Accommodation, Businesses and more pictures from Værøy
Værøy is the penultimate municipality in Lofoten. The Island is dominated by a long mountain ridge running from northeast to southwest. Værøy muncipality has approximately 750 inhabitants and covers a area of 17,7 km2 in the conty of Nordland. Nordlandsnupen is Værøy´s highest mountain. One must reach it by walking up Breiviksdalen and turning right at the end of the valley. About 90% of the population lives in the village Sørland where the administration is located, together with a doctor and a registered nurse, as well as the library. Here you will also find shops, fish landing facilities, a garage, and most of the services available in the municipality. Sanden is a beach with a 400-metre tall wall of rock towers over the spot, making it incredibly warm on fine summer days. Access is only by boat.
Fisheries have always been the most important industry in Værøy. More than 80 % of the workforce is employed in the fisheries. There is also salmon farming. The main product is still traditional stockfish intended for the Italian market. Today Værøy also have a modern and efficient herring industry. Værøy have also a hand made chocolate factory. Lofoten Chocolate offer high quality chocolate to businesses and individuals. Værøy has one 9-year compulsory school, (primary and lower secondary levels), which is attended by about 90 students. There is a brass band, three choirs, and a football team.
In recent years, tourism has been increasingly significant for Værøy. Every day, a car ferry runs between Værøy, Røst and Bodø. A helicopter service also operates to/from Bodø. During summer season there is daily connection with Moskenes by ferry. In the winter time this connection is limited to once or twice per week. The route to Moskenes crosses the Moskenes Maelstrom, one of the world´s fiercest maelstrom currents.
Sørland, and most of Værøy´s arable land, is located to the east and south of the mountainous area on the island. At Nordland there is a large pebble beach, Mollbakken, right by the road from Sørland. Several burial sites from the Viking and Stone Age have been found there. At Nordland, you can distinctly see three different sea-levels from times of yore, at 6, 12 and 40 metres above our current sea-level.
A temperature just above zero degrees Celsius, with little rain, is ideal. Too much frost will spoil the fish, as ice destroys the fibers in the fish. The climate in northern Norway is excellent for stockfish production. Due to the stable conditions, the stockfish produced in Lofoten is regarded as the best. The traditional cod harvest in Lofoten also takes place during the best drying time.
The uninhabited Mosken also belongs to Værøy, and was at one time used as grazing-land for sheep, summer and winter. Just beyond Mosken, we have Svarven, where fishermen had their shacks. This was their shelter during the saithe-fishing season, lasting from late summer to autumn.
At one time, when there was a bounty on eagles, the people of Værøy used to catch eagles with their bare hands, a rather singular pastime that the inhabitants of Værøy had to themselves. Lying in hiding in caves, hunters baited the eagles and caught them with their hands. Eagle hunting caves can be examined to this very day.
The mighty bird cliffs on Værøy are to be found on the southwesterly side of the massive, facing the ocean. During the summer, trips to these cliffs are organized every day. Norwegian Lundehund or Puffin dog is one of Norway´s seven species of dogs, and the rarest one. It has an extra toe, is small, and very agile. Puffin dogs were used solely for the puffin hunt and because the hunt was of such great importance to the islanders, this race of dogs managed to survive in Værøy.
At one time, about 150 people lived here, catching puffins as a subsidiary source of income. Catching puffins involved the use of the unusual puffin dog, also termed the Måstad dog. Puffin meat was cured in salt and lasted way into the autumn. There were no roads and very unsatisfactory harbours, so a few years after the war, the village was abandoned.
Today, there are about 700 puffin dogs in Norway. All of them can be traced back to Måstad. Going ashore on Måstad is generally combined with a fishing trip or an expedition by boat to the bird cliffs. Måstad can also be reached on foot. Starting in the summer of 1996, simple overnight accommodation will be available at the schoolhouse in Måstad.
VÆRØY OLD CHURCH
This wooden church is to be found at Værøy. It was taken apart, moved from Kabelvåg and rebuilt at Værøy in 1799. This is the oldest church in Lofoten. Right beside it, there is a small local museum.
During his Lofoten period, the painter also visited Værøy, where he lived in the "Borgstua" of the old vicarage, which has since been turned into an inn.
The Midnight Sun stays above the horizon, and it is light 24 hours a day. The sky must be clear and there must be unobstructed visibility northwards in order to see the Midnight Sun. A summer night on the fjord or in the mountains is an experience not to be missed, you can go fishing in the fjord, which contains splendid variation of fish, or you can take a walk in the wilderness surrounding.
Aurora Borealis is the Latin name for the Northern Lights – solar winds that meet the atmosphere in a zone around the magnetic North Pole. The Northern Lights are only visible when the sky is dark and clear, from August to April, and they are most intense from 10 pm to midnight. The region on the 700 northern latitude is a fantastic place for experiencing the beautiful and intense play of colours given off by the Northern Lights.
The dark time, or the long, dark Polar Night, lasts from 30th November - 12th January - there is only a twilight-dusk type of light (the blue light) for a few hours during the middle of the day. This does not mean that it becomes totally dark, however. The aurora borealis trails its multicoloured banner across the sky and the moon lights the scene just like the nightlight of Our Lord. The experience of the winter with the uniqueness of the light, the northern lights and snow is fantastic. Especially beautiful is the blue light southwards, just before it becomes dark.
Lofoten´s cod fishing season is between January and April. The original method was lines pulled in by hand from open boats, but today's modern fishing fleet employs more efficient fishing gear. Deep sea fishing enthusiasts can take a fishing trip out on the ocean. You can fish for salmon, cod and halibut. Be aware that there are a number of special rules in regards to fishing. Sportfishing for cod, coalfish, and halibut is popular here.
Golfclubs in Nordland.