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CruiseDirection - Magazine May 2019

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Hammerfest

Hammerfest is located in the county of Finnmark, Norway. Hammerfest is alongside the islands of Kvaloya, Soroya, and Seiland. These islands offer plenty of outdoor attractions with the fjords and waterways to enjoy. Hammerfest began in 1838 as a municipality though there is evidence of settlers from centuries earlier. The city name of Hammerfest came from an old anchorage in which the first part, hammer, refers to large rocks. The large rocks were great moorings for boats. The second part of the name came from ‘fastening’, another term related to boats.  

Hammerfest is disputed as the Northernmost city of Norway as it is in competition with Honningsvaag. Hammerfest is the oldest town situated on the island of Kvaloga with a road connecting the mainland. Several years ago the Kvalsund Bridge was created to make this connection and is one of the main sites to see in Hammerfest. A picture of the Kvalsund Bridge is a must for any tourist on a cruise ship or staying in the city.

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Why visit Hammerfest ?


Hammerfest location iamge - CruiseDirection

Memories for a lifetime

Plenty of outdoor attractions with the fjords and waterways to enjoy

Despite the location of Hammerfest the weather does not allow permafrost. The average annual temperature is 2 degrees Celsius, all though you get temperatures of -5 degrees Celsius and up to 11.5 degrees Celsius during the year. June and July will be some of the warmer months, but can be rainy. The best time to visit is in early spring. October to December are the rainiest months in the entire year. With snowfall there are occasions for avalanches, which any skier should be aware of. There is skiing in Hammerfest making that one of the main attractions besides the fjords.  

Hammerfest will offer sport and commercial fishing for both sea and freshwater anglers. For those wishing to get into the water, scuba diving is another popular attraction. There are a lot of undersea caves to be seen, making the scuba diving some of the most spectacular in the world.  

The northernmost glacier on the Norwegian mainland is a popular hiking spot for tourists in Hammerfest. You also have North Cape boat tours and the Struve Geodetic Arc. The Arc is now on the World Heritage List and located at Fuglenes in Hammerfest. You can’t go home without getting a picture of the arc to show your family. Hammerfest is a centre for Sami culture, which you can see depicted on a great many of the buildings around the town.  

Another interesting aspect of the area is its reindeer. During the summer months in Hammerfest the town is overrun with reindeer herds. For tourists this is something to remember. You can see as many as 2,500 to 3000 reindeer in one day just by walking down the main street. It is somewhat aggravating for the town’s people, and do be aware that they do pose some danger if approached.  

In Hammerfest you can soak up history dating back to the stone age as well as the Napoleonic Wars, which means plenty of museums for tourists to visit. There is also an armoury in Trondheim.  

A visit to Hammerfest, Norway will offer memories for a lifetime and is a traveller’s dream.

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