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14th July, 2012



We passed into the Sognefjord in the early hours and continued all the way east to Aurlandsfjord, turning south just before 0600 hours. It was a great run and the last fifteen miles in particular were amongst fantastic mountain scenery. There was the odd touch of blue up above, but for the main we were encased between mountain, fjord and moody cloud that hid the peaks above. As we slowly progressed towards the small quay at Flam there was hardly a breath of air, and the small village seemed to be just in the throes of waking up. Folks in their hotel rooms came out onto their balconies to look as our lines were passed to the shore.

Flam has always been a tourist village and since a branch of the Bergen to Oslo railway was built to connect it with the outside world in 1940 it has been an accessible and regular stop on the tourist trail (well, perhaps not until after 1945). From our bridge the famous Flam Railway station was just a few hundred yards away and the whole vista looks more like a very large model train set, with tracks, buildings and scenery all exactly in place. The majority of our tours took the train up to the main line junction at Myrdal and buses back, some folks however disembarked just before the top and walked down what can only be described as the most picturesque path back down to a lower station to re-board a returning train.


I managed to take a stroll in the afternoon in order to take a few photos of the ship. There is a new path up behind the refurbished Fretheim Hotel allowing an excellent vista of the fjord and our berth. The early summer wild flowers were in bloom and the smell of them filled the air as I followed a few others who obviously had the same idea. It was peaceful reflection and seemed far away from the minor bustle that was going on below, where ferries were coming and going from time to time, busses were lined up waiting for their returning tourists and the station stood empty for a short while before the next train came back down from around the corner.

As we left, the ships whistle was sounded in salute and the hotel guests, a fresh lot perhaps recently arrived, came out to wave us goodbye.

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