Skip to content

HONNINGSVAG, HAMMERFEST, AND NARVIK, NORWAY – PART THREE

September 6, 2015

NORWAY

FROM MAY 26 TO JUNE 9, 2015  LEONARD EPSTEIN AND JANELLE BURGESS, TRAVELED THROUGH FINLAND AND NORWAY   –   PART THREE

AFTER CROSSING THE BORDER FROM FINLAND TO NORWAY.

OUR FIRST VISIT WAS TO SAMPI  CULTURAL VILLAGE

Sapmi Park

The Sami: One people, four countries

Since the arrival of the first people 11,000 years ago, the Sami culture has been developing in Northern Scandinavia. Their way of life revolved around natural bounty, and they used to live in tents called lavvo and turf huts while they tracked reindeer. Hence, the native Scandinavians were semi-nomadic. When it comes down to it, reindeer are a Sami’s best friend. Though they are sometimes referred to as Lapps, they prefer to be called Sami.

Fascinatingly, since their ancestral lands extend more than 150,000 square miles in the Nordic countries, the Sami are the northernmost indigenous people of Europe. Today, they live in parts of Norway, Sweden, Finland and the Kola Peninsula. While they are a minority in Norway among other countries, they are still a majority in the inner mosts parts of Finn mark county in Norway.

Karasjok is the capital of the Sami people, located 11 miles from the Finnish border. Currently there are about 3,000 inhabitants and some 60,000 reindeer that spend the autumn and winter months in Karasjok. You can learn more about their history and culture at Sápmi Culture Park, which boasts exhilarating adventures against the beautiful backdrop of postage-stamp scenery.

Karasjok

A cultural park in the center of Karasjok which is the capital of the Sami people with a population of 3000, Sapmi Park is a cultural park that celebrates Sami culture and history. Here are exaples of  Sami culture, legend, arts and crafts, food traditions and everyday life. During the autumn and winter around 60,000 reindeer can be seen grazing in the area.

Here are some photos at the sampi cultural park:

SIGN ABOUT THE REINDEER HEREDERS

SIGN ABOUT THE REINDEER HERDERS

REINDEER HERDERS HUT

REINDEER HERDERS HUT

REINDEER HERDERS HUT INTERIOR

REINDEER HERDERS HUT INTERIOR

REINDEER HERDERS TENT

REINDEER HERDERS TENT

REINDEER HERDER TENT INTERIOR

REINDEER HERDER TENT INTERIOR

REINDEER SLED

REINDEER SLED

SAMPI PARK REINDEER

SAMPI PARK REINDEER

SAMPI PARK REINDEER

SAMPI PARK REINDEER

SIGN ABOUT THE SAMPI DWELLINGS

SIGN ABOUT THE SAMPI DWELLINGS

SAMPI PARK DWELLING

SAMPI PARK DWELLING

SAMPI PARK DWELLING

SAMPI PARK DWELLING

SAMPI PARK

SAMPI PARK DWELLING

SIGN ABOUT THE SUMMER

SIGN ABOUT THE SUMMER

A SUMMER HERDER TENT

A SUMMER HERDER TENT

—————–

A PHOTO EXHIBITION AT THE CULTURAL CENTER – PHOTOS DEPICTING PAST AND PRESENT SAMPI LIFE:

SAMI CULTURAL CENTER PHOTOGRAPHS OF THE SAMI PEOPLE

SAMI CULTURAL CENTER PHOTOGRAPHS OF THE SAMPI PEOPLE

SAMI CULTURAL CENTER PHOTOGRAPHS OF THE SAMI PEOPLE

SAMI CULTURAL CENTER PHOTOGRAPHS OF THE SAMI PEOPLE

SAMI CULTURAL CENTER PHOTOGRAPHS OF THE SAMI PEOPLE

SAMI CULTURAL CENTER PHOTOGRAPHS OF THE SAMI PEOPLE

SAMI CULTURAL CENTER PHOTOGRAPHS OF THE SAMI PEOPLE

SAMI CULTURAL CENTER PHOTOGRAPHS OF THE SAMI PEOPLE

SAMI CULTURAL CENTER PHOTOGRAPHS OF THE SAMI PEOPLE

SAMI CULTURAL CENTER PHOTOGRAPHS OF THE SAMI PEOPLE

SAMI CULTURAL CENTER PHOTOGRAPHS OF THE SAMI PEOPLE

SAMI CULTURAL CENTER PHOTOGRAPHS OF THE SAMI PEOPLE

SAMI CULTURAL CENTER PHOTOGRAPHS OF THE SAMI PEOPLE

SAMI CULTURAL CENTER PHOTOGRAPHS OF THE SAMI PEOPLE

SAMI CULTURAL CENTER PHOTOGRAPHS OF THE SAMI PEOPLE

SAMI CULTURAL CENTER PHOTOGRAPHS OF THE SAMI PEOPLE

SAMI CULTURAL CENTER PHOTOGRAPHS OF THE SAMI PEOPLE

SAMI CULTURAL CENTER PHOTOGRAPHS OF THE SAMI PEOPLE

—————————-

HONNINGSVAG

Honningsvåg is the northernmost city of Norway. It is located in Nordkapp Municipality in Finnmark county. Legislation effective in 1997 states that a Norwegian city must have at least 5,000 inhabitants, but Honningsvåg was declared a city in 1996, thus exempt from this legislation. The 1.07-square-kilometre (260-acre) town has a population (2013) of 2,415, which gives the town a population density of 2,257 inhabitants per square kilometre (5,850/sq mi).

Honningsvåg is situated at a bay on the southeastern side of the large island of Magerøya, while the famous North Cape and its visitors center is on the northern side of the island. Honningsvåg is a port of call for cruise ships, especially in the summer months. The ice-free ocean (southwestern part of the Barents Sea) provides rich fisheries and tourism is also important to the town. Even at 71°N, many private gardens in Honningsvåg have trees, although rarely more than 3 to 4 metres (9.8 to 13.1 ft) tall.

PHOTOS OF HONNINGSVAG

HONNINGSVAG

HONNINGSVAG

HONNINGSVAG

HONNINGSVAG

HONNINGSVAG

HONNINGSVAG

HONNINGSVAG

HONNINGSVAG

HONNINGSVAG

HONNINGSVAG

HONNINGSVAG

HONNINGSVAG

HONNINGSVAG

HONNINGSVAG

HONNINGSVAG

HONNINGSVAG

HONNINGSVAG

HONNINGSVAG

HONNINGSVAG

HONNINGSVAG

HONNINGSVAG CHURCH

HONNINGSVAG CHURCH

HONNINGSVAG CHURCH MEMORIAL TO THE SECOND WORLD WAR FALLEN

HONNINGSVAG CHURCH MEMORIAL TO THE SECOND WORLD WAR FALLEN

HONNINGSVAG CHURCH CEMETARY

HONNINGSVAG CHURCH CEMETARY

HONNINGSVAG THEATER

HONNINGSVAG THEATER

HONNINGSVAG WOODEN HOUSES

HONNINGSVAG WOODEN HOUSES

—————–

The famous dog Bamse came from Honningsvåg.

BAMSE STATUE (wikipedia)

BAMSE STATUE
(wikipedia)

“This is the tale of Bamse, the huge St. Bernard dog who lived during the 2nd World War. Bamse was owned by Captain Hafto of the Norwegian Navy, and went to sea with him on the minesweeper Thorodd during the war. He achieved legendary status in Montrose, Scotland, where the Thorodd was stationed, as tales of his adventures, courage and kindness spread.

The Bamse story was brought to the attention of the Montrose Heritage Trust by Mrs Henny King. As a member of the Montrose Port Authority board she first heard about some of the exploits of this huge St. Bernard dog during the Second World War from Captain Johansen, the then harbour master.

With the dog having died and been buried in the town she felt that even the few details that had been recounted made a wonderful story that would be excellent publicity for Montrose.

Bamse is somewhat of a legend in his native country Norway, but none of us were quite prepared for the wealth of information that would be uncovered or the huge interest that the project generated both here and in Norway and Canada.

In 2008 a book on Bamse, ‘Sea Dog Bamse’, was published by Birlinn. Written by Angus Whitson and Andrew Orr, the Bamse stories are set against the background of the invasion of Norway and the escape of many to the UK. It’s a great read and already over 4000 copies have been sold all over the world.”

————————————

NORTH CAPE

North Cape (Norwegian: Nordkapp; Northern Sami: Davvenjárga) is a cape on the northern coast of the island of Magerøya in Northern Norway. The cape is in Nordkapp Municipality in Finnmark county, Norway. It is a popular tourist attraction. The cape includes a 307-metre (1,007 ft) high cliff with a large flat plateau on top where visitors can stand and watch the midnight sun or the views of the Barents Sea to the north. A new visitor center was built in 1988 on the plateau with panoramic views, a café, restaurant, post office, souvenir shop, and a so-called super video cinema.

The steep cliff of North Cape is often (mistakenly) referred to as the northernmost point of Europe, located at 71°10′21″N 25°47′04″E, about 2,102.3 kilometres (1,306.3 mi) from the North Pole. However, the neighbouring Knivskjellodden point, just to the west actually extends 1,457 metres (4,780 ft) further to the north.

Regardless, both of these points are situated on an island, which technically means the northernmost point of mainland Europe is in fact located at Cape Nordkinn (Kinnarodden) which lies about 5.7 kilometres (3.5 mi) further south and about 70 kilometres (43 mi) to the east. That point is located near the village of Mehamn on the Nordkinn Peninsula.

The North Cape is the point where the Norwegian Sea, part of the Atlantic Ocean, meets the Barents Sea, part of the Arctic Ocean. The midnight sun can be seen from 14 May to the 31st of July.

The North Cape was named by the Englishman Steven Borough, captain of the Edward Bonaventure, which sailed past in 1553 in search of the Northeast Passage.

In the underground levels there are exhibitions about the North Cape’s long history and its attraction for travelers. The centre has a super-videograph, a 225° wide-screen system, where we watched a film by Ivo Caprino about the changing seasons at Finnmark region.

HERE ARE SOME PHOTOS AT THE NORTH CAPE AND THE VISITOR CENTER:

THE NORTH CAPE GLOBE - This is a view of the North Cape monument. You can see a big rock with a symbolic globe sculpture. This is the northiest point in Europe,

THE NORTH CAPE GLOBE – This is a view of the North Cape monument. You can see a big rock with a symbolic globe sculpture. This is the northiest point in Europe, “higher” in the North than Alaska for instance.

THE VIEW OF THE ARENTS SEA FROM THE NORTH CAPE

THE VIEW OF THE BARENTS SEA FROM THE NORTH CAPE

THE VIEW FROM THE NORTH CAPE

THE VIEW FROM THE NORTH CAPE

—————————

THERE ARE DIORAMAS DESCRIBING THE HISTORY OF THE NORTH CAPE –

NORTH CAPE DIORAMA

NORTH CAPE DIORAMA

NORTH CAPE DIORAMA

NORTH CAPE DIORAMA

———————–

NORTH CAPE DIORAMA

NORTH CAPE DIORAMA

NORTH CAPE DIORAMA

NORTH CAPE DIORAMA

—————–

ST. JOHN'S CHAPEL - St Johannes Kapell is the world’s northernmost ecumenical chapel and visitors are able to use it for prayers, meditation as well as arrange to have wedding ceremonies here.

ST. JOHN’S CHAPEL – St Johannes Kapell is the world’s northernmost ecumenical chapel and visitors are able to use it for prayers, meditation as well as arrange to have wedding ceremonies here.

———–

THAI MUSEUM IN NORTH CAPE HALL

THAI MUSEUM IN NORTH CAPE HALL

KING OF THAILAND STATUE IN NORTH CAPE HALL

KING OF THAILAND STATUE IN NORTH CAPE HALL

—————————————-

FROM HONNIGSVAG WE TRAVELED BY FERRY TO HAMMERFEST AND SAW SOME STUNNING COASTAL AND MOUNTAIN SCENERY AS WE SAILED SOUTH.

HERE ARE SOME PHOTOS OF THAT CRUISE:

HONNINGSVEG DOCK

HONNINGSVEG DOCK

HONNINGSVEG DOCK

HONNINGSVEG DOCK

HONNINGSVEG DOCK

HONNINGSVEG DOCK

HONNINGSVEG OUTSKIRTS

HONNINGSVEG OUTSKIRTS

HONNINGSVEG OUTSKIRTS

HONNINGSVEG OUTSKIRTS

STUNNING COASTLINE

STUNNING COASTLINE

 STUNNING COASTLINE

STUNNING COASTLINE

NORD NORGE - CRUISE SHIP

NORDNORGE – CRUISE SHIP

NORD NORGE - CRUISE SHIP

NORDNORGE – CRUISE SHIP

COASTAL FERRY

COASTAL FERRY

COASTAL FERRY

COASTAL FERRY

HAMMERFEST

HAMMERFEST

HAMMERFEST DOCK

HAMMERFEST DOCK

THE VESTERALEN HAS DOCKED IN HAMMERFEST

THE VESTERALEN HAS DOCKED IN HAMMERFEST

PASSENGERS TAKEPICTURES OF HAMMERFEST

PASSENGERS TAKE PICTURES OF HAMMERFEST

WE HAVE ARRIVED IN HAMMERFEST

WE HAVE ARRIVED IN HAMMERFEST

—————————

NEXT STOP IS THE ALTA MUSEUM

World Heritage Rock Art Center – Alta Museum

The World Heritage Rock art Center – Alta Museum is located at Alta in Finnmark, Norway. Norway.

World Heritage Rock Art – Alta Museum is located in Hjemmeluft, a small bay on Altafjord near the Arctic Circle.Alta Museum is northern Norway’s most-visited summer museum, with more than 1,000 visitors each day. It presents exhibitions on local culture and historic industries including the nearby prehistoric rock carvings that form a UNESCO World Heritage Site. The museum is situated at the site of early settlement of Finnmark dating from around 11,000 years ago.In 1973, the first rock carvings in Hjemmeluft were found. To date over 3000 figures have been registered here. The museum opened in June 1991 and won the European Museum of the Year Award in 1993.The Rock Drawings of Alta constitute the most important piece of evidence in favour of the existence of human activity in the confines of the Great North during the prehistoric period. Studied from 1967, the petroglyphs of the Alta fjord in the province of Tromsø were immediately classed among the leading rock art sites in the world. Close to the Arctic Circle, they are a valuable illustration of human activity between 6 200 and 2 500 BP in the Northern Hemisphere.

They are primordial evidence of the fauna, representing reindeer, elks, bears, dogs and/or wolves, foxes, hares, geese, ducks, swans, cormorants, halibut, salmon and whales, and of the environment. They also depict boating, hunting, trapping and fishing scenes, as well as people taking part in dances and ritual acts. In the final phase, some agricultural activities, rendered precarious by the climate, appear to have supplemented certain staples traditionally provided by hunting and fishing.

ALTA MUSEUM

ALTA MUSEUM

ALTA MUSEUM ROCK CARVING

ALTA MUSEUM ROCK CARVING

ALTA MUSEUM ROCK CARVING

ALTA MUSEUM ROCK CARVING

ALTA MUSEUM ROCK CARVING - REINDEER AND IN THE UPPER RIGHT A REINDEER CORRAL

ALTA MUSEUM ROCK CARVING – REINDEER AND IN THE UPPER RIGHT A REINDEER CORRAL

ALTA MUSEUM ROCK CARVING - REINDEER AND IN THE UPPER RIGHT A REINDEER CORRAL (DETAIL)

ALTA MUSEUM ROCK CARVING – REINDEER AND IN THE UPPER RIGHT A REINDEER CORRAL (DETAIL)

ALTA MUSEUM ROCK CARVING - ELK, DEER AND HUNTERS

ALTA MUSEUM ROCK CARVING – ELK, DEER AND HUNTERS

ALTA MUSEUM ROCK CARVING ELK AND FISH

ALTA MUSEUM ROCK CARVING  – ELK AND FISH

ALTA MUSEUM ROCK CARVING - REINDEER IN A CORRAL AND ELK OUTSIDE THE CORRAL

ALTA MUSEUM ROCK CARVING – REINDEER IN A CORRAL AND ELK OUTSIDE THE CORRAL

ALTA MUSEUM ROCK CARVING - CLOSE UP

ALTA MUSEUM ROCK CARVING – CLOSE UP

ALTA MUSEUM ROCK CARVING -

ALTA MUSEUM ROCK CARVING – PANORAMA

ALTA MUSEUM ROCK CARVING - REINDEER N THE FOREGROUND AND ON TOP MEN IN A FISHING BOAT AND A HUNTER WITH A CLUB

ALTA MUSEUM ROCK CARVING – REINDEER N THE FOREGROUND AND ON TOP MEN IN A FISHING BOAT AND A HUNTER WITH A CLUB

ALTA MUSEUM ROCK CARVING -

ALTA MUSEUM ROCK CARVING –  PANORAMA

ALTA MUSEUM ROCK CARVING - VERTICAL PANORAMA

ALTA MUSEUM ROCK CARVING – VERTICAL PANORAMA

ALTA MUSEUM ROCK CARVING - IN THE UPPER RIGHT A FIGURE WITH A CLUB, AN ELK AND TO THE RIGHT A PIT TRAP

ALTA MUSEUM ROCK CARVING – IN THE UPPER RIGHT A FIGURE WITH A CLUB, AN ELK AND TO THE RIGHT A PIT TRAP

ALTA MUSEUM ROCK CARVING - AN ELK, REINDEER AND A FISHING BOAT

ALTA MUSEUM ROCK CARVING – AN ELK, REINDEER AND A FISHING BOAT

ALTA MUSEUM ROCK CARVING HUNTERS AND ANIMALS

ALTA MUSEUM ROCK CARVING   –  HUNTERS AND ANIMALS

ALTA MUSEUM ROCK CARVING - MEN FISHING FROM A BOAT WITH A FISH AT THE END OF LINE AND NEXT TO IT AN ELK

ALTA MUSEUM ROCK CARVING – MEN FISHING FROM A BOAT WITH A FISH AT THE END OF LINE AND NEXT TO IT AN ELK

ALTA MUSEUM ROCK CARVING - TWO REINDEER

ALTA MUSEUM ROCK CARVING – TWO REINDEER

ALTA MUSEUM ROCK CARVING - These images (on the right in closeup) are also remarkable for their depiction of large birds with long necks, possibly geese, with one man in the act of catching a goose with its wings outspread. Beside him on the ground is what may well be a throwing stick used to bring down the bird.

ALTA MUSEUM ROCK CARVING – These images (on the right in closeup) are also remarkable for their depiction of large birds with long necks, possibly geese, with one man in the act of catching a goose with its wings outspread. Beside him on the ground is what may well be a throwing stick used to bring down the bird.

ALTA MUSEUM ROCK CARVING - THREE MEN IN SMALL BOATS

ALTA MUSEUM ROCK CARVING – THREE MEN IN SMALL BOATS

ALTA MUSEUM ROCK CARVING - REINDEER WITHOUT ANTLERS

ALTA MUSEUM ROCK CARVING – REINDEER WITHOUT ANTLERS

ALTA MUSEUM ROCK CARVING - FISHING BOATS WITH ELK HEAD PROWS

ALTA MUSEUM ROCK CARVING – FISHING BOATS WITH ELK HEAD PROWS

———————

OTHER OBJECTS SEEN AT THE ALTA MUSEUM

PIPPI STONThe Pippi Stone Discovered by Fredrik Falsen when ploughing a field around 1950. The carving on this stone was the first rock art discovered in Alta. The next was not found until 20 years later. The stone was in a potato field on the Langnes Farm near Isnestoften some kilometres from Alta Fjord. The figure was made approximately 4 000 - 5 000 years ago. Archaeologists named it 'Pippi' after Astrid Lindgren's famous children's book heroine, Pippi Longstocking, a book cover of which shows the plaits sticking out on either side of Pippi's head, which unintentionally mimics the engravingE -

PIPPI STONE  –  The Pippi Stone
Discovered by Fredrik Falsen when ploughing a field around 1950. The carving on this stone was the first rock art discovered in Alta. The next was not found until 20 years later.
The stone was in a potato field on the Langnes Farm near Isnestoften some kilometres from Alta Fjord. The figure was made approximately 4 000 – 5 000 years ago.
Archaeologists named it ‘Pippi’ after Astrid Lindgren’s famous children’s book heroine, Pippi Longstocking, a book cover of which shows the plaits sticking out on either side of Pippi’s head, which unintentionally mimics the engravingE –

SAMI DRUM - Copy of a sami drum from the 17th century (1600-tallet), from Vardø. Most of the sami drums were burned or otherwise destroyed. Only 70 still exist. The original Vardø-drum is the only existing drum from the Finnmark county of Norway.

SAMI DRUM – Copy of a sami drum from the 17th century (1600-tallet), from Vardø. Most of the sami drums were burned or otherwise destroyed. Only 70 still exist. The original Vardø-drum is the only existing drum from the Finnmark county of Norway.

—————————-

THE SKIN BOAT

SKIN BOAT INSPIRED BY THE OLDEST ROCK DRAWINGS IN THE AREA (SIGN)

SKIN BOAT INSPIRED BY THE OLDEST ROCK DRAWINGS IN THE AREA (SIGN)

This is a reconstruction of a small boat, done with a wooden frame and reindeer hides. Notice the “head” at one end. It is the boat shown clearly in the rock carvings above where someone is throwing a net. The design is from at least 6 000 years BP and is pictured on the oldest of the rock carvings.

SKIN BOAT INSPIRED BY THE OLDEST ROCK DRAWINGS IN THE AREA

SKIN BOAT INSPIRED BY THE OLDEST ROCK DRAWINGS IN THE AREA

——————————-

CHRISTIANITY

Christianity was introduced in the Middle Ages, but did not make much impact except on the outermost coast until the 1500’s. Then the Norwegian pioneer settlement expanded from the coastal area to the inner fjords, e.g. the Alta fjord. The first church in Alta was built in 1694. Medieval art from the coastal churches and pictures from the 18th century Sámi Missionary Society are shown

STATUE OF KING OLAF FROM THE MIDDLE AGES

STATUE OF KING OLAF FROM THE MIDDLE AGES

STATUE FROM THE MIDDLE AGES

STATUE FROM THE MIDDLE AGES

——–

FAMILY TREASURE

FAMILY TREASURE

FAMILY TREASURE

A FAMILY TREASURE

A FAMILY TREASURE

————————-

THE FIRST RESCUE CUTTER

THE FIRST RESCUE CUTTER

THE FIRST RESCUE CUTTER

THE FIRST RESCUE CUTTER

THE FIRST RESCUE CUTTER (REPLICA)

—————————

ON THE ROAD FROM KVAENANGENFJORD AND  LYNGENFJORD TO NARVIK WE FOLLOWED THE COASTLINE.

HERE ARE SOME PHOTOS OF THAT SHORELINE:

TROMS PROVINCE

TROMS PROVINCE

TROMS PROVINCE

TROMS PROVINCE

TROMS PROVINCE

TROMS PROVINCE

A distance indicator in Gildetun in Troms, Norway showing the distances to Kiruna (in Sweden), Nordkapp and Ivalo (in Finland).

A distance indicator in Gildetun in Troms, Norway showing the distances to Kiruna (in Sweden), Nordkapp and Ivalo (in Finland).

TROMS PROVINCE

TROMS PROVINCE

A distance indicator in Gildetun in Troms, Norway showing the distances to Kiruna (in Sweden), Nordkapp and Ivalo (in Finland).

A distance indicator in Gildetun in Troms, Norway showing the distances to Kiruna (in Sweden), Nordkapp and Ivalo (in Finland).

TROMS PROVINCE

TROMS PROVINCE

TROMS PROVINCE

TROMS PROVINCE

TROMS PROVINCE

TROMS PROVINCE

TROMS PROVINCE FERRY

TROMS PROVINCE FERRY

———————————

NARVIK

Narvik is a city in northern Norway. The town of Narvik has a population of about 14000, while the entire municipality has a population of about 18000. The city is located along the southern shore of the Ofot Fjord, and is the centre of the Ofoten district.

The modern city was founded in 1902. It grew up as an important ice-free port for Swedish iron ore exports. During and after the German invasion of Norway, Narvik was the scene of fierce battles between allied and German forces, and the war museum commemorates the events of 1940. Today, the city offers several outdoor activities, in particular alpine skiing is possible in the mountains around Narvik.

The history of Narvik as a settlement began in the Stone Age. Not very much is known about these people, but the Vikings lived in this area.

The history of modern Narvik begins in the 1870s, when the Swedish government began to understand the potential of the iron ore mines in Kiruna, Sweden. Obtaining iron ore from Kiruna had one significant problem in that there was no suitable Swedish port. The nearest Swedish port, Luleå, has limitations. It is covered with ice all winter, it is far from Kiruna, and it allows only medium-sized bulk freight vessels. Realizing these problems, a Swedish company (Gällivarre Aktiebolag) built a railway to Narvik, as the port there is ice-free thanks to the warm Gulf Stream, and is naturally large, allowing boats of virtually any size to anchor, up to 208 metres (682 ft) long and 27 metres (89 ft) deep.

Therefore, Narvik was founded as an all-year ice free port for the Kiruna and Gällivare iron mines. During the construction of the railway, the coming port was called Victoriahavn (Victoria harbour) until 1898, when the name was changed to Narvik. The town was officially founded in 1902. The Ofotbanen railway line connects Narvik to Kiruna in Sweden, passing through the mountains dividing the two countries. Locals use the Swedish slang words morsan (mother) and farsan (father), a testimony to the close ties with Sweden.

LKAB, the mining corporation, still ships the majority of its ore from Narvik (a total 25 million tons a year) and the   corporation  is still important in the area, both as an employer and landowner, although its influence is not as prominent now as it has been in previous years.

The port of Narvik proved to be strategically valuable in the early years of World War II and the town became a focal point of the Norwegian Campaign. In 1939, Germany’s war industry depended upon iron ore mined in Kiruna and Malmberget in Sweden. During the summer season, this ore could be sent by cargo ship to Germany through the Baltic Sea via the Swedish port of Luleå on the Gulf of Bothnia. However, when the Gulf of Bothnia froze during the winter, more shipments of the ore needed to be transported through Narvik and, from there, down the west coast of Norway to Germany. The town of Narvik is linked by rail to Sweden, but not to any other towns in Norway. As a result, Narvik serves as a gateway to the ore fields of Sweden that cannot be easily reached from southern Norway via land. Winston Churchill realized that the control of Narvik meant stopping most German imports of iron ore during the winter of 1940. This would be advantageous to the Allies, and it might help shorten the war. Equally as important, later in the war, German submarines and warships based there threatened the allied supply line to the Soviet Union.

Churchill proposed laying a naval minefield in Norwegian territorial waters around Narvik (referred to as “the Leads”), or else occupying the town with Allied troops. The Allies hoped that they might be able to use an occupied Narvik as a base from which to secure the Swedish ore fields and/or to send supplies and reinforcements to Finland, then fighting the Finnish Winter War with the Soviet Union. Plans to lay a minefield around Narvik or to seize the town met with debate within the British government – since both plans would mean a violation of Norway’s neutrality and sovereignty.

Finally, on 8 April 1940, the British Admiralty launched Operation Wilfred, an attempt to lay anti-shipping minefields around Narvik in Norwegian territorial waters. Coincidentally, Germany launched its invasion of Norway (Operation Weserübung) on the next day. During this invasion, ten German destroyers, each carrying 200 mountain infantry soldiers, were sent to Narvik. The outdated Norwegian coastal defence ships HNoMS Eidsvold and HNoMS Norge attempted to resist the invasion, but both Norwegian warships were sunk after a short and uneven battle. The British Royal Navy quickly dispatched several ships to Narvik, including the battleship HMS Warspite, and during the Battles of Narvik, the British took control of the coast, destroying the German destroyers that had brought the invasion force to Narvik, as well as other German ships in the area.

On 12 April 1940, the first convoys of Allied soldiers were sent under Major-General Pierse Joseph Mackesy to Narvik. The Admiralty urged Mackesy to conduct an assault on Narvik from the sea as soon as possible. However, Mackesy believed that the German harbour defences were too strong for such an invasion to take place. The Admiralty argued that a naval bombardment of Norway would enable the troops to land safely, but General Mackesy refused to subject Norwegian citizens to such a bombardment, and instead he chose to land his troops near Narvik and wait until the snow melted to take over the city.

Coordinated by the Norwegian General Carl Gustav Fleischer, Norwegian, French, Polish, and British forces recaptured Narvik on 28 May 1940. This is also considered the first Allied infantry victory in World War II. However, by that time, the Allies were losing the Battle of France and the evacuation from Dunkirk was underway. Since the Nazi German invasion of France had made Scandinavia largely irrelevant, and since the valuable troops assigned to Narvik were badly needed elsewhere, the Allies withdrew from Narvik on 8 June 1940 in Operation Alphabet. The same day, while operating in the Narvik area, the German battleships Scharnhorst and Gneisenau sank the British aircraft carrier HMS Glorious during the withdrawal from this battle. Without support from the Allied naval task force, the Norwegians were outnumbered, and they had to lay down their arms in Norway on 10 June 1940. This was not a complete capitulation, since the Norwegians kept on fighting guerrilla operations inland.

Possession of the Ofotfjord was also important to the German Kriegsmarine (navy) since it provided a refuge for warships like the “pocket battleship” Lützow and the battleship Tirpitz outside the range of air attacks from Scotland. Also, possibly U-boats were based at Narvik.

HERE ARE SOME PHOTOS OF NARVIK:

NARVIK CENTER

NARVIK CENTER

NARVIK - STANDIC HOTEL

NARVIK – STANDIC HOTEL

NARVIK AS SEEN FROM THE TOP OF THE STANDIC HOTEL

NARVIK AS SEEN FROM THE TOP OF THE STANDIC HOTEL  (SOUTH VIEW)

NARVIK AS SEEN FROM THE TOP OF THE STANDIC HOTEL (WESTERN VIEW)

NARVIK AS SEEN FROM THE TOP OF THE STANDIC HOTEL (WESTERN VIEW)

NARVIK AS SEEN FROM THE TOP OF THE STANDIC HOTEL - PANORAMA (WESTERN VIEW)

NARVIK AS SEEN FROM THE TOP OF THE STANDIC HOTEL –
PANORAMA (WESTERN VIEW)

NARVIK SEEN FROM A NEARBY HILL

NARVIK SEEN FROM A NEARBY HILL

NARVIK HOUSES

NARVIK HOUSES

NARVIK HOUSES

NARVIK HOUSES

NARVIK CHURCH - Narvik Church is the main parish church in the municipality of Narvik in Nordland county, Norway. It is located in the town of Narvik. The church is part of the Narvik parish in the Ooten deanery in the Diocese of Sør-Hålogaland. The large stone church was built in 1925 by the architect Olaf Nordhagen. The church seats 700 people.

NARVIK CHURCH – Narvik Church is the main parish church in the municipality of Narvik in Nordland county, Norway. It is located in the town of Narvik. The church is part of the Narvik parish in the Ooten deanery in the Diocese of Sør-Hålogaland. The large stone church was built in 1925 by the architect Olaf Nordhagen. The church seats 700 people.

——————–

NARVIK

THE NORDLAND RED CROSS WAR MEMORIAL MUSEUM

HISTORY
Narvik has a very strong war history, and the War Museum portrays a dramatic history about the Battle of Narvik during the second world war.
Germanys purpose of the invastion of Narvik is assumed to be a strategic goal to take control of the supply of the iron ores from the mines in Gällivare and Kiruna in Sweden, and the shipping of the iron from Narvik Harbor.

When the coordinated attach against Narvik and the most important cities along the coast of Southern Norway started the 9th of April, the two old armored ships; Norge and Eidsvoll, were situated in Narvik. In heavy snow they tried to strike back, but were soon sunk by the German invasiion fleet, with severe loss of human life

The 10th of April 1940, five British destroyers sailed in to the harbour of Narvik. They sunk two German destroyers and seven other German ships. In the battle two British destroyers, in addition to eleven merchant ships, were sunk. Amongst them, Swedish, Norwegian and British ones.

The 13th of April the battleship Warspite, nine destroyers and one aircraft carrier were sent to Narvik, and the remaining German destroyers were either sunk  or run ashore by  to save the crew. One of the German destroyers, Georg Thiele, can still be seen lying on the shore in Rombaksbotn.

At the end of May 1940 the Norwegians and the allied had cut off all the German reinforcements. And a coordinated pressure drove them back.

The 28th of May 1940 soldiers from the Norwegian battalion and the French Foreign Legion went ashore on the north side of Narvik, whilst the Polish troops covered and attacked from the south side. Before the Germans withdrew – they managed to bomb the Harbor of Narvik, but this was the very first major allied counter attack on land in Norway during the second world war.

THE NORDLAND RED CROSS WAR MEMORIAL MUSEUM

THE NORDLAND RED CROSS WAR MEMORIAL MUSEUM

THE NORDLAND RED CROSS WAR MEMORIAL MUSEUM

THE NORDLAND RED CROSS WAR MEMORIAL MUSEUM

THE NORDLAND RED CROSS WAR MEMORIAL MUSEUM

THE NORDLAND RED CROSS WAR MEMORIAL MUSEUM

THE NORDLAND RED CROSS WAR MEMORIAL MUSEUM

THE NORDLAND RED CROSS WAR MEMORIAL MUSEUM

THE NORDLAND RED CROSS WAR MEMORIAL MUSEUM

THE NORDLAND RED CROSS WAR MEMORIAL MUSEUM

THE NORDLAND RED CROSS WAR MEMORIAL MUSEUM

THE NORDLAND RED CROSS WAR MEMORIAL MUSEUM

THE NORDLAND RED CROSS WAR MEMORIAL MUSEUM

THE NORDLAND RED CROSS WAR MEMORIAL MUSEUM

THE NORDLAND RED CROSS WAR MEMORIAL MUSEUM

THE NORDLAND RED CROSS WAR MEMORIAL MUSEUM

THE NORDLAND RED CROSS WAR MEMORIAL MUSEUM - Divers retrieved this bronze eagle in 2011 from the wreck of a German destroyer.

THE NORDLAND RED CROSS WAR MEMORIAL MUSEUM – Divers retrieved this bronze eagle in 2011 from the wreck of a German destroyer.

THE NORDLAND RED CROSS WAR MEMORIAL MUSEUM

THE NORDLAND RED CROSS WAR MEMORIAL MUSEUM

THE NORDLAND RED CROSS WAR MEMORIAL MUSEUM

THE NORDLAND RED CROSS WAR MEMORIAL MUSEUM

THE NORDLAND RED CROSS WAR MEMORIAL MUSEUM - WW2 German tracked motorcycle

THE NORDLAND RED CROSS WAR MEMORIAL MUSEUM – WW2 German tracked motorcycle

————————————————————

AS WE TRAVEL SOUTH FROM NARVIK  TO MO-I-RANA  THERE ARE A FEW STOPS:

Laksforsen waterfall, Mosjoen

Nordland’s most popular tourist attraction.

At Mosjøen, the river discharges into the Vefsnfjord. The Laksforsen waterfall lies along its course.

Laksforsen waterfall, Mosjoen

Laksforsen waterfall, Mosjoen

Laksforsen waterfall, At Mosjøen, the river discharges into the Vefsnfjord River.

Laksforsen waterfall, At Mosjøen, the river discharges into the Vefsnfjord River.

—————————————————-

The Arctic Circle Center

In the area around the center, there are Russian and Yugoslavian war memorials from World War II. The center’s architecture is adapted to the surrounding nature, and a path made of marble shows how the Arctic Circle runs through the center.

There is an interesting   large souvenir/gift shop and an exhibition covering art, marble and stuffed arctic animals – including Europe’s largest stuffed polar bear.

THE ARCTIC CIRCLE CENTER

THE ARCTIC CIRCLE CENTER

THE ARCTIC CIRCLE CENTER

THE ARCTIC CIRCLE CENTER

THE ARCTIC CIRCLE CENTER

THE ARCTIC CIRCLE CENTER

THE ARCTIC CIRCLE CENTER

THE ARCTIC CIRCLE CENTER

THE ARCTIC CIRCLE CENTER - IN JUNE THERE IS SNOW ON THE GROUND HERE AT THE ARCTIC CIRCLE

THE ARCTIC CIRCLE CENTER -EVEN  IN JUNE THERE IS SNOW ON THE GROUND AT THE ARCTIC CIRCLE

THE ARCTIC CIRCLE CENTER - STUFFED POLAR BEAR

THE ARCTIC CIRCLE CENTER – STUFFED POLAR BEAR

THE ARCTIC CIRCLE CENTER

THE ARCTIC CIRCLE CENTER  –  SHOWING ANIMALS FOUND IN THE ARCTIC CIRCLE

THE ARCTIC CIRCLE CENTER

THE ARCTIC CIRCLE CENTER

————————————–

DOLSTAD CHURCH

Dolstad Church (Norwegian: Dolstad kirke) is a parish church in the municipality of Vefsn in Nordland county, Norway. It is located in the town of Mosjøen. The church is part of the Dolstad parish in the Indre Helgeland deanery in the Diocese of Sør-Hålogaland. The red, octagonal building was constructed in 1735 by the architect Nils Pedersen Bech. The church was consecrated by 7 August 1735 by the local dean Anders Dass, the son of poet and priest Petter Dass. This is the third church to be built on this site since the 1100s.Dolstad Church has four arms attached to the central octagon creating an octagonal-cruciform floor plan.

DOLSTAD CHURCH

DOLSTAD CHURCH

DOLSTAD CHURCH

DOLSTAD CHURCH

DOLSTAD CHURCH

DOLSTAD CHURCH

DOLSTAD CHURCH

DOLSTAD CHURCH

————————-

MO-I-RANA

MO-I-RANA WAS A STOPOVER FOR US  BETWEEN NARVIK AND TRONDHEIM

Mo i Rana is the third largest city in Northern Norway,

The municipality Rana is famous for their numerous caves. Mo i Rana is a new and modern city with many facilities. Downtown is situated at the end of a fjord. The city is a gateway Northern Norway.

In 1946 the Norwegian Parliament approved plans for the construction of an Iron mill in Norway. The Parliament selected Mo i Rana, and in 1955 the first steel was produced. During this period the village of Mo i Rana was changed to an industrial city.

People from all over the country moved to Mo i Rana in order to obtain work. The community needed homes for thousands of new residents. Construction of houses and residential blocks started immediately. It was also established electricity and water supply to the city. In 1930, the population was 1300 people. In 1978 The Iron Mill employed approximately 4,500 of the 25,000 town’s inhabitants, who is also the current population number of Mo i Rana.

The Norwegian Parliament resolved in 1988 to phase out state ownership of the company. Today there are 119 industrial companies at the industrial estate. The companies have activity in the iron and steel industry, the engineering industry, the research and development service industry and the information technology industry.

Mining, building boats, and hunting/fishing used to be the main ways of life in Mo i Rana before the Iron mill was built. Starting summer of 1730, there was a Sámi market in town, and wholesale merchant L.A. Meyer started a trade center. The residents traded flour, tobacco, fish, reindeer meat, skins and and other items. They also traded with Sweden in the west.

MO-I-RANA

MO-I-RANA

MO-I-RANA STATUE OF HANS A MEYER - Hans Abraham Meyer (born July 30, 1865 in North Rana in Nordland, died on 8 September 1926 in Mo i Rana) was a Norwegian trader. He was also concerned with social issues and culture. He was founder of Helgeland Skogselskap,Helgeland forestry companies is a nonprofit organization whose purpose is to promote understanding of the forest's multifaceted significance). In an article in the Signs of 1918, he proposed to create

MO-I-RANA
STATUE OF HANS A MEYER – Hans Abraham Meyer (born July 30, 1865 in North Rana in Nordland, died on 8 September 1926 in Mo i Rana) was a Norwegian trader. He was also concerned with social issues and culture. He was founder of Helgeland Skogselskap,Helgeland, forestry companies is a nonprofit organization whose purpose is to promote understanding of the forest’s multifaceted significance). In an article in the Signs of 1918, he proposed to create “a northern Norwegian Academy” in Tromsø.   For this proposal he is regarded as the initiator of the University of Tromso which was created fifty years later

PHOTOS;

LEONARD EPSTEIN

Advertisements
No comments yet

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s

%d bloggers like this: