Last year I was very fortunate to be invited by Wild Photography Holidays to join them on their summer photographic trip to the Lofoten Islands, Norway. I have been involved with running some of their holidays in Iceland, so this was to be a working holiday for me, where I got to know the format for the trip and the locations with a view to running trips in Lofoten in the future.
The summer trip to Lofoten, found here; http://wildphotographyholidays.com/holidays/lofoten-islands-summer-in-the-arctic-circle is very special. The fishing village of Svolvaer is the starting point. Local fishing activities, superb local scenery and the most wonderful Sea Eagle watching trip in the Trollfjord sets the scene for a glorious photographic holiday.
Northern Norway is known as the land of the midnight sun. This is no joke and trips out to see the sunset do not disappoint. The sun slowly drops to touch the horizon, before climbing steadily again. Colours can vary from quite rich to gentle pastel tones and numerous coastal venues allow for a variety of midnight photographs opportunities!! Usually this means that you are then going to bed in the early hours and it is already very light outside!!
During the days we spent time photographing local venues, or travelling to a new base, photographing along the way. Henningsvaer is a superbly scenic fishing village. Wonderful colours and coastal scenery make it a must stay at village. Ramberg is very well located to allow access to many venues. Coastal locations to the north and Reine to the south mean that you are spoilt for choices. Infact, there is so much to see and photograph that you have to put time aside to sleep!!
The emphasis on bird photography is certainly not an after thought on this trip. If you are in to your bird photography then plenty of opportunities exist. The Sea Eagle trip from Svolvaer is amazing. A good sized RIB takes us up to the Trollfjord, stopping en route to view Sea Eagles. You get plenty of chances to hone your fast action skills on this trip. Local scenic tours are often complimented with stops for some bird photography. Whooper Swans, Red Throated Divers and other Sea Eagle sightings are not uncommon. A very lively Kittiwake colony at one of the locations offers chances to get very close to birds nesting on window sills aswell as catching lots of action on the nearby cliffs. Plenty of local scenery here means that time disappears all too quickly. Weather and sea permitting a real high point of the trip is a boat journey across the Maelstrom to the south of Lofoten to a Gannet colony. This usually happens in the evening, the light is lovely and the birds are not disturbed by our presence. The open water, scenery and bird life all add up to this being a very special part of the holiday.
I will be back in Lofoten in May again this year to run this trip for Wild Photography Holidays. I am really looking forward to taking photographers to the many wonderful locations that Lofoten has to offer. There is a lot to see and enjoy!!