The southernmost lighthouse on Jæren offers compelling exhibitions, a café and great hiking opportunities. Kvassheim lighthouse is one of three visitor centres for Wetland Jæren, an important area for birdlife. The lighthouse is also a stop on the Norwegian Scenic Route Jæren, one of the 18 scenic routes in Norway. You can also stay overnight in the lighthouse's assistant residence. This is an extraordinary overnight experience by the mighty Jæren Sea.
Exhibitions at Kvassheim Lighthouse
Kvassheim Lighthouse was converted into an information and outdoor centre in 2010. You can learn about both the cultural and natural history of Jæren through exciting exhibitions.
The rescue story
On the ground floor, there is an exhibition that tells the story of rescue operations along the Jæren beaches. See pictures, artefacts and stories from dramatic shipwrecks, brave rescue operations and the everyday life of the lighthouse keepers. In a separate building by the lighthouse, you'll also find the beautiful gig (boat) used by the captain of the Russian liner "Ingermanland", which sank off the Jæren coast in 1842.
On the first floor, the exhibition is dedicated to the important wetland areas found at Jæren. The wetlands are home to many species of birds, plants and animals, and are of great importance for biodiversity, water purification and climate regulation. In the exhibition, you can see a nature photo gallery, listen to birdsong, look through a telescope at the bird life in the Kvassheimbukta bay and learn more about how we can take care of the wetlands.
Plastic in the sea
What kind of plastic is found in the oceans, how much and what does it do to nature? Can plastic rubbish from the sea become art? The exhibition features images from the art project Hverken Fugl eller fisk, Prestgaard/Andersen, which uses plastic found on the beaches of Jæren to create imaginative sculptures.
You can also climb up into the old lighthouse lantern. This is not wheelchair accessible, but the windows on the first floor offer great views of the area.
The history of Kvassheim Lighthouse
Kvassheim Lighthouse was in operation from 1912 to 1990 to safeguard ships along the harsh Jæren coast. The lighthouse consisted of a building containing accommodation and a light tower 12 metres above the ground. A few years later, the fog signal was replaced by an electrically powered horn signal. In 1953, an engine house was built in front of the lighthouse, where a typhoon fog signalling system was installed. At the same time, a lighthouse keeper's house was built. Kvassheim lighthouse was manned and in operation until 1990. The lighthouse was then depopulated and replaced with an automatic lighthouse lantern at the Kvassheim harbour.
The Kvassheim harbour was built in the harsh 1930s. The pier is built in stone and has served as an emergency harbour for small boats and as a base for smaller fishing boats.
The lighthouse and harbour at Kvassheim are part of the Jærstrendene landscape conservation area, which stretches over 70 km from Bore in the south to Tungenes in the north. You'll find a car park at the Kvassheim harbour, and the place is both a good starting point and a destination for great walks along the sea.