Key Faroe Islands facts as remote destination opens up to UK holidaymakers

Direct flights to the Faroe Islands will launch from the UK next month giving more choice for holidaymakers wanting to head abroad this year.

Although the islands have been on the government’s green list since May 17, they previously were only accessible via Denmark which had a travel ban on visitors from Britain.

That has now been relaxed and Atlantic Airways has announced it will begin flights from Edinburgh on July 1 meaning the Faroe islands joins Iceland and Gibraltar as green list quarantine-free holiday options for Britons desperate for an overseas break.

This remote archipelago – located midway between Iceland and Norway, north of Scotland – 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.

Favourite activities include hiking, birdwatching, fishing and adventure sports. There is also a vibrant food scene with a Michelin-starred restaurant KOKS.

It consists of 18 separate islands stretching across 1,399 sq kilometres. There was a total of 130,000 overseas visitors in 2019.

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 July 1 to December 2021. Visit www.atlantic.fo for further information.

Where to stay

Two new 4-star hotels opened in 2020; Hotel Brandan 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.

Visit most remote James Bond movie location

Set for release in 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.

Drive through a subsea tunnel

In December 2020, work was completed on the 11km Eysturoy Tunnel, the second-longest subsea tunnel for vehicles in the world, and the only one to feature a roundabout. The tunnel connects the islands of Streymoy (location of Tórshavn, the capital) with the island of Eysturoy. The roundabout features a dramatic light installation by Faroese artist Tróndur Patursson. The cost is from £20 return per vehicle.

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.

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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’ breath-taking 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 July 15-17 and tickets cost from £173 pp – https://gfestival.fo/.



Detective Inspector Sarah Lund, played by Sofie Gråbøl) wears the distinctive knitwear
Detective Inspector Sarah Lund, played by Sofie Gråbøl) wears the distinctive knitwear

Faroes’ food and fashion

Traditional Faroes food is mainly based on meat, seafood and potatoes and uses few fresh vegetables. Mutton of the Faroe sheep is the basis of many meals, and one of the most popular treats is skerpikjøt, well aged, wind-dried mutton, which is quite chewy.

Another Faroese specialty is made from pilot whale meat and blubber – but not for those with delicate tastebuds. Fresh fish is also widely-consumed and more popular.

There are also two breweries on the islands.

There has been a great interest in Faroese sweaters made famous in the TV series The Killing, where the main actress (Detective Inspector Sarah Lund, played by Sofie Gråbøl) wears the distinctive knitwear.

Visitors can buy one of the iconic designs at fashion store Guðrun & Guðrun.