Day 1 – Harstad
After a late evening flight from Oslo, we arrived at the hotel a bit before midnight. The evening had been overcast, but as we unpacked the car we noticed some evening light developing in the sky. So immediately after checking into the hotel, we rushed outside to the harbour front to take a couple of pictures of the setting sun. This would be one of the last sunsets in Harstad before the midnight sun.
Day 2 – Harstad to Kabelvag
Today we had a 150km drive between Hardstad and Kabelvag. Not having any maps of the area, we trusted in the Sat Nav, which turned out to be a mistake as it directed us along Highway 83 which involved a ferry crossing, instead of along the faster Highway E10. The morning was overcast with some heavy rain – not exactly encouraging, but after reaching the island of Austvagoya, the weather improved greatly, and we managed a few roadside shots of the Trolltindan mountains.
We visited Svolvaer and Kabelvag briefly before arriving at our hotel – the Nyvagar Rorbru Hotel just outside Kabelvag. After dinner, we could see that it might be a decent sunset, so we drove to the small beach at Rorvika for some pictures, then drove towards Henningsvaer for views of the sunset over the Henningsvaerstraumen – the body of water between Austvagoya and Vestvagoya.
Day 3 – Hennigsvaer and Grimsoya
The morning started quite bright and sunny, and we decided to drive back along the route we had taken last night – west along the E10 to Rorvika, then south to Henningsvaer, taking pictures of the coast along the way. Henningsvaer is an attractive small town that is known as the Venice of the Lofotens, as it is built on an archipelago. It famously has a football pitch on an island which is just large enough for the pitch to fit. We also had our first experience of stockfish drying out on wooden trellises, which makes for an interesting smell.
We spent the morning exploring Henningsvaer, then drove back north along the coast (more pictures!), rejoining the E10 and crossing to the small island of Gimsoya, which lies between the larger islands of Austvagoya and Vestvagoya. On Gimsoya we headed north to the beach at Hov, which is backed by the small isolated mountain of Hoven.
Day 4 – Austvagoya
First thing in the morning and the weather looked promising, but it soon clouded over and became a very flat grey overcast day – not good for photography. We drove some back along E10 in the direction of Harstad, then turned south along the side of the Raftsundet that separates Austvagoya from the much larger island of Hinnoya. We were hoping for good views of the back of the Trolltinden mountains and the very narrow Trollfjord, but the light remained very flat and the views were disappointing. All that changed in the evening, when the clouds broke up, so after dinner we headed out once again in the direction of Henningsvaer to Rorvika beach and the overlook of the Henningsvaerstraumen. Returning to the hotel, we were still taking pictures at about 1am in the morning.