Preikestolen as known as Pulpit rock is with no doubt in Top 3 natural attractions of Norway and probably of entire Scandinavia. This magic place located in the south-western part of the country. Popular for the incredibly high cliffs and also for wide views of Lysefjord. Enjoy the hike to the maximum and follow our experience to také the maximum out of this extraordinary place.
Download GPS file with waypoints and route to Your device HERE
The complete gallery of Pulpit rock
The Pulpit Rock know as “Preacher’s Chair” or in Norwegian as Preikestolen is an amazing place and also one of the most visited attractions in Norway. The Preikestolen is located in southern Norway in Rogaland county and is famous for its incredibly high cliff (604 m) falling steeply to the Lysefjord. The flat cliff top is the size of 25 x 25 meters from where You can enjoy magnificent views to the Fjord or to surrounding mountains.
The place is famous for rock climbers, hikers as well as crazy base jumpers. Pulpit Rock was formed during the last ice age in Europe (approximately 10 000 years ago). Of course, the process of erosion is continuing and recently the news came out that the crack in the rock is growing and is on the risk of disappearing. For this reason, hurry up and visit quickly.
Best time for hiking Pulpit Rock
High season: The best time, but also the most crowded period of the year is between April – October. If You want to avoid crowds on Preikestolen, be strict and start very early in the morning. Starting from the parking at 7 a.m. is comfortable enough to walk „almost“ alone. At the same time to not be stuck in a queue of people along the hiking trail.
The visit to the Pulpit Rock is possible all year round. Always get ready and check the weather and obtain relevant information before setting off. In the wintertime, I recommend using back-country ski and some extra thick clothes. The trip can become a struggle with the harsh weather. Be extra cautious while crossing the airy sections as they might be icy. Also do not get too close to the edge.
How to Get there?
Stavanger airport: The most convenient airport to land and reach Pulpit Rock is in Stavanger. There are plenty of domestic flights as well as enough international connections from bigger European air hubs. From Stavanger airport, Pulpit rock is just around 60 kilometers driving.
Oslo airport: Once You decide to land in Oslo be ready for a minimum one day to reach Jorpeland by car or by bus as the shortest distance on road is approximately 430 kilometers.
This option is definitely the most comfortable way to reach Preikestoen. From Stavanger to Jorpeland is only about 60 kilometers. From Bergen to Jorpeland is below 400 kilometers, but there are many different roads to take, so be prepared to pay some road tolls and use ferries to cross fjords. Driving from Oslo to Jorpeland is also around 400 kilometers. The downside of reaching the parking of Pulpit Rock is the price of parking. Parking at the trailhead of Pulpit Rock was in 2019 as high as 200 NOK.
Between March and November, there are bus connections daily between Tau and Pulpit Rock trailhead as well as Preikestolen Mountain Lodge. Out of the season, you can go by bus from Tau to Jørpeland. From Jørpeland to Preikestolen Mountain Lodge you must take a taxi or hitchhike.
Unfortunately, there is no direct train to Jorpeland or place nearby. There is a night train connection Between Oslo and Stavanger. Check prices and timetables on vy.no
Where to sleep?
- Hotels: The closest hotel to the Pulpit Rock is a Preikestolen Mountain Lodge which is the great starting place of the hike. Another hotel or hostels are in the nearest towns Jørpeland or Tau.
- Camping: There is camping only 4 kilometers from the Preikestolen trailhead on the road between the parking and Jørpeland.
- Free Camping: Due to the very touristic attractivity of the area it´s often forbidden to camp with vans outside of campings. There are a few places, but nothing spectacular. For closest information visit iOverlander where I´m inserting free camping places. Camping at the main parking place is forbidden.
- Tent: Thanks to benevolent Norwegian law which is granting a right to move freely in nature and also a right to stay one night there. Feel free to pitch a tent everywhere You like! Just keep the place clean after you leave.
What to pack?
Besides standard equipment for a day trek keep in mind You will move most of the trek in altiplano where the weather is changing rapidly. You can experience a warm sunny day and literally in 3 minutes, You can be lost in a snow storm. Allow to take an extra layer of clothes and always take long trousers as well as a rainproof jacket.
Even the trail is well marked and You will probably not have any issues in navigation as you will most of the time follow the crowds. You never know so rather take a GPS and download our GPS file HERE for the case of emergency. The mist can be thick and a mistake can lead you to troubles.
There is enough safe water on the trail to drink, so don´t bother carrying too many liquids, but take the bottle to collect it. Also, a small snack can be a good idea.
The Hike to Pulpit Rock
- Duration: 4 – 5 hours (Parking lot to the cliff and back)
- Distance: 8.5km round trip.
- Elevation gain: 450 meters
- Difficulty: Easy to Moderate
From the parking thru the forest
Again, If You wish to walk alone and avoid crowds and be smart and start very early. Walking literally in a jam of people is exactly what you don´t want to undertake. Starting at 7 a.m. is a good strategy to reach the cliff with a few fellow trekkers and not to push with others over the cliff 🙂
First one hour or 2 kilometers You will have mostly ascend through the forest, swamps as well as Stoney path. You will pass a couple of small lakes and streams amazed by the green nordic spruce and birch forest. It might be a bit boring, but soon You will be rewarded as soon as You reach the altiplano
Starting from the third kilometer on You will reach altiplano. Space will open, trees and the narrow rocky valley will disappear and you will start enjoying the views. Also, the trail will become more adventurous going up and down on the stones.
Pass a couple of small lakes and continue along with the emergency shelter still further on a windy plateau until you reach a boardwalk built on the edge of the cliff.
Along the cliff to the Pulpit rock
From this point on the picture below the real fun is starting. The boardwalk will take you above the valley already opening wide views the landscape. This is fortunately the only point, where the local government secured the path by fences and chains.
As soon as You pass the boardwalk you will reach the cliff itself. For those who are faint-hearted can be a problem, but still, there is enough space on the side so no one has to walk just at the edge. Luckily there is no security along. This place is also the starting point for real breathtaking views to Lysefjod. Don´t worry I passed this place with my 2 years daughter walking herself without any issue, but still, if the place is crowded it can become a little problem.
After approximately 4 kilometers of a walk from the parking lot, You will reach the desired destination the Pulpit Rock. You will be amazed by the height of the cliff which is one of the highest in Europe. Sitting with your legs hanging down the cliff is just for the brave ones.
In a high season, You will simply have no chance to be here alone and the place is extraordinarily crowded, so be cautious to not be knocked down form the cliff. There were a few cases of deaths by falling down in recent years. When You reach the cliff at the moment of not so crowded situation there is a forming queue to take a picture alone on the edge of the cliff… Funny.
I recommend to return a little bit and climb the mountain above the plateau and enjoy being alone looking from above to the Pulpit Rock and surrounding landscape.
Farewell to Pulpit Rock
The way back is absolutely similar as You came here and If You came early enough now You can see the crowds reaching the place which makes passing also for you unpleasant.
Did You like the trip to Preikestolen (Pulpit Rock)? In case you did please leave some comments below, or in case you are missing any information or You wish to add anything don’t hesitate and contact us.