We’ve been lucky to explore lots of Vesterålen while volunteering here and our hosts have taken us out on some beautiful road trips. One of which we started at 5:30am to catch the sunrise. It was a bloody cold morning, the coldest we’ve ever experienced in fact at a frigid -19 degrees! The sky started to change from a deep blue colour to purple and finally pink as we wiggled through beautiful landscapes with snowy peaks everywhere. It was early enough to catch the moose roaming around the white fields and we ended up seeing 9 of them.

The highlight of the trip for me was arriving at a gorgeous fjord for sunrise and watching the spiky peaks glowing pink. The whole line of snowy mountains were perfectly reflected in the still water, only interrupted by a thick layer of fog hovering above the waterline.

Another trip we did was further north to Stø which took us past mesmerising mountains reflected in glassy lakes and fjords. Kittiwakes lined the cliffs in Stø, making nests along the precarious edges and squawking loudly. It was a simple little village, popular with tourists going on whale trips during the summer but very peaceful and quiet in spring. Candy coloured fishing boats were moored up in the harbour with the classic red Norwegian buildings as a backdrop.

Afterwards we headed to Nyksund along a crazy coastal road where we passed a small landslide happening as we drove past. The village was at the end of the road, spread out between two islands and connected by a bridge. It was a pretty happening place in its early days but the village turned into a ghost town for 30 odd years and has only had people inhabiting it again since 2003. The area looked like a movie set with colourful wooden houses and a wild west look to them. There was one area where the walls were covered in graffiti, marking the old hippy days before the place was abandoned. We climbed up a nearby hill and enjoyed the 360 degree view of the open sea crashing into rocks, the multicoloured houses of Nyksund and the road winding along the coast.


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