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The Vega Islands, Norway Photo: visitnorway.com/Chris Arnesen
Photo: visitnorway.com/Chris Arnesen
Photo: visitnorway.com/Chris Arnesen
Photo: visitnorway.com/Chris Arnesen
Photo: Frank Grindhaug
Photo: visitnorway.com/Chris Arnesen
Photo: visitnorway.com/Chris Arnesen
Photo: visitnorway.com/Chris Arnesen
Photo: visitnorway.com/Chris Arnesen
Photo: visitnorway.com/Chris Arnesen
Photo: visitnorway.com/Chris Arnesen
Photo: visitnorway.com/Chris Arnesen
Photo: visitnorway.com/Chris Arnesen
Photo: visitnorway.com/Chris Arnesen
Photo: visitnorway.com/Chris Arnesen
Photo: visitnorway.com/Chris Arnesen
Photo: visitnorway.com/Chris Arnesen

Guided boat ride and fishing in the Vega Islands

- My Polish guests got 14 and 15 kilo halibuts here last week, says Sverre Nilsen as he turns off the engine in his fishing vessel.

Text: Frederik Amundsen

We are at the UNESCO-protected Vega Islands off the coast of Helgeland in Northern Norway.

Fishing for Halibut

We are met by local fisherman and tourist guide, Sverre Nilsen. He runs the company Vega Opplevelsesferie, has fishermen’s cabins, kayaks and boats for hire, and a big fishing vessel to take visitors out on the sea.

- I take up to eight people at a time, and we go looking for eagles and fishing in the sea. If my guests want to, we stop by one of the vacated islands and look at the old farms.

Nilsen follows the eco recorder and when he spots fish he stops the engine, and we are all fast to get the fishing equipment over board.

- My polish guests got 14 and 15 kilo halibuts here last week, he says. 

We wait impatiently. Five minutes. Ten minutes. But no. Not this time.

Cod on board

The next spot Nilsen finds turns out to be better. One of us gets a six-kilo cod. Getting a big fish on the hook is exciting every time, it lets out the child in you as the expectations rise to the sky.

Visiting a vacated island

Next stop is Tåvær Island, where Nilsen moors the boat, and we walk the short way to the vacated buildings.

- They ran a shop and a post office here until the 1980s, but then they had to give it all up, explains Nilsen.

We get a glimpse through the windows. Everything looks like the owners left in a hurry. There are old tobacco commercials on the wall behind the counter, and a mess in the corner where the post office was located.

The eider ducks

Back at the island Nilsen invites us to his home to meet his family and eat the fresh cod. When he prepares the food, we get time to visit the UNESCO museum and learn about the close relationship between the iider ducks and the people still living on the islands. Eider down production is an experience on its own. In May and June you can stay at Lånan and visit the bird keepers and watch them at work.

When to travel

We travelled in early September when the season is over, and got everything to ourselves. However the best weather is usually from June to August. This is also when the island is most accessible for visitors. Visiting the bird keepers in Lånan is possible in May and June.

Price

Nilsen charges 80 Euro per hour when he takes groups out fishing and looking for eagles.

How to get here

The Vega Islands are located off the coast of Helgeland, just south of the Arctic Circle in Northern Norway. There is an express ferry from Brønnøysund, and a car ferry from Horn, which is a 15-minute drive outside Brønnøysund.

Where to stay

Stay at the fishermen’s cabins with Vega Opplevelsesferie, or organise your accommodation through Vega Tourist Information and Destination Helgeland.

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Last updated:  26 May 2014
The Vega Islands, Norway - Photo: visitnorway.com/Chris Arnesen
The Vega Islands, Norway
The Vega Islands, Norway - Photo: visitnorway.com/Chris Arnesen
The Vega Islands, Norway

Interest:  Fishing, Sailing & Boat Activities

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The Vega Islands, Norway - Photo: visitnorway.com/Chris Arnesen

Guided boat ride and fishing in the Vega Islands

- My Polish guests got 14 and 15 kilo halibuts here last week, says Sverre Nilsen as he turns off the engine in his fishing vessel.

Guided boat ride and fishing in the Vega Islands

Source: Visitnorway

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