Norway – The Lofoten Islands: Part 2, Week 6, 25th Sept – 1st Oct 2017

25th September 2017

First thing this morning our van became a tourist attraction… Heard a minibus pull up and through the gaps in the window covers we saw Charlie being photographed along with the beautiful lake we’d parked next to the night before.

 

After our brief moment of fame we had some breakfast and got the van sorted before spending the majority of the day driving along the E10 – not rushing and just taking the scenery in!

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Weather was beautiful all day so we pulled up late afternoon in a layby next to Skagsanden beach to take a walk. Despite the sun being out we didn’t envy the surfing school who were then walking out into the water – they looked pretty cold even in their wetsuits!

We ended up spending the night in the layby with a couple of other vans and cooked up sausage and mash for dinner.

 

26th September 2017

After Nutella toasties for breakfast (yes they were as good as they sound!) we took another walk in a different direction along the coastline which involved some (clumsy)  clambering and hopping over rocks which had been washed up along the shoreline.

We made our way further along the E10 towards Å – the last village on the Lofoten  Islands (appropriately named as Å is the last letter of the Norwegian alphabet!). Another sunny day highlighted the picturesque fishing villages that we passed through, we even had the windows down as it was so mild!

 

Arrived in Å around lunchtime and drove through a small tunnel to find a large carpark which you can easily walk to both the town and the coastline from (much easier to park here than in the small village if you plan on visiting!) Now at the end of the E10 we parked the van up, had a coffee and went to explore.

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Spent a couple of hours in the sun taking a walk towards the end of the island which is accessible from the end of the carpark. Beautiful landscape with rockpools, mountains for miles and autumn coloured grassland(plus a few bogs which Tris managed to jump in….)

 

Had some lunch back at the van before we got chatting to a Danish photographer called Tommy who was fulfilling his dream of visiting the Lofoten islands and taking amazing images (check out his Facebook page here). He was very knowledgeable on Scandinavian history and also highlighted a few places we should visit whilst we were in the area.

Despite being small in size,Å makes a huge impact with red,wooden fishing buildings standing on stilts above the water. Definitely worth a visit to immerse yourself amongst the buildings and take a wander round!

 

 

We took a short drive back along the E10 and found a great place to pull up for the night. Looking out to sea with the mountains behind us. Perfect to enjoy a plate of cheese and bacon pasta…!

 

 

27th September 2017

Sat out in the sun overlooking the sea all morning with coffee and breakfast in hand before making our way to Uttakliev (a beach which Tommy had suggested we visit). Retraced our steps back along the E10 but made the most of the weather and stopped off at a couple of places to take a short walk and a few pics…

 

 

Arrived at Haukland beach (just before Uttakliev) early afternoon and parked up with a fair few other vans and motorhomes to have some lunch in the sun.

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We drove through the tunnel to the right of Haukland beach which leads round to Uttakliev, however the mountain blocked out the sun and the parking set-up confused us a bit (£20 to “camp” but no reception and was just a carpark..!) so we turned the van around and parked back at Haukland in the sun and decided we’d walk to Uttakliev tomorrow (Tommy told us you could walk round the coastline). Spent the rest of the day walking along Haukland beach and made “pizza” for dinner (made pancake batter, cooked it for a bit longer and put chopped tomatoes, basil and cheese on top. Turned out edible…!)

 

 

We had taken a look at http://www.aurora-service.eu/aurora-forecast/ (which Tommy had said was a pretty accurate forecast for the Northern Lights)… looked like we were in for a pretty good show around 10pm onwards! With warm clothes and a hot chocolate with Baileys ready we stood outside and around 10:30pm they flared up…

Everyone emerged from their vans and stood silently in awe in the carpark… Such a clear night and a beautiful setting to watch them from. Felt very lucky to see them again!

28th September 2017

Fairly early start and set off just after 11 to walk to Uttakliev, pretty stunning path round the coast and discovered a few small hidden beaches along the way.

 

 

Uttakliev beach itself was picturesque too…

 

 

Also found a pretty cool Uni-Mog parked up!

 

 

Ended up walking around 8-10km by the time we got back to the van so fuelled up on a cheese and mushroom omelette and left around 4:30pm to go further back along the E10.Took a few smaller roads which meant we weren’t seeing the same roads twice and allowed us to see more of the islands!

 

 

Pulled over for the night just before it got dark just outside the village of Vestpollen. Spoke to our Norwegian “neighbour” briefly in the layby about his time in Lofoten before cooking up some dinner.

29th September 2017

Had a walk around the pull-off in the morning as there were a few boardwalks which led to a great view…

 

 

Started to make our way up the E10 once more before turning off to do another “loop” where we passed a campsite that caught our eye due to the fact it was right next to a fjord and seemed pretty popular! Carried on past however up to Laukvika whilst Zo looked to see if it was overly expensive… Rates were fairly reasonable so we turned the van around and made our way back to Sandsletta campsite.

Greeted by two friendly staff members who said they were busy but due to our van being smaller than the normal motorhome they had a perfect spot for us. Right by the fjord and in full sunlight 🙂

 

 

Had showers and had a lazy day in the sun by the water eating, drinking and backing up our photos and GoPro footage – making use of the electricity hookup! More campers turned up throughout the day and in the evening the site was full of atmosphere and music (Friday night and good weather meant everyone was away for the weekend!)

 

 

30th September 2017

Bought a loaf of bread from reception and Tris made a fry-up which tasted even better with a view like this!

 

 

Sandsletta campsite is another one we would recommend – fairly priced in comparison to a few other sites we’d researched and the setting was beautiful! Friendly staff too and all facilities were more than sufficient. Even gave us a sticker to put on the van! http://camping-lofoten.no/english/

Carried on the “loop” that we started all the way round to Fiskebøl then joined the E10 once more. We’d seen on the way across Lofoten that there was an antique/garage sale outside a house near Kongsvika and said if it were open when we made our way back we’d pop in…

Much to Tris’ delight it was open so we parked up and were greeted by friendly Curt who gave us a tour of the place. So much stuff to have a look at from old records to wooden ice skates, Converse shoes to DVD’s and a whole load of other bits and pieces!

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Told us his background story and a bit about the area before giving some advice about what we should do next. Our original plan was to drive back along the E10 then pick the E6 up to Narvik, following the coast to Bodø. instead he said it’d be alot cheaper and quicker to take the ferry from Lødingen to Bognes.

 

 

 

Took his advice and got the 5:15pm ferry which cost around £30 and only took an hour before we arrived in Bognes. Drove south down the E6 where we spotted this old fuel station…

 

 

before turning onto the 835 where we pulled over for the night, joined later by a lorry and from the music that was being blasted out it sounded like there was a nightclub on board! Good entertainment for a Saturday night in the bus!

1st October 2017

Had the last of the bread for breakfast and fitted the GoPro on the back bumper using some cable ties to try and get some interesting shots of our trip! Also had a walk round the pull off as it was dark when we pulled up…

 

 

Left just after 12 and decided to carry on along the 835 towards the coast and onto Engeløya island where we stopped to take a look at a church( was on the map as a point of interest!).

 

 

Then made our way towards Helnessund where we reached the end of the road but found a place to pull over and have a coffee next to a little marina.

 

 

Back on the E6 we climbed pretty high through some mountains where the wind was considerably more noticeable!

 

We found one pull off but decided we’d be better off at a lower altitude so continued driving and found somewhere more suitable. Made a pasta dish with tomato, sausage and peas and with some added chilli powder it was pretty tasty!

Plans for the following week? None really, just keep driving south and see where we end up!

 

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