around the hills above the lake, we made it back to the campsite, just in time to open a beer and catch a beautiful sunset, which seemed to resonate around the entire area.

We awoke the next morning, refreshed, and surrounded by glaciers and the beautiful nature of Jotunheimen. During the night, something (or a herd of somethings) had tripped over the tent lines, spreading the tent pegs over a wide radius. We managed to find them all, but couldn't figure out what had passed us in the night. Up here, you can find reindeer, foxes, mink, deer, wolverines, elk, lynx and some goats, but not too many types of people. So it must have been animal.

It's a special feeling, when a number of elements combine, to give you a unique and new experience - waking up slowly in this beautiful place, with a freshly brewed coffee in your hand, sitting on an outcrop above the lake, watching the sun's rays as they burn across this barren and windswept landscape, inhaling the fresh air, as you watch the sunlight reflecting off the glaciers, which in turn, are reflecting off the surface of the lake.

A strange contrast to all this tranquility is when the sound of engines from a group of other motorcyclists slowly makes it's way along the Sognefjellet National Tourist Route. It took a long time for them to arrive, waving as they passed by, and an even longer time for them to disappear again. Even when they were out of sight, we could still hear them.

This great piece of road is closed during winter and re-opens around the start of May, when the snow melts. They close it again in late Autumn, depending on how early the Winter arrives. We'll definitely come back some other time, and stay a few extra days, for some climbing and glacier hiking in the Hurrungane mountains. As we rode off, we passed a series of red buildings, scattered around the mountainside - the Turtagrø Mountain Hotel - maybe we'll try that next time?

© ETR // European Touring Route AS


  • Dave O'Byrne

  • European Touring Route AS

  • Intro photo: Visit Norway



  • Gudbrandsdalen War Memorial Museum
  • Peer Gynt Festival
  • Heritage farms in Gudbrandsdalen
  • Ringebu Stave Church
  • Ringebu Rectory
  • Norwegian Automobile and Vehicle Museum
  • Norwegian Road Museum
  • Aulestad
  • Lillehammer Winter Olympic Area
© ETR // European Touring Route AS
© ETR // European Touring Route AS
© ETR // European Touring Route AS
© ETR // European Touring Route AS

Gudbrandsdalen War Memorial Museum

The War Memorial Exhibition at Kvam provides a unique insight into the Second World War and the occupation and defence in Gudbrandsdalen.

Peer Gynt Festival

The Gudbrandsdalen Valley is the home of Peer Gynt, Henrik Ibsen's world-renowned creation. The open-air stage in the World of Peer Gynt, is ideal for performances of the famous play, which is established as part of the Peer Gynt Festival, in July/August every year. The theatre performance on the banks of lake Gålå, is only one of many exciting events, which visitors can enjoy at this traditional festival.

Heritage farms in Gudbrandsdalen

Gardmillom (from farm to farm), an event involving the heritage farms in Gudbrandsdalen, is held towards the end of July. Among the attractions are cultural experiences such as farm visits, barn pubs, walks and activities suitable for the whole family.

Ringebu Stave Church

Ringebu Stave Church was built around 1220, and is one of only 28 remaining stave churches in the country, and one of the largest. In 1980-81, an archaeological excavation was carried out under the stave church, and among the finds, were 900 coins and other artifacts, some of which are on display in the rectory.

Ringebu Rectory

Ringebu Rectory, houses a unique permanent exhibition of works by the artist Jakob Weidemann. The collection comprises 42 paintings. During the period May-September, temporary art exhibitions featuring a variety of artists, are also available.

© ETR // European Touring Route AS
© ETR // European Touring Route AS
© ETR // European Touring Route AS

Norwegian Automobile and Vehicle Museum

The Norwegian Automobile and Vehicle Museum in Lillehammer offers experiences for all the family. You should visit the interactive traffic safety center, where machinery, activities and a play-area for children and adults alike, are situated in a large open-air museum, with pleasant walks in the area. Free entry, with a separate activity program for the Autumn and Winter breaks. The museum also organizes exciting and nostalgic experiences during the weekends in Advent, and the chance to do some Christmas shopping in the museum shop.

The Norwegian Road Museum comprises a display of Norwegian auto-history, from a re-built Oldsmobile, called "Oldsfossum" from the early 1900’s, up to the "Troll", the last Norwegian-produced car, from the 1950s. A number of horse-drawn vehicles are also exhibited: sledges, gigs, carioles and carts. One section has been devoted to the history of the railway, and a model railway is on display. The museum's oldest car is a Wartburg from 1889. It has a 3hp, 2 cylinder, air-cooled combustion engine. A steam driven car from 1901, and an electric car from 1917 are also on display. Many of the vehicles are exhibited in a context showing the roads, petrol stations and workshops of the time, along with their use for work and leisure.

Aulestad - Bjørnstjerne Bjørnson's home

Experience the atmosphere of beautiful Aulestad. The Nobel laureate Bjørnstjerne Bjørnson lived here with his family, from 1875. The home is one of the best preserved artist homes in Norway.

Arriving in Lillehammer, be sure to take a ride around the site of the 1994 Winter Olympics.

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