Walking to Pulpit Rock
Walking Up To Pulpit Rock
It’s around a two hour walk to the spectacular Preikestolen (Pulpit Rock), a walk that is well worth the exertion when you look out from this protruding cliff over the jaw-dropping vista in front of you.
Standing near the edge of Preikestolen is like being on the bow of a giant ship, sailing up the fjord with the old Norse gods.
The height and sheer drop is dizzying, and the view down Lysefjord takes your breath away.
It’s an attractive but steep walk up to this iconic rock formation and Preikestolen doesn’t reveal itself until the very last turn, a view you will never forget.
Plunging down vertically 600 metres to Lysefjord below, dark with the late afternoon shadow, Preikestolen looks formidable.
Stepping out onto the sun drenched flat top of Preikestolen the mountains of southern Norway spread out before you, the deep blue fjord cutting through them.
The edge is strangely enticing, it seems to draw you closer. For me however, it wasn’t a place to linger. I sat a little further back and people-watched: people will do some crazy stuff for a photo!
Walking Up To Pulpit Rock
I’d seen so many photographs of Preikestolen, and I was keen to get up there to see it for myself. It really didn’t disappoint!
I’m of average fitness (I don’t go to the gym or anything like that, I just keep myself active) and I found the upward hike to be fairly easy going, with a few challenging rocky climbs. There were quite a few people doing the walk (early May 2016), of all ages.
The path begins at Preikestolen Mountain Lodge, where there is both accommodation (including dorms) and a separate large car park – with a 150 NOK (£12) parking charge. There was lots of room of camper vans and motorhomes, but alas the lovely location forbids overnight camping.
We made full use of the parking cost, parked up the truck camper and made a hefty and satisfying lunch, before setting up our camp chairs in the sunshine for a couple of hours.
It was such a hot sunny day, we decided to wait until mid afternoon to do the hike.
The path up to Preikestolen has been upgraded and for much of the way it is a laid-rock path.
The path was being worked on when we went up, by Nepalese sherpa: you can be sure this is a well-built path by men who know what they’re doing!
The walk starts of steeply, climbing up through sun-dappled woodland before levelling off.
A boardwalk traversed a few marshy spots before becoming a little more challenging: you certainly feel the burn on a few of the rocky climbs.
The path opens out above the tree line, markers lead you across the bare landscape, and the views from up here are impressive.
There are a few small lakes, perfect for a dip or somewhere to pause.
It’s a final climb, and a short stretch on a precipitous wooden walkway, before Preikestolen comes into view.
Preikestolen is not far from Stavanger: you need to get a ferry from Stavanger to Tau and there are buses from Tau to Preikestolen Mountain Lodge.
Preikestolen Mountain Lodge has private lodge rooms, private rooms with shared bathroom (which are a HI Hostel), and dorms. Breakfast is included.
Obviously, this is not a walk for flip-flops but good trainers would be fine. The path was dry all the way. We were very lucky with the weather but this is Norway and the weather can change quickly, so I’d recommend taking a waterproof and warm layers.
Overall, including time sitting gazing at the glorious scenery, the walk there and back takes anywhere from 4 hours upwards. Take water, and a snack.
There are no shops to buy food and drink at the start of the walk, but you can fill up water bottles from a tap next to the toilet block in the car park.
In a camper van / motorhome:
We drove from Stavanger to Lauvvik, where we then took the short ferry journey to Oanes. It was a short drive to Preikestolen Mountain Lodge from Oanes.
Because we couldn’t stay at the Preikestolen car park, we drove up the coast to Tau after doing our walk and stayed on the waterside car park near the ferry terminal for 50 NOK (cost for 24hrs), and watched the ferries come and go!
Try these posts:
Exploring Norway’s South Coast A beautiful coastal drive with some quirky stops.
Silvia’s Norwegian Waffles. Grab your waffle maker out of the cupboard and whip these delicious babies up!
Nordic Road Trip Week One: UK to Norway Driving to Norway via the Netherland, Germany and Denmark.
Have you been to Pulpit Rock?