Fjærland is a scenic region of glaciers, mountains, fjords and idyllic farmland, centered around the village Mundal, which is perched on the water´s edge. The landscape here has been shaped by 2.6 million years of glacial carving, resulting in stunning mountains and U-shaped valleys crossed by glacial rivers.
The local ice fields of Bøyabreen and Supphellebreen are branches of Jostedalsbreen - the largest glacier in Europe. Jostedalsbreen has been a transport route for centuries, and there are countless stories about breathtaking journeys across the ice, just waiting to be told to curious visitors.
Local farms are generally large and enjoy an excellent climate for dairy production. Livestock can be seen happily grazing on mountain pastures called 'støl' or 'sæter' in Norwegian.
Fjærland is also host to an international ‘Book Town’, with 10 second-hand bookshops to browse. The concept opened here in 1996, with the area becoming the eighth ‘Book Town’ in the world and the first in Scandinavia.
While in Fjærland, visit the fine old wooden Hotel Mundal, browse the books for sale, tour the fascinating Glacier museum and join in activities such as glacier walks, hiking, skiing and kayaking.
History of Fjærland
The Fjærland area has been settled since the Viking Age, but there are archaeological finds dating back to the late Stone Age. The size of the population has varied over the years, and it was greatly affected by the emigration to America that took place at the turn of the 19th century.
Long a tourist destination for ships, in 1986, a road north to Skei was built, connecting Fjærland by road to other communities for the first time. It was opened by former U.S. Vice President Walter F. Mondale, whose family and name originated in the village of Mundal. In 1994, the road was extended south to Sogndal making Fjaerland easy to reach from both north and south.
The centre of Fjaerland is the community of Mundal, which includes a primary school, church, shops, hotels and other services. The church is from 1861, rebuilt in 1931 and is open to the public.