Week 48 – ferries and getting to the Faroes

Welcome to the Faroe Islands

We have spent most of this week on ferries.

First we had to get from Norway to Denmark which involved an overnighter from Bergen to Hirtshals. Then we had a two night crossing to get from Denmark to the Faroe Islands where we will be spending the next week.

And first impressions of the Faroes? With scenery like this, I think we are going to like it here.

But back to our journey. The crossing from Bergen to Denmark started serenely enough. Here we are cruising into Stavanger.

Then the music started…

….and then the dancing where the singer was very keen to get all passengers on the dance floor……

 

Then the music carried on in the bar till everyone went to bed which, thanks to our new Norwegian best friends, wasn’t till 3 am.

So by the time we arrived in Denmark…

…or specifically the very small town of Hirtshals, we were not in the mood in for dancing or doing much else other than..

…a fish and chip lunch on the harbour front and a bracing walk down the long, wide beach past the lighthouse…

…lined with miles of concrete bunkers courtesy of the German army during WWII.

 

Next morning we did our last supermarket shop before we get back to the UK….not that we are counting down the days till getting home.

 

We boarded the ferry for the Faroes…

…doing some backseat blogging to get the Norway week posted before going 40 hours without WIFI.

We were welcomed to the restaurant by who else on a ship bound for Iceland – hello Bjork.

So how did we pass the two night crossing? Well we had a few turns round the deck, spying the Shetlands from a distance…

…watched a Great Skua dive bomb gannets to steal fish from them……here’s a poor gannet on the run..

 

….checking in occasionally to track the red dot on the ship screen which marked the ship’s progress…

…whiled away some time in the bar where the ‘two for one’ offer on beer seemed to run all night…

…and relaxed in our cabin, watching the sea out the window..

…and ‘Morse’ on the telly…

….with a bucket of Maltesers whilst doing as the Faroese do….knitting.

Hurrah, my VW bedspread is now finished and ready for the cold nights in Iceland.

Thank you for the pattern Regan! An inspired pressie.

And then we had arrived on the Faroes.

Torshavn at 5 am was looking misty and wet.

We found a place to park up and cat napped until the self professed smallest capital in the world woke up and we could get breakfast in one of the smart cafes on the town’s main street.

As we plan to spend more time in Torshavn towards the end of our week on the Faroes, we didn’t hang around but headed further northwards up the island of Stremoy, the largest of the 18 Faroe islands.

The mist was heavy…

…..which made for some tense driving…

…but what we could see of the scenery looked lush and vividly green.

We went to Vestmanna…

…to one of two campsites on the island.

 

There were lots of empty static caravans but no one else around. Inside a clubhouse style building,  there was this sign…

…which looked like a real life example of what we’d read about the importance of trust in business in Denmark which I guess also includes one of its self-governing regions like the Faroes.

When the owner did come by later, she wasn’t interested in collecting money from us either. ‘I’ve got to get back home to my sewing. The instructions on how to pay are inside.’ Knitting and sewing…these islands are a hive of craftwork.

Before she left though I was curious to find out more about all the empty caravans around us. It just didn’t look like your obvious place  for a summer holiday.

She explained they were all owned by locals who come to the campsite every weekend in the winter to socialise. ‘The summer you mean’, I said thinking she’d made a mistake. No, it was definitely the winter.  She explained that in the summer, everyone is too busy fishing, farming, spending time with older children back from university in Denmark. But in the winter, they come to their caravans for get togethers at her campsite. The men bring their guitars, the women bring their knitting and they have a great time. She now has a waiting list of 80 caravans trying to join the fun.

The weather on the Faroes is so unpredictable we resolved that come rain or shine, we would get out onto the mountains. We had both for our first expedition.

And wind, we had fierce wind which sent waterfalls up like clouds of steam…

…and turned eating a banana with your eyes open into an impossible challenge.

 

 

 

So now we are watching the weather forecast. If the wind is in the right direction then we will get to Mykines, the most westerly island where hopefully we will see some puffins before they go back out to sea after the breeding season. Fingers crossed.

11 Comments


  1. // Reply

    I reckon you guys ought to buy a caravan on that campsite in the Faroes !


  2. // Reply

    Waoh! Chilly up there! Love your quilt Helen. Congratulations, x


  3. // Reply

    Oh, that knitting: wonderfully done! And the Faroes, look só beautiful, even in rain and mist! Hope for you you will see some sun too! Enjoy.


    1. // Reply

      We’ve been very lucky with the unpredictable weather…bucketing down today but beautiful clear skies earlier this week.


  4. // Reply

    The knitted blanket is fab Helen, you are talented – great achievement. Pics super as per usual – enjoy last few days


    1. // Reply

      Well I could be modest and say tis only plain and purl and a shedload of dodgy stitching but I won’t…I think it is a wonder too!


  5. // Reply

    Have you spotted anyone that looks like me yet? My father was posted on the Faroes in WW2. Some of the regiment had children there and married local women. Look forward to catching up on your return tonBlighty. Gavin


    1. // Reply

      Hey Gavin – great to hear from you and what a coincidence you commented just after we’d been to the museum. It was really interesting….look forward to catching up when we’re back. Stu


  6. // Reply

    Good to see that Bjork has cheered up xx


    1. // Reply

      Yeah, I think she’s just heard her new album sales means she can give up the waitressing job. Good thing too. I reckon she’s a future in the music business ..

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