Lofoten is an island group in Northern Norway
In the last days of July 2019 I accompanied my mother on a 5-days tour. We were lucky and had really beautiful weather. Unfortunately this was a little late in the year for midnight sun.
We stayed in a hotel in Svolvær, and had different bus excursions each day + a boat tour to Trollfjorden a little north of Svolvær.
Camera: Sony RX100V compact camera on stabilizer
Flying from Oslo to Evenes, passing Stetind Mountain
Stetind is a classic Norwegian peak nearly 1400 metres above sea-level . Well known among mountain climbers. The top of the peak looks as if it has been chopped off by an axe. For ages it has been a landmark which is visible from far off and rises high above other nearby peaks. No wonder why Stetind in 2002 was voted to be Norway’s national mountain. It is described as a perfect obelisk in pure granite with sweeping ridges rising straight from the fjord.
Driving from Evenes to Svolvær
The Lofoten archipelago is connected by the European route E10 highway (starting from Luleå in Sweden and ending at Å in Lofoten) – the Norwegian part is also called King Olav’s Road. The distance from Evenes to Svolvær is about 177 km, crossing the island of Hinnøya before reaching Svolvør on Autvågøya. Without stopping the drive takes about 2,5 hours.
Svolvær is located on the island of Austvågøya in the Lofoten archipelago, along Vestfjorden, and is the administrative center of Vågan Municipality. This harbour town of 4,300 inhabitants is home to numerous small art galleries, shops and cafes as well as the “Svolvær Goat” (Svolværgeita), a mountain with two characteristic “horns” that is popular among climbers. This double peak, 590 metres above sea level, caps off nearby Mount Fløya.
The Lofotr Viking Museum at Borg
The Lofotr Viking Museum in Borg features the largest Viking-era house ever found. The impressive 83-meter structure is reconstructed in full size, just off the original house site. Inside you take part in a Viking feast, where singing, dancing and a delicious meal is offered. In the modern museum adjacent to the chieftain’s house there are exhibits of archaeological finds, the story of Borg, and a movie “The Dream of Borg”.
The fishing village of Eggum lies on the seaward side of Vestvågøy Island, alone between the ocean and the mountains. The place attracts numerous visitors who come to experience the midnight sun. Facing the open ocean is a rest area in the shape of an amphitheatre with a car park and service facilities. On the west side of the car park stands an intricate artwork by Marcus Raetz.
We stopped outside the tourist area just to see the view.
This untitled sculpture is about 2,5 meters high. It was created by Dan Graham (USA). With walls of glass and mirrors, the onlooker becomes aware of both his physical position and the relationship between this and the sculpture’s transparent and reflective walls, while simultaneously seeing himself (distorted) in the same environment as the surrounding landscape.
Henningsvær is a fishing village located on several small islands off the southern coast of the large island of Austvågøya about 20 kilometres southwest of the town of Svolvær. It is connected to the rest of the Vågan municipality via the Henningsvær Bridges. Due to its traditional fishing village architecture, Henningsvær draws many tourists. Climbing and diving/snorkeling are also popular tourist activities in this area. The road out to Henningsvær is an experience in itself
Operations at the museum and the smithy were established in 1947. The official opening took place in 1964, but the groundwork was laid in 1963 with the opening of the E10 road. As one of the pioneers of tourism in Lofoten, the blacksmith Hans Gjertsen carried out the marketing stunt of a lifetime during the opening ceremony. He literally forced his way through the crowd to King Olav V, in order to present him with his work of art, the Cormorant.
The breathtaking village of Reine is located on the island of Moskenesøya. With red and white fishermen’s huts dotting the shoreline, and surrounding peaks of granite shooting out of the Reinefjorden, the village has earned a reputation as “the most beautiful place in the world.” It is a quiet village, but has some of the best ‘rorbuer’ on the Lofoten Islands — traditional fishermen’s cabins converted into accommodations for travellers.
The Fishing Village named Å
Å (meaning “stream”) is a village on the island of Moskenesøya, towards the southern end of the Lofoten archipelago. The European route E10 highway ends here. This part of the highway is also called King Olav’s Road. Until the 1990s, Å was mainly a small fishing village specializing in stockfish, but since the road was finished tourism has taken over as the main economic activity. The town features the Lofoten Stockfish and Fishing Village Museums.
Ramberg and Flakstad – Beaches and Church
Ramberg has approximately 350 inhabitants. There is a library, a small shopping centre with a supermarket including postal services, an unmanned petrol station, a restaurant and pub, and a bank. Ramberg is famous for its white sand beach.
Flakstad Church is the second building on this site since 1430. The timber came from Russia, exchanged fish for timber during the Pomor. This is why the steeple has a Russian Orthodox look.
Kabelvåg is located about 5 kilometres southwest of Svolvær with a population of about 2000. It was founded in early 12th century by King Øystein Magnusson, who built a church and a fishermen’s hostel there. There was a town there several centuries earlier — the first known town in North Norway. Attractions: the Lofoten Museum, Lofoten Aquarium, Espolin Gallery, and Vågan Church (also known as the Lofoten Cathedral) next to the European highway E10.
Boat Tour to Trollfjord
The Trollfjord is a popular tourist attraction due to the beauty of its natural setting. 2 kilometer long and only 100 meters wide in the mouth, with a maximum width of 800 meters. Maximum depth 72 metres. Surrounding mountains are between 600 to 1,100 meters high. The fjord is only accessible by boat, or a 10 kilometres hike over very rugged terrain. The Hurtigruten’s ships on the route between Bergen and Kirkenes detour into Trollfjorden. It is also popular with other cruise lines.