The nickname of "Venice of the North" is a bit much, but that shouldn't obscure the fact that this is the liveliest and most artistic of Lofoten villages. Lying 20km (12 miles) southwest of Svolvær, this is the largest fishing village in the Lofoten. The village was built without any professional architects. Bus no. 510 runs here from Svolvær, taking 35 minutes and costing NOK60 ($12/£6) one-way.

Seeing the Sights

Based in Henningsvaer, the North Norwegian School of Mountaineering (Nord Norsk Klatreskole; tel. 76-07-49-11; www.nordnorskklatreskole.no) conducts summer guided tours in the mountains of the Lofotens, following only the most scenic routes, such as to the top of Svolværgeita Peak. Climbing holidays, depending on the trip, cost from NOK3,800 to NOK4,800 ($760-$960/£380-£480) for a 3-day jaunt. It's always best to stop by to discuss your desires and have the options explained to you. Of course, you can call in advance and have a game plan mapped out before your arrival in town. In Henningsvaer, the mountaineering school also operates a Climber's Café and a store that rents mountaineering gear.

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Also in Henningsvaer there are Sea Eagle Safaris conducted in summer by Lofoten Opplevelser (tel. 76-07-50-01; www.lofoten-opplevelser.no). Call for information and details. Nordland is the land of the sea eagle, and in summer these safaris take you off the coast to see these birds of prey in their natural environment. Near Henningsvaer is the world's most compact flock of these majestic birds, which often have a wing span of some 2m (6 1/2 ft.). Guides include John Stenersen, author of the book The Birds of the Lofoten. From June 20 to August 10, 1-hour safaris cost NOK370 ($74/£37).

At the Lofoten Hus Gallery, Henningsvær (tel. 76-07-15-73), you can see Norway's largest collection of its north-country painters, dramatically installed in a former fish-canning house. The major focus centers on the paintings of the well-known artist Karl Erik Harr, plus other notable artists who came to the Lofoten at the end of the 19th century. Frank Jenssen presents a 20-minute slide show of Lofoten landscapes and its people, with rare photographs of the white-tailed eagle. It's open June 11 to August 12 10am to 9pm (closes earlier in winter). Admission is NOK70 ($14/£7) for adults or NOK35 ($7/£3.50) for children.

Note: This information was accurate when it was published, but can change without notice. Please be sure to confirm all rates and details directly with the companies in question before planning your trip.