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Stavanger - A travel report by Terry
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Stavanger,  Norway - flag Norway -  Rogaland
8135 readers

terje's travel reports

The King, the Can and the Oil

  16 votes
Page: 1 2
Stavanger is a capital in many ways, but first and foremost for the oil-industry of Norway. The last 30 years have brought an international athmosphere to the quiet city on the southwestern corner of the country.

View of the Vågen area
View of the Vågen area
Because of their remote distance to other major cities, the big cities in western Norway are known as cities that have it all. So also with Stavanger.
The city and bishop-chair was founded by King Sigurd because he had no other bishops to marry him and his second wife. The english (liberal?) bishop Reginald of Winchester was imported in 1125, and the King finally got his new queen. Reginald brought St. Swithun of Winchester with him as his guardian angel (which he needed?), and the cathedral is today called St. Svithun Catedral. There is also a Svithun Church (catholic) and a Svithun High School. The city center is located around the natural harbour, and particularly around the small bay called Vågen.

Favourite spots:
Old Stavanger
Old Stavanger
Old Stavanger is a part of the city with 300 years old wooden houses, small and cosy pedestrian streets, and lots of artistic outlets. In Old Stavanger you will find the Canning Industry Museum, located in a old factory. During opening hours you can see the production line in use and taste some of the goods.

In Stavanger city area, there are 3 beautiful lakes with hiking trails. This is Breiavannet (the smallest, next to the cathedral), Mosvannet (3,3 km hiking trail) and my absolute favourite Stokkavannet (8,25 km hiking trail).

As a memory of the Battle of Hafrsfjord (872 AD) which marks the beginning of Norway as a united kingdom (Harold the Hairyfair), 3 gigantic swords has been planted in the solid rock near Møllebukta. Follow the creek from the south end of Stokkavannet, and you are there after a kilometer or two. Remember, this is not the actual spot of the battle. (Correct location is at Ytraberget across the fjord).

What's really great:
Maritime Museum
Maritime Museum
The Festivals:
Offshore Northern Seas - august every second year (exhange as host with Aberdeen)
World Tour Beach Volleyball Grand Slam tournament - in july Gladmat (Food and gourmet festival) - in july
International Chamber Music Festival - in august

The Museums:
Oil Museum - at Skagenkaien
Maritime Muesum - in Vågen
Canning Industry Museum - in Old Stavanger
Toy Museum - at Sølvbergen cultural center
Zoological and archeologigal museum - near train station
Aviation museum - at the airport

Skagen Brygge Hotell in Vågen
Skagen Brygge Hotell in Vågen
Lots of hotels in all price ranges:
Limited budget:
Stavanger Lille Hotell (
Havly Hotell (
Smart Hotel (
Medium budget:
Victoria Hotel (
Thon Hotel Maritim (
Radisson SAS Atlantic (
Skagen Brygge Hotell (
Clarion Hotel Stavanger (

Skagen, the famous restaurant and nightclub area
Skagen, the famous restaurant and nightclub area
Stavanger is famous for excellent food. The Gastronomic Institute is located in the city, and many of the chefs are educated from this academy. This is my favourites (with adresses):

Bevaremegvel (Skagen 12)
NB Sørensens Dampskipsexpedition (Skagen 26)
Tango (Nedre Strandgate 25)
Jans Mat og Vinhus (Breitorget) (
Cafe de France (Eiganesveien 8)

Etnical food is also present:

Greek food at Akropolis (Sølvberggata 14)
Spanish tapas at Emilios (Sølvberggata 13)
Turkish kebabs several places around the city
American bagels at Amys Coffeebar (Salvågergaten 7)

Other recommendations:
Mauritzen Building in central Stavanger.
Mauritzen Building in central Stavanger.
The view from Ullanhaug Tower is stunning! If you get up here, its easy to understand the location of the ancient iron-age farm that is excavated/reconstructed just below the tower.
Preikestolen in Lysefjord, the most stunning piece of nature you can imagine. Several tours are arranged to get there, but you can also get there on your own. There is a hiking trail that brings you from Preikestolhytta to the "Pulpit Rock" itself. It takes around 2 hours to get there.
If you get a chance to drive past one of the bases for the offshore industry, you might be able to see some of the technological stuff that has brought the black gold up from the deep.
And when you are in your car, take as drive from Stavanger to Bryne and back, through the richest agricultural area in Norway. Along the coast you will find several really good beaches, among them Sola Beach or Bore Beach. It's usually a bit cold in the water, but perfect for wind- and wavesurfing.

Published on Saturday March 25th, 2006

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Tue, Apr 18 2006 - 11:27 AM rating by magsalex

This has encouraged me to try and make a visit.

Fri, Mar 31 2006 - 05:24 AM rating by gloriajames

Thanks for sharing this with us. Nice report.

Wed, Mar 29 2006 - 01:15 PM rating by jorgesanchez

Very pleasant read

Sat, Mar 25 2006 - 08:39 PM rating by downundergal

Interesting report. Brings back memories of Sweden being so similar.
I agree it is difficult to write about one's hometown so well done.

Sat, Mar 25 2006 - 03:16 PM rating by jesusferro

Very useful and lots of practical information. I want to eat tapas in the Spanish bar Emilios!

Sat, Mar 25 2006 - 02:41 PM rating by eirekay

Terje - Thanks for a terrific report! Lots of great detail!

Sat, Mar 25 2006 - 12:53 PM rating by frenchfrog

It is a very informative report, lots of info provides. Really good. Many thanks

Sat, Mar 25 2006 - 11:33 AM rating by rangutan

Another excellent report Terge! "30 years HAVE brought ... cities that HAVE it all"

Sat, Mar 25 2006 - 08:07 AM rating by davidx

Great information. Sometimes it can be hardest to write about a place you know really well; you make it seem easy!

Sat, Mar 25 2006 - 03:56 AM rating by isaacmolina

I have never been in Norway, but after reading your good report, now I want to go!

Sat, Mar 25 2006 - 03:54 AM rating by marianne

This is a well-written report full of relevant information. I especially like your list of hotels with their websites. Are the skies always deep blue as shown in your photos? You made me almost want to visit. Almost because I don't like cold climates.


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