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See the striking beauty of the Lofoten Islands from the port of Leknes, a major port for many cruises around the Nordland region, and one of the first destinations you'll find that sits within the Arctic Circle. Here colourful houses nestle on the waterfronts, surrounded by towering mountains and sandy beaches that lie on all sides – a magnificent, rugged landscape which was once home to the Vikings.
Whether you're taking in the sights of Leknes itself or journeying further afield to the surrounding archipelago, there's no shortage of spectacular sights to see during your Nordic voyage. The landscape offers its own incredible natural sightseeing, but be sure to take a trip ashore to see the enduring heritage that could turn this cruise destination into an unforgettable experience:
The striking red Buksnes Church is the main tourist attraction in the town, built all in wood in the ‘dragon' style, which was popular throughout Scandinavia at the turn of the last century. The current building was completed in 1905, although the picturesque site has been the location of a church since the 14th century. Visitors may want to look inside this beautiful church too – where the slender columns, archways and pews are all made of white and bare wood.
Cruises to Leknes often include excursions to the breathtaking Lofoten Islands, a landscape as varied as it is beautiful. At first glance the islands appear to be all but inhospitable, a dramatic mountain range jutting up from the sea. But over the course of your adventure you'll find farmland and fishing villages aplenty, thriving since ancient times thanks to the rich seas, fertile soil and moderate climate. During your journey you might catch a glimpse of wooden racks used to dry fish, unchanged in design since the days of the Vikings. You could also get the chance to see the charming fishing village of Ballstad, all whilst enjoying the incredible, ever-changing vistas that these islands offer.
Lofotr Viking Museum
Experience the fascinating history of the Vikings in Lofotr, a living, breathing museum built exactly where its treasures were found. Exhibitions and demonstrations during your visit can give you a true feel for Viking life, where you'll have the chance to see artifacts and reconstructions, talks and craft demonstrations that illustrate this fascinating ancient culture with love and enthusiasm.
Leknes offers a wide variety of souvenir shops to browse, where you can find artworks, jewellery and knitware – and don't be surprised to find plenty of postcards and photographs of the stunning scenery too. The museum village of Nusfjord offers visitors a selection of cafes, bars and shops, and metal sculptures of seabirds are also a particular local speciality.
It would be criminal not to try the fish during your time in Norway, and luckily there's a great choice of restaurants in town that specialise in shellfish and seafood dishes. There are also options for buffet meals and various cafes, if you feel like a lighter bite in-between your explorations of the area.
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