Briksdal glacier is a part of the Jostedal glacier icefield, which is the largest glacier on the European mainland. The highest point of the glacier lies at 1950 m.a.s. and in some places measures 400 metres in depth. Ponytraps are the only authorised form of transport allowed between Briksdalsbre Fjellstove and the glacier.
Norway still shows traces of the Ice Age, when the entire country was covered by ice. Larger and smaller glaciers are found several places in Norway. Norwegian glaciers stretch their white capes across the mountain tops and other large areas, especially towards the west and north. The glacier reflects only blue light. It is quite unique - it is a magical light. Glaciers are beautiful, exciting and impressive. The glaciers grow and shrink, change direction and change shape and color. Even several hundred meter thick ice is in constant motion and the arms of the glacier can grow several hundred meters in only a few years.
Whether you choose to visit the Briksdalsbreen, walk on the Nigardsbreen, or take a look at one of the 24 other glacial arms, you will be guaranteed a breathtaking sight. Glaciers cover over 2600 km2 of Norway´s land area. Divided between a little over 700 glaciers in southern Norway and over 900 in northern Norway. Still over 60% of the glacier covered area is found south of Trondheim.
The largest mainland glacier is the Jostedalsbreen glacier covering an area of 487 km2. The glacier is a part of the Jostedalsbreen National Park and have more than 50 glacier branches. With light playing on the ice and jade green glacial water trickling from beneath them, glaciers are truly spectacular natural phenomena. They can also be the arena for thrilling activities.
Never try glacier walking without being accompanied by an authorized glacier-guide. During the summer period there are guided tours on most of our glaciers. Remember to bring warm clothing, headwear, suitable footwear, gloves and sunglasses!
You can see Bøyabreen at quite close range from the main road in Fjærland.
Glacier walking is an incredible experience, but it also demands alertness, knowledge and equipment. Glaciers are constantly moving. Deep crevasses and gorges can reveal ancient secrets, but they are also dangerous. Guarantee your safety by using authorised instructors, and never venture out onto or near a glacier on your own.
Glacier walking is an exciting option for enthusiasts seeking a different and unconventional holiday. However, it is imperative that one should be accompanied by an experienced local guide.
Please note: The glaciers are in motion, with the following consequences: crevasses, several metres wide and 30 - 40 metres deep, may be present. The crevasses are often covered with snow. There is always danger of ice collapsing even in front of the glacier.
Never go onto a glacier without a local guide. Keep well away from steep glaciers and never venture under any glacier.
It is possible to go for guided walks on several glaciers («breer» in Norwegian).
The following are glacier information centres in Western Norway. These centres offer film viewings, exhibitions, glacier models etc. (Please note these may vary). Situated in the districts where the glaciers are found. Glacier tours with guide are possible.
Oppstryn RV 15.
Tel: +47 57 87 72 00
Fax: +47 57 87 72 01
Fjærland. RV 5
Tel: +47 57 69 32 88
Fax: +47 57 69 32 87
Jostedalen. RV 55 - RV 604
Tel: +47 57 68 32 50
Fax: +47 57 68 32 40
The Svartisen Glacier is Norways second largest. A branch of the Svartisen Glacier is the Engenbreen glacier which streches down towards Holandsfjord. There is a panoramic view from the Svartisen Tourist Centre towards the Glacier on the opposite side of the lake "Engenbrevatnet".
The Jostedal glacier
The largest of them is Jostedals Glacier, which, with its 487 km2, is the largest glacier in continental Europe. The Jostedal glacier has several spectacular branches, or arms, that extend down into the mild valleys close to sea level. It is possible to join guided glacier hikes at both Fjærland and Jostedalen, and you can visit the information centres there to learn more about the ice and the surrounding nature.
This is one of the most accessible glaciers, where you can peer into the blue ice at very close range, and everyone above the age of five can join guides on glacier walks.
You can see Bøyabreen at quite close range from the main road in Fjærland, or admire it from the Brevasshytta restaurant, even closer to the ice.
The spectacular Bergset glacier, only an hour´s easy walk from the road, is one of the most beautiful and impressing glacier arms.
"The finest ice scenery in Europe", said the English mountaineer W.C. Slingsby about Austerdalsbreen and the three ice falls called Loke, Odin and Tor.
Flatbreen / Supphellebreen
The Flatbreen glacier can be seen from the fjord, and can be reached on foot. The beautiful walk up to the glacier and the Flatbrehytta cabin takes about 3 hours.
Hardangerjøkul mountain plateau with its highest point of 1861 metres (6105 feet). The glacier here is covering an area of 73 sq kilometres (28 sq miles), an important glacier among Norwegian glaciers.
Folgefonna glacier covers a total area of 213 sq kilometres (82 sq miles). The third largest among Norwegian glaciers. Here you will find a summer ski centre, and if you want to see and experience the glacier for real, then a professional glacier team is there for you. If you don´t want to walk the glacier, you can always bicycle the glacier, do some glacier climbing or even go kayaking.
Jostedalsbre glacier, Hardangerjøkulen glacier, Folgefonna glacier, Buarbre glacier, Bondhusbre glacier, Smørstabbre glacier, Fannaråkbre glacier and Nigardsbre glacier, Bødals glacier, Brenndals glacier, Briksdals glacier, Kjenndalsbreen glacier.
Svartisen Glacier covers an area of 375 square kilometres and is the Boroughs' biggest tourist attraction. The Glacier is Norways second largest. Svartisen is also the lowest Iying glacier at the European mainland. Since the turn of the century the Glacier has been a tourist attraction for Norwegian and foreign tourists either travelling overland or as passengers on one of the many cruise liners which visit the fjord.
A branch of the Svartisen Glacier is the Engenbreen glacier which streches down towards Holandsfjord.