TOUR OF STAVANGER AND SURROUNDINGS
Sample the history of the city of Stavanger, for centuries one of the cornerstones of Norwegian maritime history: from a time when Viking kings fought battles on the Hafrsfjord to modern-day tankers, not forgetting the age of 'white sails' and steam ships. Don't miss this opportunity to visit the city and discover its many faces.
What we will see
- Jæren landscape
- Ryfylke Mountains
- Sverd i fjell (the 'Swords in Rock')
- Stavanger Cathedral
- Old Stavanger
What we will do
- We will set off from the port by coach through the lush agricultural landscape to Ullandhaug, an area famous for its reconstructions of Iron Age farms. Ullandhaug also boasts breath-taking views of the Hafrsfjord where, in 872, the Viking king Harald Fairhair defeated the last of the local princes and unified 29 small kingdoms under one crown, founding the Kingdom of Norway. To the east stretches the fertile landscape of Jæren, with the Ryfylke Mountains in the distance.
- We will then continue to the outskirts of Stavanger to admire the Sverd i fjell ('Swords in Rock'), a fascinating memorial by the sculptor Fritz Røed. The monument depicts three 10 metre-high swords that commemorate the historic battle of Hafrsfjord. The largest sword represents the victorious Harald, while the smaller ones symbolise the vanquished kings. The monument is also intended to symbolise peace, as the swords are struck in solid rock, from which they can never be removed.
- We will now pass through both the older and more modern districts of Stavanger; we will admire the inside of the Cathedral, built in around 1125 by Bishop Reinald of Winchester with the help of British craftsmen. Of all the churches built in Norway during the Middle Ages, Stavanger Cathedral is the only one that still retains its original features.
- Before returning to the ship, we will treat ourselves to a walk through 'Old Stavanger', with its typical narrow streets lined with picturesque wooden houses that date back to the 18th and 19th centuries, a time when it was home to sailors, craftsmen and merchants. This unique area, located just a few minutes from the port, is now at the centre of the city's most ambitious redevelopment project.
What you need to know
- Places on this excursion are limited. We recommend booking early.
- During religious functions the visit to the cathedral will only be a tour of the exterior.