Hundreds of puffins nesting on the rocks, golf balls that feed the fish, a unique hotel, great restaurant, hiking trails, Lundeura nature reserve, and the salmon industry. Welcome to Lovund, Norway, one of the most special islands in the country.
Lovund island in Norway was one of the stops on our road trip through the Helgeland coast. The Nordland travel itinerary that I prepared in advance, was packed with exciting places and activities (there’s so much to see!), but Lovund convinced us with its hilly landscape, huge puffin colony, beautiful hotel and famous restaurant. Oh, and the option of playing golf on top of the mountain while feeding fish (quite unusual!).
Lovund, Norway – Table of content
Things to do in Lovund
How to get to Lovund
Lovund island in Norway
For some reason, the island of Lovund in Norway doesn’t get as much publicity abroad as it should. I get it, there are tons of amazing places to see in Norway. Spectacular hikes like Trolltunga, Kjeragbolten or Romsdalseggen and islands like Lofoten or Senja attract thousands of tourists every year. But trust me, Lovund is equally worth a visit, if not more.
We stepped on Lovund’s grounds in the early morning, arriving by the speed boat from Traena (another island on the Helgeland coast that stole my heart). It was a glorious sunny day with clear air and blue sky, so, obviously, I spent the whole 30 min journey on the boat’s top deck, being blown by the strong winds, but enjoying the view.
Approaching the island, I was greeted by the view of the highest peak, 625 m high Lovundfjellet, towering over thousands of small islands in Helgeland. Apart from the little picturesque wooden houses dotted on the shore, I also spotted modern salmon processing facilities. Salmon takes a special place in Lovund.
From the ferry terminal, we took a short walk through the town to the Lovund hotel. After dropping our bags, it was time to start discovering Lovund island. And there was a lot to see.
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Things to do on Lovund island, Norway
# Play golf on top of the mountain with fish-feeding balls – Lovund golf
I’m not the biggest fan of golf. To be honest, I’m not a fan at all. However, Alex quite likes it. So when he heard that there is a place in Lovund where he could play golf on top of the mountain with balls made of fish food – it had to be a part of our Nordland itinerary. And I never say no to trying new things. Especially when it involves hiking, nice views and feeding fish.
You can buy fishballs… ummm… golf balls, and rent the golf clubs in the reception of the Lovund hotel. They will also give you a map with a hiking trail to get to the top of the hill. It’s not a long hike. I think it took us maybe 30-40 min, with all the stops.
On top of the hill, you will see a small golf range. From there, you take your gold club and the balls and try to aim for the circle down the cliff on the water. It’s not as easy as it looks. I think I managed it only once, but it was a lot of fun.
# Stay in the unique Lovund hotel and visit the famous restaurant
Lovund is well known for its unique Lovund hotel and a restaurant serving delicious local dishes. It is surely a special place to stay, with a modern main building and traditionally styled Rorbu (a type of cabins in Norway). There are huge windows, a big roof terrace and breathtaking views of Traena.
However, it’s the food in the restaurant that earned it a name. Local ingredients and coastal cooking traditions are used in creative dishes in a modern way. I enjoyed every bite of the 3-course seasonal menu.
# See hundreds of puffins on Lovund island
For all bird enthusiasts, and puffin lovers, Lovund is a well-known island, as it’s home to one of Norway’s largest puffin colonies. Every year between 200,000 to 300,000 puffins nest here on the rocks. You can find them on the western side of Lovundfjellet in Lundeura, a gigantic scree slope. It’s very easy to admire them from the cliffs, a short walk from town.
The puffins can usually be spotted between April and August every year. Their arrival day (14th April, they are very punctual), is a sight to see. Thousands of puffins arrive all at once from the sea to nest on the rocks. We’ve witnessed a small taste of that – when hundreds of them arrived back to the rocks from the day out on the sea fishing.
The best time to see the birds is later in the evening, around 10 pm.
And if you arrive in Lovund out of season for puffins, you can at least admire cute lamb.
# Take a hike to the highest peak in Lovund
Despite its small size, Lovund still offers a variety of walks and hikes. The most popular is the hike to the summit of the island – 625 meters-high Lovundfjellet. The hike takes around 2 hours and follows the eastern side of the island.
The hike is quite steep but well marked. On the top, you get rewarded with the vast view of the open Atlantic Ocean and the whole of Helgeland archipelago with thousands of islands dotted around.
There are also several shorter coastal walks to choose from. We opted for one that leads to the turquoise lagoon with little sculptures placed on the rocks on the way.
To get there, start from the Lovund hotel and go towards the place where the puffins can be viewed from. Before turning left near the cemetery keep right instead and follow the clear path from there. Look out for the little sculptures at the end of the route and have a peek at the turquoise lagoon at the bottom of the cliff. If you’re lucky, you can also find some cloudberries on the way – a local artic berry.
# Try salmon on the salmon island
Salmon is a popular fish on Lovund. And not only because it’s tasty.
The island is home to salmon farms and salmon processing plant. From here, salmon is shipped all over the world. Maybe even to your plate? Other fishing communities in the area struggle from depopulation, but Lovund’s number of people is growing. Together with its economy. When visiting Lovund, don’t forget to try some of the local salmon!
Lovund island – How to get to Lovund?
To get to Lovund you would need to travel on the sea since it’s an island.
There is a local high-speed ferry from Sandnessjøen (where the airport is). But my recommendation would be to fly to Bodø, which usually has more affordable flight connections. Then, take a scenic coastal route in Helgeland Fv17 (as we did). If you want to rent a car, I recommend checking Rentalcars for the best price.
Then you can take a ferry (2 hours 15 min, free without the car, you can leave it in a free car park) or a speedboat (35 min, 179 NOK, no cars) from Stokkvågen ferry terminal. You can also combine your visit to Lovund with Traena (highly recommended!) since the islands are connected with a speedboat.
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