Jostedalsbreen National Park: Explore this National Park in Norway

Jostedalsbreen National Park in Norway

blog authorBy Johanna Hansen shield verificationVerified Expert

    In this blog post, we will take a closer look at Jostedalsbreen, the largest glacier on the European mainland. We will discuss its history, geology, and wildlife, and we will also explore some of the best things to do in the park. So if you are planning a trip to Norway, be sure to read on!

    What is Jostedalsbreen National Park? 

    Jostedalsbreen National Park is a sanctuary for those who cherish the untouched beauty of nature. It proudly holds the distinction of housing the Jostedalsbreen glacier, the largest of its kind in mainland Europe. 

    Beyond its icy allure, the park is a canvas painted with nature's most exquisite elements. From cascading waterfalls to serene valleys, it promises a myriad of experiences, making it a sought-after destination for both thrill-seekers and those looking for a peaceful retreat.

    Where is Jostedalsbreen National Park located? 

    Situated in the heart of Norway, Jostedalsbreen National Park is a testament to the country's commitment to preserving its natural wonders. 

    The park stands as a beacon showcasing Norway's unparalleled landscapes, from its towering mountains to its crystal-clear waters, reflecting the nation's rich natural heritage and its reverence for the environment.

    Lake in Jostedalsbreen National Park

    When to go to Jostedalsbreen National Park ?

    Jostedalsbreen National Park welcomes visitors throughout the year, each season offering its unique charm. The summer months, from June to September, are particularly popular, with the park bathed in a warm glow, making it ideal for various activities. 

    However, the winter months transform the park into a snowy paradise, perfect for skiing, snowboarding, and other winter sports, offering a different kind of allure.

    When was Jostedalsbreen National Park established? 

    Jostedalsbreen National Park was founded with a noble vision in mind. Recognizing the unparalleled beauty and ecological significance of the glacier area, the park was established to ensure its protection. It serves as a sanctuary for its diverse fauna and flora and the unique geological formations found here. 

    Moreover, it aims to provide nature enthusiasts a place to connect with the environment, free from the distractions of modern infrastructure.

    What are the different types of terrain in Jostedalsbreen National Park? 

    Jostedalsbreen National Park is a mosaic of nature's finest terrains. It boasts lush valleys that come alive with a riot of colors in spring and summer. In contrast, its barren mountain terrains stand as silent sentinels, watching over the park. 

    The glacier landscapes are a sight to behold, with their icy expanse shimmering under the sun. Each hike in the park feels like a journey through different seasons, thanks to its diverse terrains.

    What is the climate like in Jostedalsbreen National Park? 

    The climate of Jostedalsbreen National Park is as varied as its terrains. Due to its diverse landscapes, the park experiences a multitude of microclimates. While the glacier regions are known for their chilly temperatures, the valleys and lower regions have milder climates. 

    However, irrespective of the season, the park's beauty remains undiminished, making it a favorite among travelers.

    Kayaking in Jostedalsbreen National Park

    Things to do in Jostedalsbreen National Park


    Jostedalsbreen National Park offers a plethora of hiking trails that cater to both beginners and seasoned trekkers. As you traverse the varied terrains, you'll encounter everything from serene valleys to the majestic glacier landscapes of Jostedal glacier. 

    Each trail offers a unique perspective of the park's beauty, making every hike a new adventure. Don't forget to pack comfortable hiking shoes and a camera to capture the breathtaking views.

    Hiking in Jostedalsbreen National Park in Norway


    There's nothing quite like setting up camp under the vast Norwegian sky, surrounded by the tranquil sounds of nature. 

    The park offers designated camping areas where you can pitch your tent and truly immerse yourself in the wilderness. As you sit by the campfire, gazing at the stars, you'll feel a deep connection with the natural world around you.


    The pristine waters of Jostedalsbreen National Park are a haven for fishing enthusiasts. Whether you're a seasoned angler or a newbie, the park's lakes and rivers offer a peaceful fishing experience. With a variety of fish species inhabiting the waters, you might just get a rewarding catch!


    Winter transforms Jostedalsbreen National Park into a snowy wonderland, making it a hotspot for skiing enthusiasts. The park boasts several skiing trails that cater to both beginners and experts. The crisp air, coupled with the thrill of skiing down the slopes, makes for an exhilarating experience.

    Ice Skating 

    For those who prefer a more leisurely winter activity, ice skating on the park's frozen lakes is a delightful option. As you glide over the ice, surrounded by snow-covered trees and mountains, you'll feel a sense of tranquility that's hard to match.

    Things to do in Jostedalsbreen

    Glacier Hiking 

    One of the park's main attractions is the Jostedal glacier hike. This unique experience allows adventurers to walk on the glacier itself, offering unparalleled views of the icy expanse and the surrounding landscapes. 

    It's essential to be equipped with the right gear and, if you're unfamiliar with glacier hiking, consider hiring a guide for safety.

    Glaciar hiking in Jostedalsbreen National Park

    Wildlife Watching 

    Jostedalsbreen National Park is home to a diverse range of fauna. From birds soaring in the sky to mammals roaming the grounds, wildlife enthusiasts will have a field day spotting and observing the park's inhabitants. 

    Remember to maintain a safe distance and avoid disturbing the animals in their natural habitat.

    Visiting Museums and Visitor Centers 

    To truly appreciate the significance of Jostedalsbreen National Park, a visit to the local museums and visitor centers is a must. These centers offer insightful information about the park's history, geology, and the importance of conservation. 

    Interactive exhibits and knowledgeable staff ensure that visitors leave with a deeper understanding and appreciation of the park's wonders.

    How to get to Jostedalsbreen National Park

    By car or camper is he best way to explore at your own pace. And if you're considering a camper, check out the offerings at Renting a caravan can elevate your travel experience, allowing you to immerse yourself in nature.

    The park is accessible by car, and this mode of transportation offers the flexibility to explore at your own pace. The main gateways to the park are in Jostedalen (Luster), Fjærland (Sogndal), and Veitastrondi.

    What to pack

    Your packing list will vary based on the season. 

    • Hiking boots for comfortable trekking.
    • Backpack to carry your essentials.
    • Food and water for sustenance during your adventures.
    • Warm clothing is essential for glacier regions.

    Tips for visiting

    • Always check the weather forecast.
    • Be cautious of potential glacier dangers like avalanches.
    • If new to glacier hiking, consider hiring a guide.
    • Practice sustainable tourism by leaving no trace.

    Woman with kayak in Jostedalsbreen


    Jostedalsbreen National Park is more than just a travel destination; it's an experience. Whether you're gazing at the vastness of the Jostedal glacier or hiking through diverse terrains, the park promises memories that will last a lifetime. So, pack your bags, rent a caravan if you wish, and set off on an adventure of a lifetime. Safe travels!

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