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Kaupanger Stave Church - "The Cathedral Among Stave CHurches"

Kaupanger stave church is the longest stave church in Norway, and is characterized by its pure style. It is one of the few stave churches that is still in active use as a parish church.


Photo: Vegard Aasen, Veri Media

A Long History

The church was probably built in the first part of the 11th century, but was soon replaced by a church twice the size, on approx. 43 m². This burned down, and sometime around 1140 and 1150 the present church was built. It is 102 m² in size and has 22 poles. No other church can match this number of staves. The staves have corky capitals or cutouts, something that gives the church an enhanced vertical feeling. It is for this reason that it is called "the cathedral among stave churches".
The church currently has 165 seats.

The fact that the church has been in continuous use and is still a parish church also helps to give the church its distinctive character. Kaupanger stave church is the largest in Sogn, and thus reflects the central place "Kaupang" had in the High Middle Ages.

Opening hours 2024

It is possible to get a guided tour of the church:

15th of June - 15th of August 

Daily: 10.00 - 17.00

Foto: Vegard Aasen, Veri Media

The Stave Church is directly connected to the large farm Kaupanger Hovedgård. Archaeological records show that the farm can be traced back to the beginning of the Bronze Age, 1800 BC. We know little about what the farm settlement was like in the early days, but from the Iron Age traces indicate that the farm was among the largest in the area

Source: Visit Sognefjord


The Location of the Church

The church is located only a short trip by car from Vesterland. 

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