Read more to learn about this magical train ride
Have you ever traveled to a new place and sensed some unnamable shift in the air? Had the feeling that something unusual could happen?
On the Flåm Railway Line in the Norwegian Flåmsdalen valley, this feeling is pervasive. White waterfalls trickle down dense forest cliffs, and small cabins sit nestled in quiet hollows. The word green takes on new meaning, and each view from the train window looks like a painting from a storybook. Magic old and fabled suddenly feels real.
During the 12.6-mile train ride, passengers can expect to go through several tunnels and make stops at stunning waterfalls. One stop, however, will undoubtedly stand out from the rest. At Kjosfossen waterfall, passengers step onto the platform and are met with the expected roar and mist of the falls. But above that, something else fills the air—music. A traditional and almost mournful folk song plays on a fiddle, accompanied by a woman’s voice. And then, as if floating above the falling water, a blonde-haired figure in a red dress steps onto the cliffs and begins to dance.
This is the Huldra of Scandinavian mythology, a female forest spirit known for her beauty and powers of seduction. For a few enchanting minutes, passengers suspend their disbelief as they watch her twirl among the mossy rocks until, eventually, she retreats out of sight behind the cliffs.
Rumor has it that the bewitching dancer is not a Huldra but a student at the Norwegian Ballet School. Regardless of what’s true, maybe it’s more fun not to know.
Tip: Because of mist from the waterfalls and probable rain, train passengers are encouraged to wear a raincoat and shoes with good tread.