Øye Stave Church Cultural Heritage

  • Øye stavkyrkje

    Øye stavkyrkje Photo: Morten Helgesen

  • Øye stavkyrkje

    Øye stavkyrkje Photo: Morten Helgesen

Essential info

  • Destination: Kongevegen
  • Season: January–November

About Øye Stave Church

Øye Stave Church is one of the smallest stave churches in the country. It is located at the western end of Lake Vang, along the E16 and has it’s own parking lot. It’s a nice place to stop and take a picture of the beautiful church. The church was previously built right down by the lake’s shore, just slightly northeast of where the memorial is. Up until a few years ago, the ancient gravestones were also visible down by the lakeshore. It is assumed that the water level of Lake Vang has risen since the 1200s and therefore the church was moved to higher grounds.

The new church was rebuilt in 1747. But what had happened to the old church? Did it burn or blow down, or did they demolish it and use the wood as was common to do in that time? Local historian Knut Hermundstad, who was born in the early 1800s, was the most knowledgeable about the old church. It seemed that what actually happened was that the rocks in the foundation started falling out. The same thing happened to the new church in 1935. A more detailed history about both the new and old Stave churches at Øye can be found at the Valdres Museum in Fagernes.


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