Norway has no shortage of fjords, but the longest and deepest of them is the Sognefjord. It stretches over 200km inland from the ocean, and the tiny town of Flåm lies at the end of one of its most scenic stretches. The best way to see the fjords is by boat, but before we got to that there was time for a taster with a walk along the waterside in Flåm. In one direction, steep cliffs rose out of the water, with trees clinging perilously to sheer rock faces.
From the train window I watched snapshots of Norway’s stunning scenery flashing by, one after another – steep rocky cliffs, deep blue fjords, lush green meadows, neatly painted red and white clapboard houses, mountains topped with a sprinkling of snow. I was expecting the Flåm Railway, or Flåmsbana, to be impressive – it’s ranked as one of Europe’s most spectacular rail journeys – but we hadn’t even arrived at the start yet.