Risøyhamn, Norway

Risøyhamn is a village on the island of Andøya. It lies by the Risøy strait, where a bridge connects Andøya with Hinnøya. Several bird colonies are found close by, including one with at least 160,000 nesting puffins. The area has enormous peat bogs, large cloudberry marshes and coal deposits (not commercially viable). The mine at Ramså is popularly known as ‘the open geology book’. It consists of 300 km thick deposits of sandstone containing coal under layers of sandstone and shale as well as the complete skeletons of ichthyosaurs, enormous fish-like dinosaurs that roamed the area 150 million years ago. The Norwegians arrived much later, and close to Risøyhamn there are found burial mounds as well as the remains of former Iron Age settlements.

Today whale safaris are a major attraction, where you can experience the elegant 20 m long, 40-tonne sperm whales.

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