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Svínoy and Fugloy - A view from our expert author
The boat rises and falls up to 3m on the swell and ricochets off the quay only to be catapulted back towards the jetty as it strains on its moorings.
The journey that everyone who comes to the Faroe Islands wants to make is the combination of bus and ferry that leads to the country’s two most remote islands: Svínoy and Fugloy. Indeed, much of the attraction of these two last places far out in the North Atlantic lies in the getting there. The weather in this exposed northeastern corner of the country often plays havoc with timetables and arriving here at all is a major achievement. A journey out here is not something to be undertaken on a whim; it requires careful planning, perseverance and not least a large amount of luck. It’s certainly not a journey that is recommended to anyone who suffers from seasickness. Not only are the rolls and swells in this part of the Atlantic particularly unsettling, there is also no proper harbour on either island, which means that passengers must take their life in their hands and leap ashore from the ferry at just the right moment as the boat rises and falls up to 3m on the swell and ricochets off the quay only to be catapulted back towards the jetty as it strains on its moorings. If all this sounds alarming, and indeed it is all the more so in a northeasterly gale, rest assured that there is always someone on land to give you a hand as you fly through the air onto dry land – an experience that is likely to stay with you for quite a while. In a strong tide, the roughest parts of the journey will be when the boat turns out of the sheltered Hvannasund sound to pass through the narrow stretch of water, Svínoyarsund, between Bergið on southern Viðoy and Tangarnir on Svínoy, as well as the final stretch across the open water of Fugloyarfjørður between Svínoy and Fugloy when the boat, quite literally, bobs like a cork. Quite remarkably, there has not been an accident on this route for many years.