Architecture Meets Nature on Norway's Detour Routes

Architects and designers located 18 of the most scenic routes in Norway and built more than 200 structures meant to enhance the surrounding landscapes.

Visitors can enjoy the many features in these contemporary structures, which include viewing platforms, picnic areas and rest stops. To enjoy the breathtaking views, don't be afraid to venture off the beaten path and onto the open road.

1. Cyclist House, Grunnfør

Photo courtesy of the National Tourist Routes Project.

This cyclist retreat offers open views of the Vesterålen islands toward the north and mountains in the south. Built to provide a shelter from the strong winds, the building has bicycle parking on the entry level, as well as a food-preparation area and 360-degree, viewing-enclosed decks on the second floor.

2. Resting Point, Parking and Facilities, Eggum

Photo courtesy of Vegar Moen, Snøhetta AS and the National Tourist Roads Project

This site was chosen to be the millennial spot and an amphitheater and parking area for camper vans were created in 2007. The structure was designed by Norwegian architects Snøhetta, designers of the library in Alexandria.

3. Scenic Overlook, Stegastein

Photo courtesy of Todd Saunders, Tommie Wilhelmsen, Vegar Moen and the National Tourist Routes Project.

The mountain road between Aurland and Lærdal, called the Aurlandsvegen, holds a breathtaking viewpoint, the Stegastein platform.

It is situated nearly 4 miles from the center of Aurlandsvangen and about half a mile above sea-level, overlooking the Aurlandsfjord.