A fjord is a long, narrow stretch of water surrounded on all sides by steep, dramatic cliffs – carved out by the movement of glaciers over hundreds of thousands of years. Although Norway is perhaps best known for its stunning collection of fjords, this natural phenomenon can also be found in many other destinations across the world. Fjords create a landscape like nothing else on Earth, guaranteed to amaze and inspire all those who are lucky enough to observe them first-hand. So read on to find out where some of the world’s most breathtaking fjords are located, so you can see them for yourself on your next luxury cruise.
Norway is most commonly associated with fjords, as the nation’s coastline boasts dozens of these awe-inspiring landscapes. The Norwegian fjords are particularly accessible and therefore popular with hikers, cyclists and lovers of the outdoors in general, who flock to the region for its incredible natural beauty.
Some of Norway’s most beautiful fjords include Geirangerfjord, Sognefjord and Lysefjord, which boast towering cliff faces and cascading waterfalls, creating a truly majestic setting. These marvellous destinations are regularly featured on luxury Norwegian cruise itineraries, offering cruisers the opportunity to sail through the scenery for themselves.
The winding fjords of Chile are truly spectacular, and many are also navigable, offering cruise ships access to ports including the wonderful city of Punta Arenas. This complex labyrinth of waterways offers unforgettable views, where steep cliffs soar high above the channels below and astonishing scenery is on display at every turn.
Chile’s main fjords and channels can be found along the Strait of Magellan, the Gulf of Penas and Tierra del Fuego to the extreme south. These regions boast some of South America’s most awe-inspiring landscapes, which is quite a feat in a continent famed for its astounding natural beauty.
New Zealand’s fjords are located throughout the country’s magnificent Fiordland and the Fiordland National Park has been named as a World Heritage Site due to its incredible landscape, formed by glaciers over many millennia. The Fiordland National Park boasts a wide range of amazing scenery to appreciate, from sweeping valleys and towering mountains to tranquil lakes and beautiful waterfalls.
The Fiordland is also well-known for its fantastic hiking trails, famous amongst ramblers the world over. The region’s ‘Great Walks’ include trails across Milford Sound, Sutherland Sound and Dusky Sound, where the scenery is nothing short of outstanding. Scenic flights over the fjords can also be arranged with local tour operators for a unique perspective on this marvellous landscape.
Alaska is world-famous for its vast areas of wilderness, colossal glaciers and incredible landscape – and the Alaskan fjords only add to this well-deserved reputation for natural beauty. This majestic region boasts several impressive fjords, where icy waterways cut through the mountainous landscape to create an unforgettable backdrop on your North America voyage.
Kenai Fjords National Park, Tracy Arm and Misty Fjords National Monument are just a small selection of Alaska’s breathtaking fjords, each home to shimmering icy blue lakes, craggy cliff faces and expansive forests filled with stunning flora and fauna. A luxury cruise to Alaska can take you to see much of the region’s coastal scenery, including many of these imposing landscapes.
Greenland has around 50 major fjords along its icy coastline – a number of which have been named as UNESCO World Heritage Sites and are protected to maintain their natural beauty. Greenland is a particularly remote cruise destination and therefore its landscape is often the main attraction for the visitors who come in droves to marvel at the nation’s renowned scenery.
There are a number of cruise ports along the coast of Greenland at which travellers can observe and explore the country’s beautiful fjords. The dramatic ice fjord at the port of Ilulissat is one of the most popular and can often be found on cruise itineraries sailing to Greenland’s magnificent shores.
For more information and advice on luxury fjord cruises or to book your suite or stateroom on-board, simply call our expert Cruise Concierge team on 0808 202 6105.