Faroe Islands Re-opening To Brits from July

STORY BY Patrick 10th June 2021

The list of countries and regions on the UK Government’s green list is very short, but it is not widely understood that many of those few countries on that green list – like Australia and New Zealand – are closed to British tourists anyway. 

This means arrivals from those countries don’t have to quarantine arriving in the UK, but that travellers from the UK can’t actually go to them on holiday.

(Image Credit: Jann Kellr)

So it’s good news to hear that Denmark has lifted restriction on travel to the stunning Faroe Islands,  located midway between Iceland and Norway, north of Scotland, from the start of July, enabling UK tourists who have been fully vaccinated to explore this wild archipelago – one of the locations of the long-awaited new James Bond film, No Time to Die.

This remote archipelago – is the perfect place to get away from the crowds, with a population across its 18 islands of just 50,000, plus 80,000 sheep. Visitors can enjoy a host of outdoor activities – hiking, birdwatching, fishing and adventure sports – alongside a vibrant food scene (including Michelin-starred restaurant KOKS), an exciting programme of summer music festivals and the chance to buy one of Sarah Lund’s iconic wool jumpers at designer store Guðrun & Guðrun and from 1st July you can fly direct from Edinburgh with Atlantic Airways in just 1 hr 25 minutes.

(Image Credit: Chris Allary)

The moment you land on the Faroe Islands, you are transported to an ethereal environment, surrounded by incredible scenery and dramatic landscapes, from stunning waterfalls and rugged cliffs to quaint grass-roofed houses and spectacular coastlines.

Fully vaccinated travellers from the UK are now allowed to enter the Faroe Islands without the need to quarantine. All visitors still have to be tested on arrival at the airport (at a cost of £36) and should self-isolate until they have received the result (usually within half a day), with a follow-up test to be taken on the fourth day of their stay. Travellers are asked to be careful and keep a social distance from people they meet until they have the result of the 4th day test. Travellers are still allowed to go hiking, explore the islands in their car and enjoy outside space as well as indoor activities such as visiting restaurants.

James Bond Movie Location

Currently set for release on 30 September, the hotly-anticipated 25th James Bond film, ‘No Time to Die’, used the wild and rugged scenery of the Faroe Islands in the third and final act of the movie. Scenes were filmed on the island of Kalsoy, populated by just 150 inhabitants and known for its twisting roads, deep valleys and famous Kallur Lighthouse, perched on a steep cliff at the top of the island. The remote island can only be reached by ferry or helicopter; you can now take the James Bond Sightseeing Tour and hike your way around the film locations, led by a specialist guide. The tour costs from £315 pp, including a tour of the film locations with a guide, ferry crossing, hiking around the film locations and a boat trip.

(Image Credit: Lauren Breedlove)

World-first Subsea Tunnel with Roundabout

In December 2020, work was completed on the 11km Eysturoy Tunnel, the second-longest subsea tunnel for vehicles in the world, and the only such tunnel in the world to feature a roundabout! The tunnel connects the islands of Streymoy (location of Tórshavn, the capital) with the island of Eysturoy for a much faster journey time, and the roundabout features a dramatic light installation by Faroese artist Tróndur Patursson. The cost is from £20 return per vehicle. Pay online in advance here, or drive through the tunnel without stopping and pay at one of the petrol stations listed here.

The 20th G! Festival

This July sees the 20th anniversary of the G! Festival, an eclectic and intimate music festival held in the tiny fjord-side village of Syðrugøta, home to just 400 people. Stages are built on the beach and the football pitch, making this a truly unique three-day event. Caught between the peaks and the ocean, in a break between the cliffs skirting the coastline, Syðrugøta lies within an unrivalled natural amphitheatre and is set against a backdrop of the Faroes’ breathtaking landscape, dominated by grass-carpeted mountains. Over the years, the festival has seen world-class acts perform, including Fat Boy Slim, The Guillemots and Travis, and this year’s line-up includes Faroese artist Eivør Pálsdóttir. The G! Festival takes place from 15-17 July and tickets cost from £173 pp

Hiking Tours made easy

Keen walkers can now plan their routes with help from experts with the new Visit Faroe Islands Hiking Guide which highlights the Faroe Islands’ best hiking tours via old village paths, historically the only connections between villages. You can filter your search by the region you’d like to explore, the difficulty rating, duration and distance to find the right route for you, and you can also search by type, including family-friendly and best hikes for viewpoints. Start with an easy and beautiful 3.3km hike along the seashore between Hellurnar and Oyndarfjørður, or challenge yourself with the 7.9km varied hike from Norðtoftavegur to Klaksvík, taking you through the old village path over the mountain. The guide is incredibly detailed, with descriptions, 3D maps, weather forecasts and facts to help you get the best from your journey. Visit here to plan your hike.

(Image credit: Daniel Villadsen)

How to get to the Faroe Islands

Fly direct from Edinburgh to Vágar Island from £308 pp return. Flights operate twice-weekly (Mondays and Thursdays) from 1 July to December 2021.

Where to stay: Two new 4-star hotels opened in 2020; Hotel Brandan (below) and the Hilton Garden Inn, both situated in the capital, Tórshavn. An overnight stay costs from £153 for two sharing at the Hilton Garden Inn and from £209 for two sharing at Hotel Brandan.

(Image top credit: Chris Riefenberg)



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