The natural edge of the world, the Old World, when only clouds that go beyond the horizon, the endless summer sun and the entire perspective of space that amaze with its depth and volume… such a dizzying feeling can only be experienced at the Norwegian cape North Cape. Separated from the North Pole by the one and only archipelago of Svalbard, the North Cape is called the northernmost point in Europe, although this is not entirely true. Literally 1.5 km away is a real land, but in terms of infrastructure, convenience of access roads and the beauty of local landscapes, no other cape can compare with the North Cape. It is here that thousands of tourists come all year round. In summer to enjoy the midnight sun that never sets below the horizon, and in winter for the fantastic Northern Lights. Check ANDYEDUCATION to learn more about the country of Norway.
What to see
There is a specially equipped North Cape center on the cape, which includes parking, parking for campers, a museum, a restaurant, souvenir shops, a small chapel of St. John and even a monument “Children of War”. This is a very popular place among tourists and Norwegians, so you should not be surprised how such a wealth of entertainment appeared in such a remote point from the major cities of the country. The first travelers appeared here in the distant 1664, and since then their flow has not weakened.
At the North Cape Tourist Information Center, you can visit an exhibition and watch a film about the North Cape, send a postcard with an original stamp, and even get married in “the northernmost temple in the world.”
Center opening hours: from May 18 to August 17 – from 11:00 to 1:00, from August 18 to August 31 – from 11:00 to 22:00, from September 1 to May 17 – from 11:00 to 15: 00. The cost of visiting the cape and the center for 2 days is 275 NOK, for 12 hours (without visiting the cinema and the exhibition) – 180 NOK. Tourists who arrived at the cape by bus do not pay for the entrance – it is already included in the fare. Also, admission is free for all travelers who arrived at the North Cape by any non-motorized form of transport – a bicycle, a scooter or two on their own.
For two and a half months on the North Cape, you can not lose a single minute of the joy-inspiring ultraviolet and even spend the night under its gentle, but, alas, almost no heating rays – this phenomenon is called the midnight sun.
Midnight sun and North Cape in summer
Summer on the North Cape is a rather relative concept, the air temperature rarely rises above +10 °C, and, as a rule, stays at around +7 °C, and it gets much colder at night. But this does not stop the crowds of tourists seeking to enjoy the enchanting spectacle of the midnight sun on the North Cape. After all, every summer, exactly from mid-May to the end of July, the sun here does not fall below the horizon. For two and a half months, you can not lose a single minute of the joy-inspiring ultraviolet and even spend the night under its gentle, but, alas, almost no heating rays. This truly magical spectacle can be spoiled only by fogs – frequent guests on the coast of the North Cape. Although the waves lost in the milky haze, the splash of which you hear, but almost do not see, are an attraction no less than that same midnight sun.
In addition, in the summer on the North Cape you can go on an exciting safari – on a king crab or on a bird safari in Giesvær. Dead ends, boobies, cormorants – the bird market here is represented by a variety of representatives of the genus of birds, who sometimes behave arrogantly and noisily, but certainly will not let you get bored. Finally, do not forget about sea fishing.
North Cape in winter
In winter, oddly enough, the North Cape is not so cold, the temperature is around -3…-11 °C. Warm clothes, a mug or two of fragrant mulled wine and such degrees will seem trifling compared to Russian winters.
The main attraction on the cape in winter is, of course, watching the magical Northern Lights, which can be seen almost every clear and frosty night from mid-November to mid-March. The best time for “viewing” is from 21:00-21:30 to midnight. In the “load” local tour desks offer dog sledding or snowmobile safaris.
How to get to the North Cape
Despite such an exotic location, at the end of the world, North Cape can be easily reached by almost any type of transport.
The nearest town to the cape and, concurrently, a major transport hub in Northern Norway is Honningsvåg.
The West Finnmark region, where Nordkapp is located, boasts excellent transport accessibility, because there are five airports here at once, receiving flights from all major cities in the country. The closest to the cape is located just in Honningsvåg. Widerøe planes from Oslo land here (with a change in Tromsø or Alta).
North Cape is not on the mainland, but on the island of Magerøya, but you don’t need a ferry or a boat to get there. In 1999, a comfortable underwater tunnel was built, through which it is free. In Norway, the condition of the tracks is carefully monitored, but due to sudden snowfalls in winter, sometimes you have to follow the snowplow, keep this in mind when planning your route and arrival time.
There is a car park on the North Cape, the use of which is included in the price of the entrance ticket.
You can get to the North Cape freely (on arrival you will only need to buy a ticket), but keep in mind that from November 1 to April 30 the road for private vehicles is closed and you can only travel by bus from Honningsvåg, tickets for which are best bought for day.
On a ferryboat:
One of the most romantic ways to visit the North Cape is on the comfortable Hurtigruten cruise ships that cruise along the coast of Norway from Bergen to Kirkenes. The nearest port to the cape, where the ship makes a stop, is in Honningsvåg, from there you have to travel by bus.
The North Cape Express runs daily between Honningsvåg and the North Cape, taking around 45 minutes. This is a great option for anyone arriving at the North Point on a cruise ship and planning a half-day excursion, just in time for their ship to sail. The fare starts from 450 NOK, a ticket to the North Cape is usually included in the price.