Spectacular, breath-taking and impressive, from a visual point of view Fjords can almost be defined as traditional landmarks depicting the great Norwegian country. Their stunning beauty has been a very well known touristic attraction for the many travelers that gather yearly to the four major Norwegian Fjord regions called: More & Romsdal, Sogn og Fjordane, Hordaland and Rogaland.
The word Fjord comes from the Scandinavian language meaning “narrow inlet of sea”.
As a matter of fact, Fjords are found in areas where glaciers have retreated many centuries ago, leaving a typical U shaped carved valley which consequently various years later, filled with sea water. This seems to have occurred approximately 2,5 million years ago in an era called Pleistocene. Because of the substancial weight of these glaciers (almost 3 khilometers thick!) and their abrasive nature, upon retreating glaciers have left very deep valleys up to 1300 meters deep under sea level.
Back to Norway, the largest Fjord is Sogn og Fjordane extending inland for more than 120 miles and with a depth of about 1308 meters under sea level. Whether you visit it from the above steep mountains or from below via cruise, the Sogn og Fjordane Fjord offers breath taking views and many precipices. If you are planning to visit this Fjord, do not miss Nryfjord which is an arm of the Sogn of Fjordane. Nryfjord offers the narrowest Fjord of the world at some point being only 250 meters across.
Many large coral reefs have been discovered at the bottom of the many Norwegian Fjords. These reefs are frequented by lots of sealife creatures such as anemones, fish, sharks, and corals. Because of the abundance of maritime sea life, many fishing boats are seen sailing along the Fjords.
Wildlife is also abundant around the Fjords and many lands adjacent to the Fjords are very fertile offering a variety of fruits and vegetables. The succesful cultivation of many fruits (including citrus) is also due to the climate found along the Fjords. Due to the warm Gulf stream, surrounding areas appreciate an unusually mild climate and curiosly remain ice free year round.
While Fjords are commonly associated with Norway, Fjords can also be found in many other places with a glaciar past. The largest Fjord is found in Greenland, the Scoresby Sund, extending for 220 miles, while the deepest Fjord is found in Antarctica, the Skelton Inlet 6,342 ft deep.
Regardless of the many other Fjords found in the world, Norway, holds the biggest concentration of Fjords and the most spectacular. If you are interesting in visiting a Fjord, Norway is the place to go for the quantity and variety offered.