Hardangervidda is a high altitude mountain plateau in the west of Norway. Its vast expanses – the largest such Alpine plateau in Europe – makes it a fantastic place for those who like to wander around endlessly. The area is one of the most popular hiking areas of Norway and should be mentioned along with Jotunheimen and Rondane.
The area differs from Jotunheimen, for instance, in the absence of deep valleys and high peaks. The majority of the area lies between 1000 and 1250 meters altitude. There are the occasional outliers, like Hårteigen (1681) and Hardangerjøkulen (1876, glacier). The ice left countless lakes.
For nature lovers, the Hardangervidda has a lot to offer: a special flora and many rare breeding birds. Another interesting feature is that the whole area lies above the tree line. Elsewhere in Norway, mountains are intersected by wooded valleys. But Hardangervidda is rather barren, only comparible to the tundra north of the Arctic Circle.
Walking in this area is facilitated by the dozens of huts - staffed and self-service - interspersed with well-marked trails. Apart from the DNT huts there are dozens of private cabins in and around the area. Membership in DNT is of course a must.
Anyone can plot his own route. Some pretty obvious routes start in Rjukan and then cross to the northwest in about a week time, finishing in Kinsarvik. A longer route of about 9 days starts in Finse (north of the plateau) and runs south to Haukeliseter or Røldal. There are many other possibilities.