A Closer Look at Trollstigen
This serpentine stretch of road 63 in Møre og Romsdal county is Norway’s most visited tourist road with 2,500 vehicles passing precariously every day during peak season.
Historically, Trollstigen used to be an important transport passage between the villages Valldal in Indre Sunnmøre and Åndalsnes in Romsdalen. When the road opened in 1939, after 8 years of construction, it wasn’t long before Trollstigen became a tourist attraction. Trollstigen is closed during late autumn and winter. A normal operating season stretches from mid-May to October, but may sometimes be shorter or longer due to weather conditions.
The road is now one of Norway’s 18 National tourist roads and is an engineering masterpiece and a modern wonder to behold. Some sections are carved into the mountainside itself whilst others are supported by gargantuan stone walls creating space out of thin air.
The eleven magnificent hairpin bends offer jaw-dropping and sometimes heart-stopping views at every turn, your head feels like it’s on a swivel as you battle to take it all in. Each bend has its own name, often after the person who supervised the construction work on that particular section.
Trollstigen is surrounded by mighty mountains that reach an altitude of over 1600 meters. To the west of the road lie the mountains of Bispen (1450 m), Kongen (1614 m) and Dronninga (1701 m), to the east of the road Stigbottshornet (1583 m) and the Storgrovfjellet (1629 m). There is a restored hiking path for those with the lung capacity and the gumption to experience Trollstigen by foot.
There are many campsites in the area with most of them well placed for stunning views from your sleeping bags. There are also some choice hotels worth checking out too. In Geiranger, Hotel Utsikten is beautifully situated on a mountain slope overlooking Geirangerfjord, with magnificent views and only ten minutes drive from Ørnesvingen.
Valldal Hotel is located just a few meters from the shoreline and boasts breathtaking views of fjords and mountains. The area is ideal for mountain hiking, as well as kayaking or relaxing boat trips on the fjord.
The award-winning architecture at Hotel Juvet offers something truly unique. Seven small cubes on stilts, with glass walls that offer each space a striking view of the valley, the river, the courtyard or the dramatic river below. Through careful orientation, every room gets its own exclusive view changing with the season, the weather, and the time of day. No room looks into another so the rooms are experienced as private even though curtains are not an option.