Ever since I found out about the Faroe Islands, I have been dying to go. We quickly added this archipelago to our list of most beautiful islands in the world and we started planning our trip.
Based on the pictures I was seeing on the internet, the Faroe Islands looked like something out of a dream, but getting there seemed difficult. Was it worth the hassle? After spending a week exploring these islands, I’m able to honestly answer the question, “are the Faroe Islands worth visiting?”
Are The Faroe Islands Worth Visiting?
The Faroe Islands are an isolated group of islands in the North Atlantic. Situated between Iceland and Norway, these islands are full of extremes.
As I mentioned, I was desperate to see this group of islands in person. I was expecting to have the best trip of my life in the Faroe Islands. With loads of hiking trails, unique landforms, and the most epic cliffs, why wouldn’t we have an amazing time?
There were four components that affected our trip: the weather, the people, the prices, and the adventures. These are all important factors to consider when deciding if it’s worth visiting the Faroe Islands.
Before you begin reading our stance on if the Faroe Islands are worth visiting, remember that this is just our experience.
1. The Weather On The Faroe Islands
Since the Faroe Islands is an archipelago in the North Atlantic, you can expect weather patterns similar to Iceland. We thought we came prepared by packing warm jackets, layers, and rain gear.
Unfortunately, the weather in the Faroe Islands is so extreme that it’s difficult to prepare for it at all.
Our raincoats that held up perfectly in the torrential rainstorms in Iceland were completely demolished by the end of each day in the Faroe Islands. And the warm jackets and layers we packed were just not enough to fight the wind that whipped across the island; mind you, this same gear kept us warm in Svalbard (located in the Arctic!).
Some days were so windy that we couldn’t even leave the house. Keep in mind, we NEVER stay home. We are always willing to brave the weather. But the Faroe Islands were different.
So, if you’re looking for semi-tolerable weather, the Faroe Islands might not be worth visiting.
Note: We were in the Faroe Islands for just over a week and the weather remained the same throughout our trip. We were told by locals that this was completely normal.
How To Prepare For The Weather On The Faroe Islands
To be completely honest, I thought that we were prepared for the weather in the Faroe Islands. It’s difficult to say how to prepare for such high winds and rain because I have never experienced anything like it.
My best advice would be to spend more than a week on the islands. While we were there, we had one day where we were able to go out and enjoy a hike. We still battled the wind (in fact, I was blown over multiple times because of it), but the sun peeked out a few times and the rain kept at bay.
If you spend more than a week on the Faroe Islands, I’m sure you’ll have a few days where the weather is bearable.
2. The People On The Faroe Islands
Wherever we travel in the world, we always attempt to meet a few locals and experience the local way of life. This helps us understand the culture more and appreciate the land more, too.
We have met people from all over the world and have been pleasantly surprised that the majority of them are kind and friendly (except Paris. They weren’t as friendly there). Since we’ve met such kind people throughout Scandinavia, we figured the Faroe Islands would be the same.
Upon arrival on the Faroe Islands, we were met by a grouchy car rental associate. No problem, a lot of people hate their jobs, right? We didn’t hold her behavior against anyone else on the island.
Later, we ran into a few more locals who also treated us in a not-so-friendly way. This soon became a trend and we felt kind of uncomfortable after a few days.
We always try our best to fit in and do as the locals do, but it was blatantly obvious that many of the locals do NOT like tourists.
Note: Our Airbnb hosts were exceptionally nice and offered us loads of advice, so maybe we just had bad luck with everyone else?
How To Interact With The Locals On The Faroe Islands
Tourism is still fairly new to the Faroe Islands. I can completely understand the stress and frustration that the locals must feel toward tourists.
While living in a major ski town in the US, Mike and I encountered rude tourists and people that just didn’t care about our town on a daily basis. To say we were frustrated was an understatement.
The best way to interact with locals anywhere you go is to show respect for their town and the land. Here are a few tips to remember for your next vacation:
1. Go out of your way to leave no trace. Pick up after yourselves and leave the land looking better than the way you found it. Stay on the trail or road; erosion is a real thing!
2. Do as the locals do. Take notes from the locals around you. If they aren’t doing something (like stopping on the side of the busy road to take a picture of something cool), you probably shouldn’t either.
3. Respect private property. Unless you’re in the middle of a town, it’s likely you’re standing on private property. This land is owned by someone else. Respect that and stay on the trail or path provided.
This is especially true if there are obvious signs telling people to keep away. I can’t tell you how many times those signs are ignored by travelers. NOT COOL.
3. The Prices On The Faroe Islands
Scandinavia, in general, is expensive for travel. We’ve spent time in multiple different Scandinavian countries and we were always blown away by the prices.
We expected this before arriving in the Faroe Islands. In fact, this is one of the reasons why we wondered if the Faroe Islands were worth visiting. Would the Faroe Islands be worth the price tag?
To our dismay, the prices in the Faroe Islands were outlandishly more expensive than any other Scandinavian country we had visited, even Iceland!
For a bit of a breakdown on prices, this is what a few different things cost us throughout the week on the Faroe Islands:
Car rental for 7 days: $800 USD
Airbnb for 7 days: $800 USD
A basic meal at a restaurant: $30 USD
Hiking to the most popular landmarks (yes, they charge you to hike on many of the trails): $30 USD each
Now, to the Faroe Islands’ defense, this is an archipelago in the middle of the ocean. Getting food and supplies to this island is not easy and I’m sure it’s ridiculously expensive.
However, there are some things that agitated me, like charging $30 per person to hike to Sørvágsvatn. That’s just silly.
How To Save Money On The Faroe Islands
Mike and I are the king and queen of budget travel.. we are self-declared. We know how to save money while traveling in expensive locations. However, for the Faroe Islands, traveling on a budget posed very difficult.
Here are some things we did to save money on the Faroe Islands and make our time there worth it:
1. Cook for yourself. This saved us thousands of dollars because the price for meals in restaurants was way beyond our budget. We went to the grocery store and stocked up on food for breakfast, lunch, and dinner each day.
Pro-tip: Cooking for yourself will save you money in almost any location in the world (unless you’re in SE Asia). Opt to make yourself food instead of eating at restaurants every day. Save the restaurant visit for one special night during your trip.
2. Travel with friends. During our trip to the Faroe Islands, we brought two of our good friends along. We split the cost of accommodation and the rental car, which saved us all money in the long run.
3. Rent an Airbnb. Whether you rent a private room in someone’s house or an entire apartment, renting an Airbnb will be the cheapest option for accommodation on the Faroe Islands. Be sure to book one with a kitchen so you can cook your own meals!
4. The Adventures On The Faroe Islands
And now for the most important part of visiting the Faroe Islands: the adventures. Are the adventures in the Faroe Islands worth it?
Despite the harsh weather, we made it out to all of the most iconic spots on the Faroe Islands and I will admit, they were breathtakingly beautiful. I am a sucker for a gorgeous and unique landscape and that is what the Faroe Islands offered.
However, my only thought during our trip was, could I see similar landscapes in other countries?
An Attainable Alternative To The Faroe Islands
Although the Faroe Islands are unique and incredible in their own way, I think you could find places similar to it in Iceland. After two long trips to Iceland, I have realized that there is more than meets the eye. Getting off the beaten path will be key for your adventure.
If you’re looking for a more affordable and easily attainable visit than the Faroe Islands, I suggest spending time on the west coast of Iceland. Be sure to add Hornstrandir and the Westfjords to your Iceland itinerary and you’re sure to see sights comparable to the Faroe Islands.
Our Experience Visiting The Faroe Islands
Now, don’t let me be a Debby-downer for you. If you’re set on visiting the Faroe Islands, absolutely do it. I only wanted to share my experience with the Faroe Islands to be upfront about what you are getting yourself into.
Also, keep in mind that not everyone has the same experience. Perhaps you’ll talk to a few other explorers that have truly enjoyed their time on the Faroe Islands.
Don’t let us hold you back! In fact, if you do go to the Faroe Islands, we’d love to hear about your experience.
How Do You Get To The Faroe Islands?
If you’re set on visiting the Faroe Islands, awesome! There are four major cities you can fly out of to reach Vagar Airport in the Faroe Islands and they include Edinburgh, Copenhagen, Reykjavik, Bergen. Find direct flights from each of these cities year-round.
We flew out of Copenhagen to get to the Faroe Islands and only paid $100 roundtrip. That price alone made it worth visiting the Faroe Islands.
You won’t find cheap flights to the Faroe Islands just anywhere. Be sure to check out our post and learn how we save thousands on travel: The Best Website for Cheap Flights.
The Wrap-Up: Are The Faroe Islands Worth Visiting?
So, are the Faroe Islands worth visiting? Yes and no.
We are glad we went to the Faroe Islands but we definitely wouldn’t go back anytime soon. There are other places on our bucket list that take precedence.
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