8 Reasons to Love the Lofoten Islands in the Summer | Arctic Norway

Summer hums above the Arctic Circle

For a while now, my internal compass has been pulling me north. Recently, I answered the call. And I am so happy I did. We just returned from a 10 day trip to Northern Norway. Above the Arctic Circle. I had seen pictures and read stories but truly underestimated the awe I would feel. We loved The Lofoten Islands in summer. I am home now with lungs still full from breathing in nature. My soul is content from so much wonder and awe. Lofoten was beyond lovely at summertime. Let me share with you why.

So Many Reasons You Should See The Lofoten Islands in Summer
1 | THERE ARE MILLIONS OF MOUNTAINS

I will admit, it was mountains I was seeking. That drew me to this place. And I found them. So many. Ok. Maybe not millions. But it feels like there was yet another peak in every direction you looked. Jagged and rocky, they define these islands and set this scene. A backdrop for memories of mountainous goodness.

2 | THE MIDNIGHTS are FULL OF SUN

For one month before and one month after the summer solstice on June 21st, the sun does not set this far north. At all. And while we missed the true midnight sun by a week or so on our visit in late July, it never truly got dark. Even when the sun sets at midnight, it rises again at 2 am. Sunset…. sunrise. Sunset… sunrise. If you have trouble sleeping or a photographer’s fear of missing out, it may mess with your head. But we fell in love with the perpetual twilight that threw lots of light in the sky every night.

3| WHITE SAND BEACHES WILL tempt you

Who knew that the Arctic has some of the best beaches in the world? Here you will find sugar fine sand that sits in wide white crescents. Take off your shoes and wiggle your toes. Look for pink clam shells, striped limpets and fragile urchin skeletons. Dare to take a dip. We did and you should. It’s not THAT cold. But maybe we’ve been Scandi conditioned. The water here is so clear and such a brilliant aqua blue that it felt perfect to cool off in after a hike in the hills. We loved the swaths of perfect white sand at Kvalvika, Haukland, Uttakleiv and Ramberg Stranda.

4 | There are hikes in them hills

The Lofoten Islands offers hikes for all abilities and energies. With a good pair of shoes, you should be all good to go. We hiked over hills to white Arctic beaches. We scrambled up rocks to see views over villages. We strolled along cliffs with no ascent needed for stunning. Stay on the trail and pack out what you pack in. This is the Lofoten code of conduct. Protect this beautiful place for all to enjoy.

5 | TRY A KAYAK TO CRUISE

Back down at sea level, take to the water. A kayak is a perfect way to see into the clear water. We loved paddling around Skrova with WildSeas Adventures. Keep watch for Sea Eagles in the sky or little crabs scurrying on the seafloor. It is that clear. Quiet and calm, serene and safe. There is something magical about the sound of paddles dipping and pushing as our boats slid smoothly over the sea.

6 | SO MUCH FRESH SEAFOOD TO TASTE

Fishing has been important to the peoples of the place before written history. Cod is king here and you’ll see stockfish drying on racks all over the islands. Try some as jerky or in a tomato stew like dish called Bacalao. In the southern archipelago, don’t miss Anita’s Sjømat on Sakrisøy for the best fish sandwich or peel and eat shrimp.

 

7 | You can rent a RORBU TO SLEEP IN

Those classic Norwegian fisherman’s cottages, rorbuer have been renovated for your Lofoten respite. Rent them all over the islands in darling seaside villages like Å, Reine, Sakrisøy, Henningsvær, Nusfjord, Ballstad, Kabelvåg and Svolvær – just to name a few. There is something special about sitting out over the water and watching the sun set behind the mountain ahead of you.

8 | Blossoms Blooming, there are WILDFLOWERS TO FIND

For a place that is covered in snow much of the year, I couldn’t stop marveling at the many wildflowers blooming. Fields and forests were blanketed in color. Like icing on the cake on why there’s so much to love about Lofoten in the summer.

 

Suitcases and Sandcastles

54 thoughts on “8 Reasons to Love the Lofoten Islands in the Summer | Arctic Norway

  1. Kerwin Carambot

    That midnight sunset pic is gorgeous! All of them are good. You really capture the epic scale of the places you wander to. Bravo!

    1. oregongirlaroundtheworld

      I was surprised how warm it was actually – we had days that hit 23 degrees C – it was warmer up there than in Copenhagen when we were visiting!

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    1. oregongirlaroundtheworld

      It does mess with your head a bit – feels like you are laying down to sleep at 7pm in the evening. It’s a trip.

  3. Esther

    WOW!! I seriously never even considered the Lofoten!! Vut tonight I am showing this post to my husband. The mountains, the nature, the food is al right up our alley. Thank you for the inspiration!!
    #FarawayFiles

    1. oregongirlaroundtheworld

      I loved all of Nordland actually! From Bodø to the Lofoten archipelago up to Vesterålen, so much to explore! Cheers from Scandinavia! Erin

  4. That looks like an amazing place to visit! I can’t remember the last time I saw a mountain (living in flat Norfolk, UK) I am very jealous. #FarawayFiles

    1. oregongirlaroundtheworld

      Yes – it’s pretty darn flat here in Copenhagen as well. Growing up on the West Coast of the United States, I am used to mountains in my landscapes! And while I love the flat for riding my bicycle here, I crave some peaks and vistas and views. Norway ticks all my buttons! Cheers, Erin

  5. Trish @ Mum's Gone To

    Oh my, this is spectacular. I had no idea how beautiful these islands would be. I’m pulling on my walking boots right now!
    #farawayfiles

    1. oregongirlaroundtheworld

      There are so many fabulous hikes and treks here – for all abilities – the path from Haukland Beach takes you right along the water and mountain, but is flat and not difficult. Or you can literally climb to the top of those peaks. That was a little high for me!

  6. It is so crazy to me that the sun never truly sets in the arctic during the summer. That is definitely something I’d like to see. And Lofoten seems like the perfect place to see it. It seems so beautiful there. #FarawayFiles

    1. oregongirlaroundtheworld

      Thank you so much Gerri! When you got off the main road – that could get a little congested – yes – it was super serene – sometimes just the tinkling of the bells on the sheeps in the hills!

  7. Norway and Scandanavia as a whole have been on my list for such a long time. I should have gone when I lived in London. But it’ll always be there right? Your pictures are making me want to drop everything and go now though. Those midnight summers and mountains are pretty tempting! #FarawayFiles

    1. oregongirlaroundtheworld

      Scandinavia has something for everyone – Norway has the epic mountains and scenery, Sweden has fika and fun outdoors, Denmark has design, cool cafés and bicycles! Cheers!

  8. Norway always makes me think of my time in New Zealand, with all of the mountains and just the vast differences of landscapes that can be found in one country. I really can’t wait to make a stop in Norway. #FarawayFiles

    1. oregongirlaroundtheworld

      You would love it – so amazing! Just so much epic at every turn. And I need to get to New Zealand! Cheers!

    1. oregongirlaroundtheworld

      Not Machu Picchu! But you can hike to the top of most of them (and no altitude sickness!) Northern Norway was maybe one of the most beautiful places I ever been! Awe around every corner.

    1. oregongirlaroundtheworld

      Haha! That was the problem! With so much light – I wanted to be up photographing all the time! A little tired when we got back, but worth it! Cheers from Scandinavia, Erin

    1. oregongirlaroundtheworld

      I knew about the beaches, but had no idea how soft and fine and white the sand would be – so beautiful!

  9. My goodness Erin! What a gorgeous place! I know a lot of people rave about it. I am used to see winter pictures, so, I am happy to see the beautiful beaches and blossoming flowers. Hope you write more about your adventure. #FarawayFiles

  10. You’ve given us so many reasons to visit the Lofoten Islands. Everything just looks so beautiful there! Although I’m one of those people who can’t sleep even if it’s a little bright out so I’d definitely have to bring eye masks or something if I visit!

  11. My list of places to visit was already so long, but after seeing and reading about your recent adventures I’m afraid I’ll be adding to it! The photos alone are stunning, but I can actually feel your excitement while reading your words! #farawayfiles

  12. Clare Thomson

    Oh. My. Goodness. I’ve been waiting for this post after all your dreamy Instagram pictures and it’s every bit as beautiful as I was expecting. I so have to visit the Loftoten Islands. They were already on my wishlist but they’re really close to the top now. Just tell me one thing. How warm was it? Loved reading this for #FarawayFiles

    1. oregongirlaroundtheworld

      We lucked out and had days that were 22-23 degrees – but I think normal summer is about 15C on average. I just know you would love it!

    1. oregongirlaroundtheworld

      We had a couple days of pouring rain. Hiking in it was an adventure for sure! It’s still so beautiful even in the rain and moody clouds I thought!

  13. Just beautiful Erin. It just sounds like the perfect escape. The light is incredible and it must have been such a wonderful feeling waking up to those views every day. I feel my compass pulling me north now too

  14. Wow, your photos of Lofoten Islands are spectacular and my favourite is the fisherman’s cottage. I can imagine the fresh air and the beautiful and natural landscape – great place for you to recalibrate and enjoy the wondrous beauty of nature 🙂 #FarawayFiles

    1. oregongirlaroundtheworld

      That is EXACTLY what Lofoten was for us – soooo lovely! Thanks Kat – cheers from Copenhagen, Erin

    1. oregongirlaroundtheworld

      I know! It was so beautiful and I couldn’t believe how nice the beaches were! Cheers from Scandiland!

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