Stavanger has for centuries played a leading role in Norway's maritime history, from the time when the Viking kings battled in Hafrsfjord, through the period of the "white sails" and the steamships up to modern super-tankers. Stavanger is also the most important "oil city" in Norway.
Commencing from the pier, you will travel through rich agricultural countryside before arriving at Ullandhaug with its reconstructed farmhouses from the Iron Age. After an interesting and thorough introduction to life in those far away days, you will re-board your coach and continue on to the viewpoint nearby. From Ullandhaug hill you are afforded a wonderful view over Hafrsfjord, where the Viking king Harald Haarfagre (the Fair-haired) in 872 defeated the last of the regional princes and united the 29 small kingdoms, creating the Kingdom of Norway.
Traveling back to Stavanger, you will next stop at Stavanger Cathedral for a visit. One of few churches in Norway that has retained its original design, the Stavanger Cathedral was named St. Svithun Cathedral after St. Swithun, or Swithun. In addition to serving as the English Bishop of Winchester from 852-862 A.D., St. Swithun was the Patron Saint of the Winchester Cathedral from the 10th-16th century.
Following your tour of the Cathedral, you will re-board your coach for the return drive to Stavanger. Along the way, a stop will be made in the old residential area of the city to see Northern Europe's best-preserved wooden house settlement, which is filled with charming, late-17th and early 18th-century wooden houses. At this point, you may opt to continue on for the remainder of the return drive, or disembark the coach and join your guide for a brief walking tour past the white houses en route to the ship.
Please note: This tour includes a moderate amount of walking; some of it over uneven natural surfaces and there are some steps to negotiate. The tour is not available to wheelchair guests and those with mobility concerns are cautioned to evaluate their personal level of stamina and ability. Flat, comfortable walking shoes and a sweater or jacket are suggested. The transportation is not air-conditioned.