Preikestolen (or Pulpit Rock) Norway, is a result of a mountain frozen glacier breaking off large, angular blocks of the cliff. Over the years it formed a spectacular 604 meter viewing point, offering incredible views of the fjord of Lysefjord.
Formed around 10,000 years ago during the last ice age, Preikestolen is one of Norway’s most popular tourist attractions and it’s not hard to see why. It features an almost perfectly flat 25m x 25m surface from which hikers, day-trippers and daredevils take in the surrounding scenery.
Preikestolen is a magnet for extreme sport lovers. It attracts thrill-seekers ranging from rock climbers to BASE jumpers. However, for the vast majority of the 300.000 visitors Preikestolen attracts each year, it simply offers an opportunity to be present at one of the most unusual and spectacular places in Norway.
One of the most popular ways to experience Preikestolen is to hike it. Beginning at Preikestolenhytta, this surprisingly sedate hike takes you on a trajectory of 334 meters over the course of between one and four hours (depending on how busy it is), and over a length of around 2.3 miles each way.
If you’re going to attempt this, it’s recommended you wear proper hiking boots, as there are some fairly steep sections along the way. You should also bring your own refreshments, as you won’t be able to stock up at the summit. Obviously, don’t forget to pack a camera as well.
Reward for your efforts will be spectacular. Greeting you at the summit will be a picture-perfect view of the deep blue Lysefjord curving into the distance, between the subtle greens and greys of the rolling mountains on either side of it.
However, as you inevitably seek to take advantage of such an incredible photo opportunity, make sure you don’t get too close to the edge, as this is one viewing platform that isn’t fenced off.
If hiking is not for you, or you suffer from a fear of heights, boat trips along Lysefjord allow for an altogether more relaxing means of experiencing Preikestolen, albeit from the bottom up.
Meanwhile, for those who’d like to experience Preikestolen from its foot as well as its summit, you can take the Pulpit Rock cruise. It boards in the nearest city Stavenger and takes passengers to the village of Oanes, along Lysefjord. From there, a short bus ride will take you to the start of the hike.
Finally, for those really serious about avoiding the crowds, a guided sunrise hike will allow you to experience the view in blissful early-morning solitude.
However you choose to experience Preikestolen, you’ll be left in no doubt as to why it’s one of Norway‘s most popular tourist attractions.
From the calming fjord flowing beneath it to the breathtakingly beautiful views from its summit, it is hard to find a more satisfying example of nature in the world.