Jordan Atop Kjeragbolten 😸

In May 2022, Parker saw a photo of Kjeragbolten and insisted that we needed to go there, so we spent 11 days in Norway, exploring hikes throughout the Lysefjord and enjoying the town of Stavanger as we joined in on the Constitution Day celebrations!

From adding Fiskesuppe to our diets, celebrating with the entire nation on their national Constitution Day, and discovering our all-time favorite hike, this experience created life-long memories for us both!

On our first night in Norway, we were given the recommendation to try fiskesuppe, a staple in Norway. We happily found the creamy, warm soup with delicious, fresh chunks of fish to be fantastic! We ended up chasing down this meal most nights throughout our trip and were thrilled to bring the recipes home with us!

Our favorite Hikes on the Trip:

Preikestolen - Pulpit Rock
Kjerag & Kjeragbolten - (Our favorite hike we have ever done!)

Preikestolen - Pulpit Rock

Difficulty: Moderate-Challenging. Distance: 5 miles. Elevation gain: 1,305 ft. Time: 3 hr. Trailhead: Preikestolen Fjellstue.

This gorgeous hike is one of Norway's most famous, starting at the mountain lodge Preikestolen Fjellstue and ending at the famous pinnacle outlook, towering 604 meters above the Lysefjord. This was a nice, moderate-intensity hike with the best views at the end.

Kjerag & kjeragbolten

Difficulty: Challenging. Distance: 5.7 miles. Elevation gain: 1,912 ft. Time: 4 hrs. Trailhead: Øygardstøl.

1,084 meters above sea level, Kjerag is the highest peak in the Lysefjord. This hike was the main source of motivation that pulled us to Norway and it turned out to be the most challenging and rewarding hike we had ever done.

The hike had rope-assisted climbs, 2600ft elevation gain, one-of-a-kind streams and ponds forming from melted snow, & the opportunity to conquer your fear of heights by stepping out onto the Kjeragbolten! The adventure back down the mountain was also special, with large stretches where we could glissade back down.

This is our all-time favorite hike we have ever done, largely due to the consistently incredible views that are offered for the entire hike.

Flor&Fjære restaurant and gardens

While staying in Stavanger, we took a ferry trip across the fjords to Flor&Fjære, a privately owned family property with lush, colorful gardens and a gorgeous greenhouse restaurant. Because of the tree coverage, the island can grow plants and trees not otherwise grown in Norway, Creating a diverse collection of gardens that flow together for a magical experience.

We spent a memorable afternoon walking through the beautiful and expansive gardens, wine in hand. In their brand new, extravagant greenhouse, we were served a high-class meal of local ingredients and fiskesuppe made with herbs and vegetables grown on the island.

This was a last-minute decision on our part, but we were glad to have had this special and unique experience.

Lysefjord Boat Tour -

At the start of our trip, we decided to take a cruise of the Lysefjord to see from below what we would soon be hiking from above.

We booked through Rodne Fjord Cruise, leaving directly from Stavanger and taking us past Forsand, where we stayed while hiking in the Lysefjord.

This fun, easy boat tour consisted of Fantahålå (Vagabond’s Cave), where vagrants once hid from the sheriff in the old days, past the magnificent and towering Preikstolen, up close to the Hengjanefossen waterfall, and past the Norwegian goats lounging in the pastures.

Stavanger on Constitution Day
During our stay, we were lucky to experience the May 17th Constitution Day celebrations, with parades throughout the towns all across the country and everyone adorned in traditional outfits. We joined the crowds downtown and ate from the classic hot dog stands. This was also a fun way for us to walk around and explore Gamle Stavanger, the historic center of Stavanger, and Øvre Holmegate, Norway's most colorful street

The Stavanger Art Museum, where Parker found his favorite painting by Hans Gude, is filled with distinguished Norwegian and international art dating back to the 19th century, has a small cafe, and is located in a park surrounding the lake Mosvannet. We spent an enjoyable morning exploring the museum and grounds.

The Norwegian Petroleum Museum was also interactive and informative, showing how offshore operations have become Norway's most important industry. The exhibits showcase technological advances, how oil revenue has affected Norwegian society, and the climate challenges posed by greenhouse gas emissions and global warming.

Parker's favorite piece of art at Stavanger Art Museum by Hans Hude

Just outside of Stavanger are a few hidden gems-

The Sverd i fjell, or the Swords of Stavanger, stand overlooking the fjords and are said to commemorate a battle which unified the Viking tribes of Norway under one king, Harald the Fairhaired. According to legend, in 1872, Harald sought a meeting with the other Viking tribal leaders, then cut off their retreats by boat, forcing them to battle until they submitted to Harald's rule, allowing him to become the first king of Norway.

On our last night in Norway, we visited Sola Beach and the Sola Beach Hotel. We enjoyed more fiskesuppe, walked a long stretch of sandy beach, and reflected on all of Norway's amazing adventures.

Wish List:
If we return to Norway, we would love to hike the famous Trolltunga. Additionally, we want to head north towards Lofoten for some snow shoe hikes and epic views of the Northern Lights!