Cruising Norway: Exploring Stavanger Bay and beyond

In our latest feature, Peter Cumberlidge explains why Stavanger Bay is the perfect starting point for boaters interested in cruising Norway

Norway’s stunning west coast stretches over 1,000 nautical miles in a cruising extravaganza of navigable sounds and dramatic fjords, protected from seaward by layers of skerries and picturesque islands.

There are anchorages galore and the scenery is spectacular, especially where mountains fold close to the sea.

The midsummer days are almost literally endless and time slows right down when the sun only dips for a few short hours.

Boating is a way of life for most Norwegians and it’s normal to hop into a fast launch to get to the shops. Many houses have their own jetties and getting about by water is completely natural.

Kvitsoy harbour 1Ferries are used for commuting and even the smallest villages have good mooring places and facilities for visitors.

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Norway’s big landscapes are sparsely populated and cruising here you feel an uplifting sense of space and room to breathe.

About five million Norwegians occupy a country nearly three times the size of England. Enjoying the great outdoors is part of their culture, especially among boat owners.

Stavanger Bay is an ideal taster for this amazing country, the nearest corner of Norway to the UK. This beautiful expanse of sheltered water is peppered with islands, and enticing rias lead away in all directions.

The lively port of Stavanger is near the entrance and you’ll find many attractive yacht harbours in rural surroundings.

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