Gjende Viewpoint Hiking Trail
Take a quick hike from the dock for views across Gjende Lake
- Destination: Jotunheimen National Park
- Season: June-October
- Difficulty: Easy
- Distance: 1.1 kilometers (out‑and‑back)
- Elevation Gain: 120 meters
- Duration: 0.5-1 hours
About Gjende Viewpoint
This short hike provides easy access to a photo-worthy viewpoint above Gjende Lake. Here, at the very eastern end of the lake, you can look deep into the heart of Jotunheimen with the famous Besseggen Ridge alongside you.
The Gjende area is a popular entry point for adventures on the eastern side of Jotunheimen National Park. Gjende is a short detour along Norwegian Scenic Route Valdresflye.
A public bus stops at Gjendesheim and connects to Oslo and Bergen. From Oslo, take the NW161 Valdresekspressen. This route runs from Oslo bus terminal to the stop Gjendesheim. Or take the route NW160 Valdresekspressen to Årdalstangen and change to NW161 Valdresekspressen.
From Oslo, head north on E16, towards Bergen, for 185 kilometers. When you reach Fagernes, follow signs to road 51, towards Vågå/Beitostølen. From Beitostølen keep following road 51 towards Bygdin. Drive past Bygdin for another 22 kilometers until you reach the signs for Gjendesheim lodge on your left. Turn here.
From Bergen drive via E16 towards Vossevangen. Then drive to Beitostølen either through Vang or Fagernes. Follow road 51 for another 34 kilometers before you see the sign for Gjendesheim.
Note: Parts of Road 51 (between Garli and Maurvangen) are closed during winter and typically open from April to December.
If you’re visiting for the day or beginning a multi-day trek, park in the long-term parking lot at Reinsvangen. The parking lot is on the right-hand side shortly after turning off Road 51 and on to the road to Gjendesheim. Parking costs 150 NOK for 24 hours and longer stays are available. Pay by card at the machine. A shuttle runs the 1.7 kilometer trip between the parking lot and the dock every 15-30 minutes.
By the dock there is free parking for up to 2 hours. You still need to collect a ticket from the machine.
For overnight guests at Gjendesheim, free parking is available by the cabin.
The trailhead is just behind the convenience store, signposted for Besseggen Ridge. As this is the same trail for Besseggen, you might meet a lot of hikers coming down towards you, especially if it’s later in the day.
The trail is uphill but with lots of stone steps it is quite easy to hike. When the trail starts to level off you have reached the viewpoint.
- Free toilet by Reinsvangen parking lot and by the dock
- Convenience store by the dock where you can buy drinks, food, and basic supplies
Where to stay
Questions or comments? Let us know.