Lying on the southwest coast of Norway, Stavanger is the country’s fourth largest city. Once a fish-orientated economy, it is now known as the “oil capital”. Car free streets in the centre, open air produce markets and historic 19th-century wooden buildings await you. The famous Pulpit Rock is also nearby.
When to Go?
Visiting between May and September are often seen as the best times of the year to visit Stavanger both for the temperatures and for the events. In May the air can still be crisp but it is also just before the crowds set in.
Stavanger Airport Sola, located 20-minutes from Stavanger, is Norway’s second largest airport when it comes to international air traffic. A shuttle bus departs from the airport to the centre of Stavanger every 20 minutes. The train from Oslo to Stavanger takes eight hours. Buses and ferries depart daily and Stavanger is a regular stop for Norwegian fjord cruises.
The Valberg Tower is a historic 1850’s lookout tower that has been converted into an interesting guard museum. You can also find some nice views of the city from the west side of the tower.
What might initially sound like a boring museum is anything but. The Norwegian Petroleum Museum takes you through a range of hands on activities, visuals, reading material, replicas and exhibitions that focus on petroleum history, Norway’s history, technology, “the black days”, the making of oil and what products come from petroleum.
At one time, Stavanger had a successful fish and canning industry. The Norwegian Canning Museum provides a hands on education of that history and the people and machines that kept it running. Not the biggest museum in the city but one of the most interesting.
Stavanger Cathedral, Norway’s oldest cathedral built around 1100 is well worth a stop. The church was built in Anglo-Norman style. The interiors are not over the top but still impressive.
The Stavanger Maritime Museum features 200 years of maritime history. Located in two warehouses dating from around 1800, it isn’t just the history inside that is worth the visit.
Eat and Drink
Pick up a freshly baked cake, tempting snack or some warming tea at Bakeri & Konditori by Charles & De. Open seven days a week, you can even watch the masters at work when you visit.
You will find Bølgen & Moi Stavanger at the pier of the Norwegian Petroleum Museum. Lunchtime is filled with homemade sandwiches, cookies and light dishes, whereas at dinner you can indulge in a seven course artistic menu.
A restaurant with a name as great as Fish & Cow has to make the list despite it only having just opened. Fish & Cow is a modern brasserie, open six days a week with a focus on fresh and local ingredients for both dinner and lunch.
Located in the heart of Stavanger, Radisson Blu Royal Hotel is just five minutes walk from Stavanger station. Stylish interiors, free WiFi and an in-house spa make this a traveller’s favourite.
Myhregaarden Hotel is a boutique hotel five minutes walk from Stavanger Station. Friendly staff, well equipped rooms, and free WiFi are all features of this comfortable hotel.
Situated on the harbour side, Clarion Collection Hotel Skagen Brygge is about a five-minute walk from the old town. But the stunning views of the Vågen Fjord more than make up for it. Free WiFi is available, as are free waffles between 3 and 6pm.
Here are additional options for where to stay in Stavanger.