Posted on

A Spectacular Train Journey Through Norwegian Nature

“All aboard” the conductor shouts. He makes sure no one is entering or exiting the train, then he blows a whistle and leaps onto the stairs and enters the front carriage. The train starts moving, slowly but surely. We are now leaving Myrdal station, a station in an empty village 866 metres above mean sea level. Right next to the station is a tunnel, the first of many. We enter it, and after a few minutes, we are out. Then we already see why Flåmbanen is considered one of the world’s most beautiful train journeys.

The train tracks curve through the mountains and valleys. It is late summer, so the trees and fields are still vibrant green. And it has rained for a few days, so the waterfalls are spitting out tonnes upon tonnes of water. In an hour we will be at Flåm, a town almost at sea level, so the descend will be steep. We pass deep valleys, tall mountains, large waterfalls, and small houses and cabins along the way. Each carriage is fitted with two monitors showing facts about the line and its history, and over the speaker system it is announced every time we pass a great view or landmark.

“You’ve heard the saying; The journey is the destination, right? Well, this has to be where they invented that saying.

Overheard conversation between British tourists

Some call the Flåm Railway “the 20-line” because a recurring number in the Flåm Railway’s history is 20.
The line is 20 kilometres long, featuring 20 tunnels. It took 20 years to build, with 120 to 220 workers working shifts day and night. To top it off, the construction cost 20 million Norwegian kroner. During the late 1800s the planning of a railway between Norway’s two largest cities, Oslo and Bergen started. Included in the comprehensive plan was two short branch lines, one to each of Norway’s largest fjords, Sognefjord and Hardangerfjord. Flåm is located relatively far into Norway’s largest and deepest fjord, Sognefjord, as well as close to Myrdal and where the line was planned to go. Thus making it the obvious choice for a connected branch station. The Flåm Railway was for long used mainly for passenger transport corresponding with the Bergen Line. Although they are still corresponding, today the Flåm Railway is mostly a tourist attraction rather than a key transportation method. In the last few years, the Flåm Railways has seen up to a million passengers a year.

The train is fairly empty today. Except what seems to be two locals, everyone spends most of the time enjoying the view or capturing the moment with cameras in different sizes. Two of the people making a digital memory of the ride is Hansi and his friend Fynn, two german tourists taking a detour on their way from Bergen to Oslo. They are train enthusiasts and have interrailed all across Europe. Just halfway through the ride Hansi is sure that the Flåm Railway is a good contestant to become his favourite train line.

“This is not just a journey, it is an experience”

Hansi, German Tourist

Interesting read? Here at Nuet, we publish weekly blog posts about everything Scandinavian. Read other interesting posts at and follow our Instagram @nuetaquavit to get instant updates on new posts straight to your feed.

Posted on

Secret Cabins

A secret cabin is a shelter that at some point in its history has been kept hidden from someone. These hidden shelters can be found across the deep forests and vast mountains all over the country. Wanderers, hunters, gatherers, fishermen, refugees, tramps, and resistance fighters, have all built in places where none else walks. Some of them have become known to the public, like the one in Northern Norway we visited this summer, but others are so hidden that almost none knows about them, and probably never will. 

Inge Wegge and Jørn Nyseth Ranum spent nine months in an unhabitable and isolated bay above the arctic circle to surf some of the greatest waves in the world. They built their cabin out of driftwood and other cast-off materials that washed up on the secluded shore, while they ate expired food the stores would otherwise throw away.

While their primary goal was to catch amazing surf, they experienced one of the most mystical and secretive traits about Norwegian culture. The following words can be found hanging in their abandoned shelter in Lofoten: 

«We are two guys who brought our surfboards, turned off our cellphones and walked out here in September 2010. We lived here one winter to follow a dream: surfing, and live a simple simple. We gathered drift wood, bottles for insulation and rocks, -everything from this beach, and made an environmentally friendly home. It was a cold winter with lots of storms, but the fireplace made out of an oil barrel kept us warm. We truly lived by the saying: «Rich life – simple means»! You are welcome to use everything here, and we hope you enjoy and respect it. Want to do your share? Pick up some garbage, chop som wood, enjoy the silence.»

Inge Wegge and Jørn Nyseth Ranum

“We lived here one winter to follow a dream:
surf, and live a simple life.”

Inge Wegge and Jørn Nyseth Ranum made a film about their experience.

Read more about Scandinavian nature and outdoors here at and follow us on Instagram at @nuetaquavit to get instant updates on new posts.