Gjógv on Eysturoy in the Faroe Islands

From Eiði to Gjógv: Exploring Northern Eysturoy

Before venturing to the Faroe Islands, I knew I wouldn’t be able to leave without doing the famed drive from Eiði to Gjógv that passes over the tallest mountain in the Faroes, Slættaratindur.  I wasn’t likely going to have time to do an all-day hike around the area, mostly because there was still a bit of winter weather atop the mountain, but the drive itself was sure to offer some incredible views.  I was also looking forward to exploring Eiði and Gjógv as I heard both were worthy of my time.

Eiði’s claim to fame is that it is home to Risin and Kellingin, two of the most renowned sea stacks in the Faroe Islands (you can get a killer view from Tjørnuvík over on Streymoy).  The town of Eiði has 669 residents and the name itself means isthmus in Faroese.

View of Eiði from Streymoy

Eiði on Eysturoy in the Faroe Islands

View of Eiði from Streymoy

From Eiði, you can hike across the highest peak in the Faroes, Slættaratindur, which proudly stands 882 meters high and offers the best view in the entire Faroes.  From its peak, you are able to see all eighteen islands from Suðuroy in the south to Viðoy in the north.  While we didn’t do the four-hour or so hike this time around, we did do the drive, which greeted us with fog so thick that we were unable to see even merely a few feet in front of us.  I have driven in some thick fog before in Florida and other parts of the US, but nothing prepares you for the wrath of the Faroese fog.  We crept across the mountain and crossed our fingers that a sheep wouldn’t dart out in front of our vehicle.  That view of eighteen islands became a distant desire at that point.  During the winter, this drive is evidently near impossible and the road can become blocked (for those of you reading this that are planning a winter trip to the islands).

We eventually made it out of the fog only to emerge to a road overlooking the picturesque village of Gjógv, population 49.  Gjógv is fairly popular amongst travelers and I don’t know anyone who has been to the islands who has skipped this quaint place by the sea.  Gjógv means ‘gorge’ in Faroese and represents the famed sea-filled gorge that photographers flock to in hoards to take a photo of.  Here is a photo of the sea instead:

Gjógv on Eysturoy in the Faroe Islands

Despite being only 63km from the capital city of Tórshavn, the village can leave you feeling light years away from reality and society.  There is not much happening there; nature is all one needs to keep occupied.  Gjógv has one of the best natural harbors in the Faroe Islands and has a rich fishing history.  Rich history doesn’t come without a tragedy or two, and Gjógv is no exception.  In the village, you will undoubtedly see a memorial dedicated to the many fishermen who lost their lives at sea.  We never saw another soul in Gjógv, not even a local, so this really humanized the place and reminded me that life on the beautiful Faroe Islands didn’t come without countless sacrifices.  We paid our respects to the place and were incredibly humbled by it.  The memorial is imaged by a female and two children looking out to the sea with the names of the lost fishermen behind them.  The statue was created by Janus Kamban.  His name is well-known across the Faroes for his commemorative statues throughout the islands.

Statue in Gjogv, Faroe Islands fishermen

Close to the memorial is the village church.  This church dates back to 1929 and was the first in the Faroes to conduct a sermon in the Faroese language.

Church in Gjogv, Faroe Islands

In Gjógv, one can stay at the renowned guesthouse (and one of the few places to stay at around there) Gjáargarður.  The guesthouse offers free wifi and the owners are extremely knowledgeable about the area and hiking.  The guesthouse also has a seasonal restaurant.  If you’re looking for alternative places to stay in Gjógv, you can also check out Airbnb where a couple of listings exist.

Hikes are in abundance in and around the area.  Ambadalur Valley is located to the northwest of Gjógv and offers a view of the highest free-standing sea stack in the Faroes and is known to locals as Búgvin.  Seabirds are in abundance in this area and Búgvin is a safe haven for them.  To the east of Gjógv, you will find Tyril and Middagsfjall, two tall peaks that offer some worthy hikes alongside their killer views of Funningur’s Fjord, or Funningsfjørður.  To see more about the hikes in and around Gjógv, you can check out this link.

If you’re planning a day trip to Northern Eysturoy, I would definitely stock up on food before making the journey out there.  Eiði offers more civilization and a place to purchase food, but Gjógv is smaller and a bit more remote.

The drive across Slættaratindur is windy and not for the weak.  As someone who has a fear of heights, I am almost thankful that the fog blocked all views as I probably would have succumbed to a panic attack going down the mountain.  Fog is ever-present on this drive, as is undesirable weather, so I do recommend being focused and prepared for it ahead of time and ensuring that you can drive it without any issues.  Winter tires should be on all rental cars in the Faroes, so that shouldn’t be something of concern.  If this drive isn’t your ‘cup of tea’, you can take an easier route back which will take you through the historical village of Funningur.

Gjogv, Faroe Islands

Gjogv, Faroe Islands

Gjogv, Faroe Islands

Gjogv, Faroe Islands

Gjogv, Faroe Islands

Gjogv, Faroe Islands

Gjogv, Faroe Islands

Gjógv on Eysturoy in the Faroe Islands

Gjogv, Faroe Islands

Gjogv, Faroe Islands

Gjogv, Faroe Islands

Additional Resources:

This blog has a great recap of some local hikes that are essential to outdoor lovers traveling to Gjógv

Visit Faroe Islands talks about the rugged island of Eysturoy

Melissa documents her hike to Ambadalur on her blog

Sidetracked Blog documents their Eysturoy experience with some killer photos (it was so green when they were there!)

Northern Eysturoy in the Faroe Islands: From Eiði to Gjógv

To read more about my travels in the Faroe Islands, check out the following posts:

SANDOY, FAROE ISLANDS: THE PERFECT DAY TRIP FROM TÓRSHAVN

KIRKJUBØUR: A TASTE OF FAROESE HISTORY ON STREYMOY

Northern Eysturoy in the Faroe Islands: From Eiði to Gjógv

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Megan is a digital marketing strategist and world traveler based in Frankfurt, Germany but hailing from Richmond, Virginia. She has traveled to over 85 countries and 45 US states and has a special love for the Nordics and Eastern Europe. Her passions are animals, the Pittsburgh Steelers, Ohio State football, craft beer, coffee, and copious amounts of concrete. She is also an advocate for removing dill from all dishes globally.
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32 Comments
  • Sara
    Posted at 16:38h, 18 June Reply

    Nice post!

  • Daniel Ryan
    Posted at 16:42h, 18 June Reply

    Wow !
    What a beautiful post !
    All the pictures you posted on this post are really really amazing and all the places are so much charming !
    Hills are like a love !
    Thanks a lot for sharing your post!
    Have a nice day!
    _______Daniel
    Daniel Ryan recently posted..Best Air Mattresses for Camping 2017My Profile

    • Megan Starr
      Posted at 17:53h, 18 June Reply

      Thanks so much! Hope you get to travel there one day if you haven’t already been!

  • Daniel Ryan
    Posted at 16:47h, 18 June Reply

    Wow ! Informative post! Hikes are in abundance in and around the area. Ambadalur Valley is located to the northwest of Gjógv and offers a view of the highest free-standing sea stack in the Faroes and is known to locals as Búgvin! Thanks!
    Daniel Ryan recently posted..Best Air Mattresses for Camping 2017My Profile

  • Amalia
    Posted at 21:30h, 19 June Reply

    I absolutely love your photos, they have such quality that I actually included Faroe Islands into my bucket list for the next months!

    • Megan Starr
      Posted at 21:35h, 19 June Reply

      Yes! It definitely is a must see for anyone loving nature and the outdoors. Just a spectacular land!

  • Gale
    Posted at 10:47h, 20 June Reply

    Faroe islands!! 😍 This place is wonderful. Truly hiking is the best way to explore such places, i hope to be here one day.

    • Megan Starr
      Posted at 16:38h, 20 June Reply

      I really hope you can make it one day! It is out of this world <3

  • Miranda
    Posted at 17:44h, 21 June Reply

    This thick fog just reminds me of the movie from the ’80s “The Fog”; I’m just waiting for a ghost ship to come lurking from the ocean! But really, haha love the mystery “look” to the pictures which really makes me want to visit to see the beautiful scenery!

    • Megan Starr
      Posted at 09:35h, 22 June Reply

      The fog was sooo freaky! It definitely added to the mystery of the place, but I don’t wish driving in that upon my worst enemy haha :) Thanks for your comment xx

  • Mariella
    Posted at 18:56h, 21 June Reply

    What a great adventure! It seems like you had an awesome time exploring Northern Eysturoy :) Safe travels! xoxo – Mariella

    • Megan Starr
      Posted at 09:34h, 22 June Reply

      Was such a gem of a place in the Faroes… I’d love to go back and do it all over again (minus the heavy fog haha).

  • The Italian Chica
    Posted at 19:05h, 21 June Reply

    What an enchanting place! It seems to be inside some fairy tale…and the houses are so cute <3 Nice articles and beautiful pictures!!

    • Megan Starr
      Posted at 09:34h, 22 June Reply

      Thanks so much! Was truly a magical setting!

  • Kelly
    Posted at 19:18h, 21 June Reply

    This looks amazing. I would love to visit the memorial to the lost fosherman. Looks touching. Such a beautiful place.

    • Megan Starr
      Posted at 09:32h, 22 June Reply

      It was really sad to see such a tragic piece of history existing in such a stunning place for sure…

  • Meg
    Posted at 19:54h, 21 June Reply

    WOW! This place looks like a DREAM COME TRUE for me. Seriously. I might go out there and just never come back. Stunning photography and excellent read!

    • Megan Starr
      Posted at 09:29h, 22 June Reply

      I truly was tempted to never leave haha! I’d love to move there for a year or two actually!!

  • Theresa
    Posted at 20:11h, 21 June Reply

    The photos are awesome. I truly knew next to nothing about these islands until now.

    • Megan Starr
      Posted at 09:11h, 22 June Reply

      So glad I brought them to your attention :) I hope you get to see them with your own eyes someday!

  • Melissa
    Posted at 01:22h, 22 June Reply

    Your photos are absolutely stunning! Thanks for the great info. I’m a big fan of hiking every where I go.

    • Megan Starr
      Posted at 09:10h, 22 June Reply

      Thanks for the comment! Yes, I’m a huge hiker so it is always a priority when I travel.

  • Alice Ford
    Posted at 04:59h, 22 June Reply

    What beautiful photos and a great story. I have heard so much about the Faroe Islands. It is so alluring and magical looking. Great captures of the andscape despite the fog.

    • Megan Starr
      Posted at 09:08h, 22 June Reply

      It really is one of those places that you just pinch yourself when there and can’t believe a place like that actually exists….

  • Ria Molde
    Posted at 07:12h, 22 June Reply

    Visited the Islands in May, totally in love! Great to read your story!

    • Megan Starr
      Posted at 09:07h, 22 June Reply

      That is so awesome! I love meeting others who have been and getting their perspective on the place. If you have any writings or pics public, I’d love to see them :)

  • ada
    Posted at 11:45h, 22 June Reply

    I had no idea we have such a beauty not so far, here in Europe! Faroe Islands looks stunning! I love reading blog posts like that when I learn so much whats around! I bet hiking there was wonderful! Your photos are fabulous!

  • Megan B.
    Posted at 19:13h, 22 June Reply

    Wow! Your photos are absolutely incredible. I can’t imagine living somewhere so remote! Thanks for sharing your experiences exploring this gorgeous area.

  • Frank
    Posted at 07:02h, 23 June Reply

    So beautiful in its desolation. I just wonder what it’s like living in a place like that. Imagine a place with a population of 49??
    I was also thinking you must have had a hell of a time pronouncing some of those names. Gjógv, Slættaratindur, Viðoy. I’d hate to be that guy asking for directions.
    Frank recently posted..Tips on visiting Creel, Copper Canyon, Mexico. And what you really have to know.My Profile

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