One of Norway’s most iconic images is of a traveler dangling his legs over a cliff, a glistening fjord below his boots. Preikestolen, known in English as Pulpit Rock, is that cliff, and it can be reached only by a two-hour hike from the nearest car park. That doesn’t stop thousands of people from undertaking the journey from April to October, however. If you decide to join them, bring sturdy shoes, plenty of snacks and water, and warm clothing no matter what the weather. For a less strenuous day, take a ferry from Lysefjord to Stavanger—you’ll get to see the cliff from below and taste the water from the Hengjande waterfall.

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Hike the Preacher's Pulpit

In America, an attraction like this would no doubt be fenced off after the first careless (or suicidal) tourist slipped off the side. Not so in Norway, a nation whose people seem to share equally in the belief that nature should not be fenced in, and that common sense should indeed be common. Preikestolen, or “preacher’s pulpit” (or “Pulpit Rock”) is definitely imposing, that’s for sure. Formed during the ice age, the flat-topped cliff rises 1982 feet over the Lyse Fjord. The 2.5 mile hike up is fairly strenuous, and the sheer beauty from the top makes this among the most popular tourist attractions in Norway. The hike begins about 25 km from Stavanger, Norway’s fourth largest city. Allow 3-4 hours for the hike from the car-park.

On Foot

One of Norway’s most visited natural sites is Preikestolen, which translates as Pulpit Rock. At the top of a steep cliff that rises almost 2,000 feet above the Lysefjorden below, a small flat plateau provides incomparable views of the fjord and nearby peaks. Depending on how quickly you make the trek, it’s a four-hour hike—two hours each direction—on the trail which was widened and improved in 2014. The closest city to Preikestolen is Stavanger, famous for colorful Holmegate street, home to many cafés and galleries, and its historic center which includes 173 wooden buildings from the 18th and 19th centuries. For more information, visit

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