Originally there was no common name for this large mountainous area, however in 1820 the Norwegian geologist and mountaineer,Baltazar Mathias Keilhau (1797-1858) proposed the name “Jotunfjeldene” "the mountains of the giants" (inspired by the German name Riesengebirge. This was later changed to “Jotunheimen” by the poet Aasmund Olavsson Vinje in 1862 - this name/form was directly inspired by the name Jötunheimr in Norse mythology.
Jotunheimen (English: The Home of the Giants) is a mountainous area of roughly 3,500 km² in southern Norway and is part of the long range known as the Scandinavian Mountains. The 29 highest mountains in Norway are all in Jotunheimen, including the very highest – Galdhøpiggen (2469 mtrs). Jotunheimen straddles the border between the counties of Oppland and Sogn og Fjordane.
Jotunheimen contains Jotunheimen National Park, which was established in 1980 and covers an area of 1,151 km². The “Hurrungane”mountain range is also inside the national park with the sharpest peaks in Jotunheimen.
Bøverdalen valley, where Leirvassbu Mountain Lodge and Elveseter “Culture and Art” Hotel is situated, is the gateway to the magnificent mountains and glaciers of the Jotunheimen plateau. Geologically the whole area of Jotunheimen belongs to the Caledonian folding. During the ice ages it was heavily glaciated and got its present form.