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Tour to Arctic circle from .... ?

Want to hit top of Norway in June. Three possible starting points, Oslo via Trondheim and along Norwegian Coast (2,000 kms * a little long), from Stockholm and along the Baltic 1,700kms - do-able, Helsinki and thro Central Finland skirting East Baltic coast for 100 or so kms - 1500 kms. Woild love advice on which is best in terms of scenery and points of interest along the route. No doubt the Norway coast would present the best vistas but is it worth the extra effort. I expect the climb from Oslo to Trondheim would be very testing,
Cheers Jerome


  • bobmcstuffbobmcstuff Posts: 11,178
    I have never cycled in Norway (would love to though, I've investigated doing something shorter before), but I know the country quite well because the company I work for is based in Bergen. Aside from Bergen I've visited Oslo, Trondheim, Tromso and Hammerfest multiple times.

    I've been to Stockholm and Helsinki but I can't advise about the rest of the country.

    I don't know where you had planned to stop - Hammerfest would make a good stop point in the Arctic Circle because while it is small, it has some actual "stuff", and it is very scenic. Apparently it is a popular place to see the Northern Lights; Bill Bryson wrote about it in one of his books. Tromso is bigger, and is in quite an impressive setting.

    One thing I would say though is that if you go up the coast it will be absolutely spectacular but also very hilly - and you will end up spending quite a lot of time in the middle of absolutely nowhere (which is fine so long as you are prepared). I was grounded in Tromso for weather once (the Wideroe pilots are hardcore so you can imagine how bad it was) and investigated driving back down to Bergen, it's a stunningly long way! And there is a whole lot of not much.

    Strava suggests Oslo to Hammerfest via Trondheim and Tromso by the most popular route is 2,150km, but with nearly 23,000m climbing!! If you take the small roads round the actual coast it will be even hillier.

    I assume you had planned Oslo for ease of flights? You can fly to Trondheim as well, although it would likely be more expensive (I usually end up flying KLM via Amsterdam). This would take about 500 or so km off the Southerly part of the route.
  • orraloonorraloon Posts: 12,323
    You could try contacting Kajsa Tylen (Year in the Saddle, Guinness WR holder) for info on long distance riding in Sweden. She is active on that facebook thing.
  • LongshotLongshot Posts: 940
    edited January 2020
    Also try Andrew Sykes who has written a number of cycling trip books with his (now retired) bike Reggie. He's done a trip to the northern end of Norway and his book may be of use! He's contactable easily through his 'Cycling Europe' blog.
    You can fool some of the people all of the time. Concentrate on those people.
  • durhamwaspdurhamwasp Posts: 1,247
    I'm regularly in Finland, and have considered cycling Hanko to Nuorgam (Southern to Northern most parts) in the past, but from experience of driving through Finland it will not be that exciting! Long straight roads through forests with lakes and trees basically the only scenery.
    Finland is a fantastic country though, friendly people, nice cities etc, so i'm sure it would still be decent. Hairy Bikers drove the length of Finland, and had similar thoughts to mine, maybes you can find that series on iPlayer. - Reports on Cingles du Mont Ventoux, Alpe D'Huez, Galibier, Izoard, Tourmalet, Paris-Roubaix Sportive & Tour of Flanders Sportive, Amstel Gold Xperience, Vosges, C2C, WOTR routes....
  • fenixfenix Posts: 5,437
    Check out footage from the Arctic Tour ?
    Lovely country but the roads do seem a bit dull and loooooooong.

    You can get the post boat out of Bergen and see the coast and then get off and cycle back or up or whatever you want to do. I think boat gives you some of the best views though.
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