Anyone who likes to travel actively should put Norway on their to-do list. You can take beautiful walks, rafting, kayaking, canoeing, mountain biking,… In the summer of 2019, I was as a tour guide in norway’s southern fjords. The first of the four mountain walks on the program was the mountain walk to the Preikestolen.
What’s the Preikestolen?
Preikestolen (the Pulpit) is a small plateau (25m x 25m) that is 604 meters above the water of the Lysefjord. The imposing view from this cliff makes this place one of Norway’s best-known and most important tourist sites. Tourists staying in Stavanger can easily get there with a bus service. If you come by car there is parking (25 euros). ‘The Preikestolen Camping‘ is also a perfect base for the campers among us.
The walk to the Preikestolen
The total walk (back and forth) is only 6 km long and takes on average about 4 hours. Most of the route actually consists of stairs. Like many mountain trails in Norway, these stairs are made by Nepalese Sherpas. There is also an alternative and more adventurous route from the Preikestolen which crosses the ordinary path about halfway through. This one is a lot of fun to do when you return. Just follow the red T’s starting right on the Preikestolen.
In bad or wet weather, this walk is not really much more dangerous (as long as you don’t take the alternative route), but you take the risk of ending up in a cloud that prevents you from seeing the beautiful scenery. Also remember that there can be a lot of wind on the Preikestolen (even in good weather). When I visited the place, it was mostly cloudy but this gave a very nice effect on the scenery. So you don’t just have to go on sunny days.
One thing is important when you go to the Preikestolen. This unique place is very well known all over the world, so the whole world sometimes seems to be there as well. If you’d rather see a little fewer Asians on slippers, you can go early in the morning or just in the late evening (The days in the summer are very long in Norway). From 4pm most busses are back in Stavanger.
Is it worth it?
Is the mountain hike to the Preikestolen worth it? Take a look at the pictures and the conclusion was taken very quickly. The large mass of visitors is a disadvantage, but also underlines how beautiful the view is once you arrive (and even during the hike). Anyone visiting Norway’s southern fjords should certainly stop for the mountain hike to the Preikestolen.
By the way, I have the honour of bringing another group to Norway in the summer of 2020. If there are questions about the Preikestolen or norway’s southern fjords, you can post a comment below or send an email below.
Are you an avid hiker yourself? Then this post about three nice hikes in the Ardennes might also interest you.