We arrived in Stavanger after a very long train ride. We left Bergen in the morning, but as there are no direct trains to Stavanger, we had to go almost all the way back to Oslo and then head back West. We chose the train over a direct and therefore faster bus because we had all rail expenses already covered by our Interrail pass. Therefore we arrived in Stavanger late at night, after almost crossing Norway from West to East twice. First of all, this move saved us quite a lot of money. Second, the scenery was breathtaking and we had free internet on the train.
We hit the streets of Stavanger the next morning, batteries recharged. The weather was miserable and is was drizzling. So we figured out it was best to start the day by visiting the cathedral and the Petroleum Museum, hoping the weather will get better later, which it actually did, but just not before we took a cruise on the Lysefjord to the Pulpit Rock.
The cathedral (Domkirke), though not a large one, has some beautiful wood carvings and dates back to 9 centuries ago. It’s also a very quiet and serene place and we liked its overall feeling.
But maybe more impressive than the interior, is the exterior. Located by a beautiful artificial lake surrounded by a small but pretty park, for me, this was one of the most beautiful places in Stavanger.
After visiting the cathedral, we went to the Norwegian Petroleum Museum by the shores. We’ve already visited an incredible number of art museums in our life, and for this trip we decided to skip them altogether and instead only go to quirky museum like this one. We didn’t know what to expect, but we ended up having fun connecting dots and learning lots of interesting stuff about the way the lives of the Norwegians changed/improved since they started drilling for petroleum.
My favorite part of the museum was without a doubt a speed animation about the evolution of our planet, from the very beginning till a supposed very end. The museum is very modern and it has lots of interactive media apart from some original objects and models. Well worth visiting for educational purposes.
We loved the random statues we spotted all over Stavanger. This seems to be a new trend in Europe and I personally see it as the way the state says ‘we care about the well-being of our citizens’. They always make me smile when I see them, anyways.
In spite of being a pretty small town, Stavanger has many, many beautiful wooden houses from the 17th and the 18th century, some of them very colorful. This makes out of it a very jolly city when the sun is shining. And I personally loved the joie de vivre the locals showed too. They enjoyed the terraces no matter the weather. On a day like this in Spain, the bars wouldn’t have cashed in much.
And we will always remember the seagulls of Stavanger. They are the most aggressive and noisy seagulls we’ve ever seen. They are like the offline version of ‘Angry Birds‘. God forbid you have some food in your hand or they might just steal it from you. They constantly hover over McDonald’s terrace looking for prey in spite the fact that the locals seem to spoil them and feed them in parks. And for crying out loud, don’t these birds ever go to sleep? As tired as I was, they even woke me in the middle of the night as they were quarreling over something.
For more Stavanger travel tips and ideas, you can check out RegionStavanger.com
You can also see our month long Interrail itinerary and read our tips for traveling Europe with an Interrail pass. Have you used an Interrail pass before or are you planning an Interrail trip in the near future? Please leave us your feedback. It means the world to us.
We’d like to thank Interrail for providing us with two complimentary global passes for our 1 month Eastern Europe & Scandinavia tour. Though we used the Global Pass for our journey, it’s worth noting that single country passes are also available.