The Gudbrandsdalsleden, the Olav Path

After the death of King Olav in 1030 and his canonization, many pilgrims walked to the holy place of Nidaros to pray, give thanks and do penance. After the Reformation the routes fell into disrepair. Since the 1980s, work has started to restore these age-old routes, the most important of which runs from Oslo to Trondheim, the Gudbrandsdalsleden. Nowadays, modern pilgrims walk along this route for countless reasons, to escape the hectic pace of everyday life, to reflect on their own existence, in search of physical and mental challenges or simply to enjoy nature. Whatever it is, ultimately the tour is so much more than an ordinary mountain hike or a tourist trip.



A self-guided hike to Trondeheim. During this tour you walk from Dovre over the barren Dovrefjell plateau, through a beautiful cultural landscapes along the river Orkla, through forests and bogs to the city of Trondheim where the imposing Nidaros Cathedral stands. The shrine of Olav the Saint once stood in this church. For this trip you need to bring a sleeping bag and luggage transfer is not always possible.

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01. Travel day. Overnight stay in Budsjord (approx. 4.5 km)

A short walk from the train station to the first accommodation.

02. Budsjord – Fokstugu (approx. 14.5 km)

Today you start the ascent of Dovrefjell. On the bare plateau, wind and weather have free rein. You follow the old king’s road to today’s highest point: Allmannrøysa (1210 meters above sea level). For centuries people have placed a stone on this pile when they passed this point, but now the old road has been given monument status and the laying of stones is no longer allowed here. From Allmanrøysa there is still a descent of more than 6 kilometers to the fjellstue Fokstugu.

03. Fokstugu – Hageseter (approx. 19.5 km)

You walk back to the other side of the E6 and follow the path along the river Foksåa up through the Foksådal. The first part takes you above the tree line again, but later you mainly walk between birch trees. Along the way you will enjoy the magnificent view over Dovrefjell and the Fokstumyra Nature Reserve, Norway’s most famous bird sanctuary. Finally you reach Lake Avsjøen, which you pass on the east side. Through a beautiful and varied terrain you reach Hageseter, where you will spend the night.

04. Hageseter – Kongsvold (approx. 16.5 km)

After only one and a half kilometres you will reach Veslehjerkinn; this area was already inhabited during the Viking age. Here stood the first sælehus – a safe haven for pilgrims and travelers – built by order of King Eystein Magnusson. At Hjerkinn, at an altitude of 965 meters, is the Eysteinkyrkja. The church from 1969 is designed after Norway’s national mountain, Snøhetta. You follow the old king’s road over Hjerkinnhø and after a few kilometres you pass the highest point (1288 m) with a beautiful view of Snøhetta and Rondane. Tonight you will stay in the ‘palatial’ accommodation Kongsvold Fjeldstue and enjoy a special pilgrim dinner in the historic dining room.

05. Kongsvold – Ryphusan (approx. 21 km)

The last day on Dovrefjell starts with a walk parallel to the E6 on a somewhat more difficult path to the beginning of the so-called Vårstigen. The ascent to the viewpoint at Tingsvaet – the highest point of Vårstigen – is steep, but the view is worth it. With a bit of luck you can spot musk oxen on the other side of the E6. After this the terrain flattens out and you walk through the forest to the Drivstusætra. Then it goes up again and after the bridge over the river Vårstigåa the pilgrim route leaves the Vårstigen. Above the tree line the road becomes less steep again and you can walk relatively easily for about 10 kilometers through the Vinstra valley to Ryphusan.

06. Ryphusan – Oppdal (approx. 27 km)

From Ryphusan you descend further through the Vinstra valley – a river valley with steep mountain walls on both sides. You walk largely parallel to the river Vinstra and after about 12 kilometers you pass the pilgrim chapel of St. Mikael. You walk through forests, past fields and farms in the direction of Oppdal. Passing the Vang burial ground with more than 750 burial mounds from the Viking age you reach Oppdal church and then it is just a short distance to the city centre of Oppdal.

07. Oppdal

Today you can rest from the efforts of the past few days. Perhaps a good opportunity to visit the cemetery Vang for a nice stroll that has been set out there or to look around in the city centre of Oppdal.

08. Oppdal – Langklopp Fjellgård (approx. 21.5 km)

After leaving the apartment complexes around Oppdal behind, you continue walking through cultivated landscape and forests, surrounded by a beautiful mountain area. It’s not a difficult hike; you walk on typical Norwegian grusveier, interspersed with grass paths, to the next accommodation address. Along the way you regularly have beautiful views over the valley on your right.

09. Langklopp Fjellgård – Stamnan (approx. 20 km)

Today’s tour leads through the beautiful Orkla valley – the river meanders through a cultural landscape with vast pine forests on the mountain slopes. Until Skjepphaugen, where you cross the river, you mainly descend. After the bridge you can choose between a steep climb with beautiful views over the valley or a flat walk along the banks of the Orkla. The last 2 kilometers you walk parallel to highway 700.

10. Stamnan – Hol (approx. 22.5 km)

You reach Rennebu through the forest. After Rennebu you follow national road 700 for one kilometer and then you climb up the mountainside again. On the way you will pass some old farms – so-called trønderlån – the typical style of large and medium-sized farms in Trøndelag. When you are back on the main road, it is only a few kilometers to the overnight address.

11. Hol – Løkken Verk (approx. 19 km)

Also today a nice stage along the Orkla, through Meldal to the mining village of Løkken Verk, mostly on flat gravel roads, asphalt and grass paths, but after Meldal and Malmplassen there are also a few steep climbs.

12. Løkken Verk – Gumdalen (approx. 9 km)

A short stage today, so actually half a rest day. At Malmplassen you will be reminded of the mining industry and you will see some remains of the old smelting furnace. There is also a milestone here that indicates that it is still 61 kilometers to Nidaros.

13. Gumdalen – Skaun (approx. 21 km)

After passing Lake Solsjøen and Korslia Farm, you will reach a shelter designed as a ‘living room’. A great place for a break. Then a tour through a beautiful and deserted peat area begins. This was the route used by the pilgrims in summer, in winter they walked higher along the slope through the snow. After a few kilometers you leave the marshy area again and walk on forest paths and gravel roads to Skaun.

14. Skaun – Øysanden (approx. 18 km)

The milestone in Skaun states that it is still 38 kilometers to Nidarosdom in Trondheim. You first walk to the historic site of Husaby. You walk between fields and meadows in the direction of the river Gaula.

15. Øysanden – Trondheim (approx. 21 km)

In the first kilometers of the last stage to Trondheim, a short but tough climb awaits you. Later you walk through a forest area and finally through the streets of Trondheim to the Nidaros Cathedral, the goal of this pilgrimage walk.

16. Travel day

You can book extra nights in Trondheim if you want.

16 days of which you walk 13 days, an average of 18 kilometers per day.


The route is described as ‘moderate’ to ‘difficult’, which means that if you are a trained walker the route is fairly easy to do. The first part of the trip is the hardest. The route over the Dovre plateau can be hazardous during bad weather – so check the forecast. You cross mountain paths, forests, gravel and asphalt. If you want to walk the entire route, you need to be in good shape. We also recommend that you bring good hiking equipment – broken-in hiking boots, a comfortable backpack and possibly walking sticks. Planning the entire route requires time, so start planning early and don’t hesitate to contact us with your questions.

You spend the nights in pilgrim hostels, ranging from simple to comfortable. In a hut on a campsite, in traditional fjellstuer, on authentic farms or in old storehouses, in a motel or on a mattress in a parish house. What is certain is that you are introduced to a special, unusual part of Norway. In one place you use your own sleeping bag. There are a couple of places where you might have to share a room.

Meals can be booked – but not for all places: 8x dinner, 11x breakfast/lunch.

Luggage transfer is possible along most stages of this trip – but not all. Ask us for details.

Accommodation, most meals (8x dinner, 11x breakfast/lunch), booking, assistance through app (if needed).

Overnight stay in Ryphusan, luggage transfer, bed linen, plane- and train tickets. You will of course be helped to find the trip that suits you best.

This offer is covered by the STO Garant guarantee. You can find the conditions for this guarantee scheme on STO Garant’s website (

Contact us for more information: or +31 6 12834782.

  • € 1.495 (one person, single room where available)
  • € 2.315 (two persons, double room where available)


Self-guided hike along Gudbrandsdalsleden, Norway

  • Available from June to August

  • 16 days of which you walk 13 days, an average of 18 kilometers per day.

  • € 1.495 (one person, single room where available)

  • € 2.315 (two persons, double room where available)

Contact us for more info