Norwegian Scenic Route Aurlandsfjellet (Aurland Mountain) runs from Aurlandsvangen to Lærdalsøyri, a distance of 47 km (Road 5627). Among the attractions close to this stretch are the villages of Lærdalsøyri, Flåmsbana, Aurlandsdalen and Nærøyfjorden. If you drive through the Lærdal Tunnel, the world’s longest road tunnel with a length of 24.5 km, it will allow you to enjoy a wonderful round trip.
The road was opened in 1967 and its forerunner was a construction access road. It runs from Lærdalsøyri to Aurlandsvangen over the mountains, and the highest point is 1,306 metres above sea level. The road is closed in the winter and snow lies on the mountain throughout large parts of the summer, so the name “the snow road” is truly befitting.
Start in Aurlandsvangen
Both times I’ve crossed the mountain, I started in Aurlandsvangen. Climbing up the steep and narrow twists is incredible as the view get more and more spectacular for each turn and each meter you climb. The Stegastein viewing point is an attraction in itself. Great looking and breathtaking view over Aurlandsfjorden and Aurlangsvagen below.
When you continue to climb up the mountain, the shapes of the landscape becomes softer as you pass the tree line. When you reach the plateau on the top with an endless landscape of scattered stones, you get the feeling of being on an alien planet.
Don’t forget Old Lærdalsøyri
Descending towards Lærdalsøyri, the road is not as steep as it was climbing up on the other side, making it a more pleasant ride downhill. Enjoy the river and waterfalls playing alongside the road. And make sure to stop at Old Lærdalsøyri when you get down. It’s easy to just pass it if you don’t know about it.
Two other locations which are must-see when this close, is Vindhellavegen and Borgund stave church.
Winter closed: Norwegian Scenic Route Aurlandsfjellet is closed over the mountain during the winter season between the Aurland/Lærdal municipal boundary and Nalfarbakkane above Aurlandsvangen. The road from Aurlandsvangen to the Stegastein viewing point is open all year round. The stretch is normally closed in November and reopens in June.