This is without a doubt one of my outdoor favorite places! Located between Stavern and Helgeroa i southeast of Norway, you’ll find the Coastal Path – a 35 km signposted coastal path where you walk along rocky shores, sandy beaches, shallow bays and wooded areas. Along the way you’ll find breathtaking views, several camping sites, lot’s of boats and many cabins.. The Coastal Path is a fantastic experience if you enjoy walking, as you can see and hear the seabirds, breathe in the fresh, clean air, and simply live in the moment.. It’s definitely a must-do if you ever visit Stavern!
To make the most out of this experience, planning is essential. In addition to walking the Coastal Path, you also have the possibility to soak in some history and see some historic sites and monuments along the way.. Here is a map over the Coastal Path and if you plan to walk the entire path, I would set aside a full day.. 🙂
Guide to Walking the Coastal Path
What to bring; comfortable shoes + clothes, a backpack, food, drinks, snacks, toilet paper, swimwear, towel, sunscreen, sunglasses, and your wallet. Make sure to put on comfortable shoes and clothes, I recommend workout clothes and sneakers with a solid sole. Depending on the weather, you might want to bring a fleece jacket + a wind jacket, as it’s definitely better to bring more than less. A good backpack and something to eat and drink is essential. I would recommend freezing a bottle of water + bringing a bottle of water, that way you’ll always have cold water at hand. Snacks such as trail-mix, chocolate and fruit is also a good idea. If walking in the middle of the summer, make sure to bring a towel and swimwear. There are many great places where you can take a dip in the ocean, which feels great after walking for a while. You’ll also pass several camping sites along the way, all whom have a convenience store.. If you find yourself suddenly craving some ice cream, your wallet comes in handy!
Meeting point – Stavern City Center; your day starts in Stavern City Center. If you depend on coffee in the morning, I recommend stopping by Det Gule Galleriet Cafe. If you’re like me and prefer cold coffees, I highly recommend their iced latte with caramel. It’s soo good! If you need to stop by a grocery store, there are a couple to choose from where you’ll get pretty much anything you need.
Places to visit along the way
Frediksvern Fortresss; you start you trip with a historic walk through Fredriksvern fortress. Fredriksvern is Norway’s first main navy base and the original name was Fredriksvern Verft, named after King Fredvik V. who reigned at the time. Fredriksvern has played an important role is the development of Stavern as well as in the Norwegian maritime history, and the place has been a harbor since ancient times. Today, you’ll find several art galleries and small exhibits as you pass through, and it’s also a walking path leading one of Stavern’s greatest beaches Corntin.
Hall of Remembrance (Minnehallen); is a national memorial site right next to Cornin beach. The memorial was commissioned by the Norwegian Parliament after WWI to commemorate the fallen Norwegian sailors of both World War I and II. The monument was designed by two architects from Oslo and is formed as a pyramid of locally quarried rocks. Inside you’ll find the sculpture “Abyss” and in the crypt, 7562 sailor’s names are carved on copper plates. At the alter in the main hall, you’ll find a commemorative poem to the fallen sailors by the Norwegian poet Herman Wildenvey.
Nevlunghavn; is located in a harbor located four kilometers south of Helgeroa. A former pilot station, Nevlunghavn is now a charming fishing village who has managed to preserve it’s original character – it’s characterized by many small white houses, it’s narrow streets, it’s many fishing boats and fishers who bring their catch ashore, and the views of the Skagerrak sea. In the harbor, you’ll also find several oceanside restaurants serving freshly caught, bars and cafes. I recommend grabbing lunch at Nevlunghavn Cafe & Conditori. From Nevlunghavn there are approximately 2.5 kilometres to Mølen, which is definitely worth a visit!
Mølen; is Norway’s largest beach of rolling stones and it’s a part of “Vestfoldraet”; the terrain left behind after the end of the most recent ice age 10 000 years ago. It’s a national treasure and one of the most popular attractions, both among locals and tourists. The cultural landscape is one of the most majestic landscapes in Norway; the areas had 16 large cairns, many up to 35 meters in diameter, with almost 200 small cairns in rows parallel to the shoreline. The cairns probably served as “sea markers” along the shipping lanes between different trading centers. This, combined with striking natural beauty and the position on the edge of the sea, makes it a must-see in the area. If interested in rocks or birds, this is the place for you; more than 100 different types of rocks and a total of 316 bird species has been found at Mølen. In the summer of 2008, Mølen was also made an official part of the UNESCO European Geopark.