Sauherad is a municipality in Telemark county, Norway. It is part of the traditional region of Midt-Telemark. The administrative centre of the municipality is the village of Akkerhaugen. The municipality borders Kongsberg, Skien, Nome, Bø, and Notodden.
The parish of Søfde (later spelled Saude, then Sauherad) was established as a municipality on 1 January 1838 (see formannskapsdistrikt). The area of Luksefjell was transferred from Sauherad to Gjerpen in 1847.
The municipality (originally the parish) is named after the old Sauar farm (Old Norse: Sauðar), since the first church was built here. The name is the plural form of sauðr which means "spring" or "issue of water". The meaning of the combination Sauherad (Old Norse: Sauðaherað) is "the district (herað) of Sauðar". Prior to 1918, the name was written "Saude" or (before 1862) "Søfde".2
The coat-of-arms is from modern times. They were granted in 1989. The arms show a gold-colored apple tree on a blue background. It was designed by Halvor Holtskog.
- Railway - Both the Sørland Line and the Bratsberg Line run through Sauherad. The Bratsberg Line runs as part of the Sørland Line between Hjuksebø and Nordagutu. The Hjukse Bridge at Hjuksebø on the Bratsberg Line is Norway's tallest railway bridge at 65 metres (213 ft). Nordagutu Station is the only operating station left in Sauherad.
- Roads - Riksvei 36 and 360 goes through Sauherad, and so does Fylkesvei 44, 151, 551, 553, and 555. In 2008, all roads and streets got names, as one of the last municipalities in Norway.
- Sauheraddagane (since 1993)
- Kartfestivalen (Kart Festival, since 2005)
- Norsk Eplefest (Norwegian apple festival, since 2006)
- Blæksås fortress (3-5th century)
- Bratningsborg fortress (3-5th century)
- Steinborg fortress (3-5th century)
- Evju Bygdetun (Museum)
- Nes stone church (12th century)
- Sauherad stone church (12th century)
The following cities are twinned with Sauherad:3