Lillehammer - Vinstra

97,5 KM
6 days
Experience local villages, cultural history, historical farms and hospitality on a challenging pilgrimage from Lillehammer to Vinstra.
Hard route
Situated along Gudbrandsdalsleden

Day 1: (25 km) Lillehammer - Øyer

The charming little town of Lillehammer is located along the Gudbrandsdalsleden and offers many exciting experiences. Stay in Lillehammer for a day and enjoy the cozy small town atmosphere before embarking on your pilgrimage. From Lillehammer you walk to Storhove, an old medieval estate and a centre of power. The name Hove (Hofvin) suggests that this was a cult site in pre-Christian times. From Storhove the pilgrim path goes to Fåberg and on to Hafjell. From Fåberg you walk on roads and small paths steeply up into the terrain and follow nice hiking trails through the forest. The last kilometres towards Hafjell and Øyer you follow the road, with phenomenal views towards Hunderfossen.

Accommodation on Øyer:

Day 2: (15 km) Øyer - Tretten

The second day starts with a good ascent. The pilgrim path goes high up the valley side throughout the day and crosses green pastures and on narrow paths. Along the way lie the site of the Skåe church from the 1300s, and the remains of the old Tjodvegen - an old road from the Middle Ages. The pilgrimage goes through magical forest in Kløv, before the pilgrim path comes to Kjørkjehaugen, which is also the remains of a medieval church.

Accommodation at Tretten:

Day 3: (27 km) Tretten - Ringebu

On the third day the pilgrim path goes down to the valley. The Gudbrandsdalsleden descends steeply through the forest before coming to Rolla Nature Reserve and Rolla Bridge, a nice place for a break. The Rolla Bridge was built in 1829 and replaced the original wooden bridge. The trail follows the old Kongeveien (King’s road) towards Trondheim. Further towards Fåvang, the walk goes a long way along Fåvangveien before crossing the Tromsa bridge, a crossroads for travellers for hundreds of years with a spectacular view. Towards Ringebu the path goes uphill to Elstadkleiva, with great views both north and south of Gudbrandsdalen. From here, the trip continues down to Ringebu Stave Church, the only preserved stave church in Gudbrandsdalen and well worth a visit.

Accommodation at Ringebu:

Day 4: (16 km) Ringebu - Hundorp

The pilgrimage starts north along the Panoramaveien, with nice views of the valley and Ringebu. The road goes down towards the center of Ringebu and from the Våler Bridge, the pilgrim path continues through Kjønås and on to the Bærsveinhølen, an old bridge site where the mighty river Frya runs below. After crossing the river you go through the woods towards Dale-Gudbrands Gard. The farm was an old chieftain's seat and power center for Gudbrandsdalen in the Viking Age. Here you can familiarize yourself with the story of the meeting between the Viking king Olav and Dale-Gudbrand in 1021, the historic "Christian church" from Heimskringla. Here is also the Pilgrim Center Dale-Gudbrand who can provide information and guidance if needed.

Accommodation at Hundorp:

Day 5: (7 km) Hundorp - Harpefoss

A short pilgrimage is ahead of you on the fifth day. The pilgrim path passes Sør-Fron Church, a distinctive octagonal stone church that lies along the path. The road continues through the vicarage from the 1300s, where the Norwegian-Danish author Ludvig Holberg lived for a period as a child. The stage ends at Sygard Grytting, an old large farm which today is run as a small hotel and a pilgrim hostel.

Accommodation at Harpefoss:

Day 6: (7 km) Harpefoss - Vinstra

On the last day pilgrim path crosses the highest point in the Gudbrandsdalen valley, past Skar which is about 600 meters above sea level. The climb is steep for the first few miles, but the rewards are great when you reach the top. A Gapahuk (open resting place) is set up to welcome pilgrims and other hikers, and from here you can enjoy the view of the Gudbrandsdalen valley and Jotunheimen Mountains.

The pilgrim path continues through a beautiful and varied landscape high above Vinstra, before a steep descent takes you down to the centre of Vinstra.

Recommended period:

June to September

Arrival in Lillehammer:

  • Flight: Oslo Airport Gardermoen
  • Train: Dovrebanen to Lillehammer (vy.no)
  • Alternatively take the pilgrim boat Skibladner

Departure from Vinstra:

  • Train: Dovrebanen (vy.no)
Ringebu Stave Church, the only preserved stave church in Gudbrandsdalen is well worth a visit. Photo: Eskil Roll
At Høgkleiva a great resting place “Gapahuk” is built for pilgrims, and here you get a beautiful view of Gudbrandsdalen. Photo: Per Gunnar Hagelien
Staying at Sygard Grytting is a unique experience. Photo: Eskil Roll
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