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Home Inspiration Silent Lofoten in Winter. A six-days Itinerary North of Norway

Silent Lofoten in Winter. A six-days Itinerary North of Norway

No better way to experience wonderland than with a mountain Guide

LOFOTEN, NORWAY: Winter in Lofoten transforms this archipelago into a serene wonderland. The landscapes wear a white blanket, the air is crisp, and the Northern Lights dance in the night sky. While the days are shorter and the temperatures lower, this season offers a unique charm. The wonder of Lofoten in winter allows to connect with the natural beauty of this Norwegian paradise.

Lofoten in winter: Looking out for all kind of weather.
Lofoten in winter: Looking out for all kind of weather.

In winter, the usual crowds drawn to the vibrant colours of the midnight sun dissipate, leaving behind a calm and quiet collection of islands that await discovery. Lofoten emerges as a cluster of islands, patiently awaiting exploration by those seeking to immerse themselves in the distinctive allure of nature and local life.

Day 1: Chasing Northern Lights

Begin your winter escapade in Svolvær, the bustling heart of Lofoten, and just a short 30 minute flight from Bodø. Upon landing, make your way to the conveniently located car rental services at the airport. Renting a car is a seamless process, and you’ll find yourself behind the wheel in no time. The scenic drive from the airport to Svolvær is delightfully brief, allowing you to soak in the stunning coastal vistas as you approach your destination and already here you’ll find yourself stunned by nature’s beauty.

Svolvær still pulsates with life. Wander through the charming streets of Svolvær, explore local galleries and shops, and savour baked goods from the local bakery. Checking in at Thon Hotel Svolvær, renowned for the best breakfast.

Small catch: In Lofoten so small fish is not normal.
Small catch: In Lofoten so small fish is not normal.

Day 2: Like a True Fisherman

After a proper breakfast, set sail with RIB Lofoten on a fishing boat, immersing yourself in the life of a local fisherman. Fishing in the chilly winter weather might not strike you as the most touristy activity. However, unlike the old-time fishermen who braved the elements regardless of wind or weather, you now have access to the right attire for a comfortable experience.

Witness the majestic sea eagles soaring against the dramatic coastal backdrop and enjoy hours at the open waters. Learn about the catching of the arctic cod, and how this dates back as far as the viking age, when stockfish first became Norway’s largest export product.

These red houses are called Rorbuer.
These red houses are called Rorbuer.

Vitality and Coastal Tranquility

A short drive from Svolvær takes you to Henningsvær, a fishing village celebrated for its thriving artistic community. Wander through the snow-draped streets adorned with lively fishing cabins transformed into art studios.

The quieter winter months provide a unique opportunity to connect with local artists or unwind in cosy cafes. Don’t miss a stroll along the harbour, where fishing boats gently sway in icy waters, creating a picturesque tableau.

If you’ve brought your own catch from the fishing expedition, take advantage of Tobiasbrygga’s fully equipped kitchen to prepare your fresh meal. The view from this cosy haven reveals a stunning harbour and pristine waters, adding a touch of calmness and natural beauty to your experience. And if you’re in luck you might see the sky light up in colours of green and red again.

In Lofoten, rorbuer are the alternativ to hotels
In Lofoten, rorbuer are the alternativ to hotels

Restaurants also offer typical local food
Restaurants also offer typical local food

Day 3:  Nusfjord Arctic Resort

Driving westward along the E10, after 85 km you’ll find yourself in Nusfjord, a well-preserved fishing villages. Located between imposing mountains and the expansive sea, Nusfjord offers a timeless escape into the past.

Nusfjord Arctic Resort and 19 meticulously converted red fishermen’s cabins, harkening back to the village’s heyday in the 1850s. These cabins provide authentic Rorbu lodging. As you step into these cabins, the historical significance becomes evident. Every creaking floorboard and weathered beam holds a fragment of history, contributing to a serene, yet palpable atmosphere. And best of all, a sanctuary of luxury awaits in what must be the most comfortable bed in hotel history.

The Sea: On your own in a kayak at the seaside.
The Sea: On your own in a kayak at the seaside.

The wild side of Lofoten, north of Norway.
The wild side of Lofoten, north of Norway.

Day 4: Guided Adventures

Continue the road to Sørvågen, on the southern tip of the Lofoten archipelago. Take time to absorb the breathtaking beauty of Reine, a small but enchanting village. The roads are narrow and the views extraordinary.

Upon reaching Sørvågen, the winter landscape beckons for exploration. No better way to experience it than with a guided mountain hike led by Audun.  Having guided tourists for years, his tales and knowledge from the surrounding mountains are captivating. Age nor your health is an obstacle, as all the trips are arranged according to your personal preference.

As hunger sets in refuel at The Tide, indulging in traditional Norwegian cuisine warms the soul. The colder months bring a sense of cosiness where hearty fish stew and local delicacies provide a delicious respite. Consider Holmen Lofoten, a space where you can log off and truly reconnect with yourself. Being a family driven hotel, they focus on showcasing the culture of their home at the outermost edge of the islands.

Winter in Lofoten
Winter in Lofoten

Day 5: Unspoiled Wilderness

When heading north towards Kabelvåg, don’t miss the chance to experience the local culture in Sund, by making a memorable stop at one of Lofotens oldest tourist attractions. Here, the echoes of tradition ring through the air as you watch blacksmith Tor-Vegard Mørkved crafts cormorants in wrought iron – a mythical bird in Northern Norwegian folk legend.

Complete your Lofoten winter escapade with a visit to the secluded haven of the basecamp of Skårungen. Located in unspoiled wilderness, this destination, easily accessible by car and only a ten minutes’ drive from Svolvær.

Local food served in Lofoten.
Local food served in Lofoten.

Day 6: Home from Lofoten in winter

As the soft glow of dawn pierces through the frost-kissed windows of Skårungen hotel, you find yourself having a final breakfast before departure to Svolvær Airport. A carefully crafted meal, as a testament to Skårungen’s commitment to sustainability.

Here, the focus on minimising food waste is evident as you recall the unique practice of ordering breakfast the day before. Ensuring that you are served only what you intend to relish. It’s a thoughtful touch where the delicate balance between human comfort and environmental consciousness is maintained.

As you return the rental car at Svolvær Airport, you can’t help but reflect on the enchanting journey through wonder of Lofoten in winter. Most likely, you´ve discovered that the genuine interest of the locals adds an extra layer of richness to your travel experience.

Gudmund Lindbaek
Gudmund Lindbaek
Journalist founded King Goya online travel magazine. Meeting people for engaging stories. I´m off to uncover the best strategies for long life living. This is part of my venture “Around the World in 80 Lanes” – about travel, run sprint, staying fit! I just want a tiny slice of adventures to feel alive, and then excited to return home.

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