The Lofoten islands in northern Norway are said to be something totally unique and definitely a place to visit so after we were done with our hike to Kebnekaise was it here our GPS directed us. After a day in the car driving through the beautiful Swedish and Norwegian alpine did we arrive to Narvik and the start of the road out to Lofoten. Directly from the start were we treated with clear blue water and high peaks rising directly out of the water and we realized that this group of islands was something out of the ordinary.
Out first stop was in Svolvær which is the biggest city on Lofoten and here we found a tourist information agency with great guide books, tips for different activities and where we could find campsites. After having a nice lunch next to the harbor did we seek out one of the companies that offer guided trips around Svolvær and booked an RIB safari to the famous Trollfjorden. Apart from showing the beautiful fjord was it also an eagle safari and we got to see sea eagles both in Trollfjorden and then later on 2 other places on our way back to Svolvær.
Our accommodation for the stay in Svolvær was the campsite Lofoten Feriesenter which was located in a great setting with nice tent spots. It was also located within walking distance to the center of Svolvær which meant that you could leave your car and just walk to the different activities you set out to do. The facilities were clean but the common kitchen was way too small and you would have to queue in order to cook food and to get a spot at one of the tables.
After our first day in Svolvær was it time to hike and we set out to explore Fløyatoppen which is one of the peaks just next to Svolvær. The start of the hike is pretty much from the center of Svolvær and therefore is it easy to get to but the hike itself is both physically demanding as well as a bit technical in the beginning as it requires some easier climbing to get up the first part of the trail. But once the first bit is done does it turn into a normal hiking trail until it's time to get to the final summit. One spot that shouldn't be missed on the way up to the top is to go by Djevelporten even if it's a bit longer. It can be a lot of people looking to get a picture of themselves on top of it but it's absolutely worth the wait to get out on it yourself. Once you're happy with your pictures at Djevelporten is it time to continue to the peak of Fløya which offers even more stunning views than you had on your way up.
Before we felt completely satisfied with Svolvær was it time to take a morning out fishing. We had read that this was pretty much a must if you visited Lofoten and I can't say anything else than that I agree. The boat that took us out were over 200 years old and the crew made sure that we had an experience we surely wouldn't forget. The fact that we also got to catch codfish bigger than any of us ever had seen didn't exactly lessen the experience. The record on our boat that day was a codfish of a little over 7 kg but the biggest amongst Elin, Marcus and me did Marcus win with a codfish of 5.56km which gave a proper fight before we managed to get it inside the boat.
Once we were done with Svolvær did we continue southwest down Lofoten to the small town Moskenes which is located almost as far out on Lofoten as you can come by car. Here we set up our tent on Moskenes camping before we set out to hike to Kvalvika beach. The parking and start of this hike was about a 40 min drive from Moskenes and even if it was raining did we just manage to get a parking spot. The hike was pretty easy but the surrounding was grand as the hike went up through a mountain pass with tall peaks on both sides and once the white sand beach got visible did it all sum up to an experience that was hard to beat. It is possible to hike up to the peak of the mountains surrounding the beach but since the clouds did cover the peak did we skip this hike. But I can imagine that the views from there on a sunny day is something extraordinary.
As a finishing hike before it was time to take the ferry back to the Norwegian mainland did we set out for Reinebringen. Since it is one of the most well-known hikes on Lofoten does Instagram have a whole bunch of different pictures from the top which you probably have seen. The start of the hike is from the little fishing village Reine which is located about 5 km from Moskenes. The is only about 2km to get to the top but with a vertical elevation gain of 480 meters means it's a steep hike all the way to the top. But to make it a bit easier is there a stone stair which goes almost to the top but don't underestimate how physical it is to get to the top. Once at the top are you rewarded for your hard work with incredible views that no picture in your phone can compete with.
The Lofoten Islands are truly one of the most beautiful and amazing places I have visited and I strongly recommend a visit to this incredible group of islands.
Tips for Lofoten:
- Be flexible with your plan. The weather is fast-changing and can differ a lot between different locations on Lofoten so make sure to check the weather forecast and plan your day accordingly. The distance between different towns and locations are not that big and the views you get along the way quickly makes you forget about the time.
- In order to be as flexible as you would like to do I strongly recommend that you camp instead of staying at hotels. We lived in our tent the whole trip and never had any problem finding a campsite and all the places we camped at had good facilities.
- To get the most out of your visit to the Lofoten Islands should you really hike up into the mountains. There are so many different hikes of different difficulty and no matter which one you choose will you get to see stunning views. A good guide book of different hikes can be bought at the Tourist information in Svolvær.
- We are super happy with the guided tours we did and it really gave that little extra to the whole experience. So I strongly recommend spending that extra cash on an eagle safari, fishing trip or kayak tour. None of the activities we went on did we pre-book more than the night before which means that even if you are there during peak season is it possible to find something to do with short notice.
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