Most places in the world that are considered hidden gems remain hidden, because it requires a little extra to get to these places. But it is not impossible.
With the Steigen mountains to the east, and the Lofoten Islands to the west and the Norwegian Sea beyond that, Flatøy Lighthouse emits fire and sparkle. It is a hidden gem. Here the sky meets the sea in the beautiful surroundings. Here you mind to rest and your mind takes wing.
In 1875, the Lighthouse Authority wanted a lighthouse on Flatøy. The need arose from the large number of boats passing on the way to the Lofoten fishery. The journey across the Vestfjord to Lofoten can be harsh and dangerous. On November 15, 1882, the lighthouse was lit. Flatøy lighthouse was manned until 1966, and today it’s the Friends of Flatøy who ensure that it is possible to stay here.
Text and photographs by Sigrid Thorbjørnsen.
- The first leg of trip to Flatøy is by plane to Bodø. From Bodø, hop a ferry to Bogøy. From Bogøy, by car or bus to Steigen Sjøhus
- Steigen Sjøhus provides transportation to the lighthouse. In addition, they offer kayaking courses, scuba diving, snorkeling, hiking in the mountains. They have small apartments. This is good to know, since the weather is changeable and can delay the trip to the lighthouse.
- Trine Vegge, Erik Vegge, with help fromPaul Fortun, arrange kayak courses. Included in the courses are dry suits, jackets, kayaks, paddles and all that is needed.
- Paul Fortun and Greta V. Sollie heading out to Flatøy Lighthouse. Greta is the driving force behind Friends of Flatøy Lighthosue and and is the Number 1 contact person.
- The lighthouse beckons. The sun shines 24 hours a day at this time of year. The lighthouse sparkles and awaits its guests.
- From the pier to the lighthouse is a lush and green trail that winds over the island. A cornucopia of wild flowers reaching for the sun and on top of the hill waiting lighthouse.
- The view is beautiful. Here in the open sea the weather can change in a snap. But these changes are exciting. And when the sun comes out by degrees, we have only to enjoy what nature has to offer.
- Cottongrass (myrull), sea and sky. A tricolor as beautiful as any other.
- The natural pools on the island are guarded by birds who have their nests around in the moss. And on the horizon is Lofotveggen, the steep wall of mountains in the Lofoten archepelago.
- Three kayakers and a dog came to visit. Having paddled around the area, it was important to take a breather on Flatøy Lighthouse.
- Lunch includes the best of nature Nordland has to offer.
- Landing for kayaks is not entirely worked out, but it’s certainly not impossible.
- This automated light now does the work of the lighthouse. Here, with the Lofoten Islands in the background and the sea sparkling in the morning sun—that’s a view everyone wants, a summer day.
- Paul Fortun and Greta V. Sollie on top of the old lighthouse.
- While we are waiting for the guests, we enjoyed the midnight sun, the open doors, the height of the air and the wide ocean. Right now, there is no better place on earth.
For some general information on Flatøy Lightghouse, click here.