Ever wanted to try island hopping? Well, consider islet hopping by kayak in Helgelandskysten instead!  Hear the wing strokes of birds passing close above your head, catch as much fish as you can eat, and experience the tranquility of the beautiful Norwegian archipelago.

In the summer of 2016, we had an amazing camping and kayaking trip to Helgelandskysten together with some of our friends. We were extremely lucky with the weather and experienced sun, cloudless skies, and calm sea almost every day. We even got a tan! In this post, we will take you through our five day trip to Helgeland, and hopefully inspire you to go yourself!



Starting out at Søvik

The starting point of our journey, was at the ferry dock at Søvik. From Søvik, we headed south- west, paddling quite an open stretch for the first few hours. After some time, we found the most amazing little lagoon, with crystal clear waters, and chalk white sand. Step aside, Caribbean!

The first night we spent at a small beach on the south end of Blomsøya. Those of us who had brought eye masks and earplugs were quite happy with ourselves, as the midnight sun and some happy seagulls made it quite difficult to sleep without.

Pål Andersen padling through the lagoon
Drone view of Vega Islands

Inexhaustible ocean and a private island

In beautiful weather, we continued north west. We took our time, using our fishing rods along the way. The amount of fish at Helgelandskysten is crazy, so we could easily have lived off of the fish we got during this trip. The species of fish we got the most was cod, which tastes delicious fried in butter. We found an amazing camp site at Slottøya, and set up our tents on a small hill overseeing a shallow beach. We spent the evening freediving, preparing dinner, and having a really good time. A perfect place to enjoy the midnight sun.

Morten Tokildsen pulling a 6kg cod
Pål enjoying the midnight sun

Buøya and free diving

On our third day, we headed north, and paddled for several hours only stopping to eat. After a while, we found a great campsite on the north side of Buøya. There were a few sheep welcoming us as we got there, but they quickly decided we were boring, and moved to the other side of the island. At this location, we did some great freediving in a nearby current.

Sheeps walking around on the campsite
Hotel room with free ocean view

Long white beach at Alterøyan

As this was our last night out in the archipelago, we wanted to find an especially nice camp site for the night, and boy did we! After some hours of paddling, we ended up at the north side of Alterøyan. We found an amazing long white beach with nice, soft grass to camp on. On this island as well, we were welcomed by some curious sheep. We prepared a fine meal of cod, and enjoyed the midnight sun along with some beers, from the top of the islet. This was an excellent ending to an amazing trip.

One of many beautiful camp sites. Be mindful of the tides. At midnight only a few meters out 100 was left of the beach.
Moten spending the night on top of the island on his sleeping pad

Heading back

The last day of our trip, we took our time, stopping whenever we felt like it, and made sure to get a lot of good pictures. This day was also a beautiful sunny one, so it did not feel especially good when we once again reached the ferry terminal, and had to get our kayaks out of the water. We wanted to turn back and do it all again.

Paddling back to the ferry quay


In Norway we have something we call “public right of access”. This entitles you to hike and camp in the countryside. You can walk and ski wherever we wish and camp wherever we want on uncultivated land, and no closer than 150 metres to a house or cottage. If you want to spend more than 48 hours in the same place, you have to ask the landowner’s permission. We are so lucky and privileged to have this, and should therefore take good care of the nature we are allowed to use. Therefore; Never ever leave behind trash or any other sort of evidence of your visit, and be respectful of the land owners. We are lucky to be able to access this beautiful scenery and wildlife, and we would like to keep it that way in the future.

Morten watching the sheep pasture

Where and how to take the photos:

While paddling close to Herøy and the Seven Sisters you have a wonderful background to get some amazing shots. I would try as often as I could to get the Seven Sisters, and Dønnamannen in the background to bring some scale to my pictures.

I was mostly using my Sony a6300 and the 16-70mm f4 lens. Then you will have the options to use both wide angle for those landscape shots, and the ability to zoom your subject if you are further away.

I highly recommend using Peak Design Capture Pro plate, the rain cover and their camera strap. This way your camera is secured from water splash and accidental drops.

I would also avoid using polorizer filters when the water is deep, as it can get very dark and artificial. I only use them when I want to cut the water and see the bottom underneath.

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