Sauda is a city in Rogaland County, Norway. It’s located 172 kilometres north-east of Stavanger and 221 kilometres south-east of Bergen. Sauda’s local rivers were harnessed for hydroelectric power generation in the early 20th century. This harnessing paved the way for industrialisation in the area. The charming city centre houses chic cafes, historic museums, sporting facilities, nightlife and a bustling ski resort.
Sauda boasts a sports centre, library, cinema and many cafes, bars and restaurants. Sit and enjoy a coffee by the water’s edge, while marvelling at the surrounding snow-capped mountains. The city accommodates all ages and offers a multitude of outdoor activities from walking and cycling to motocross. Sauda is also home to south-west Norway’s largest alpine ski centre. Sauda Skisenter can transport visitors via five ski tows, 4 kilometres into the mountains. Adventurers can choose from several routes on the alpine slopes to suit their own experience and endurance levels. There’s great après ski facilities in the resort, with cafes, bars and ski shops. Visitors who enjoy being at one with nature can take a trip to Svandalsfossen Falls. The water cascades fiercely down the rock face, creating torrents of mist and exceptional photographic opportunities. There are several museums to explore in Sauda, notably the Industrial Workers Museum and the Fagerheim Collection. The latter displays a collection of old wood carvings featuring the community at work throughout the last century. Sauda has a wide selection of dining options. From steak houses to Asian and Mediterranean cuisine, there is something to suit all taste buds. There’s a range of stylish cafes, as well as some interesting independent shops.
The centre of Sauda is easy to navigate. Visitors can walk around the city with ease. Locally, buses and ferries operate routes around Rogaland County to towns, cities and places of interest. Taxis are also available. Driving from Stavanger to Sauda takes just under 3 hours, while driving from Bergen takes around 4.5 hours.
Archaeological evidence suggests that people have been living in Sauda since the Ice Age. During the Middle Ages, it became a popular city for trade and industry. The waterfalls along the fjord were utilised to build and run sawmills, and lumber businesses began to thrive. Many countries began to trade with Sauda which resulted in ships accessing the harbour. Towards the end of the 19th century, mining began in the mountains. By 1910, the American Electric Furness Company had begun construction of Europe’s largest smelting plant. Today, Sauda is a thriving city, set in a picture postcard landscape, offering tourists a multitude of activities and pastimes.