Wednesday, 16 May 2018

Måsøy, island of Måsøya - the most remote little hamlet in Norway.

The small Island of Måsøya is one among many on the Barents Sea coastal waters of Norway. At 71º N, it's quite more northernly than the Faröe Islands (62º N).

Most of the island is uninhabited, exposed and treeless rock, and there are just a few miles of roads around its only settlement, Måsøy. A forgotten misty-moisty village surrounded by great sub-arctic scenery make it a perfect Ultima Thule.

Måsøy is a fishing village in Måsøya, at the northern extreme of Norway, west of the larger island Magerøya, and about 300 km above the Artic Circle. For the Norwegian standards, this is a 'poor' community in a forlon piece of land. There are no trees, only a few shrubs, bush and grass, some berries. A herd of a few dozens reindeer shares the island with a few dozens residents, who barely have the minimum common amenities and conveniences.

Glorious scenery but unfriendly living conditions.

Måsøy, island of Måsøya

Coordinates : 71° 01′ N, 24° 59′ E
Population : ~40 (whole island)

Vestervågen, the eastern side of the settlement.

The village is located on the southern part of the island on an isthmus between two small but wide inlets, Østervågen (the fishing port) and Vestervågen.

The island is only accessible by boat; there is a regular ferry and a speedboat.

Damp weather most of the year.

The village was an administrative center decades ago, with its harbour, church and school, and gave name to a large community in Finmark.

Vestervågen sandy bay, back to the church.

The best in Måsøya: white sandy beaches in the freezing waters of the North Sea.

Vestervågen is also the sandy side.

Presently there is only a modest grocery shop with post service. The local primary school closed in 2016. Europe is really too far away.

The school, still looking new, wonderfully located.

As students reduced to one, the school eventually closed and is now for sale.

Post and grocery shop.

Måsøy has a speedboat connection with the municipal center. All the shipping traffic takes place in the east side, Østervågen.

Good harbor conditions help to the fishing activity. After years of stagnation, the capture of crab has been reactivating a small fleet.

The harbour buildings, mainly warehouses and offices.

Ferry departure.

Decorated window at the ferry's waiting shack.

The church in Måsøy

The first church was built in 1747; a century later a new church was built, but like most other in Finnmark, Måsøy Church was burned down by the Germans in 1944.

This new church was completed in 1953, and was designed in similarity to the burned timber church.

Ah, and finally, this is the ideal place to enjoy a magical midnattsol, midnight sun !