The Telemark Canal
The canal became known as “the fast route" between eastern and western Norway and was also the most important transport route between upper and lower Telemark for people, domestic animals, goods and timber.
The Telemark Canal was etched in the mountains for well over 100 years ago, and when the canal was completed in 1892 the rest of Europe called it “the eight wonder of the world”.
Five hundred men had worked for five years, blasting their way through the mountains. With a total of 18 locks chambers, the route was cleared from Skien to the ancient Norwegian village of Dalen, a sailing difference of 72 metres. The canal became known as the “fast route” between eastern and western Norway and was also the most important transport route between upper and lower Telemark for people, domestic animals, goods and timber. Today it is the tourists from near and far who come to experience this unique watercourse which still remains almost as it was for over a hundred years ago. The stone walls of the locks, the enormous lock gates and even the actual opening and closing mechanism – everything is authentic.
The Queen of the canal, “Victoria”, built in 1882, has repeated her journey between coast and mountain for over a hundred years. Despite her old age, Victoria is perfectly suited to the needs of today on her journey through the locks and over beautiful lakes. This traditional vessel can accommodate 180 passengers.
M/S Victoria has open decks both before and aft, so that passengers can fully appreciate the fairytale journey from sea to mountain. During the journey, information is given about everything you see during the sailing trip.
Enjoy the gentle journey across beautiful lakes, through locks with stone-walled sides, pass small houses with canal architecture, through narrow canal passageways and at slow speed.
The possibilities are many and the variations great, everything from a 10 hour all-day trip to a shorter one of 2 hours.
A range of Tidemark’s cultural treasure lie a stoneis throw from the canal; Morgedal – the cradle of skiing, the tourist centre of Vrådal, the stave churches at Heddal and Eidsborg, the history of the war at Rjukan, Ulefos Manor House, Ibsen’s birthplace Skien, and last but not least, the fairytale Hotel Dalen with its dragons and spires.
Read more at www.telemarkskanalen.no.