Hjelmeland municipality is located in the magnificent region Ryfylke. It is known for its' fruit, berries, cider and fish production, together with the production of the traditional chair called Jærstol. At different farm outlets you can buy local products, including berries, fruits, vegetables, cheese, yoghurt, honey, eggs, apple juice, cider and even italian pizza ovens with flour and other pizza ingredients!
You must try the award-winning smoked salmon, apple juice and the new cider that won the Cider World Awards 2020.
The Norwegian Scenic Route Ryfylke (RV 13) runs through Hjelmeland. Here you can find scenic nature, with fjords, mountains, rivers, waterfalls, lakes, beaches, islands and culture landscape.
There are a lot of different hiking options and the hike to Skomakernibbå gives a magnificent view 700 meters above Jøsenfjorden. A hike to Ritlandskrateret takes you to a meteorite crater formed 500-600 million years ago. There are different maps for hiking options for free at the tourist information.
The village of Hjelmeland
Hjelmeland is the largest village of Hjelmeland municipality and the administrative centre is found in Hjelmelandvågen. The municipality also includes villages like Fister, Årdal, Randøy, Vormedalen, Jøsneset and Jøsenfjorden. In the village of Hjelmeland you can find the town hall, a library, the local museum, the tourist information, a bank, a grocery store, a church, a school, sport facilities, a few shops and a doctor’s office, among others. The tourist information and the local museum is open during the summer months. The museum entrance is free.
The spinning mill
By the river in the village of Hjelmeland you can also find Spinneriet (the spinning mill). It is an old industrial building with a versatile history. Nowadays it is used for cultural purposes after its renovation in the 90s.
The world's largest "Jærstol"
The world’s largest traditional chair is also located by the river in the village of Hjelmeland. The chair was made in 1998, in connexion with the hundered years anniversary of production of these traditional chairs. The chair is 4.5 m tall. Nowadays there is only one producer of these chairs left in Hjelmeland, namely Aksel Hansson AS.
Every year different festivals are held in Hjelmeland. Sankefestivalen is held in late June and Ryfest is held early September, and these are both located in the centre of Hjelmeland village, at Hjelmelandsvågen.
During the summer there is also a summer market each Saturday from 12pm- 3pm in Hjelmelandsvågen.
A boat trip on the fjord is a memorable experience. Mighty mountains break straight up from the sea, with the characteristic royal peak, “Skomakarnibbå”, right in the center of the mountainside. The mountain formation “Skomakernibbå” (Shoemakers peak) got its name from the legend of a shoemaker sitting at tip of the mountain edge while fixing a pair of shoes. You will hear more about the story as we sail onwards. If you are lucky, you may spot white-tailed eagles floating over the fjord.
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