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Saturday, August 7, 2010

Norway: Magic Ice in Svolvær



Day 5: Svolvær - Kabelvåg

We wanted something quieter for the day and planned to take an early ferry for a day trip from Svolvær to Skrova, where we wanted to walk around in nature and watch marine birds. But it rained heavily when we woke up. It was cold and we were a bit exhausted - so we stayed in bed a bit longer. We still forced ourselves to the ferry pier, which is at the other side of the town, in time. But when we were there, we skipped our plan and didn´t enter the ferry. It seemed much nicer, to take another look at Svolvær.

While Svolvær is not the little, charming fishing village but much more crowded and busy, it still has its pros. It's a good place to base and make trips around the satellite areas. It's beautiful and has some attractions you can visit even when it rains. Beside some museums it has something; we really wanted to see - "Magic Ice". It´s a dark hall with a lot of huge ice sculptures and of course it's freezing inside. I haven't seen such huge ice sculptures before, so there's always the first time. I took quite a few photos and at the end of our little tour inside, we've got an ice glass with a little drink in it to keep us warm. It was something new and pleasant experience.



Fortunately the weather had improved and the sun found her way. We took advantage of that and started a trip by bus to Kabelvåg, a village next to Svolvær. Kabelvåg is an interesting village, because it once was bigger than Svolvær and still has a huge church, reminding of the glory days. It has a string of attractions close to one another in Storvågan, which is a bit to walk from Kabelvåg. Storvågan is the place, where the first city of northern Norway arose. When we arrived by bus in Kabelvåg, there were some festivities going on at the market square, but we soon walked to Storvågan (with a little help of our previously printed Google map) to our main destination - the charming Aquarium and water zoo "Lofotakvariet".



The Lofotakvariet is located directly at the water, which is a sight for itself and a rather spectacular setting. They showed seals and a lot of local species that can be found in Norwegian waters. I loved it to get an impression of the local fauna and I also loved the waffles they sold. After a little coffee we enjoyed the view in the area and slowly went back to Kabelvåg. For the way back from Storvågan to Kabelvåg we saw another option there - a culture experience path through the greens that branched off the main road. There we found a few stones (what's left) and markings of an early settlement.


Back in Kabelvåg we decided to walk the 6 kilometers to Svolvær, because the bus was scheduled for a late departure and we had to go in the direction anyway to see the huge church of Kabelvåg, the Vågan Church or "Lofoten Cathedral". The Church is a reminder of the history of the place and today has more seats than Kabelvåg has inhabitants.



The way from the church back to Svolvær leads mostly along the road, but through an impressive landscape. Unfortunately we had to hurry a bit, because we still wanted to go to a supermarket. We just came back in time, before they closed.


In the evening we just walked a bit around in Svolvær, as it was our final evening there, and enjoyed the landscape, the water and the mountains.


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