What are the highlights of Senja island in Norway? Sharp peaks plummeting down into the sea, white sand beaches, islands dotted in the turquoise water. Find out what places to see in Senja and what are the best things to do in Senja in Norway.
Bursting with beauty, Senja island in Norway is one of the places (another one is Svalbard), worth a trip beyond the Arctic Circle. There are many reasons why you should visit Senja island. The combination of stunning landscape, similar to more popular Lofoten islands, but with a lower number of tourists, makes it a very tempting destination for all outdoor adventure lovers. Sure that, we loved it too!
You can just drive around, stop anywhere, start walking and you can be sure to find wonderful views. There are, however, the highlights that you don’t want to miss. Have a look at where to discover the diverse landscape of the “Norway in the miniature” and go wild in Senja.
THINGS TO SEE ON SENJA, NORWAY
NATIONAL TOURIST ROUTE AND STOPS ON THE WAY
The National Tourist Route in Senja island in Norway is 102 km long and it passes through some of the most beautiful parts of the island. The top sights on Senja on the National Tourist Route include the places mentioned below.
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This tiny island with a fishing town is a picturesque place in the north of Senja, located in the middle of Øyfjord. The island is inhabited only by a few hundred people. On Husøy you can find one of the most active fishing communities on Senja, together with pretty wooden Norwegian houses. The views of the island from the road above, and from the island towards the opening of the fjord are spectacular. In the past, the only way to get to the island was by the boat, now Husøy is connected to the Senja with a tunnel.
This famous beach with not any less famous toilet building (yes, really) is located in the inner part of the Ersfjord. Full of fine, white sand and surrounded by green jaggy mountains brings to mind a combination of the landscapes from different countries. The gold-plated toilet facility on the beach car park designed by a skilled architect is an attraction by itself, featured on the Senja brochures all over Norway.
Near Ersjordstranda, there is also a perfect area for wild camping. You can camp anywhere on the grass on the left side of the beach. There are picnic tables and a toilet facility for you to use.
Tungeneset is a wooden walkway leading to the striking view. The walkway overlooks the sharp Oksen mountain and the crashing waves of the North Sea. The bright colours of the larch wood contrast well with the dark stones and deep green peaks in the horizon.
The view somehow reminded me of the Jurassic Park movie (where are the dinos though?). The rocks by the shore create a flat surface that collects the seawater and, in the calm weather, acts as a mirror reflecting the peaks in the background.
This 44-meter long viewing platform overlooks the waters of the Bergsfjord and the mountains around. The platform is located along the windy route up the hill. You can stop on the car park and look down at the enchanting landscape.
THE BEST SENJA HIKING TRAILS
It’s almost impossible to come to Senja and to not try some of the great Senja hiking trails. There are tons of possibilities for hiking on Senja, from short and easy coastal walks to more difficult hikes involving scrambling. Some of my favourite hikes on Senja are below.
This is the best hike on Senja if you want to see the famous view over Segla on Senja, like the one below. The hike is not very long, but at the top, it gets more exposed. It is also a great place to pitch your tent and try some wild camping with spectacular views. You can find more information about this Segla view hike here.
Once you are in the area, you can also climb the Segla mountain itself. Even though you won’t be able to see the view to Segla, standing on it, there are still pretty amazing views to be had from the top. You can find more info about hiking Segla here.
The hike to Husfjellet is a very picturesque walk with wonderful views on both sides of the mountain. During the trek, you cross through the small forest and then you go up to the open space. Unfortunately, when we were there, the peak was in a thick cloud, so we didn’t see much on the other side.
The Russehula hike is a gentle walk by the coast, leading to the historic cave. The Russehula cave has been named after the Russian explorers who invaded this part of the Norwegian coast in the XIII century.
You start the hike from Mefjordvær village and continue along the coast. During the whole duration of this Senja hike, you can admire the wonderful views of the mountains from one side and to the open sea to the other.
Sukkertoppen hike – and a viewing platform in between
This short hike offers great views to Hamn i Senja resort and surrounding coastline. We haven’t actually made it to the top of Sukkertoppen, as the weather was quite wet. However, around one-third of the way, there is a viewing point, worth hiking up to.
It’s a very easy and short walk, starting from the car park near the Hamn i Senja resort, or alternatively on the other side of the mountain (there are signs). From the viewing point, you can see a beautiful panorama of the Bergsoyan archipelago dotted around the turquoise waters. Are you in some tropical islands or Norway? 😉
WHAT OTHER PLACES TO VISIT IN SENJA
Ånderdalen National park
Full of pine tree forests, wetlands and lakes, the Ånderdalen National Park is perfect for gentle strolls filled with singing birds and the scent of the forest. The picturesque drive to the park from the north of the island will take you through the empty land with beautiful views.
We’ve travelled there in June and getting out of the tunnel brought us into another world, full of winter.
Senja Troll Park
Once home to the biggest Troll in the world, after a recent fire, a troll center still holds a small exhibition about the trolls. It is worth a stop on the way for some sweets in a traditional wooden house.
The little beach
One of my favourite spots while driving in Senja was a little beach, that we found while driving around. The tranquil feeling and the peacefulness of the area made a perfect place to relax.
Hamn I Senja
Hamn i Senja is a holiday resort on Senja island, located not far from Hamn. Its location is very picturesque and it’s worth a stop, even if only for a coffee. Hamn i Senja offers sea cottages just by the fjord, and new apartments, as well as activities and local food in their restaurant overlooking the marina. Check prices and availability here.
How to travel in Senja?
Senja is best to be explored by car. The roads are good and it’s easy to just stop somewhere and go hiking or enjoy a picnic. I recommend checking the car rental prices through the price comparison tool such as rentalcars. We always do that to try to find the best deal for the dates that we plan to travel. You can check the available cars, prices, and dates here.
Where to stay in Senja
Hotels in Senja
Would you like to visit Senja in Norway? Which place would be on top of your list? Do you have any other favorites? Let me know in the comments!
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