After trying to conquer Trolltunga within 2 days, we decided to do it in one day for a variety of reasons. Although we did not have to carry the heavy equipment including a tent, we did not have the opportunity to experience a sunset or sunrise on Trolltunga in romantic solitude.
As we later discovered, we would have been up there but not really alone with an overnight stay.
Read everything about our Norway itinerary here:
Our 2 week itinerary through the south of Norway
By bus, car or by foot to Trolltunga?
After spending the night on the rather moderate Odda campsite (too crowded, too small, too impersonal) we set off at 6 o’clock in the morning by car to the Trolltunga car park in Skjeggedal. We had also considered taking the shuttle bus, which would have left directly from the campsite. But if you already have a (rental) car ready, then the shuttle bus makes no sense, since it costs 150 NOK for the outward journey and another 100 NOK for the return … and that per person! So you’re at 500 NOK -- that is over 50 € -- for 2 people. Parking at the Skjeggedal parking spot costs only NOK 300 per 12 hours. This means that it is worth to drive yourself and to park at the top. So you are also less dependent on the bus timetable.
Another option is not to drive all the way to the Skjeggedal, but to park right at the beginning of the private road (a few km before Skjeggedal) at the Tyssedal car park. This costs only NOK 150 per 12 hours, but then it is again reliant on the bus to get ahead. Or you try like some others hitchhiking to get ahead.
8 km savings through a new road
Therefore we decided to drive directly to the Skjeggedal parking lot. When we reached the top, we saw a billboard announcing a new parking lot and a new serpentine road that could save 4km (one way) and park directly on top of the mountain.
Now you only have the possibility to run the old route through the forest, but apparently no one takes this route. Or you walk up the new serpentine road. That’s free. And it looks like most hikers do it! Incidentally, the old funicular -- with which many people used to shorten the route -- has been cut through this new serpentine road and can no longer be used.
So we decided to save a total of 8km and pay the 500 NOK required to drive up the serpentine road and park at the top on one of the 40 parking lots.
The hike to Trolltunga
From the upper parking lot, our actual hike started at 7.30 am. And from the very beginning we have noticed the masses of people who were behind, before and sometimes beside us. And they all had the same goal as us. At times we also felt a bit rushed because we are not the fastest hikers and have pretty often passed people by us. In our opinion, that was the biggest disadvantage of this hike: the many other people. And not only that a lot of people went with us towards Trolltunga, we also met a lot of hikers going back. This means that a not really small amount of hikers spent the night on the mountain and presumably (as we did) thought to marvel at the sunrise or sunset on the mountain with only a few others. With the increasing number of people who came to meet us, spending a night on the mountain is unlikely to be on the crag with fewer people than when you leave early in the morning
With the increasing number of people passing by it is seemed not very likely to be on your own on the summit even if you spent the night there.
My tip: start early!
That’s the biggest tip we can give you, if you want to get a picture on Trolltunga (because you always have to queue): Run as early as possible! After a little over 4 hours and 11 km we reached the much desired destination at about 11:30. The queue where you have to wait was already long enough to reach the ladder before Trolltunga. I stood in the line and after waiting for about 45 minutes it was my turn and I could be photographed by Sabrina.
Another tip for couples pictures
A good tip, by the way, is to find another couple in line behind you, with whom you can close a photo pact. One of them takes pictures of you, individually and together. And when it’s your turn, one of you goes up and shoots the corresponding pictures. So no one has to spend hours with the camera at the photo point and you do not have to do it twice as a couple.
After we have enjoyed the atmosphere at Trolltunga a little bit, we started our way back at about 13 o’clock. At that time, the queue was about three times as long as it had been at the beginning. And on our way back people still were running towards us.
Finally, I can say that you must have seen this crag certainly and that a photo of it also belongs in every Norway Photobook. Nevertheless, I found the landscaping along the hike far less exciting than I had suspected. Also, to our taste, there were too many people on the same trip as us.
More tips for your Norway road trip:
- Our 2 week itinerary through the south of Norway
- Tips for your Norway road trip
- Knutshoe -- A better alternative to Besseggen
- Kjeragbolten -- Fighting our way through the mist
- Buarbreen -- Hiking our first glacier