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Travel Guide of Besseggen in Norway by Influencers and Travelers

Besseggen or Besseggi is a mountain ridge in Vågå Municipality in Innlandet county, Norway. The 1,634-metre tall mountain ridge is located in the Jotunheimen mountains within Jotunheimen National Park.

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How to visit Besseggen ?

Why traveling there?

Besseggen is a popular mountain ridge in Jotunheimen National Park, Norway, known for its stunning landscapes and breathtaking views. Traveling to Besseggen is perfect for nature lovers and adventure seekers, as you'll be surrounded by unspoiled beauty, crystal-clear waters, and dramatic mountain peaks. The hike is considered a must-do for many Norwegians, as it offers an unforgettable, once-in-a-lifetime experience.

How to get there?

To reach Besseggen, you'll first need to fly to Oslo, Norway's capital. From Oslo, take a train or bus to Otta, then a local bus to Gjendesheim, the starting point of the hike. Alternatively, you can rent a car and drive to Gjendesheim, which takes about 4-5 hours.

During the summer season, it's possible to take a boat across the Gjende Lake to Memurubu, where you can start the hike and walk back to Gjendesheim. This option allows you to hike the ridge in one direction and enjoy the stunning views without backtracking.

What to book in advance?

If you plan to take the boat across Gjende Lake, it's highly recommended to book your tickets in advance, as it can get crowded during the peak season (June to September). Additionally, if you plan to stay overnight in Gjendesheim or Memurubu, make sure to book accommodation early, as rooms fill up quickly during the hiking season.

What are the costs?

The costs of visiting Besseggen will vary depending on your travel style and preferences. The boat trip across Gjende Lake costs about NOK 340 ($40) per person for a one-way ticket. Accommodation in the area ranges from budget-friendly options like dorm beds at mountain lodges (around NOK 500 or $58 per night) to private rooms in hotels (starting at NOK 1500 or $175 per night). Food, transportation, and other expenses should also be considered.

What are the best things to do?

The primary attraction in Besseggen is the famous ridge hike, which takes around 6-8 hours to complete and offers spectacular views of the surrounding mountains and lakes. Along the way, you can take breaks at various viewpoints, soak in the scenery, and snap stunning photos. Besides hiking, you can also enjoy fishing, kayaking, or simply relaxing in the great outdoors.

Where to eat?

1. Gjendesheim Mountain Lodge: This lodge offers delicious traditional Norwegian cuisine, perfect for refueling after a long day of hiking.
2. Memurubu Mountain Lodge: Another excellent option for traditional Norwegian food, located at the other end of the hike.
3. Vågå Bakery (in Vågå, a nearby town): Stop by this bakery for some delicious pastries and sandwiches, perfect for a quick snack or packed lunch during your hike.

Where to stay?

1. Gjendesheim Mountain Lodge: Located at the starting point of the hike, this lodge offers affordable dorm beds and private rooms, as well as meals and picturesque views.
2. Memurubu Mountain Lodge: Situated at the other end of the hike, this lodge provides a comfortable place to rest and recharge after conquering Besseggen Ridge.
3. Vågå Hotel: For those who prefer a more traditional hotel experience, Vågå Hotel is a charming and cozy option in the nearby town of Vågå.

Off the beaten path

For a truly unique and off-the-beaten-path experience, consider hiking to the summit of nearby Mount Knutshøe. This lesser-known trek offers a challenging and rewarding alternative to Besseggen Ridge and features equally stunning views of the Jotunheimen mountains and Gjende Lake. The hike is less crowded than Besseggen, allowing for a more peaceful and intimate connection with nature.

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Learn More about Besseggen

Besseggen is a rocky ridge located in the Jotunheimen massif, Norway, with the lakes Gjende and Bessvatnet on both sides of the ridge giving a beautiful view of the lakes. Besseggen is the most famous mountain hikes in Norway, and every year, more than 30,000 hiking enthusiasts challenge themselves by climbing to the top of the ridge. ​​This legendary trail is not to be taken lightly with a distance of nearly 9 miles (16 km). High season is in summer, but in winter, ski facilities, snow activities and excursions are offered to snow enthusiasts. The hike on the Besseggen takes between six and eight hours, and is recommended for experienced hikers. If you are inexperienced, it is highly recommended having a tour guide with you. Don't be afraid to venture out, many signs and markings are available to guide you. There are two routes to reach the summit, you can start by foot from Gjendesheim, or take a boat from Gjendesheim towards Memurubu and start your hike from there. But it is highly recommended reserving a place on board to make sure there is enough room. Weather conditions in the mountains are always uncertain and can change from one minute to the next, so be prepared before you go. ​The physical efforts are worth it, as you hike, you will be able to observe the magnificent landscapes taking shape before your eyes​. ​​As the miles go by and the elevation decreases, the lunar and rocky landscape gives way to vegetation. To rest nearby, Jotunheimen National Park has many hotels, so you can enjoy the spectacular view while relaxing. This trip is a way to enjoy the abundant wildlife in the area. Discover the peace and freedom that these Norwegian mountains offer.

Frequently Asked Questions by Travelers planning a trip to Besseggen

How long does the Besseggen hike take ?

Hiking in Besseggen takes about 6 to 8 hours with breaks, it is a hike recommended for experienced people.

In winter, the ridge is filled with ice and snow, which can make it dangerous. The snow stays until the beginning of June, and the ideal season to hike Besseggen is between June and October.
In the high season, during July and August, the trail can be crowded, and the boats fill up quickly. So we recommend you to go in the off-season to enjoy it better.

You must have all the necessary equipment to climb to the top, enough water and food, clothes and shoes adapted to the weather and the hike. You can rent all the necessary equipment before the ascent!

There is a short-term parking lot in Gjendeosen, where you can park for free for 2 hours. If you need to park for more than two hours, go to Reinsvangen. During the high season, there is a continuous bus to the boat.
Most people who go to Besseggen take the boat from Gjendeosen. It is advisable to book tickets in advance or the boat will be full.

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