If you’re visiting Bergen, seeing the fjords is a must. But if you’re only in Bergen for a short time, a full-day tour like Norway in a Nutshell might be too long. Luckily, there’s a short fjord cruise from Bergen to the beautiful Mostraumen Strait which takes only 3 hours.
In this Mostraumen fjord cruise review I’ll tell you what it’s like to go on this easy excursion from Bergen and give you some tips for your trip.
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About the Mostraumen fjord cruise
Taking a Mostraumen fjord cruise is one of the most popular trips from Bergen. You can go from the centre of Bergen to the Mostraumen strait and on to the village of Mo in just 90 minutes – much quicker than the other popular fjord cruises from Bergen.
While the cruise from Bergen to Mostraumen isn’t quite as dramatic as some of the other fjords around Bergen, it’s a great way to get a taste of Norway’s beautiful fjords, while leaving you plenty of time to see Bergen’s other sights. The Mostraumen strait itself is absolutely stunning, and you’ll see plenty of beautiful waterfalls and cute little villages.
We took a Mostraumen fjord cruise with a company called Rødne, who offer one of the most popular excursions from Bergen. The Rødne tour leaves from Zachariasbryggen, right in the centre of Bergen, next to the fish market and only a short walk from our hotel near the Bryggen UNESCO site.
I booked my trip using Get Your Guide – you can book the same cruise that I took and see more Mostraumen fjord cruise reviews on their website.
What it’s like to take a Mostraumen fjord cruise
Our boat for the short cruise to Mostraumen was the Rygertroll, which can carry up to 147 passengers. The main deck is all on one level and there’s space for wheelchairs, so it’s fully accessible.
Leaving Bergen: Bryggen to the Nordhordland Bridge
The cruise set off from Zachariasbryggen right on time at 10am, sailing first past Bryggen, then the Rosenkrantz Tower, Håkonshallen and the cruise ship terminal.
Once out of the harbour, the boat began to pick up speed. It hadn’t been too cold in Bergen, but the outside deck did get very windy once we were properly underway.
There were a couple of hardy souls who stayed out on deck for the whole cruise but most people alternated sitting inside with time out on deck for the key sights. There’s an on-board commentary so you won’t miss a thing.
Around 20 minutes after setting off, we passed the pretty Salhus Tricotagefabrik, a former textile factory that’s now home to the Textile Industry Museum.
Just after Salhus, the boat passes under the majestic Nordhordland Bridge and into the Osterfjord. The bridge connects Bergen to the Nordhordland region of Norway; it’s 1614 metres long and opened in 1994.
Entering the Osterfjord
Stay out on deck if you can while you pass the Bergen Engines factory, the entrance to another branch of the Osterfjord and the picturesque village of Hamre, all on the right-hand side of the boat. Hamre is famous for its cute, 16th-century church which has dark, almost black wooden walls and a bright red roof.
The Osterfjord is known for its wonderful wildlife; there’s a chance you could see seals, goats and even eagles on the way to Mostraumen.
The boat continues at high speed past pretty little villages with characteristic wooden houses, before reaching the narrow strait around Paddøy island. The captain slows right down (making it much more pleasant to be out on deck!) and plays some beautiful music by Grieg as you continue through the jaw-dropping landscape.
Romarheimsfjorden to Mostraumen
Once the boat passes the tips of Paddøy island and neighbouring Hokøyna, the boat speeds up again through the Romarheimsfjorden until you reach the incredibly narrow Mostraumen Strait.
At less than 200 metres wide, the Mostraumen Strait is so narrow it looks more like a river than a fjord – even the famously narrow Nærøyfjord is over twice as wide.
The scene of the little village next to the Mostraumen channel is one of the most beautiful places in Norway, but it might surprise you to learn that the strait has only been here since 1743. The next section of fjord, the Mofjorden, used to be a freshwater lake until floods eroded the river bed and allowed salt water from the Romarheimsfjorden to flow in.
The Mofjorden: Slottet rock formation, waterfalls and Mo
The Mostraumen fjord cruise carries on through the Mofjorden, Don’t miss the Slottet rock formation on the left, which reminded me of a tree-topped version of the famous Pulpit Rock near Stavanger.
As the boat approaches the little village of Mo at the end of the Mofjorden, you’ll see two beautiful waterfalls, one on either side of the fjord, framing the village in the centre. The largest is the Bergsåafossen, and it’s an awe-inspiring sight.
This was the only part of the boat trip that was at all rough. As we turned towards the waterfall we were sailing across the waves, which made the boat a bit bumpy for a minute or two. Apart from those few moments, the trip was very smooth.
The boat slowly approaches the waterfall; if you’re on the open part of the lower deck, you’ll be close enough to feel the spray on your face.
There isn’t time on this short fjord tour to stop in Mo, but you can see the village’s pretty wharf from the boat. With its bright colours, it reminded me of a miniature version of the Bryggen wharf back in Bergen.
Returning to Bergen
This is as far as the Mostraumen fjord cruise goes, but there’s time for another stop on the way back to Bergen. Just after you pass back through the Mostraumen strait, the boat slows down again and approaches a stunning sheer rock face.
The cruise takes the same route back to Bergen as it took from Bergen to Mostraumen, so you’ll have another chance to see any of the sights that you might have missed on the way out.
Tips for your Mostraumen fjord cruise from Bergen
Book in advance
The boat I took for my trip to Mostraumen took less than 150 passengers, and it’s a popular day trip from Bergen, so I recommend booking in advance.
I bought tickets for me and my partner through GetYourGuide – I’ve used them several times before and I was able to get our boat tickets straight to my mobile phone.
Get there early
While there are plenty of seats for everyone inside the boat, you’ll need to be at the Zachariasbryggen wharf well in advance of your boat’s departure time if you want a seat by the window – and by well in advance I mean at least half an hour before the boat leaves.
We got to the departure point around 20 minutes before the boat left and all the window seats had already been taken. It worked out fine for us as we wanted to spend as much time outside as possible but if you want to stay inside and have a good view, you’ll need to get there as early as you can.
Wear warm clothing
It’s nice and warm inside the boat, so this tip is just for if you want to spend time out on deck. If you plan to go outside then bring warm clothing – even if it’s a warm day in Bergen, you’ll be glad of it!
I took my Mostraumen fjord tour at the end of August, and while it had been raining quite a lot in Bergen (see my tips for things to do in Bergen in the rain!), it wasn’t particularly cold. When the boat was going slowly it wasn’t too cold, but when we picked up speed I wished I’d brought a hat and scarf!
Try the cinnamon bun
There’s a kiosk on board, selling hot and cold drinks and snacks, including the delicious Bergen speciality, skillingsbolle, a large, twisted cinnamon bun. Prices on board are a little bit higher than you’d pay on land, but not by much, and you can pay by card.
There are toilets on board.
Mostraumen fjord cruise review: final thoughts
I hope you’ve found this Mostraumen fjord cruise review useful. I really enjoyed my trip to Mostraumen; while the fjords you see on the way aren’t quite as impressive as the ones you’ll see on a Norway in a Nutshell tour to the Nærøyfjord and the Aurlandsfjord, they come very close, and Mostraumen itself is absolutely stunning. I also loved seeing all the waterfalls and the little villages by the side of the fjord.
The other benefit of the Mostraumen fjord cruise is that it’s so quick. Norway in a Nutshell is an amazing experience, but it does take a full day.
If you’re limited for time in Bergen, or you just don’t fancy a full day trip, the Mostraumen fjord tour is a great way to get a taste of Norway’s beautiful landscapes.
Read more about Norway:
- See the best of Norway with the Norway in a Nutshell self-guided tour from Bergen to Oslo
- The best things to do in Bergen on a rainy day
- Things to do in Oslo