Torshavn, Vestmanna and Fugloy


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July 7th 2013
Published: July 7th 2013
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Arriving in Torshavn

We arrived in Torshavn (capital of Faroe Islands) on Wednesday evening 3.7. after a 30 hour boat trip. The boat was a lot like Viking Line cruise boats, even if we thought beforehand it would be much smaller. The main difference to the Viking Line boats was that nobody seemed to be drinking and partying :-) We too spent most of the time sitting and reading, having an occasional coffee or meal.

We are staying in the B&B accomodation of a sweet lady called Fanny. Her apartment is within few minutes walk from the harbor, as well as town center. Well, actually everything in Torshavn is within easy walking distance: when we took an evening walk to take ­a look at the city, after 10 minutes walk we reached a meadow with sheep :-) The town is very small (I thought it would be a little bit bigger), and very cute with lots of bright colored wooden houses, some of them having grass on the roof. There isn't much to do, though, and the weather is really not great. During our few hours walking tour we probably covered most of the sights (most important being the Tinganes "old town"). There are more things to see within walking distance from Torshavn center, but we have to plan our schedule purely according to weather forecasts and thus haven't seen those yet. Most of the time the weather generally seems to look like late October in Finland (chilly,grey, wet, windy), but some part of the islands always has brighter conditions. Have to admit that it has crossed our minds why we are not laying somewhere under palm tree on white sand already, but even so, we are enjoying our time here a lot 😊 This place is very relaxing and calm, there really isn't much else to do except to enjoy the nature. Hard to imagine that anyone living in a place like this could experience much hurry or stress in their life.

Vestmanna cliffs

Our first excursion was to Vestmanna village, and especially to take a boat cruise to see the bird cliffs. We arrived at the village few hours before the boat tour started, so we spend that time walking the village from one end to another. We even saw some sun light 😊 There wasn't anything special to see in the village itself, but for us it's exciting just to see those cute colorful villages by the sea.

The boat tour was amazing. It's not easy to describe the views in words, or capture them in photographs, but you can try to imagine sheer cliffs arising to up to 600 meters straight up from the sea, and flocks of different sea birds flying around. We did also see puffins, which I was mostly looking forward to, but they were so quick in their moves that it was hard to properly look at them, not to mention taking photos.

When the boat turned back to the village, it started to rain. We were rather wet by the time we got back to the shore, so we went to the cafe to have some hot chocolate. I guess our equipment is about right, though, because we were never freezing or even too cold. After arriving back in Torshavn, we took a nap, then had dinner at an Irish Pub and went to bed.

Fugloy

On the second day our alarm clock was set to 5.30, because we headed to the Northern island of Fugloy as it was supposed to be beautiful, and weather was going to be even sunny. Both were true. First we took a bus to a village from where we boarded a mail delivery boat to reach the island. Views on the boat trip were great - as Leo put it, like his image of Grand Canyon, only in green color. On the way the boat stopped to deliver some mail and also other stuff, such as oil barrells, or pile of wood. We got off at a village called Kirkja, and took a few hour walk accross the island to another village called Hattarvik. Views indeed were spectacular. You can see some of that in the photos. More striking however was the utter peacefullness of the island. Most of the time we were walking, all we could see was green hills, sheep and an endless seeming road. No other people around, except the occasional car passed us perhaps 5 times during the whole day (and it was the same car several times). We met also some friendly locals who started talking with us, and told us that in Hattarvik there lives 4 people, in Kirkja the number was a bit bigger in summertime, but during the winter also just 4-5 people. One guy in Hattarvik even said that it is impossible to be stressed on that island - you just cannot be in a hurry. Must be because anyway everything happens if the weather permits. You cannot for example know for sure if the boat to the mainland is coming, it comes if the weather is ok, and it comes when it reaches the island..not according to exact schedule. This guy also told us some facts about the sheep farming in Faroe islands. We had been wondering how the sheep can get on some spots of grass between extremely steep cliffs - now we know that they are sometimes taken there even by helicopters. That is done so the sheep can eat the better grass to get more fat. Another piece of information new to us was that they are actually utilizing only small amount of all the wool they get from the sheep. The wool is cut off more to make the sheep more comfortable. We were also taken into a barn where the sheep were gathered for the cutting - we have never heard so many bääääää at once :-)

After seeing the sheep we walked back to the first village Kirkja and took the mail boat back to the mainland. This time the boat tour was a bit longer, but again, enjoyable views. It's amazing what kind of service you get here - we were supposed to tell the captain of the mail boat that we will need a bus to the town of Klaksvik, because some busses only come if needed. Well, the captain said he will arrange the bus to us and few others. But actually it was not a bus, but a taxi. It seems like if busses are not running, you can simply get a taxi arranged for yourself. That ride (about 7km) would have costed around 3 euros, but because we have Faroe Island travel cards, it was even totally free for us. Even more amazing was what we heard from a Scottish guy we've been running into regularly on busses and boats - he said that when the only shop at the starting point of his hike today was closed, a local guy actually called the shop owner to come and open the store. And he came and the guy manage to do his shopping 😊

Note that you can see more pictures if you scroll down on this page.


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10th July 2013

Hi
I got this block address from Mari and I have enjoyed seeing all the pictures and reading about your adventure. Everything looks beautiful and I fully understand now why you wanted to see a place like that even though it is cold and rainy very often over there. Have a nice continuation!

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