Living in Sandnes

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Discover life in Sandnes, where modern urban development blends with natural beauty, offering a unique mix of modern amenities and outdoor activities in a fast-growing city just minutes from Stavanger.

Sandnes is a small, quiet yet fully-serviced city a short distance south of Stavanger. It’s known as an alternative place to live for those who work in the bigger city.

Modern waterfront of Sandnes, Norway. Photo: Richard M Lee / Shutterstock.com.
Modern waterfront of Sandnes, Norway. Photo: Richard M Lee / Shutterstock.com.

Why? Because on weekdays there are trains running from and to Stavanger almost every 15 minutes, and that it takes only 20 minutes to get to Stavanger either by car or by train.

If you like to go to the movies, going out to eat, shopping and spending time exploring the great outdoors, Sandnes has some great options.

Where is Sandnes?

As you can see from this map, Sandnes is within easy reach of Stavanger:

The city was often referred to as the bicycle city of Norway since in the past bicycle production was the main activity in the city's economy, in addition to milling and brickwork.

There are some great routes to enjoy bike riding. In fact, during most part of the year you can get free bikes for rental at the Tourist Information office, part of the rental program offered by the city.

Quick Facts About Sandnes

To get to know Sandnes quickly, let’s list some facts about this Norwegian city:

  • The population of Sandnes is 62,037
  • 30% of the population commutes daily into Stavanger
  • The city is named after an old farm


The city offers numerous nature trails, including the famous Rogaland Arboretum with over 140 plant species. Top hikes and outdoor areas in Sandnes are Arboret, Dalsnuten, Stokkelandsvatnet, Lifjell and Bynuten.

Sandnes is close to some of Norway's most beautiful beaches, making it a popular spot in summer.


There is a big cinema, bowling, some cafes and restaurants located in the city center.

One place I recommend to visit is the Science Factory (Vitenfabrikken), this museum in the city center has fun and interactive activities for kids all ages with a curious mind.

Events in Sandnes

When it comes to other events like dance and theatre, there is a Culture center near the harbour with a wide range of events (visit the Tourist Information to get their calendar of events).

Sandnes city centre. Photo: Carmen Cristina Pettersen Carpio.
Sandnes city centre. Photo: Carmen Cristina Pettersen Carpio.

Some big festivals also take place here in Sandnes, like the roller-ski festival Blinkfestivalen, Tour de Fjords, or the week in September where you get to taste a wide range of food for only one hundred kroner.

Not far from the city you find Rogaland's biggest theme park, Kongeparken.


Whether you are a shopaholic or just enjoy some window shopping, Sandnes is a nice option for you.

The city center is small and you can easily visit main shopping areas by foot. Langgata is one of the longest pedestrian streets of Norway and it is a lovely street where you find restaurants, cafes and shops.

The street gathers Sandnes' inhabitants with small events, including concerts, food markets and different activities. In addition, Sandnes has one of the biggest shopping malls in Norway, Kvadrat.

So, if you want to have some of the activities of a small city, yet still want to enjoy a peaceful, relaxed lifestyle, Sandnes has the perfect balance.

About Carmen Cristina Pettersen Carpio

Originally from Ecuador, Carmen Cristina is now settled in Norway and works for the tourist organisation Region Stavanger. She writes for Life in Norway about adjusting to the Norwegian lifestyle, and runs her own blog all about Ecuador.

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2 thoughts on “Living in Sandnes”

    • I grew up minutes from Sandnes and have fond memories of times spent there. Over the years we have visited my sister and her family and everywhere we go has a definite beauty, awesome mountains, breathtaking fjords, scenic drives through towns large and small and not to mention the farms. Have you thought about writing a story about Ålgård, this is a growing area and have so much charm minutes from Kongeparken.
      It is also on the way up to Sirdalen a popular ski area. I hope to read your story one day soon.


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