Sirdal is the largest municipality in the county of Vest Agder, but one of the least populated. Sirdal, which is a valley, is named after the river Sira which runs through the entire valley and connects the small villages.
Sirdal is charactrised by mountains and lakes. Tonstad, which is the municipality centre in the south, is located by the scenic Sirdalsvatnet Lake at 50 metres above sea level. The mountains get higher the further north you travel - the highest peak, Urdalsknuten, reaches up to 1,434 metres.
Sirdal was a poor agricultural community until the mid-1960s, when a major hydro electrical power development started. Today Sirdal produces about 5 percent of the country's annual power production, and is often referred to as the hydro electrical capital of Norway. Sirdal is now a rich municipality, where about 45 percent of the workforce is employed by the civil service. The hydro electrical power company Sira-Kvina, and tourism, are other important industries.
Sirdal is a popular ski resort, with more than 3,000 cabins/holiday homes in total. Five ski fields and 200 kilometres of cross-country slopes make it a popular resort in the Stavanger region. In summer the main attractions are the Lysefjord and Kjerag, which are located in Forsand municipality, less than 30 kilometres from Suleskar in upper Sirdal.
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The community centre of Sirdal is Tonstad, Norway's capital of hydro electrical power development.
Key facts about Sirdal
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