Gudbrandsdalsleden, which means the path of Gudbrandsdalen, stretches from Oslo to Trondheim, a 643 km well-marked pilgrim path with beautiful and varied landscape. Along the path you can experience soothing agricultural landscapes, you can spend the night on historic farms, wander across the mighty Dovrefjell plateau and enjoy the tranquility of the lush Trøndelag nature.
Gudbrandsdalsleden has countless cultural heritage stories and places to offer, many hundreds are on or close to the path, and remind you of past struggles and experiences. Gudbrandsdalsleden also gives you close contact with the legacy of the Viking king Olav Haraldsson, later known as Saint Olav (St. Olav). Water springs, named after St. Olav, are widespread and these are known to have healing effects. Along Gudbrandsdalsleden we find the historical sites St. Hallvard Cathedral, Bønsnes, Granavollen, Hamardomen and Dale-Gudbrands Gard, several of these places are indirectly or directly related to the saga of Olav Haraldsson, later St. Olav.
St. Olavsleden is one of the world’s northernmost pilgrim paths, extending from the Baltic sea to the Atlantic sea, through Sweden to Norway. The trail goes through large forests, over mountains, along lakes and past communities and historic sites. The roadbed varies from gravel road, asphalt and trails.
The St. Olavsleden starts in the town of Selånger, on the east coast of Sweden and ends in the Nidaros Cathedral in Trondheim. It follows parts of the road that Olav travelled when he returned from Novgorod in Russia in the summer of 1030, to recapture the Norwegian throne. A journey that ended with the battle of Stiklestad, the death of Olav Haraldsson and the start of the era of St. Olav.
You can also read about the St.Olavsleden on the swedish website: https://stolavsleden.com/
West of the Oslo fjord you will find Tunsbergleden, with a variety of cultural experiences in lush countryside and easily accessible terrain. Perhaps you have reached the starting point Larvik by boat from Denmark, having first walked The Ancient Road?
Here, the pilgrim season is long, and you can enjoy the softwood forests, light green in the spring and red in the fall. The trail passes through residential areas with everyday life and historic city centers and streets. The Tunsbergleden starts in Larvik and ends after 190 kilometers at Haslum church in Bærum. There it connects to the Gudbrandsdalsleden northwest of Oslo, which continues on to Trondheim.
Large parts of Tunsbergleden follow roads that have been in use since the Middle Ages and historical cultural experiences are close by, such as the historical points of interest dating back to the Viking area like Kaupang, Istrehågan, Gokstadhaugen and Borrehaugene. In addition, you can visit Vikingodden in Tønsberg and Midtgard Vikingsenter and Gildehallen in Borre.
The coast pilgrimage is a beautiful and spectacular journey along Norway’s perhaps most important road – the coast! A journey with fjords, islands, islets and reefs – a saga from Viking to pilgrimage. The journey starts in Egersund and ends at Nidaros Cathedral in Trondheim.
In the maritime nation of Norway, the coast has always been one of the most important and perhaps most used means of travel. Not only for trade and general transport, but also for pilgrims who visited the tomb of Saint Olav.
Along the coast pilgrimage, you travel mainly by public transport (or your own boat) from so called “key place” to “key place” (important places of cultural heritage). You can also hike some stretches along the way, or perhaps you want to bicycle?