From EUR 5'850
8 Days Sea Kayaking The Iconic Lofoten Islands! The Lofoten Islands, a chain of spectacular islands, where jagged peaks embedded in the sea and the sounds of the Moskenes maelstrom, one of the world’s strongest ocean currents tell Viking sagas and legends of a seafaring people. Here our Iconic Lofoten Islands Sea Kayak Expedition, an 8-day magical journey that takes you on a close and personal discovery of this historical fishing culture. We paddle our sea kayaks, island hopping a 120 – 135 km averaging 5-6 hours on the water each day. Here, the history and culture of a rugged seafaring people and the waterways that connected them come alive as we paddle into fishing villages and lodge in choice sea houses built on century old wharves.
Arrival Day – Bodø
Meet your Guide! Saturday, 17:00 (5:00 pm) at the Scandic Havet Hotel in Bodø.
Sample local brews over an informal confab with your guide while you savor the spectacular views of Bodø’s harbour with the expanse of Westfjord waning on the horizon. Followed by an exposé of the days a head in the Lofoten Islands, where you will receive details on what to expect in terms of weather, paddling conditions, route description with a day to day break down of the trip including tide calculations and morning departure times, an overview of our accommodation and a meal outline, as well, we’ll touch on various cultural points of interest; finally any changes in the program, route, etc. that were deemed necessary.
Refreshments and a light supper will be served.
Day 1 – Bodø to Reine
Crossing Westfjord by ferry & A welcome to the Lofoten Islands – No paddling today.
We gather in the lobby of the Scandic Havet at 09:30, Sunday morning; once everyone is ready, we embark on the short walk through the centre of town to the ferry terminal. The ferry departs at 11:00.
Arriving in Moskenes early afternoon, where our transport is waiting to take us on the short drive to Reine. Our Rorbu is ready; we marvel in the majesty of the Islands over a light lunch. There is free time this afternoon to relax, settle in and enjoy the hamlet of Reine. Enjoy the sights, sounds, and smells as your senses come alive in Reine’s bustling harbor and if you want to stretch your legs, then the short hike up the Sherpa Stairs to the famous Reinebingen is recommended as the views are breathtaking.
KMT’s Anchor Aperitif, a time-honored tradition of sharing stories and laughs from our days adventure over a libation after docking for the night. A relaxing ambience as your guide to share thoughts and interpretations of the history and life of the Lofoten, setting the stage for a glorious week exploring these Iconic Islands before we enjoy a delicious fish supper.
Day 2 – Reine Fjord by Sea Kayak
saltwater and sea breezes, a quintessential fjord paddle, approx. 6 hours round trip.
Gear up! After getting into our padding gear we launch our sea kayaks for the first time in the Lofoten Islands from the town pier. The towering peaks of the Moskenes Tetons beckon us as we venture out of the harbour and into the fjord. Today’s paddle includes a comprehensive introduction to sea kayak touring.
Kayaking amongst the jagged peaks of Reine fjord we paddle into Bunesfjord, one of the three arms of Reine fjord. Landing mid-fjord, we stretch our legs on the short hike up to a couloir overlooking the North Atlantic Ocean. Gazing at the endless watery horizon with the sounds of waves crashing on the massive white sandy beach below we try to picture life as it once was in one of the earliest settlements in the Lofoten Islands.
After returning to Reine; Hot showers, Anchor Aperitif, scrumptious dinner and the final preparations for tomorrow as we get set to say farewell to Reine with our Lofoten journey beginning in earnest.
Day 3 – The Journey Begins
bridges, rocky shores, sounds, a coastal paddle to Flakstad Island and Nusfjord, 5-6-hour paddle.
Crossing under the Reine Fjord bridges we venture out onto mighty Westfjord with the steep rocky walls of the Moskenes Tetons leading us to the sound at Sund, a narrow river like channel separating the islands of Moskenes and Flakstad. Our arrival at the mouth of the sound is timed with the slack in the sound’s current allowing us to cross safely over to the Hamlet of Sund, where we refuel on hot beverages and a hearty lunch. Before joining the local Blacksmith in his workshop where we witness his artistry as he creates birds of steel.
Rested and refueled we return to our waiting kayaks for the paddle up the length of Flakstad island and to the natural harbor of Nusfjord. Pointing our kayaks up Skjelfjord we round the northern tip of Kunna Island before crossing the fjord and slipping around the headland at Nesland, where the sheer rock faces of Flakstad are interspersed with quaint commonage farms along the Nesland coast. These ancient farm settlements lead us to the secluded mouth of Nusfjord.
The entrance to this “tucked away” fjord opens as we round an imperceptible headland, and paddle into the natural harbour of Nusfjord. The village is protected under the UNESCO world heritage act and has been beautifully restored to its former glory. Relaxing on the wharf, enjoying our Anchor Aperitif and listening to the sounds of the bird rock, we recount the days’ journey.
The Arctic Resort of Nusfjord is a welcome anchorage after 2 days of paddling. Enjoy a soak in the outdoor hot tub before a relaxing sauna at the spa to soothe your paddling muscles before a feasting on delicious fish supper. Turn in early as tomorrow’s challenge is a 15+ mile day and we need to catch the fist slack of the day over the Napp current.
Day 4 – The Napp Crossing and 15+ Mile Challenge
Napp Sound, Open Water Crossing, Islands, Headlands, and Paddling Miles!
Nusfjord to Stamsund (15+ miles) 7-8 hours
The Napp Sound, one of Lofoten’s most revered water ways. It boasts a tidal current that flows at over 6.5 knots and separates Flakstad Island from Vestvåg Island; with 24 hours of daylight we can depart Nusfjord when the current is most favourable and the sea conditions optimal for crossing.
Our best chance to cross is during the first tidal slack of the day! This calls for an early morning with hot coffee and a quick breakfast before we gear up and push off. We launch from the sheltered harbor and our kayaks glide easily out to the headland marking the end of Flakstad Island; with the Napp Sound looming before us, it is decision making time, to cross or not to cross?
After a couple hours of paddling we land on Vestvåg Island, having successfully crossed the Napp Sound! Landing on the outskirts of Ballstad we refuel on hot beverages hearty sandwiches. Feeling refreshed and ready we aim our kayaks out through Ballstad’s harbor and to the mouth of Buksnesfjord. We head across the fjord to the islands of Mortsund; under the cliffs of Barsund Peak we find a secluded beach, the perfect place to stretch our legs and top up our energy supply.
The final headland around Ure and the islands dotting Goose Island Straight lead us to our destination, the village of Stamsund. Cruising amongst the many small islands, spotting playful seals and soaring sea eagles we finally glide into the harbor’s entrance. Completing today’s paddle challenge in Stamsund we disembark from our cockpits and celebrate with a well-deserved Anchor Aperitif and a late lunch.
The rest of the day is yours; where there is time to stretch your legs wandering and exploring this quaint little village or to just relax and maybe take a nap. Tonight, we dine on the Warf, where the sights and sounds of this bustling harbour entertain us through a hearty meal.
Day 5 – Rest Day
leg day! Verdant hills, grazing sheep, panoramic vistas, hiking into history
During a leisurely breakfast we consider our options for the day; the known is that we are giving our paddles a rest.
Individual desires and interests are met with a variety of options for the day. A favored preference is the acclaimed hike over the mountains to Borg, the Viking Chief’s Farm of the Kingdom of Borg. Wandering over the lush green slopes with majestic vistas of the North Atlantic and mighty Westfjord to the Viking Chieftain’s house where we relive life in the 9th century on a guided tour of this reconstructed residence.
Returning to Stamsund via our transport, where plans for the next day are laid over an anchor aperitif and a tasty supper.
Day 6 – Open Water Crossing! Stamsund to Henningsvær
Over the prodigious Henningsvær Current? island hopping, tides & currents, white sandy beaches, soaring sea eagles, today’s paddle can really range in passage as the conditions for the open crossing determine our route; it can be as short as a 5-hours or it can take up to 7-8 hours!
The tide waits for no one! We launch on an ebbing tide as today is current day and we need to cross Henningsvær current when the Gimsøy current is slack. Riding the outgoing tide from Stamsund so that we can cross Gimsøy Sound on the first afternoon slack.
We begin the day cruising through the islands of Valberg, island hopping our way to a beautiful white sand beach, the perfect spot of a break which we timed with the approaching slack tide in Gimsøy Sound. The Gimsøy sound separates Vestvåg Island from Austvåg Island, the last island in the Lofoten chain. Crossing Henningsvær Current at the south end of Gimsøy Sound is the last major crossing on our journey; our chosen route depends on the tide, the weather and the sea state.
Henningsvær seems to rise out of the sea as we approach, situated on a cluster of islands this vibrant fishing village comes to life as we navigate the secret entrance to its harbor and paddle down Mainstreet Henningsvær. We pause to absorb the splendour of this majestic village with sculpted rock peaks providing a perfect backdrop.
The hamlet of Henningsvær is a true fishing village; during the summer it hosts the Lofoten Island’s climbing community. Every summer rock climbers from all over the world descend on Henningsvær to climb the granite walls of the Lofoten Mountains.
Landing at the hotels’ dock, we toast our arrival in Henningsvær with a traditional Anchor Aperitif. After freshening up there is ample free time to wander and explore this charming village before we celebrate our crossing with a delicious supper. And, if the brightness of the Arctic night keeps you awake then the vibrant night life of the Klatre Kafé - Rock Climbers Café might entice.
Day 7 – Henningsvær to Svolvær
Austvåg Island – Vågakallen, Bremholm Sound, The Fisherman’s Wife, and the Svolvær Goat! Our final paddling distance is 12 miles.
Breakfast comes early after our evening in Henningsvær. We say goodbye to this quaint village as we launch onto ‘Mainstreet’ Henningsvær. Pointing our kayaks towards Vågakallen, a famous Lofoten landmark; where rookie Lofoten fishermen had to pay their respects to the Lofoten Seas by removing their hats when passing by for the first time.
We paddle past the granite walls of Lofoten’ s climbing mecca, Paradise, cruising in amongst clusters of islands and through Bremholm Sound, in search of the Fisherman’s Wife, who will lead us to the heart of Svolvær’s renowned harbour.
Svolvær, Lofoten’s, ‘Original City’ this bustling fishing community is the Lofoten Islands Heart and our final stop on our paddling journey. Celebrating our arrival with a final Anchor Aperitif and unwinding after paddling over 65 miles through this Arctic Archipelago. This afternoon is free for you to explore the city before we meet for celebratory drinks and a festive supper commemorating our magical journey.
Day 8 – Bodø
A Catamaran Ride, Westfjord, The Salten Coast, Bodø.
Our last morning together, we gather for a leisurely breakfast. Spending our final time together reminiscing over the past days paddling and adventuring through these majestic Arctic Islands.
After breakfast we say our goodbyes, as the 12:45 catamaran to Bodø awaits. Cruising over Westfjord you arrive in Bodø at approximately 4:30 pm.
The passenger terminal is located directly behind the Scandic Havet Hotel.
These impressively scenic islands form an archipelago one hundred miles north of the Arctic Circle. It is a place of mystical landscapes illuminated by nearly continuous daylight. Glacially-carved, shear granite spires rise out of a sea made rich by the meeting of the warm Gulf Stream and the Arctic Ocean. The Islands are fringed with green pastureland and dotted with picturesque fishing villages each with its own unique character and dramatic mountain backdrop. This is a true Arctic sea kayaking adventure with the advantage of finishing every day with a hot shower and a warm bed.
You’ll kayak the length of this remarkable chain of islands through indigo-blue fjords cutting between jagged peaks, stopping at white sand beaches and hiking to viewpoints for incredible panoramic vistas. At the end of each paddling day you’ll stay in “rorbus”, traditional fishermen’s lodges with time to explore these charming villages and sample the local cuisine. Great kayaking, spectacular scenery and Norway’s seafaring culture make the Lofoten Islands one of the world’s great paddling trips.