Refsnesstranden beach is located between Nærlandstranden beach, Skeieskogen forest and a small landing strip for small aeroplanes. This is a popular bathing beach and a great hiking and fitness area. There are good parking facilities at Refsnes with space for 40 cars. A good hiking tip is to walk from Refsnes beach via Nærland beach to the Hå old vicarage and the Obrestad lighthouse.
Refsnes is one of several exciting stops along the Norwegian Scenic Route Jæren, one of 18 stretches of road in Norway that have the National Scenic Route trademark. Along these stretches of road, you can experience world-class art, design and architecture.
In the car park at Refsnesstranda, you will find a toilet facility designed by architect Tai Grung of Lie & Øyen Arkitekter. The building is made of aluminium and is metallic grey. It reflects the landscape and sky on rainy days but becomes sharp and contrasting in the sun. The facility has a toilet, outdoor shower, flushing station and bench to sit on. The building is a gateway from the car park into the beautiful landscape. The design emphasises the long lines of the landscape, while the building frames and reinforces the encounter with grass, fields, sand dunes, pebbles and finally the sea and sky far out there.
Jæren Friluftsråd operates both the facility and the car park.
Nationally, the area around Refsnes is a rare geological element. The salmon river Håelven contributes to a high degree of variation in habitat type and species diversity here. Rare plant species and vegetation types such as coastal heathland are typical of this area. It is also an important migration and breeding area, and it is a bird conservation area with Ramsar status. Important cultural heritage sites in the vicinity include a large ancient burial ground in Skeieskogen forest.
Responsible tourism at the Jæren beaches
- It is forbidden to drive motorised vehicles
- In the bird protection areas, you cannot exercise activities of disturbing effect; surfing, board sailing, kiting and dog walking.
- It is prohibited to surf/board sailing/kiting in the bird-protected areas from 1 October to 31 March
- Horseback riding, bike riding, camping and tenting in the sand dunes are prohibited
- You must not walk on farmland during the growing season
- Respect people's privacy. Do not set up a tent any nearer than 150 meters from a house or a cottage
- You'll need permission from the land owner if you camp for longer than 2 nights
- Do not light a fire in nature between 15 April to 15 September
- Respect the fact that others might use the area as their livelihood
- If you bring along a dog in nature, you are obligated to keep it on a leash where livestock is grazing. Remember the general laws on keeping dogs on a leash
- For hunting and fishing, special rules apply that you need to be aware of
- Flying with drones is forbidden throughout the entire landscape protection area
- Larger events are not allowed without a special dispensation