We’re starting off rough – as we always do, because in our opinion Vágar is home to the most beautiful and spectacular spot in the Faroe Islands. What place is he referring to? We’ll show you a lake on the edge of a cliff, a waterfall falling into the ocean, a town with a population of 17, and a heliport where cows graze :)
Vágar (or Vágoy) is the third largest island within the Faroese archipelago, with a population of just under 3,000. It is here that there is a piece of flat land on which the airport was built, so if you are flying to the Faroe Islands, this is the first island you will set foot on (you won’t see another airport for passenger planes here).
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Faroe Islands airport
Let’s start with the fact that already on landing we have the opportunity to see a fantastic view – Lake Sørvágsvatn (also called Leitisvatn), which is located some 40 meters above sea level, and its tip is on a cliff. If you’re lucky, you’ll be able to see this largest lake in the Faroe Islands in all its glory from an airplane. We just happened to hit the sunny weather and couldn’t get enough of the view (so forgive the poor photos that don’t do the view justice – a sleeping daughter on my lap didn’t help with the photos either ;-)).
In any case, the view from the plane was not enough for us, and during our stay we hunted for relatively good weather conditions to go to the aforementioned cliffs and admire the view in all its glory. We made the first approach on the second day, but unfortunately the cliffs were shrouded in clouds. The next day we had more luck :)
We wrote about how to get to the Faroe Islands and about Vagar Airport here.
You can admire them from an airplane, from a car but the most impressive is the view from the Trælanípan cliff. The cliff may not knock you over with its height, as it is “only” 142 meters high, but the approach is quite steep and you have to climb about 100 meters up. You also have to take into account that you have to walk a bit to the cliff itself, so it’s not as hopping as it may look.
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The lake itself is surrounded by high cliffs, and it is these that give the impression that the lake is higher than it actually is. At the extreme, water from the lake flows into the Altantic Ocean through the Bøsdalafossur waterfall. The lake itself is calm, with the only disturbance being a cruise ship running right up to the edge. Walking along the trail, at the other end of the shore we saw only individual houses built on the slopes of hills and surrounded by lush green grass.
It is an incredibly quiet and deserted place (that’s how the whole Faroe Islands are, by the way). Walking to the cliff, we could count on the fingers of one hand how many people we met. The only sounds that reached us were the bleating of the ubiquitous sheep and rams that watched our every move on the trail.
Although the word trail is very much over the top. It is a route that leads almost its entire length along the lake, and only the last section is a bounce to the pass and then the cliff itself. Admittedly, we have seen that excavators have gone into action to prepare a route higher up along the hill, which will perhaps be visible in some way, nevertheless the one you are walking on now is just a more or less trodden path. There are no markings here, moreover, it’s hard to get lost ;)
The entire route is about 10 kilometers long (in both directions). It is easy, only the approach to the cliff can be more strenuous. However, it’s worth having proper shoes, because at times it’s wet and you have to cross streams and mud. Fortunately, the view from Trælanípan makes up for all the effort and inconvenience.
Anyway, see for yourself:
And then there’s the panorama (wow!):Please define valid width and height attributes for remote images. This will also optimize the loading time of the remote panorama. Please define valid width and height attributes for remote images. This will also optimize the loading time of the remote panorama. Please define valid width and height attributes for remote images. This will also optimize the loading time of the remote panorama.
Also, don’t forget to go below to walk along the rocks to the waterfall itself. It’s impossible to see it perfectly straight ahead from the mainland, but the views are still great :)
You can leave your car in a small parking lot just outside the village of Miðvágur (going towards the airport).
Located in the western part of the island, Mulafossur waterfall is one of the most photographed places in the Faroe Islands and appears on the covers of guidebooks.
More noteworthy than the waterfall itself are the surroundings – cliffs on one side, a perilous shoreline just above the green expanse and a rocky hill overlooking everything. In between is the small settlement of Gásadalur, with only 17 (!) permanent residents.
To see this magnificent view you must stop in front of the village (preferably on the left in the parking lot) and walk a short distance along the paved road.
Don’t let the closed gate fool you – you can open it and move on, but it’s important to close it behind you so that the animals stay where they belong.
The route is about 300 meters and theoretically takes about 5 minutes, but considering the fact that every now and then you want to take pictures, you can spend and hour here. Anyway, see for yourself:
And then there is a small panorama:Please define valid width and height attributes for remote images. This will also optimize the loading time of the remote panorama.
We also recommend you take the dirt road along the cliffs, all the way past the village of Gásadalur. There you will find one bench, from which you can enjoy the view of the increasingly higher cliffs and the island of Mykines. If you’re lucky you may even be able to spot the famous puffins (puffins ).
We can’t miss the settlement itself, through which one returns from the aforementioned vantage point.
The small, quiet, almost deserted town does not have much to offer, except for one cafe or store. Nonetheless, you can see the traditional Ferrer houses with grass on the roof and imagine for a moment what life is like here. And this life has changed over the past dozen years or so….
Before 2004, you had to use a boat, helicopter or climb nearly 700-meter hills to get here. Not very favorable conditions for settlement, right? Not surprisingly, the number of residents declined, down to as few as 12 people, and to this day you can still see abandoned houses in the village.
The turning point was the construction of a tunnel in 2004 connecting the island of Vágar to Streymoy, and a road that made it possible for anyone to get here by car. Will it be possible to save this settlement? We will probably find out soon enough.
On the way back to the car, just outside the city limits, we also saw a heliport that has changed its purpose a bit :-)
Vágar Island is an incredibly captivating island. Here you will find high, steep cliffs with breathtaking views.
Here you can also find small, almost abandoned villages just waiting for new residents, but also “larger” developing ones, which can look forward to better times thanks to easy access to the island and the airport.
Definitely Vágar is a must-see point during your stay in the Faroe Islands.
We also recommend the photo gallery, and there are more than 100 photos there! :)