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Photo: Ian Brodie
Travel Trade

Norwegian fjords and culture with Peer Gynt

From magnificent fjords in the west, to the heart of culture in the east, you can travel in the footsteps of Henrik Ibsen and Edvard Grieg, and experience their inspiration through one of Norway’s world famous folktales – “Peer Gynt”.


Grieg’s home in Bergen

The “Peer Gynt suite” by Edvard Grieg is a world famous classical piece, which is probably just as much known from cartoons as from the stage. The piece was written in 1867 for the theatre production of Henrik Ibsen’s dramatic poem “Peer Gynt”.

Arriving in Bergen, its easy to find your way to Edvard Grieg’s home at Troldhaugen museum. During the summer season, visitors can experience a piano concert with Grieg’s music every day. Guides take you through the home of the composer, and vividly tells the story of Grieg’s life and music.

Steep mountains and deep fjords

On your way to the heart of culture in the Gudbrandsdalen valley, you will experience the magnificent nature of Western Norway. Passing Flåm, you can travel with the unique Flåm Railway, which is one of the worlds most spectacular train rides. The railway has been named the best train journey in the world in 2014 by Lonely planet, and is on the top 10 train journeys in Europe in National Geographic Traveler Magazine.

Folk culture and a national tourist route

Walk in the footsteps of the Norwegian people all the way back to the 14th century at the Valdres Folk museum. Experience the culture and folk music that inspired both Ibsen and Grieg in their work with “Peer Gynt”, as you are guided through one of Norway’s largest historical outdoor museums.

Grieg travelled to the Jotunheimen mountains when he was asked by Ibsen to write the music for the theatre “Peer Gynt”. He needed to find inspiration from the same folk culture that Ibsen wrote about, and the result was the ironical suite which complimented the satirical look on the Norwegian people.

On your journey over the national tourist route Valdresflye road, you will be amazed by the mighty nature that Grieg and other great Norwegian artists have travelled through and been inspired from. Stop for a hike in this vast landscape with majestic views to peaks in the horizon, or simply enjoy the view from your car.

In Peer Gynt’s kingdom

Enter the heart of culture in the Gudbrandsdalen valley, and travel into the realm of Peer Gynt to experience one of Norway’s most spectacular outdoor theatre performances.

In 1862, Henrik Ibsen travelled from Oslo to Western Norway to collect folk tales as inspiration to write again. It was in the Gudbrandsdalen valley that he found the inspiration for “Peer Gynt”, through nature, culture and a local folktale.

Ibsen's drama "Peer Gynt" is considered a masterpiece in literature as well as theatre play. Every year since 1989, the Peer Gynt festival produces the theatre production of Peer Gynt at Gålå, at an outdoor theatre venue by a lake, where nature acts as the spectacular scenery.

The drama is performed at its birthplace, where the folktales come from, and where Ibsen might have been told the stories that inspired him to write the poem. This is the most authentic experience of the world famous theatre play "Peer Gynt".

Peer Gynt by lake Gålåvatnet - 2014

Going west in Ibsen’s footsteps

From the Gudbrandsdalen valley, Ibsen explored the small towns and local communities on his way to the western part of Norway. Do as Ibsen, and stop in Lom to see the magnificent stave church which is one of Norway’s largest, and explore the charming small town.

On your way over the mountains, the dramatic Norwegian landscape will reveal itself as you arrive in Geiranger. Travel with ferry over the Geiranger fjord, listed on UNESCO’s world heritage list.

One of the small towns Ibsen enjoyed on his travel was Hellesylt. Today you will find the Peer Gynt Gallery here, an exhibition created by artist Oddvin Parr, with large wooden sculptures inspired from Ibsen’s “Peer Gynt” - which cannot be found anywhere else. In the gallery you can also get a video guiding from Dennis Storhøi, that played the role of Peer Gynt by lake Gålåvatnet from 2008-2013.

Continue your travels to Ålesund, and return to Bergen with Hurtigruta to explore the scenic coast of Western Norway.

Peer Gynt Galleriet i samarbeid med Sparebanken Møre