Julie Norway 14 Comments

If you are making a decision about where to stay in the Lofoten Islands, you have a lot of options.

Take your pick from rorbuers (fisherman cabins that have been converted into small apartments), hotels, hostels, and campsites.

Not only do you have to choose what kind of accommodation to stay in, you also have to decide where to stay. The Lofoten Islands are a large area and it takes several hours to drive from one side to the other. Your options include larger towns like Svolvaer or Leknes, picture perfect Reine or Hamnøy, or a number of smaller towns in between.

A Quick Overview of the Lofoten Islands

The Lofoten Islands are a wonderland of jagged mountains, white sandy beaches, and beautiful fjords. Fishing is a way of life here, and as tourism explodes, many of the fishing cabins are being converted into accommodations for travelers, called a rorbu.

The Lofoten Islands stretch from the southern tip of Hinnøya all of the way to the southern tip of Moskenesøya. Many of the best things to do on the Lofoten Islands are located between Svolvaer and the tiny town of Å.

The Lofoten Islands are located in the Arctic Circle, but due to the warm Gulf Stream current, temperatures may be warmer than you would expect for an area located so far north. The northern lights can be see from September until April. From late May to mid-July, you can experience the midnight sun. The Lofoten Islands make a great year-round destination.

We visited the Lofoten Islands in early July. The sun never set and we had a wide range of weather conditions in the five days we were here. The weather started off amazing, with bright, sunny skies and unusually warm temperatures. The following two days, clouds moved in and the temperatures dropped to 16°C (60°F). During our last two days, it rained almost all day, keeping is indoors and postponing our flight off of the islands. So, be prepared for a wide range of weather conditions while you are here.

Where to Stay in the Lofoten Islands

The main towns of Svolvaer, Leknes, and Reine all make great places to stay. There are also some wonderful small towns and fishing villages to choose from.

There are a few things to consider when choosing where to stay in the Lofoten Islands. The larger towns of Svolvaer and Leknes will have a lot of dining options and are accessible by airplane. The smaller towns like Reine, Hamnøy, and Å are more charming and picturesque.

You will also need to consider driving distances between towns. If you stay in the far southern or northeastern part of the Lofoten Islands, you will be driving more to get to the sights (although that’s not a bad thing…around every bend is another gorgeous view and I doubt you will get tired of it).


Svolvaer is the capital city of the Lofoten Islands. This large town has an airport and a port where you can take a ferry to and from the mainland. Since it is one of the largest towns in the Lofoten Islands, you will have a lot of restaurants to choose from if you stay here.

Svolvaer Norway

Svolvaer, seen from Fløya

Driving Distances

  • Svolvaer to Leknes: 70 km, 1.25 hours
  • Svolvaer to Reine: 121 km, 2 hours

Anker Brygge

Anker Brygge is a rorbu resort that offers 27 cabins and suites. Located on a small, man-made island, some rooms offer views of the town of Svolvaer. Take your pick from rorbu suites and rooms that accommodate between two and four people. All suites have a patio and a small kitchenette.

Hotel Anker Brygge

Anker Brygge | Where to Stay in the Lofoten Islands

Svinøya Rorbuer

This is another property where you can stay in a traditional rorbu. Svinøya Rorbuer is located a short distance outside of Svolvaer, with a beautiful setting between the mountains and the ocean. Take your pick from one-bedroom cottages to a four-bedroom house that can accommodate up to eight people. People who stay here say the view is so beautiful that it is hard to leave.

Hotel Svinoya Rorbuer

Svinøya  Rorbuer | Where to Stay in the Lofoten Islands

Hammerstad Camping

If you are traveling by camper van, plan on camping, or are looking for a highly rated budget accommodation, Hammerstad Camping is worth considering. This property offers a number of cabins that can accommodate two to nine people.


Kabelvåg is a very small town located just a few miles down the road from Svolvaer. If you like the idea of staying outside of town, but having restaurants nearby, Kabelvåg is a good pick. We spent one night here while road tripping through the Lofoten Islands.

Nyvågar Rorbuhotell

This is where we stayed and we loved it! We spent one night in a rorbu. The first floor had a small kitchen, living area, and bathroom. On the second floor were two bedrooms with two twin beds. The rooms were clean, quiet, and gave us a lot of space to spread out. Onsite is a restaurant and breakfast is included.

Get prices, read reviews, and see photos on Booking.com.

Nyvagar Rorbuhotell | Where to Stay in the Lofoten Islands

Nyvågar Rorbuhotell | Where to Stay in the Lofoten Islands


Leknes is centrally located in the Lofoten Islands. This is also one of the larger towns in the islands, so you will have all of the perks that come with that, such as restaurants, shopping, and even an airport.

Driving Distances
  • Leknes to Reine: 56 km, 1 hour
  • Leknes to Svolvaer: 70 km, 1.25 hours

Lofoten Basecamp

This is a gorgeous property located just a few miles away from Leknes. Each villa has three bedrooms that can accommodate up to six people. Every unit comes with a kitchen, a washing machine, and a terrace with a beautiful sea view. This highly rated property tends to sell out fast, so if you’re interested, book it as soon as you know your dates.

Hotel Lofoten Basecamp

Lofoten Basecamp | Where to Stay in the Lofoten Islands

Get prices, read reviews, and see photos on Booking.com.

Scandic Leknes Lofoten

This hotel is located in the town of Leknes. Prices here are more budget friendly than staying in a rorbuer. Plus, this hotel is conveniently located near the airport, perfect if you are using the Leknes Airport to fly in or out of the Lofoten Islands.

Get prices, read reviews, and see photos on Booking.com.

PRO TRAVEL TIP:  Accommodations tend to book up fast so make your reservations as soon as you know your dates. The busiest season to visit the Lofoten Islands are the summer months. We made our reservations in February for our stay in July and even then, many places were already sold out for our dates.


Nusfjord is one of the best preserved fishing villages in the Lofoten Islands. It’s located a bit out of the way, which can be a good or a bad thing, depending upon your travel style.

Driving Distances
  • Nusfjord to Reine: 41 km, 50 minutes
  • Nusfjord to Leknes: 27 km, 30 minutes
  • Nusfjord to Svolvaer: 92 km, 1.5 hours

Nusfjord Arctic Resort

Nusfjord Arctic Resort is more than just a collection of restored fisherman’s cabins. It’s a historic property, with a restaurant, a pub, and a small museum. This is a tourist attraction, so there will be people who visit the property during the daytime. If you don’t like the idea of having a bunch of tourists milling about outside your door, this isn’t the place for you. However, if you like the idea of staying on a historic property, check it out. If you choose not to stay here, you can still visit it during the daytime, like we did.

Nusfjord | Where to Stay in the Lofoten Islands

Nusfjord Arctic Resort | Where to Stay in the Lofoten Islands


Earth Trekkers

Stay in one of the renovated fisherman’s cabins that can accommodate up to four people. Nusfjord Rorbuer has a beautiful setting, tucked away on a fjord amidst the rocky mountains.


Hamnøy is a small fishing village located right next to Reine. This is where we stayed and we had a wonderful experience.

Reine, with its collection of red and yellow fishing cabins on the water, with the backdrop of the Lofoten mountains, is one of the most picturesque spots on the Lofoten Islands. Everyone road trips down here at some point, so the town can get very busy midday. But by 5 pm, most of the day-trippers are gone and Reine and Hamnøy are quiet again.

We loved it here. We loved how quiet and peaceful it felt in the evenings. It was wonderful walking to dinner, taking in the views, and hearing the seagulls (there are a lot of noisy seagulls here!).

Driving Distances
  • Hamnøy to Leknes: 52 km, 1 hour
  • Hamnøy to Svolvaer: 116 km, 2 hours

Reinefjorden Sjøhus

This is where we stayed and it was wonderful. We stayed in a two-bedroom apartment, which is really a two-level cabin with a kitchen and a living area. The view from the living room was AMAZING! We could look across the water to Sakrisøy and Reine and see Reinebringen in the background. My only complaint is that they do not have black out curtains, so with the midnight sun, I did find it difficult to sleep. That’s easy to fix by bringing along a sleeping mask. But without a doubt, we would stay here again.

Where to Stay in Reine | Where to Stay in the Lofoten Islands

Reinefjorden Sjøhus | Where to Stay in the Lofoten Islands


Reinefjorden Sjohus | Where to Stay in the Lofoten Islands

View from our room | Where to Stay in the Lofoten Islands

Take your pick from a traditional hotel room, a fisherman’s cabin, or a seahouse, which is a two-level house with two bedrooms, a bathroom, a kitchen, and a living area. We stayed in the seahouse.

Get prices, read reviews, and see photos on Booking.com.

Eliassen Rorbuer

This is the most iconic property on the Lofoten Islands…the red fishing cabins set against a backdrop of Reinefjord and the Lofoten mountains. And guess what, you can stay here! Take your pick from 35 renovated fishing cabins. The cabins can accommodate two to four people and some offer a sea view.

Get prices, read reviews, and see photos on Booking.com.

Hamnoy | Where to Stay in the Lofoten Islands

Eliasson Rorbuer | Where to Stay in the Lofoten Islands


Reine is one of the most popular spots to visit in the Lofoten Islands. It is located right next to Hamnøy. There are a bunch of hotels to choose from, as well as several restaurants and there is a grocery store in town.

Lofoten Islands

Reine and Hamnøy seen from Reinebringen

Reine Rorbuer

This is another classic rorbuer property located in Reine. Take your pick from one-bedroom, two-bedroom, and three-bedroom cottages. Onsite is Gammelbua, a restaurant that serves traditional Norwegian food.

Get prices, read reviews, and see photos on Booking.com.

Sakrisøy Rorbuer

This is another highly rated property that offers the classic rorbuer experience in the heart of Reine. One and two-bedroom cottages are available and the cottages offer a terrace overlooking the water. Sakrisøy Rorbuer tends to sell out fast so make your reservations as soon as you know your dates.

Sakrisoy | Where to Stay in the Lofoten Islands

Sakrisøy Rorbuer | Where to Stay in the Lofoten Islands

Sakrisøy Gjestegård

This is a restored manor house in Reine. The guesthouse has 10 rooms that share a living area and kitchen. Some rooms share a bathroom and the deluxe rooms have a private bathroom and flat screen TV’s.

Get prices, read reviews, and see photos on Booking.com.


The tiny town with the tiny name of Å (pronounced aw) marks the southernmost point of the Lofoten Islands, at least what is accessible by car. There’s not much more here than some houses, a great bakery, and a Norwegian fishing museum. However, there is a great budget friendly place to stay.

A Norway

Staying in A | Where to Stay in the Lofoten Islands

Salteriet Hostel

Located right on the water in Å, this hostel offers twin and triple rooms with a shared bathroom.

Get prices, read reviews, and see photos on Booking.com.

Our Recommendations

There are a lot of options in the Lofoten Islands and even with our narrowed down list, picking a place may still feel overwhelming. So, how do you decide where to stay? Here are a few recommendations based on traveling style and budget.

As far as location goes, staying in Reine or Hamnøy is our first pick. It’s hard to beat the scenery here, and with a wide range of accommodations to choose from, not to mention access to restaurants and a grocery store, this is a great place to base yourself.

If you want the classic rorbuer experience in this area, consider Eliassen Rorbuer or Reinefjorden Sjøhus in Hamnøy, or Sakrisøy Rorbuer in Reine. If you are a budget traveler, consider Sakrisøy Gjestegård in Reine or go a little farther down the road to Salteriet Hostel in Å.

If you want to stay somewhere centrally located in the Lofoten Islands that gets rave reviews, consider Lofoten Basecamp.

If you are a budget traveler, consider Hammerstad Camping in Svolvaer, Sakrisøy Gjestegård in Reine, or Salteriet Hostel in Å.

If we did it again (and I hope we do!), we would stay in both Nyvågar Rorbuhotell and Reinefjorden Sjøhus again. Both were amazing and oh, that view from Reinefjorden Sjohus! However, I’d also be interested in trying Lofoten Basecamp.

And if you are road tripping through the Lofoten Islands, you can stay at more than one place. It may make sense to spend a day or two near Svolvaer and then journey down to Reine and Hamnøy.

For more information to help you plan your road trip through the Lofoten Islands, read our article Lofoten Islands Itinerary: Complete Guide for First Time Visitors

If you are planning a trip to the Lofoten Islands and have questions about where to stay in the Lofoten Islands, let us know in the comment section below.

More Information for Your Trip to Norway and the Lofoten Islands:

BEST OF THE LOFOTEN ISLANDS: For an overview of the best things to do, read our Lofoten Islands Top Ten List. Great hikes in the Lofoten Islands include Ryten, Reinebringen, Festvagtind, and Svolvaer Floya. For a big adventure, climb Svolvaergeita for one of the most unique experiences in the Lofoten Islands. 

NORTHERN NORWAY ITINERARY: On this 10 day Norway itinerary, road trip through Senja and the Vesteralen Islands, two beautiful off the beaten path destinations, and visit the Lofoten Islands.

BEST OF NORWAY ITINERARY: In this guide, we share two different ways to plan a 10 day trip that includes both the Lofoten Islands and southern Norway.

NORWAY TRAVEL INSPIRATION: Norway is one of the most beautiful countries we have visited. Don’t miss our article Northern Norway in Photos to see some gorgeous shots of Norway. For a list of the best places to visit in Norway, check out our Norway Bucket List.

SVALBARD: Plan the perfect visit to Svalbard with our Svalbard Travel Guide. We also have articles about the best things to do in Longyearbyen, what to pack for Svalbard in the summer, and how much does it cost to visit Svalbard?

For more information on how to plan your trip, visit the Visit Norway website.

Are you planning a trip to Norway? Read all of our articles about Norway in our Norway Travel Guide.


Lofoten Islands Norway Where to Stay


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Comments 14

  1. Avatar for Lance


    I planned to travel alone to Lofoten from mid July this year for about 1 to 3 week. As I don’t drive so what is your recommendation of my itinerary & budget accommodation using the public transport there in Lofoten?

    Thank you

    1. Avatar for Julie Post

      Hello Lance. We had a car in the Lofoten Islands so don’t have experience with public transportation. I recommend looking into bus schedules and ferry schedules, familiarizing yourself with the main hubs, and then choosing one or two of these towns as your place to stay. The bus schedules will also let you know where you can go and how long it will take to travel around. It would also be worth looking into if Uber works in the Lofoten Islands (or some other ride share app). Uber could potentially get you to places the buses can’t (if there is Uber in the Lofoten Islands). Cheers, Julie

  2. Avatar for Amy Haralson
    Amy Haralson

    Hi Julie, all your recommendations are so helpful! I have been making reservations this last week of January for the last week of June and there is already very limited availability at the places in Reine and Hamnoy that you recommend. Just want other readers to know to start earlier than I did. Also, Reinefjorden Sjhus where you stayed told me that there is a construction site nearby that may change the view. They said they would send me pictures in May/June if I request them. This is a little concerning. I double booked us at a place in Reine that gets a score of 9.5 on booking.com called Rostad Retro Rorbuer, as all the other places you mentioned were either sold out or didn’t have options left that I liked. Would love to know if there is a reason you didn’t mention this property, or there are just too many to mention? Thanks!

    1. Avatar for Julie Post

      Hello Amy. Thank you so much for these updates. This guide was written a few years ago and it is on my list to do a big update. It could be that that Rostad property is relatively new to Booking.com and/or is getting better review scores now. But I’ll look into it and potentially add it to this guide. But if it gets a 9.5, that is a very good score so hold onto it until you get the photos from Reinefjorden. Cheers, Julie

      1. Avatar for Amy Haralson
        Amy Haralson

        Thanks Julie, just wanted to give you another update on the construction that I received a message about today. A sauna and cabin are being built in front of the sea house you stayed in and in front of other apartments. They said the view will be affected and that they can send me pictures in June.

        As far as Rostad Retro Rorbuer, I chose to cancel those reservations because of the lack of photos and not really knowing what I was getting. They told me they were remodeling the unit I had reserved and could send photos later. It may be very nice. Some units have a washing machine included which I haven’t seen other places.

        Now we are double booked at Eliassen in the Superior Cottages, which were added 2019/2020. I’m sure it will be amazing wherever we end up!

        1. Avatar for Julie Post

          Hello Amy. Thanks again for all of these updates! And I agree, where ever you stay will be amazing. It’s such a lovely town and we liked walking over the bridges to dinner at night, when things get a lot quieter after the day trippers leave. Cheers, Julie

      2. Avatar for Amy Haralson
        Amy Haralson

        I received this message this morning…The cabins and saunas will be built on the ground floor so from Klippfiskbrygga’s apartment you should mostly see the roof of the new cabins. The fjord and mountain view will be still there. 🙂 Of course, we will try to update also pictures on booking.com as soon as we have new units built. I think in May we will be able to send you pictures with an updated view.
        We want our guests to have a wonderful time visiting Lofoten so we will do what we can to make your stay satisfying. 🙂

        1. Avatar for Julie Post
  3. Avatar for David K Greene
    David K Greene

    Your website is incredible! I am taking notes and planning my trip to the Lofotens. I may have questions later. Thank you.David

    1. Avatar for Julie Post
  4. Avatar for judy dalgleish
    judy dalgleish

    we are driving to Lofoten and have 5 nights there. all the places you suggested seem so lovely. would you recommend staying 2 nights at one place and 3 nights at another? if so, wher e would you recommend … we just couldn’t decide if we should stay at one place eg leknes and travel to sightsee daily or split into 2 bases. Thank you and love your website and your stories!

    1. Avatar for Julie Post

      Hello Judy. Yes, for that amount of time, I recommend staying in two places. We stayed in Svolvaer for one night and stayed in the Reine/Hamnoy area for 3 nights. This saves you a lot of time from driving back and forth. Plus, Reine really gets quiet once the day trippers leave, so I recommend putting a few nights in this area (Hamnoy or Reine since they sit side by side). If you want more ideas for how to plan your time, we also have a Lofoten Islands itinerary. Have a great trip!! Cheers, Julie

  5. Avatar for jessi
    1. Avatar for Julie Post

      No, you do not see the classic view from Reinefjord Sjohus. You can get the classic view from the bridge in Hamnoy. It is labeled Hamnoy Bridge Photospot Viewpoint on Google Maps. Cheers, Julie

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