Municipality of Kvam
Ålvik is located on the north side of the Hardangerfjord, 25 km from Norheimsund in the north-eastern direction. 700 inhabitants enjoy life in Ålvik. Elkem AS Bjølvefossen has 155 employees and produces both clean ferrosilicon and about 120 different alloys are produced and sold around the world. Bjølvefossen receives its electricity for production from Statkraft's Bjølvo Kraftverk which is 1200 meters inside the mountain in Ålvik. School, kindergarten, church, sports field and residential houses lie on a small side road from FV 7. The COOP store is centrally located at Torget. Tyrvefjøra is located 750m from Torget and has bathing and picnic area with facilities as part of the public works administration’s project for the national tourist routes.
Ålvik is a good starting point for walking in the mountains. Gravel toll roads winds itself up to the treeline from Ytre Ålvik and Vikedal in Ålvik. Information signs along Fv.7 are located where the toll roads start.
Øystese with its 2500 inhabitants lies 6 km north-east of the municipal center in Norheimsund. The town offers many services and is a versatile business community. The town will be the home of a new health bath/swimming hall “Hardangerbadet in late 2019 when it is ready for use. Hardangerbadet will be a public bath, a health and medical center specialising in back and skeletal disorders. Next door is the completely renovated Hardangerfjord Hotel which will share the reception hall with the Hardangerbadet.
The secondary and high school are located in the center of Øystese.
The Fitjadalen valley behind Øystese center has a municipal road that winds itself up to Fitjadalsvatnet -lake, which is a good starting point for a walk around the lake or hiking in the mountains. An alternative road from Fv.7 between Øystese to Fyksesund over Soldal - Porsmyr, is a scenic drive past Skårsvatnet with its goldfish. A fun place for children for them to feed the fish and have a picknick. (The road is narrow and is not recommended for large cars)
Strandebarm with its inhabitants of 1300, was a freestanding municipality stretching from Innstranda to Mundheim until 1965, when it merged with the municipality of Kvam. The center of Strandebarm is Tangerås with Strandebarmtunet, which houses the COOP grocery store, café, hairdresser, health center, and a building shop. Close to the shopping center is also Strandebarm kindergarten, (to the left of the image). Behind, to the right of the picture e, we see Strandebarm boat marina next to Strandebarm sports complex. Close by is the new Strandebarm primary school, where pupils from Innstranda to Mundheim are bussed to. The area offers trails with magnificent views of the Hardangerfjord, in particular the trail to Klepp with its cabins from earlier years as summer farms.
Strandbarm was also the birth place of two of Norway’s famous authors:
Hans E. Kinck, (1865- 1926) philologist. novelist, was nominated for Nobel prize in literature seven times. Today you can visit his home at Kinch House about 200 meters from Tangerås.
Jon Fosse (1959- ) a playwright, poet and writer, lived his youth and child years in Strandebarm.
Distance from Norheimsund to Tangerås is 30 km.
Overnight accommodation in Strandebarm is offered at Strandebarm Sporthotell (next to the sports complex.
Norheimsund with its 3300 inhabitants is the municipal center of Kvam herad and the regional center in outer parts of Hardanger. In 2013, Norheimsund was awarded the Norwegian government’s “most attractiv village” prize. The basis for winning the price was thetight and easy access center with good access to the fjord. The center offers over 30 specialty shops, liquor stores, hotels, several cafes, bank, post office, town square with and a bus hub. In the small boat-marina there are also guest boat docs. From the pier in Norheimsund departs daily, in season the popular passenger boat for the Hardanger fjord cruise to Ulvik and Eidfjord. Along Strandvegen promenade can you walk from Hardanger Fartøyvernsenter through the village center and onward to the bridge over Straumen and from there on the pedestrian path along Movatnet to Steinsdalsfossen, (return via Fv.7).
No parking fees in Norheimsund including and all centers of the municipality.
Tørvikbygd with its ferry connection over the Hardangerfjord from Jondal, is an important transportation hub and lies 12 km south of Norheimsund. The COOP grocery store is located by the ferry quay. Tørvikbygd has its own kindergarten, and the school covers pupils in classes from 1th to 5th grade, after which the pupils are bussed to Strandebarm elementary school. Tørvikbygd has many active local groups associated with youth work, sports club, presbyterian house, and music enthusiasts find their place in Tørvikbygd music corps. 500 persons makes their home in Tørvikbygd. This area is known for its extensive trail network including Innstranda trails, both areas has marked trails from lowland to hillsides summer cabins, and to the mountain top trail of Tørvikenuten “Nuten” at about 1000m elevation.