The southern coast of Norway with its interesting towns, steep rock-faced fjords, and rocky islets is so scenic that it would be difficult to choose a favorite sight from among them. We found that it was the short cruises we took which provided the best scenery and created some of our favorite memories of Norway.
For our day in Stavanger, we had pre-booked a morning excursion with Rødne Fjord Cruises to Lysefjorden and the famous "Preikestolen" or Pulpit Rock and then would spend the remainder of the day exploring the town on foot. Just beyond the cruise port area on Skagenkaien quay, we boarded the M/S Rygerprinsessen, an extremely comfortable catamaran which can seat up to 180 people inside and topside. The Rygerprinsessen made her way out of Stavanger's harbor and our onboard guide, Mike, introduced himself and began his narration of the journey. He began with some very interesting information about the city of Stavanger itself, and then about Tingholmen (site of the 998 national assembly held by King Olav Tryggvason), and before long we were had reached the Høgsfjorden where many people have summerhouses or "huts" along the shore and dotting the green hills.
Sailing toward Lysefjord, firstly we would pass under the Lysefjord Bridge just at the mouth the fjord with the towns of Oanes and Forsand on either side. The narrow Lysefjord is just over 26 miles long, while at its deepest point it is nearly a staggering 1,400 feet deep. As we looked up and down the steep granite walls of the fjord, it was hard to imagine that the fjord was carved out by glacial movement during the ice age. It was doubly hard to imagine because our day on the Lysefjord was actually brilliantly sunny and very hot!
Along the way we passed by the pothole or "Jettegryten," a geographical bathtub of sorts created by rock movement. The cruise took us so close to the bottom of the Hengjane waterfall that we felt the refreshing spray from the falling water. Another of our short stops was to see the goats which live on the sides of the fjord -- not sure who they belong to, but seems that many tourists feed them as well as crews from excursion boats such as ours. When the goats see the boats coming, they come down to the closest point to the water expecting to be fed. Hopefully this feeding continues through the winter!
We stopped again for a moment just at the side of a sheer rock face to have a look at a green mailbox attached to the rock -- odd place for a mailbox, and even odder that I can't remember why it was there when there is no home or building even close by.
Before our stops at the waterfall and for the goats, we made an actual landing and the M/S Rygerprinsessen tied up at a tiny piece of beach called Helleren, a beautiful spot for a snack and to soak in the surrounding scenery.
Rødne Fjord Cruises from Stavanger to Lysefjord & Pulpit Rock:
Departure from Skagenkaien Quay in Stavanger; Duration of cruise is approximately 3 hours.
Guiding in several languages. Tickets can be purchased at rodne.no in advance or on board before departure.
Scheduled departures can be a little confusing. Make sure to verify months, day, and time of cruises online before booking. Currently cruise departures are scheduled for:
January-April & October-December
Wednesday-Sunday at 11:00
(No departure on 1 January, 24 and 25 December)
May – September
Daily at 10:00 and at 14:00
Prices for 2016:
Adults NOK 480,-
Children 4-15 years NOK 300,- (Free if under 4 years)
Family ticket NOK 1300,- (2 adults + up to 4 children)
Next tip: Helleren Fjord Restaurant.
Chance to both looking up from a cruse to the end of the Fjord and a chance to look down on the lysefjord as we drove the small roads on the north and south rim with a rented care beautiful small roads like 496 near fossmark with nobody but us on them and lots of sheep.
Lysefjord is one of the most visited fjord in Noway. One often see people siting on a huge square rock. Its a scary view sometimes. That flat rock is here. One can take Lysefjord Sight*seeing boat. It will take you to the best area of the Fjord within one hour or two. You really enjoy the day trip.
Our final stop on our Lysefjord cruise, is a the Hengjane Waterfall. Here, the Boat is brought quite close to the waterfall, and once again the Captain waited until we all had taken a photo. This waterfall plummets down the cliff, 400 metres into the fjord.
We saw a couple of other waterfalls, but I am not sure if they are named.
So, all we have to do, is return to Stavanger. This cruise was excellent, and both my husband and I thoroughly enjoyed the relaxing time watching the scenery go past.
We are heading to Pulpit Rock on our cruise, but before reaching it, we stop to view "Vagabond's Cave.' In here, we can make out a stuffed figure lying in the Cave. The cave was named such, as a group of vagabonds used to come here when escaping from the arms of the law!
Next, was a stop to see the Goats, who are fed bread, and a little further on, one Seal, even though there are many that live in the fjord.
We are now at Pulpit Rock, and looking up is nowhere near as impressive as the photo's I have seen from the top. Still, the cliff is sheer, and you wouldn't want to make a mistake and fall into the fjord! The rock formation was formed during the last ice-age, which was about 10,000 years ago.
Pulpit rock is 604 metres above the fjord.
Don't worry about not getting a photo at this stop and others, as the captain of the Boat, turns it around so that everybody has a chance of getting a good photo. This is great, and I wish more Boat captains would do this.
As we head towards on our cruise to the Lysefjord, the scenery has changed dramatically. Now, we are finding islands with an odd house, inlets where a house and Boat is hidden, and even a fish farm.
We dropped mail off at one small village, then later on saw a few more villages. These are set in and amongst huge boulders of all different shapes and forms, great for viewing!
It is scenic viewing, and a part of the cruise I really enjoyed.
Are you on a cruise? We were, and we did the Lysefjorden and the Pulpit Rock by ourselves, as it was much cheaper than offered by the cruise line, and it really could only be the same tour!
Where our Ship docked, was where the Cruise tour departed from. We just walked a few hundred metres to the Rodne Fjord Cruise, booked our cruise for 10am, then had a look at the markets and some of Stavanger whilst waiting.
The 3 hour cruise took us to the bottom of the famous Pulpit Rock before returning to Stavanger. The Boat has a sun deck and kiosk, much appreciated for a warming hot chocolate drink. Good that information is given in several languages, including English.
On the boat, we sat inside as the air was quite cool, and I just went outside for photo's. Dress warm, as you are on a Boat, and you are in Norway!
January-April and October-December
Wednesday-Sunday at 12:00.
Easter (5-9 April) at 12:00.
May and September....Daily at 12:00 a.m. (No departure on 17 May)
June...Daily at 10:00 a.m. and 2:00 p.m.
July and August...Daily at 10.00 a.m. and 2:00 p.m.
Extra departures Thursday, Friday and Saturday at 12:00.
PRICE OF CRUISE.....Adults...400nk ...Seniors/Students...300nk
Family ticket2 adults + up to 4 children..1000nk
Come along for the virtual cruise in the next few reviews, having a look at what you can expect to see!
Our ship did not pass Pulpit Rock on the way in or out, so I thought the cruise that you can pick up at the docks was a nice way to spend a few hours. The cruise was 400NOK ($67US) per person vs. $99US if we did a ship excursion and it was within 10 minutes walk of any of the ships docked that day. Our cruise line map made it look like it was really far away from where we docked but it was very close and very easy to find. They take credit cards right there at the dock, you'll want to get there a bit earlier than the cruise to ensure a good seat.
The 1st cruise of the day is at 10am, I believe it was about 3 hours round trip. Even though it was a little chilly we sta up on the deck both directions, most people crowded on the deck on the way over and then headed to the covered and heated section below.
We saw some seals and some goats, the goats I suspect are planted there by the cruise line but still fun see.
There are two boat companies in Stavanger offering sightseeing trips down the Lysefjord. We have been with Rodne boats, which leave from the central harbour area in Stavanger (not far from the Skagen Brygge Hotel).
It’s possible to book seats (advisable during the summer months) or you can turn up at the boat on the off chance there are spaces, but on a nice day you could be disappointed. On the day we went, there were lots of people being turned away because the boat was full. Out of season, they won’t run this trip unless they have a minimum number of people (I think about 15). They let people on board about ten minutes before sailing. On a nice day, it’s a bit of a scrum for seats on the upper deck so get there early to get a good position in the boarding queue.
The boat has a comfortable lounge deck for those who don’t want to sit up on deck (or weren’t quick enough getting on board). There is also a small shop where you can buy drinks, snacks, stamps, and film for your camera if you haven’t progressed to digital photography.
Take a fleece or warm layer with you; it can get chilly on the upper deck even in the sun!
Binoculars are good to have but not essential.
Don’t forget your camera!
This is an enjoyable three-hour trip that takes you along the coast outside Stavanger, then down Lysefjord as far as Preikestolen where you can admire the famous viewpoint from below. If you’ve ever climbed Preikestolen, the thing that strikes you is how tiny and delicate it looks from the fjord. The boat goes on slightly further to a waterfall (Hengjanenibbå) where they collect some of the water for passengers to sample. The views from the boat are beautiful and this trip is relaxing and enjoyable.
We have admired the well-known Lysefjord from a comfortable sightseeing boat of the Rodne Company. The tour takes about 3 hours and offers you unforgettable images of Stavanger, of the fjord, the Pulpit Rock, beautiful waterfalls, rocks and caves, Norwegian summerhouses along the coastline...
At this time of the year, you can enjoy this cruise on Saturdays and Sundays and only if there are at least 15 tourists on board.
The famous, 40 Km long Lysefjord, surrounded by impressive mountains and cliffs carved out during successive Ice Ages, is one of the best fjords of Norway. For a magnificent view of the fjord, you must walk to the top of the Pulpit Rock or the Kjerag mountains. Unforgettable!!! You can visit the fjord also by boat or ferry.