Our adventures

Arctic Circle Adventure Week

Sustainable, local traveling that encourages personal interactions with Norway's local people! Boat from isolated island to island in the Arctic Circle of Northern Norway with us!

"Sustainable travel is one of the most important aspects of exploring in today's modern world. Having the opportunity to visit some of the most creative, unique and isolated communities in Norway is something that's hard for most tourists to access without a local company."— Hvitserk guide

Hvitserk of Norway is part of a research-project developing new and exciting experiences for travelers – and this is the first itinerary. On this tour, we will travel with transportation that is already a standard in Norway, reducing our impact on the environment we aim to conserve. It gives travelers an unique opportunity to visit and meet the locals on the rugged and fascinating islands south of Bodø and off the Helgeland Coast. These islands are far less visited than the Lofoten Islands, more remote –  yet equally dramatic and stunning. If you want to explore Norway in an intimate setting, with real local culture away from the tourist hotspots, this is the tour for you.

Some of the unique features on this trip:

  • Remote mountain hikes with vistas of tens of thousands of islands
  • Experience the Midnight Sun!
  • Explore Træna – one of Norway’s most creative and isolated municipalities
  • Live the local lifestyle traveling by expressboat and ferries from island to island
  • Kayak in an archipelago far, far away from the mainland
  • See Puffins and Sea Eagles up close and personal
  • Eat a homecooked meal of traditional fish at a local’s home
  • Drink whiskey on Myken – at the world's first Arctic single malt whisky distillery, with whisky made from desalinated Arctic sea water, matured under the Midnight Sun and the Northern Lights.

At Hvitserk, we aim to work within sustainable systems already in place, and give travelers an experience that is intimate, interactive and engaging. This tour aims to use only local transportation, giving travelers a glimpse into local life, as well as reducing our impact while we explore Norway. This is a special itinerary for travelers that enjoy learning more about the country their visiting, experiencing a variety of active travel activities, and having a very personal experience with local people. 

DIFFICULTY           

Level 2 out of 5. Please read more about our level of difficulty here. The mountains can be steep and paths are sometimes rocky and a bit slippery (especially it rains). You should have some hiking experience from similar conditions. Good fitness level and some hiking experience are also fine. 

WHAT TO BRING?

Have a look at the full equipment list by clicking "Equipment list" in the menu above. 

ACCOMMODATION

We stay in a variety of traditional guesthouses at different destinations on the trip, in twin rooms. It might also be possible with single rooms. Please let us know if you would like to pay extra for this.

BAGGAGE

There is no weight limit, other then what your airline has imposed, but, as the group and luggage will all have to fit into our minibus, we do ask you not to bring more than one main item of baggage and one daysack. You will only have to carry your daysack on this trip. 

INSURANCE 

You need a travel and health insurance that also includes transportation back to your country. Remember to bring your insurance card/information. 

LANGUAGES      

The guide speaks English.

CHANGES MAY OCCUR

We reserve the right to make changes to the program, and the price. The day to day program is indicative, and changes may occur. Please have a look at our terms and conditions

NUMBER OF PARTICIPANTS              

Minimum: 4 people; Maximum: 8 people.

WHAT'S INCLUDED?          

  • Professional nature guide.
  • Accommodation as described in the day by day program in twin rooms. (Shared with the same sex). 
  • Breakfast, packed lunch, and dinner (as described in the day to day program). 
  • All local transport.

NOT INCLUDED IN THE PRICE:

  • Transportation to the meeting point in Bodø. Transportation  on the last day. 
  • Drinks and snacks.

DAY 1: ARRIVAL - MEET THE GROUP IN BODØ

Arrival in Bodø, an important coastal hub in Northern Norway. We meet at the hotel and have dinner together at 7 p.m. It is possible to reach Bodø with train from Oslo/Trondheim (NSB) or with an international or local flight (several daily departures with SAS and Norwegian). The airport is a 15-minute walk from the airport to the hotel or a 3 minutes taxi drive. We spend the night in a central hotel right on the ocean and close to the harbor. Together with the guide we will enjoy dinner together, look at the itinerary for the week, and get excited for all the experiences you will have the coming week.

Accommodation Hotel Meals D

DAY 2: Island Hopping

The islands in Northern Norway are connected with several different ferries and express boats, and after breakfast, we take the southbound express boat from Bodø to Bolga (2.5 hours).
At Bolga we head for the islands highest peak – Bolgtinden (338 meters above sea level). Sections of the hike are steep, but no climbing is involved. As many of the hikes we will do this week, we start from sea level – and after a few hours, we are rewarded with an incredible view from the summit.
After a coffee, cold beer or soda at the local café, we continue with the express boat to Rødøy. The express boats take us through majestic scenery along the rugged coastline and stop at several small islands and hamlets. After arriving at our charming and rustic hotel (Klokkergården), we will be served a three-course dinner with high-quality local food at the cozy restaurant at Klokkergården.

Accommodation Guesthouse Ascent 338m Distance 3km Meals B L D Descent 338m Time 3-4hrs hiking Transport 3 hrs

DAY 3: Views of a thousand islands


After a delicious breakfast, we head for Rødøyløyva. The 443-meter high mountain is a true classic in this beautiful archipelago. The tour is quite steep, but this trail has been designed and built by Sherpas from Nepal, the most skilled trail builders in the world. The 2 hours hike to the summit is – like yesterday - rewarded with a superb view!  The Helgeland Coast has over 12,000 islands – and you will see hundreds from the summit. If the weather is nice, we make a small detour to Storsand (The Big Beach) – a pristine, whitewashed, sandy beach – which is a perfect stop for a good coffee and a late lunch.
Again, we continue southwards with the locals on the express boat, and head for our favorite island on this part of the coast – Træna. Træna has around 450 inhabitants and is approximately 40 km from the mainland. It is one of Norway’s smallest and unique municipality. The local government was awarded the “most innovative” in Norway last year, and a music festival on the island is recognized worldwide (The Guardian wrote in 2015 that it is one of the best festivals in Europe) .
This unique community is where we will spend our night at Træna, enjoying another traditional dinner together as we end our day of adventures and look forward to the next.

Accommodation Guesthouse Ascent 443m Distance 3km Meals B L D Descent 443m Time 4-5 hrs hiking Transport 2 hrs

DAY 4: Kayaking and a homecooked meal with a local


After breakfast, we go on a half day kayak tour around the Træna archipelago experiencing the sea life up close and personal. Those who wish to hike more instead will also have that option. We meet for lunch and venture on a small afternoon hike on the neighboring island of Sanna. Then we continue by boat to Selvær – a secluded community with 50 inhabitants. Here we are welcomed to a unique dinner; since the best way to experience a new culture is to meet the locals, we enjoy an authentic dining experience with homemade food at a local’s home. The host will give you a taste of local cuisine and share their stories from the isolated island – a true way to integrate with locals and not something easily done in other parts of Norway.  After dinner, we will journey 30 minutes back to our guesthouse on Træna and relax after another full day of exploration.

  Accommodation Guesthouse Ascent 250 Distance 4km Meals B L D Descent 250 Time 1-2 hrs hiking, 3 hrs kayaking Transport 1 hr

 

DAY 5: hiking puffin island


From Træna we will take the ferry to the sister island of Lovund where we spend the day hiking to the Lovund Mountain (625 meters). The summit offers a magnificent panorama of the Helgeland coast (roundtrip 5-6 hours).  Lovund is a coastal community famous for puffins and salmon farming. Despite its humble size (475 inhabitants), Lovund is one of the most entrepreneurial coastal communities and plays a leading role in Norwegian aquaculture. If you’re curious about Norwegian innovation and economy, this island gives insight into how the locals live and sustain such a remote and simple lifestyle. We will have the option, weather depending, to detour to the puffin scree at the western part of the mountain –thousands of puffins flying in the high cliffs above the ocean.
We will feast on another superb dinner at either Lovund or Træna and head back to our accommodations for another well-deserved nights rest.

Accommodation Guesthouse Ascent 625m Distance 6 km Meals B L D Descent 625m Time 5-6 hrs hiking Transport 2 hrs

DAY 6: arctic whiskey under the midnight sun


Although its hard to say goodbye to Træne, its time to move on. From Træna we head to Myken (one hour by express boat). Myken is a set of 40 small islands, 32 km from the mainland.  Historically, the islands had around 150 inhabitants – who depended on the rich ocean surrounding the community to survive. Now, Myken has approximately ten inhabitants. The island’s population was steadily decreasing until a group of men started a Whiskey distillery. Today, the island has the world's first Arctic single malt whiskey distillery, with whiskey made from desalinated Arctic sea water, matured under the Midnight Sun and the Northern Lights. After the distillery was established, both a restaurant and overnight accommodations were created to house the incoming explorers with a pallet for whiskey. Here, we enjoy a three-course dinner with local seafood in the restaurant above the distillery. After dinner we will taste a diversity of local whiskeys, and spend the night at the eclectic bed&breakfast offering both twin rooms or Norway’s only indoor camping area. This unique B&B was built in the old school’s library, and you can enjoy a snooze in a historical mini-camper for an authentic experience.

Accommodation Mini-camper Meals B L D Transport 1 hr

DAY 7: return to the mainland


After breakfast, we have some time to explore the island before we board the express boat back to Bodø (3 hours). We end the tour in Bodø… unless, the magic of the Arctic has claimed you, and you want to continue your adventure on Hvitserk’s Lofoten tour.

Meals B L D Transport 3 hrs

Take a good look at this list, and make sure you bring everything you need. We encourage you to use what you have for this trip, and purchase items if youre missing something important on the list below. We have divided the gear list into three categories:

1) Required: If you do not own this gear, you must acquire it for your trip. 

2) Recommended: Gear we suggest to be comfortable, but it is not imperative.

3) Optional: Fun, additional luxuries.  

Layering is extremely important in a variable climate like Norway. This list will guide you through the essentials. Remember the Norwegian saying "There is no bad weather, only bad gear", and prepare appropriately for any weather. You can read about weather where youre traveling here.

The video below is for SUMMER gear, despite the snow in the background. Welcome to Norway!

Please contact us at [email protected] if you have any questions.

We always recommend wool in the Norwegian Mountains, but if you already have synthetic layers and don't want to buy new ones, synthetic is okay. 

 

REQUIRED:

BASE LAYER

Wool long-sleeved top and bottom.

MID-LAYER A medium thickness wool or fleece top.

INSULATED JACKET

A warm jacket for breaks and before after hiking. We recommend a puffy jacket with down or synthetic. Something equivalant in warmth is also okay.

SHELL / RAIN JACKET

Gore-Tex or similar is mandatory. Extrememly important in Norwegian climate. The jacket must be waterproof, have a hood, and make sure you don’t get wet even if it rains all day. We recommend jackets with pit zips for ventilation. 

HIKING PANTS

Hiking pants comfortable for all day wear. Should fit your long underwear beneathe and fit under your rain shell pants if you choose to bring some. Zip off into shorts or an additional pair of shorts is option. 

HIKING SHIRT

Bring 1-2 shirts for daily hiking. 

GLOVES / MITTENS

1 thin pair of gloves to protect your hands. 1 pair of over mittens for additional warmth.

HATS

1 sun hat, 1 warm hat.

HIKING SOCKS

2-4 pairs, we recommend wool, above the ankle, in your preferred thickness. If your footwear is not waterproof consider a gortex sock option.

HIKING SHOES

Bring footwear you know fits you and is comfortable. Trails can be wet and rocky. We recommend waterproof hiking boots. 

BACKPACK

Daypack for warm layers, food, snacks, water and needed items. 20-40 liters.

SUNGLASSES

UV rated, we recommend a strap to keep them in place and so they don't get lost.

SUNSCREEN / CHAPSTICK

Make sure the Chapstick has UV rated sunscreen in it. 

WATER BOTTLE / CAMELBACK

2 liter capacity. 

TOILETRIES

Personal basics: shampoo, conditioner, toothbrush, toothpaste, hairbrush, etc...

PERSONAL MEDICATIONS

Make sure you bring any personal meds you need on your trip, and ensure the Hvitserk office is updated on your allergies or needs. 

 

RECOMMENDED:

WOOL UNDERWEAR

We highly recommend bringing wool underwear and bra for hiking. No cotton.

WATERPROOF SHELL PANTS

We recommend having a water proof layer for your legs in case the weather is cold and rainy. You will enjoy the hiking more when warm and comfortable.

SCARF OR BUFF

A layer to protect your neck or face. 

THERMOS

We recommend a thermos for hot drinks to have with you all day.

SWIMWEAR

A bathing suit and small towel if you would like to swim, hottub or sauna depending on your trip. 

TREKKING POLES

Most guests prefer hiking with poles. Helps with challenging terrain and to maintain energy over long days. 

HEADLAMP

Important item to always have in your pack. Emergency back up and useful for long days. 

FIRST AID KIT

If you have certain hiking aids specific to you: i.e. blister care or ibuprofen, etc...

CAMERA

Its important to be present while hiking, but also a great joy to bring some snapshots home with you for memory lane. 

CASUAL CLOTHES

A reminder to bring a set of clothes for transfers, relaxing in the evenings, and non-hiking time. An extra, dry pair of shoes is recommended for after and before hiking.

 

OPTIONAL:

ANTIBAC

If you need it for the bathroom or lunch. 

WET WIPE OR TOILET PAPER

If you have a bathroom emergency while hiking. We use "pack it in pack it out" ethics, so you will need to carry out your used items and throw them away later.

EAR PLUGS

If youre a light sleeper.

JOURNAL

 In order to take notes and write about the trip.

SNACKS

Chocolate, nuts or energy bars if there is something particular you enjoy eating. You will have the opportunity to buy snacks on your trip.

SLEEPING MASK

To cover your eyes when sleeping in 24 hour light. You can aslo use your buff.

Bed linens and towels are included all nights.