Whale spotting 

Whale spotting in Norway

Whale spotting is an event that really should be on everybody’s bucket list, including yours. Meeting the giants of the sea is a unique experience. Many whale spotters even call it a mystique encounter they will remember for the rest of their lives. There is only one way to find out if this will be the case for you too. Go on a whale safari yourself.

Whale safari in Norway: a “cool” experience

To spot whales, you don’t have to travel to far destinations such as South Africa. If you feel comfortable in a “bit cooler” place, Norway is the ideal location to see whales.

You won’t regret spending one day of your fishing holidays in Norway on spotting whales.  Your search for whales starts in Stø, a small fishing village and only 10 km from our holiday homes. That is probably as far away as a trip to your supermarket at home. So, you really don’t have any excuse to let this magic event just slip by.

What is the best time to spot whales in Norway?

The whale season in Norway takes place in summer, from 29th of May to 31st of August. In this period, you have the biggest chance to meet whales.

Whales are huge, but so is their natural habitat. It is not always easy to locate them. Do you start seeing the resemblance with a safari in Africa? You just cannot know in advance which animals you will actually meet at which location. On the plus side, excitement is of course big part of the fun.

Which whales can be spotted in Norway?

In Norway, the seawater is nutrient-rich, creating an ideal habitat or pit stop for a wide range of whale species that are crossing the oceans.

The sperm whale is the most legendary whale you can spot in Norway. It is the goal of every whale spotter to at least see a glimpse of its tail friendly waving above the water. Or a fountain of water sprayed from its blowhole. But the real highlight is of course a sperm whale jumping out of the water, followed by a big splash.

Besides the sperm whale, you can see other whales too in Norway. Meeting them is at least equally exciting and educative.

There is a huge chance to meet following whales on your whale safari:

  • Killer whales
  • Pilot whales
  • Minke whales
  • Humpback whales
  • Porpoises
  • Blue whales
  • Sperm whale

National Geographic, but in reality

Obviously, the main goal of a whale safari is to watch the huge sea animals. But your whole quest on the boat is filled with opportunities to enjoy the amazing nature of Norway. You cannot compare the impressive mountains along the Norwegian coast with a typical tourist beach where hotels have ruined the original landscape.

During your boat trip, you have the impression of being in the middle of a National Geographic documentary. It is as if you are sailing from one amazing moment into the next.

The boat sails you to Anda, an isle with a nature reserve 5 km offshore.  During your layover, you will see sunbathing seals. Their winged companions, such as puffins, cormorants, European sea eagles dive for their meal into the sea. All this takes place before your eyes while you are breathing in healthy sea air and enjoying the endless view of the sea.

Thanks to the vivid comments of the experienced guides, you really start to understand the secret lives of the animals. Only the missing background music makes you realise that you are not watching a documentary. 

Taking a deep breath after your whale adventure

The trip lasts about 6 hours. Once back ashore, you can relax in one of the restaurants of Stø. Enjoying a delicious meal and comparing your pictures to find out who took the most amazing ones. It is also part of your big adventure.

Do not forget to charge the batteries of your smartphone before starting your whale quest. And why not even bring an extra power bank? Whale spotting is not an everyday activity. So, make sure an empty battery will not spoil your once in a lifetime chance to make a private movie of your encounter with the amazing sperm whale. 

Taking a deep breath after your whale adventure

The trip lasts about 6 hours. Once back ashore, you can relax in one of the restaurants of Stø. Enjoying a delicious meal and comparing your pictures to find out who took the most amazing ones. It is also part of your big adventure.

Do not forget to charge the batteries of your smartphone before starting your whale quest. And why not even bring an extra power bank? Whale spotting is not an everyday activity. So, make sure an empty battery will not spoil your once in a lifetime chance to make a private movie of your encounter with the amazing sperm whale. 

Fisher's Town 

A typical fishing village in Norway

Nyksund is a stone's throw away from our holiday accommodations. The short drive of 15 km is more than worth it. At the end of the road you will discover one of the most authentic Norwegian fishing villages. 

When you visit this historical place, you may even get lucky. A local expert might share his secrets on how to catch the biggest fishes during the rest of your stay in Norway. 

All roads lead to ... Nyksund

In fact, there is only one road to the fishermen’s village. You won’t need a GPS because the road is only 10 km long. It starts in Myre, one of the largest fishing villages in Norway.

In Myre you can visit a white concrete church with unique architectural features. Or you can do your shopping in one of the stores. When you are feeling hungry, you can enjoy a delicious meal in one of the local restaurants.

If you are not afraid of a long hike, you can also walk to Nyksund on the The Queen’s Route.

Remote fishing village

Living in a completely isolated fishing village is not everybody’s cup of tea. Although Nyksund was densely populated by cod fishermen in the 19th century, it became a real ghost town in the 70s of last century.

The dawn of the new millennium brought a fresh start for Nyksund. Gradually, people started moving into the village. Currently, it has a population of about 40 people. But only a few of them have the courage to spend the harsh winter months in Nyksund.

What to do in Nyksund?

Although you cannot even send a postcard in Nyksund, the village is worth a visit. Especially fishing enthusiasts and tourists seeking for authenticity will enjoy the atmosphere. The village is a living showcase of Norwegian architecture and culture. The dilapidated fishing cabins are silent witnesses of a rich past. 

Nyksund lies at the sea and is surrounded by mountains. It’s a real hidden pearl of the Norwegian coast where silence, the vastness of the sea and the beauty of nature rule. This makes it a highly recommended place to enjoy a peaceful sunset.

The small sea port has a restaurant where you can enjoy traditional (fish) meals.

So, if you plan a road trip in Northern Norway, or book your fishing holidays in our comfortable accommodations a few kilometers away, you should absolutely visit Nyksund.

Northern Lights  

Northern Lights in Norway

The Northern Lights are a spectacular natural phenomenon which triggers the imagination of many people for a 1.000 good reasons. Imagine the sky filled with dancing waves, veils and curtains of green (and sometimes purple, red, or yellow) lights. A big contrast with a typical night.

The Northern lights in Western Europe

We have to admit it. You sometimes have a tiny chance to observe this light spectacle in Western Europe too. But as it the case for other natural phenomena of this magnitude, bad weather and clouds often spoil the fun. Do you remember the last eclipse or supermoon? Probably not, because it was again … too cloudy in Western Europe.

Best conditions to observe the northern lights in Norway

Clouds and light (pollution) are the main obstacles that can prevent you from watching the polar lights.

In other words: the best conditions to observe the Northern Lights are a cloud free sky and a moon that is not shining too brightly. Being in a remote area further increases your chances. In fact, our holiday homes are an ideal location: far away from the city lights.

Polar lights in Northern Norway

There is a very good reason why Northern Lights are also called “Polar lights”. The phenomenon can namely best be observed nearby the polar regions. 

In the Southern Hemisphere, it is called aurora australis. In the Northern Hemisphere, you can watch the aurora borealis. The closer you are to the South or North pole, the higher your chances to see the polar lights.

In that respect, the Scandinavian countries are ideal. But here too, the general rule applies. The closer you are to the North Pole, the higher your chances to see polar lights.

Vesterålen lies above the Arctic circle. It is even a bit closer to the North pole than Norway’s most popular Northern Lights destination: Lofoten. In Vesterålen, it is very likely that you will experience a magical night of pure beauty. The ideal occasion to celebrate your exciting sport fishing holidays or whale spotting adventure. 

Are really eager to see the Northern Lights? Then you have to plan your fishing holidays for the months this spectacle can be observed.

In which months can you observe the Northern Lights in Northern Norway?

The best period to observe the Northern Lights in Northern Norway is from September to March. There is a logical explanation behind this.

In the Arctic Circle “Day and night” are really different from what you are used to. Between late May and mid July, the sun does not set at all in Northern Norway. The permanent sunlight makes the aurora borealis invisible. It is there, but you simply cannot see it.

In the months when the nights are dark, the aurora show takes place during the night. You don’t have to set an alarm to wake up early. Nor do you have to stay up late to observe this free natural spectacle.

Increasing your chances of an aurora observation

Unfortunately, there is no real guarantee that you will be able to watch the Northern Lights during your stay in Norway. But nonetheless, we would like to share some practical tips with you.

  1. The longer you stay in the Arctic Circle region, the more likely your chances to see the polar lights.
  2. You can download apps on your smartphone that will estimate your chances on a daily basis.
  3. And of course, we are here to make your holiday as pleasant as possible. During your holidays, we will give you personal advice about the best days, time and places to experience the Northern Lights.

The alternative? The midnight sun

Between May and August, you cannot see the Northern Lights in Norway at all. But fortunately, you can enjoy another special natural phenomenon: the midnight sun.

In this period, the sun does not set at all. In the evening, the sun nearly touches the horizon, but only to raise back immediately. This other natural light show is overwhelming too. And it opens a lot of interesting opportunities for you.

How about fishing at midnight in full sunlight? Or hiking in the mountains, or strolling along the beach at 3 AM and normal daylight?

Northern Lights and 24 hours of sunshine

Would you like to experience both the aurora and the midnight sun? That’s possible. All you have to do is plan two fishing trips to Norway in two different seasons: summer and winter. 

This way, you can have two very different and unique holidays in Norway in just one year. Or you can of course spread it over several years. But every single time, you will for sure return home with amazing stories. And beautiful memories you will never forget.



Hiking in Norway

Norway is the ideal destination for everybody who loves to hike in the mountains and meanwhile enjoy the beauty of nature. There are many interesting hiking trails in Vesterålen. While your companions are having the best fishing time of their lives, you can explore the beautiful environment at your own pace. 

Walking boots on and Nordic walking poles ready? Backpack prepared with a tasty picnic? Smartphone fully charged to capture the beauty of the Norwegian countryside and share it later on with your friends at home? You're ready to hike.

The Queen’s Route (Dronningruta)

This famous trail is named after Queen Sonja of Norway. On several occasions, she loved to go for a walk in the surroundings of Stø, where you can also spot whales. 

In 2012, The Queen’s Route was elected as the "Most Beautiful Hike" by readers of the Norwegian magazine Friluftsliv. (Literally translated: "Living in the open air”).

These two trivia in fact tell a lot about what you can expect from the route: a majestic walk in a healthy environment.

The path runs for 15 km. Depending on your physical condition, this will take you 5-8 hours. Finngamheia is the highest point on the trail: 448 meters above sea level. The lowest point is 0 meters. So, you will for sure meet some challenges on your path.

Do you prefer the easy way? The best starting point is Stø. You then continue to walk towards the mountains. Further on your trip, you will cross the historic fishing village Nyksund and stroll along the white sandy beach.

If you are more into a real hiking challenge, you just follow the opposite route.

Even if you only walk on a small part of the trail, you will be rewarded. Along the coastline you will see authentic Norwegian fishing villages with the typical red wooden houses. For many tourists, this is the most famous icon of Norway.

Higher up in the mountains you can enjoy breathtaking panoramas and the beauty of untouched nature. Maybe less known, but this is also typical of Norway: a deep respect for the environment. 

Hiking in the unspoiled nature of Norway

All Norwegians do their best to keep nature as clean as possible. In their philosophy you leave any place in the state in which you would like to find it yourself.

You cannot but notice this everywhere you walk. You won’t find any litter or signs of vandalism along your way. All hiking trails are neatly marked.

Moreover, in Norway you can go wherever you want to. Of course, a fence has a purpose. Just as in your country, you should respect other people's property in Norway too. But apart from that, you can move freely.

Short distance trails

There are several short distance trails in the surroundings of our holiday accommodations. Your host will give you plenty of tips adapted to your hiking desires and goals.


Shopping in Vesterålen

Do you need a break from your fishing companions? Or do you just want to discover more of Northern Norway during your fishing holidays? Luckily for you, there are some interesting shopping places in Vesterålen.

Sortland, the blue city

Sortland lies about 60 km from our holiday cottages. The city has a population of about 10,000. A figure that probably rather corresponds with the population of a small town in your country. But in the vast landscape of Northern Norway, the amount of residents is seen from a completely different perspective.

In recent years, the town has gained popularity. Unlike other cities in Northern Norway, the population has risen and it has also become more attractive to tourists.

The boost was triggered by a simple, yet effective, city marketing concept. “Let’s paint the houses and buildings blue and involve artists and the community in this project”. The result?

The city is covered with blue painted houses. A big contrast with the traditional red fishermen's cabins you can see along The Queen's Route.

Sortland is buzzing with life. Museums, whale safaris, the surrounding vast and pure nature waiting for you to be explored, cozy restaurants with local (fish) meals, shopping centres and numerous local shops. 

It’s the ideal city to buy souvenirs, or to soak up Norwegian culture. Or even to escape for a day from your fishing companions.

Myre, the largest fishing village in Norway

Myre is about 15 km from our holiday cabins. The largest fishing village in Norway is less vibrant than Sortland, but at least there are some supermarkets and fishmongers.

But let’s be honest: the most delicious fish is the one you catch yourself.

Do you plan to grill your fish on a BBQ, or prepare them in the kitchen? Myre is the place where you can find all ingredients to transform your meals into real feasts. Depending on the period of your stay, you can even have dinner while enjoying the enchanting Northern Lights or the charming midnight sun.