Queen Sonja of Norway is a passionate mountain hiker and her favourite hike in the Hardangerfjord region is therefore named after her: Dronning means Queen in Norwegian
She personally inaugurated Dronningstien on 29.6.2013. The trail is located in the high mountains between Kinsarvik and Lofthus and offers a magnificent view of the fjord. If you think that such a hiking trail with a royal patron must be completely overcrowded, I can reassure you:
I only met 2 other people on the whole route during the hike in early September!
The hike is long and demanding with a steep descent to Lofthus. But it is also super varied: you walk through hiking forests, high mountains, past waterfalls and through lush orchards. By car, it is best to follow the dirt road from Røte to Heng at 750 metres above sea level. From here the trail is marked with a blue D (D, as in "Dronning"). The way down to Lofthus, including the "Monk's Steps", is marked with a red Ts. Of course, you can also do the hike the other way round ...
Probably one of my favourite hikes, as the path was super nice and lonely and most of the time you have a gorgeous view of the Hardangerfjord 1000m below.
Click on the first picture to see the photos:
Starting point: Røte
Leave route 13 in Kinsarvik near the ESSO petrol station and follow the road as long as it is paved.
Parking: At Røte Parking fee: NOK 100.
Length: 16 km
Total ascent: 1,100 metres
Total walking time: 8-9 hours
Season (depending on snow): Mid June - early October
Hiking boots, wind- and weatherproof jacket and trousers, change of clothes, cap, scarf and gloves, enough provisions and drinks for the entire hike, headlamp, hiking map, compass, first aid kit, a charged mobile phone.
By own vehicle with the ferry from Hirtshals/Denmark to Kristiansand/Norway. 2h15 journey time, directferries.co.uk. By plane with one change to either Stavanger or Bergen. From there, continue by public transport or rental car.
Lofthus Camping is located directly on the hiking trail and offers normal pitches for tents and campers as well as bungalows for 2-8 people. The location directly above the Hardanger Fjord is spectacular. Tent pitch from 15 euros, 2-person bungalow from 40 euros.
Lofthus Camping, Hellelandsvegen 120, 5781 Lofthus, Te: +47 53 66 13 64, www.lofthuscamping.com