Skip to main content

Archipelago landscape

Blog post   •   Jun 27, 2019 07:00 UTC

Photo: Terje Rakke Text: Katrhine Sørgård

Vega is like a blue shadow out at sea. The myriad of islands that make up the Vega islands off the Helgeland coast form one of Europe’s most extensive archipelagos. Out here in the blue await great experiences on a small scale.

Photo: Kathrine Sørgård

Interaction between humans, nature and eider ducks is an ever-present factor in this unique island landscape. A close relationship that has endured for over 1,000 years. The vulnerable marine wilderness and the interaction between humans and eider ducks is part of our shared cultural heritage. The Vega islands are in good company, with a host of other treasured global sites on the UNESCO World Heritage List.

Photo: Kathrine Sørgård

Arriving by express boat, you feel an immediate kinship to this island setting, where the buildings rise up from the sea on the low-lying islets. One of these is Store Emårsøy, twenty minutes by boat from Vega. Visitors can travel back in time once a week to where the past meets the future.

Photo: Kathrine Sørgård

You can visit the island of Lånan twice a week in high season. The 30-km boat trip out into the icy sea north west of Vega is an adventure in itself. The eider duck wardens on Lånan proudly explain about the extensive process that turns the precious eider down into the finest down filling.

Photo: Kathrine Sørgård

“To get enough down for one quilt, we have to gather down from around 60 nests,” says Hildegunn Nordum, who comes from Lånan and lives here for part of the year.

If you want to explore this archipelago independently, you can try island-hopping and go out in a hired kayak from Adventure Vega. An excellent means of transport in the archipelago, up close and personal with the ocean and the bird life. Snorkelling with an instructor is another exciting activity.
Photo: Antonligaarden/

After a long cycling trip round the island, it’s great to arrive at Vega Havhotell. The menu features dishes incorporating delicious local seafood ingredients. Ocean enthusiasts should also visit the sea urchin bar at the old wash-house in Nes. Here you can sample roe from sea urchins served with ship’s coffee containing seaweed. Dare you try it? 

Photo: Kathrine Sørgård

For more information visit