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Flaam, Norway


The journey to the Flaam Valley is a dramatic and peaceful voyage through the majestic Aurlandfjord, a branch of the longest and deepest fjord in the world. Flaam's appeal is its magnificent surroundings, from fertile farmland to crystal-clear streams to perfect snow-capped mountains.

Along the coast, melting glaciers after the last ice age formed the wild scenery, narrow fjords, and snow-clad, high mountains of Western Norway. Flaam is one of four ports sitting securely in the innermost part of the famous Sognefjord. Neighboring farms dot the ever-changing panorama of huge mountains and thundering waterfalls, with goats grazing along the fjord while seals occupy the smooth rocks along the shore.

The Flamsbanen, a masterpiece of electric railway technology, extends from Flaam to a mountain station at Myrdal. Crossing the river and valley floor three times, this steep, manifestation of skillful Norwegian engineering twists through tunnels spiraling in and out of the mountain offering incomparable thrills and beautiful sights.

With the scenic fjordland as a backdrop, the villages of Aurland and Laerdal are charming glimpses into Norway's fairy-tale-like past. Stroll the intimate alleyways amidst picturesque, old wooden buildings, handicraft shops and art galleries. In Undredal village, take in the colorful decorations on the walls and ceiling of Scandinavia's smallest church, a tiny structure which seats only 40 persons and dates back to the 12th century.

Music, lights, peace and harmony make for an extraordinary underground experience in the echoing, glowing chambers of the White Caves. If you feel like you're on the moon, you're not far off -- anorthosite, the white mineral excavated here for decades and known for its magical neutralizing characteristics, is also found on the moon.

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