More than just Pulpit Rock - Explore Stavanger's City Islands with me

Every summer, thousands of tourists come to Stavanger for one reason only: to hike Pulpit Rock (and maybe Kjerag too).

Did you know that the city has a ton of other things to offer, though? And that the trail leading up to Pulpit Rock is notoriously crowded? Why not take the boat to an island in the fjord, just a short cruise from the city centre, where you can enjoy Norway’s nature in peace?

I’ve recently explored Lindøy - one of Stavanger’s city islands in its mini-archipelago in the Byfjord (city fjord) and had an absolute blast! Here’s all you need to know in order to explore Stavanger’s city islands yourself:

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The city fjord surrounding Stavanger offers plenty of islands, both uninhabited and inhabited ones, but only 12 of them are part of the so-called “Byøyene” (city islands): Steinsøy, Vassøy, Langøy, Lindøy, Hellesøy, Tunsøy, Kalvøy, Uskekalven, Stølsvik, Rosenvik, Usken and Sjølvik.

These 12 little islands are situated just a 5 to 15 minute boat ride from the city centre, between the Stavanger neighbourhood/island of Hundvåg and the little town Hommersåk in Sandnes, at the other end of the fjord. The people who live here take the boat to work and school every day - no matter the weather!

I have to admit, I did consider living there as well - at least for a short second when Simon and I were looking at a new place to live the other week (renting on the islands is a lot cheaper than renting in the city!), but then again, the boat doesn’t go at all hours of the day either… Heading over to one of the islands for a hike and picnic is a fun way to get to know the region, though - especially if you don’t want to or can’t rent a car, and if you’re afraid of heights and don’t want to hike Pulpit Rock for that reason.

The islands that are particularly well suited for a hike are Lindøy and Langøy, but you’ll also find nice hiking trails in Hommersåk - meaning, if you choose the latter, you can combine a fjord sightseeing cruise with a hike for the price of a bus ticket (in contrast to the usual fjord cruises that cost around 400 NOK).

Granted, there won’t be a guide onboard and you won’t get to see the famous Lysefjord, but Byfjord and its islands are pretty scenic too, trust me!

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As you’ll see in the video, the boat doesn’t stop at all the islands all the time. Sometimes, you have to hoist the buoy and sometimes you have to call the captain in advance if you want the boat to stop. The ticket for the boat ride costs 37 NOK for adults (19 NOK for students) and when visiting, you should definitely download the “Kolumbus” app, which enables you to buy bus/boat tickets without having to bring cash.


More information about visiting Stavanger’s islands:

You’ll find the boat schedule for 2019 here, as well as more information on hiking trails on Lindøy here (in Norwegian only I’m afraid, but there’s a map that might be useful), as well as on Langøy here. You can also access more information on visiting/hiking in Hommersåk here.