People just cannot get enough of Iceland right now. That’s probably because virtually any twist or turn leads to scenery that looks like something which should be narrated by David Attenborough. There’s just one problem: when people can’t get enough, it usually means there are way more than enough people. No matter how far you drive along the ironically named Ring Road, you just can’t seem to kick the tourists. Figuratively, at least.
Enter the Faroe Islands: long overlooked, but maybe not for long. In short: they’re everything.
Why The Faroe Islands?
The Faroe Islands are everything you seek from New Zealand, such as the 2:1 sheep to human ratio, with the unrivalled, rugged volcanic beauty of Iceland, New Zealand and Norway combined. The Faroe Islands are 18 self governing islands which are technically a part of Denmark, but geographically are actually in the middle of the Atlantic Ocean. For reference sake, they’re wedged between Iceland, the United Kingdom and Norway. Streymoy will be your main port of call, and it will blow your mind.
In any argument, the Faroes would lay fair claim to the most stunning group of islands. There are cliffs like those of Moher in Ireland, waterfalls as gram’ worthy as Seljalandsfoss in Iceland and terrain like a greatest hits of Milford Sound in New Zealand meets the fjords of Norway. Sprinkle in the quaint little villages and you may be convinced that you’ve died and landed in a Peter Jackson film. As a sprinkle on top, Puffins thrive here. They’re everywhere.
Getting to Faroe’s Vágar Floghavn (FAE) requires getting to Europe first. There are direct flights from Bergen, Copenhagen, Edinburgh, Reykjavik and Billund, but that’s about it. For most travellers, the easiest starting points will be Copenhagen, Edinburgh or Reykjavik, thanks to long haul flights to each from many far reaching parts of the world. From any of those gateways you’ll need to book separate flights to the Faroe’s. Once on the islands, you have the option of ferries, cars, busses or bicycles or a combo of all the above. With new road and sea tunnel infrastructure getting around is actually easy.
Somehow Still Under The Radar
The Faroe’s aren’t unknown in many circles, but they’re overlooked in mass market tourism. That’s incredible news for those seeking unique experiences in the quaintest of quaint settings. The entire population is somewhere around 50,000 people, and with such limited flight options, it’s not like there are 50,000 people flying in every day. Basically, if you’ve been dying to see New Zealand but it’s too far, or hoping to see the Northern Lights or just crazy waterfalls in Iceland without all the people, now is the time to visit the Faroe Islands.
When To Visit The Faroe Islands
For the longest days, best weather and most Puffin sightings, it’s really hard to beat spring through fall. Tourists flock during August, so if you have the ability to jet over during late April or early May, or September on the other end, you can beat peak pricing and enjoy the archipelago just as you’d hope. With limited accommodations and major tourism infrastructure (that’s a good thing), it’s always good to book well in advance. Same goes for flights! Enjoy.