We discovered at Preikestolen while waiting on our bus that it was impossible to get to Lysebotn and back with public transportation in the time frame we needed to. The recommendation was to rent a car, so that’s what we did. We got a little black Fiat 500. It was a bit scary at first, (And by a bit scary I mean Josh almost ran into a cement wall before we had left the parking garage and stalled twice before we had even gotten to the road) but once we got out onto the open roads is was exhilarating (and still a little scary). The views through the mountains were incredible. I absolutely LOVED the freedom and NO WAITING. The roads are only one lane in most places and you can’t see around the mountains to see if other cars are coming which is a little scary when your fiance is flying down the winding mountain roads filled with sheep. There weren’t many cars on the roads we were taking and again, the freedom of being able to go where we want when we want was awesome. I wish we would have rented a car earlier in the trip! (Lesson learned!) I will warn you though, Norwegian radio stations are far and in between…and by that I mean basically nonexistent. You’re lucky if you can pick up one station and 90% of the time it is just someone talking in Norwegian. And the sheep are seriously everywhere so try not to run those over if you are renting a car to drive through the mountains of Norway. Being able to drive and the beautiful views made that part of the long journey way more enjoyable than taking public transportation and I would highly recommend it to everyone.
When we got to the trail head of Kjeragbolten we were surrounded by mountains, looking down to the fjord, and above the clouds. It was super cool. We had lunch and some very disappointing macarons I had previously purchased before starting our hike. This hike was awesome. There were several places where the mountain was so steep you had to grab a chain to pull yourself up the slippery rocks. It was a very pretty hike despite the cloudy day, although it did get colder and colder the closer we got. It was probably an hour and a half to 2 hour hike with our stops for photo ops. The hike and the cold were definitely worth enduring for this fantastic rock formation. Kjeragbolten is a giant boulder wedged between two rock walls. It looks as though it could drop the thousands of feet below at any instant. We took turns getting our picture taken out on the rock and asked someone to take a few of us together as well. We walked around a bit to look off the edges of the cliffs (once again over looking a fjord) and we sat and had a snack up there as well. We definitely would have stayed longer but I was so cold I was shaking and some rain/borderline snow was starting to fall so we headed back down. Of course about 20 minutes into our hike down the sun came out and warmed us up instantly. I was tempted to go back to the rock because I’m sure the sun would have made the fjord look even more incredible, but we opted not to because we still wanted to go check out the town of Lysebotn. It probably only took us about an hour to get back down to the trail head (we beat every single person who left before us).
We hopped in the car and Josh let me drive (after yelling at me thinking I was going to drive off a cliff as if I haven’t been driving manual cars since I was 15 years old) down the mountain to the town of Lysebotn. We got to see the fjord from eye level as the sun was setting and it was absolutely beautiful. The sun setting between the mountains made the water sparkle and you could just see water and mountains forever. There wasn’t much going on in the town so we decided to head back to Stavanger to try and get a souvenir since we were leaving Norway in the morning. We got back around 1930 and everything was already closed so that’s one downside to Norway. Stores are only open from like 10-4, but oh well. We did find a cute chocolate shop and ended up finding a nice, kinda cheap (for Norway) place for dinner. It was called Ostehuset. It had a deli counter with several options that were weighed for the pricing. I had caprese salad and stuffed eggplant. Josh had penne pasta and a vegetable medley. When we were getting ready to leave, a female worker cleared our plates and offered us free bread. Seriously she would have given us as much as we wanted. We got a few different kinds of bread and some scones for the morning and cinnamon rolls. It was awesome.
We walked around town a bit more because it was much more enjoyable than the night we tried to explore in the rain, but still nothing was open so we went to find our next Airbnb place we had booked. This place wasn’t so easy to find because we didn’t know that we had to walk to it (couldn’t get there by car). The apartment was cool. It had an awesome deck overlooking the city and the bed was really comfy…but the host was talking SOOOOO loudly on his phone and had it on speakerphone and had his music blaring when all I wanted to do was sleep since we had to be up in 5 hours. I was kind of annoyed. Once he stopped yelling into his phone however I fell asleep pretty quickly, just to wake up at 4 am so we could head to Greece!