Millions of questions - because I like to be prepared
Replies: 17 - Last Post: Feb 21, 2012 6:43 AM Last Post By: lotesse
Jan 27, 2012 8:36 AM
Millions of questions - because I like to be preparedHello!
I posted this on another traveler forum, but no replies, so I'll try my luck here:
well, I am seriously considering coming to Faroes this summer (mid-July, ~two weeks).
1) Is the smyril line/ atlantic airways absolutely the cheapest way to get to the Faroes?
2) I have this wish to arrive, and leave to Iceland by water, and I've heard some rumors that it is cheaper to book tickets online via Danish version of the website - is there any truth to it?
3) And also, can I somehow avoid taking a cabin space? I know the trip lasts for days, but I really think I could do without a room. I doubt it is possible, but doesn't hurt to ask, right? :)
1) I'm a hitchhiker in heart, and I think it would be the most awesome thing to hitchhike a helicopter. Any chance that is possible to do?
2) While we are at it. I understand there is really not so many people around, but you guys still have to move around. Is hitchhiking possible? I do not expect quick travel with 5 minutes of wait - I just want to get from point A to point B, but still want to keep plans realistic.
3) What are the odds I would find a (fishing) boat that would be willing to take me aboard for a day?(I'm willing to scrub the deck)
Accomodation and Food
1) I am about to buy a good, durable, waterproof tent. I have spent a considerable amount of time in Scandinavia, and am quite aware that the weather can be rough, windy and 100% rain, but people still camp, right? How common is it, and how safe? And could you give me an approximate price of a campsite per day? Also, do they allow taking showers (for a price, even better if it is for free), and using the kitchen?
2) Any supermarkets in bigger places?
I have no ideas on what I'd like to do. Just a few general ones like: being in contact with people, meeting the Faroese, learning about them/you, hanging out with them/you for some time; enjoying the nature; helicopter ride; running after/from sheep; taking many pictures. So any activities which don't cost a lot of money, but are recommended as a must? Any magnificent places to visit? Any 'dont's'?
1) Probably a silly question, but when did you last have a report of a murder/rape case?
2) Anything in particular a young lady traveling alone should worry about (using more than common sense, of course).
3) Is there something special I should have with me? I don't mean weapons but some gear/apparel that comes handy? (besides the obvious waterproof, warm etc)
Price range, compared to Iceland, Norway, Sweden or Denmark: Are the FI more expensive then the above mentioned, somewhere about the same, or cheaper? I'd like to know only in order to plan my finances accurately.
I never buy anything I don't need. I'd probably pay for some of the transport, some of the food, for stamps and postcards, a polyester big flag, and 1-3 cheap souvenirs.
That is it (for now). Congratulations for managing through millions of my questions, and thank you for answering me! :)
Jan 28, 2012 2:17 AM
1High season, couchette trip, all included, return, is 299€, as stated on the website
Seems good to me.
I don't think you can do that trip without a couchette.
I used Smyril several times to go to Iceland, and it's a long trip, but worth it if you enjoy this kind of slow, relaxed way. This was before they sail from Denmark, though, and with the old Norröna, which was not extremely comfortable, or stable in bad weather..., I even boarded once from the Shetland Islands, in these good old days. Same for the Faroe Islands (some time ago...1998 was my last trip!).
As a woman, no special hazard. I did camp too, and the weather could be rough. It could be next to some hostels, or in the middle of nowhere, I just tried to find a sheltered spot, but the wind shifts wildly, there. Sometimes I stayed in hostels. There was not much in terms of accommodation. Lots of info here
I used the excellent bus/ferry transportation system (but no helicopter, so I can't tell), and hitched a number of times. This was a great way to meet people, but yes, there were not many around. I've had miserable waiting times in pouring rain and crazy wind...
I had to carry basic supplies as the shops were far apart.
Going to some outlying Islands (like Fugloy, a must IMHO...) the weather has to be taken seriously, if you have a tight timetable. And even if there are some new boats, one must not be too seasick...Or use the helicopter (sailing is half of the fun!)
There is one thing I can't help you now, it's the actual prices...but the Faroe Islands, for sure, are one of the most extraordinary places I have been too.
Hope this helps.
Jan 28, 2012 2:44 AM
2Thank you for your reply!
In the meantime, I found out that wild camping is not allowed - but what is the fine? Do they lock you up if you set up a tent on someone's meadow, or do you just have to pay a fine? Also, do you think it would be possible to just ask the owners of the land if they'd permit you to stay for the night?
I actually like it when the sea starts to move, and this might sound freaky, but I do want to get in a little rough seas weather on a boat. Nothing life threatening, of course, just to get my adrenalin up a little.
About the Smyril Line. They do have this discount right now, where they offer cheaper tickets for early booking, but no matter which combination I check the trip from Denmark to Iceland (one way) is always 280 euros. It is alright, but I am not sure it included the early booking discount - then it should be 250. I might write to them and check. Because I need a 2 weeks stop at Faroes, at least, so I can't buy the Denmark - Iceland ticket, but Denmark - Faroes; Faroes - Iceland trip.
Jan 28, 2012 9:50 AM
3Transport: there are those 2 option Atlantic Airline and Smyril - so easy for you to figure out which is cheapes - -depends entirely on the value of your time wasten on the ferry.
Riding a helicopter for free? You are kidding. BTW - the helicopters on FI are (all?) part of the public transport system (and very, very cheap) - can you hitchhike a bus or cab?
There are supermakets in the larger towns - normally at least one on each of bigger islands
DO NOT run after sheeps - they are part of somebodys living.
Never walk on "in-fieds" (the fenched plots) - the grass there is grownt be harvested - consider it a a wheat field - never walk in high grasss -follow the path - the grass will have to feed some sheeps.
Prices exactly like in Denmark - except for alcohol. i.e. cheaper than Norway - something cheaper/something costlies than Sweden.
FI actually had ONE murder case (I think they wwere not even sure that it wwas a murder) last year - first for an incredible number of years. How can you get the idea of asking of safety in Scandinacia/Nordic countries when you say you have been here a lot?
Jan 28, 2012 9:53 AM
4Some random answers:
1) Hitching a helicopter? No, I'd say that would be quite impossible, unless you have some magical charming powers. The helicopters are run by Atlantic Airways, a commercial company, and it would be like hitching a ride on a airplane... The business is heavily subsidised, though, and the prices are very cheap (compared to general costs in the Faroes). Definitely try to include a ride or two during your trip! http://www.atlantic.fo/default.aspx?pageid=4540§ionid=137
2) General hitchhiking should be more realistic, although I'd say it's quite uncommon. During my week there, I didn't see anyone trying to hitch a ride, while on Iceland, for example, I on average picked up at least one hitchhiker a day. The Faroes are really small (really, much smaller than you even might imagine!) so hitching would perhaps not be that time consuming.
3) I wild guess here: Slim. If I was a professional fisherman, I wouldn't want to have a silly tourist running around deck while trying to do my job. But you could of course offer to scrub the decks while the boat is on shore. Maybe they'd warm up to you then :-)
Accomodation and Food
2) Tórshavn has plenty of supermarkets. Outside the capital, the selection is much more scarce, and opening times erratic.
A boat trip to the Vestmanna cliffs is cool. I also enjoyed just driving around in and especially through the islands, but I guess you're not about to hire a car. Plenty of places to visit, almost everywhere in the Islands, I'd say. Get the Bradt guide to Faroe Islands, it lists lots of stuff to do and visit. And of course, puffins!
The Faroes have to be one of the safest places on Earth. I think your biggest danger is to slip and fall into the sea when hiking... People are friendly and very helpful. Also very trusting, which I guess reflects the low crime level in the Faroes. Saw one police car during a week. Got my rental car without showing even my driver's license, and by promising to pay in cash when I returned the car, as I still didn't have any local currency.
Enjoy the trip, it really is a beautiful place, even in the misty rain!
Jan 28, 2012 11:06 AM
Actually, I hitchhiked both buses and taxis, multiple times, piece of cake. :)
And safety, I always check. Better to ask, no matter how improbable than to have a forensic pathologist opening my guts. Besides, there are other dangers than people. Fog, dark, unmarked trails, what should I know.
Thank you a lot for your answer!
Well, one way or another I'll take a few helicopter rides. I'm really looking forward to it. :D
You've all been helpful a lot, I might post on here again, once the day of my departure gets closer. :)
Jan 28, 2012 2:21 PM
6RE safety: You were the one that brought up murder/rape. For the other "dangers":
fog (a danger??): you will be in fog several times/day - you are in the middle of the North Atlantic
dark (danger?): you didn't as far as I can see give a month, but in summer there is hardly any night - in winter up to 20 hours or so
unmarket trail: all of them except for small cairns that often are misleading
paths are often slippery/muddy - it rains typically several times/day - often 100 m vertical drop - no fences/handrail except when there are REALLY far down - the "must-do" trip to Mykines is really a challenge for many that go for the puffins ( and the fantastic nature). Especilly the path down to and up from "the bridge over the North Atlantic".
- so if these are things that worry "a young lady travelling alone" -these islands are NOT the place to go.
There ARE big supermarkets in major towns: Sørvagur, Tvøroyri, Vargur, Klaksvik, the towns in south end of Esturoy are places that I am sure of.
BUT if you have no own transport and are 20 km away and there are 4 hours to next bus, it IS a problem as you do not really know what small grocery store or fast food outlet you can find in smaller towns - try the gasstation! (if there is any).
Opening hours of supermarket s arenormal (daytime) but remember that the ppl. are VERY religious - so do not count on shoppin on a Sunday.
re illegal camping - forget the fine - it will be the locals - or some local police officer that simply MAY (or may not) move you away - the problem is that what you think is unused land is someones premium grass field!
Go to the local townhall or other authority and ask - there will often be a "camping area" in the town / village - with no service what so ever (normally - maybe access to a toilet at the football field next to) and it will typically be free which seems important to you.
Jan 28, 2012 3:08 PM
Jan 29, 2012 8:27 AM
8In your profile you put Serbia
Maybe you are interested to know that in Faroe islands (as of January 1st 2011) you can find Serbs living too. They are 36 male and 19 female residents from Serbia and Montenegro (as passport). Some are playing soccer in Faroe Islands Premier League.
Edited by: tanabata_hikoboshi2
Edited by: tanabata_hikoboshi2
Jan 29, 2012 9:22 AM
9For fun and anticipation, this is an exceptionally nice day in Mykinès, the boat has just left happily, etc. The block of concrete at the bottom is the "pier", you will be lucky if the so-called docking doesn't look like a roller coaster ride, having to jump onto slippery ground, and scale up that hill...
Take great care on trails, some are pretty impressive, hope you do not have fear of heights...
Feb 8, 2012 2:19 AM
10I am just starting my research for a trip to the Faroes in 2013 - part of a "homecoming" journey, as my family came to Canada from Iceland via Orkney Islands - but other family members lived in the Faroes as well. I am not comfortable hitchhiking or relying on freebies from locals when I travel - but instead intend on being self-sufficient and paying my own way. I don't mind cheaper hotels, prefer B&B's, so if you have any places to recommend, I'd appreciate it. (Not worried about current rates - I can look that up when I book my trip.)
I'd like to take a ferry from the Orkneys to Faroes, then onwards to Iceland. I have been looking up the ferries, but the schedules are all very confusing, as per departure points. (I do realize that there is only a weekly ferry between the Faroes and Iceland - more curious about a ferry from the Orkney Islands to the Faroes.)
Also - any information you have on how to "get around" once I'm there, would be helpful. I am comfortable renting a car if need be, but am also interested in recommendations for tour companies, as I will be on my own - and it's nice to have people to travel with.
I'm allergic to seafood and am a vegetarian. Is that going to make things very difficult? I do have food items I can bring with me...
I'm a musician (Celtic/Roma/Balkan style music) - so would be very happy if anyone knows of any bands that play traditional styles? Even if I can't attend a show, it would be nice to know who to look for in the shops. If there are any public jam-sessions, that would be amazing! One of the best evenings of my life was spent at a celtic jam in St. Johns Newfoundland :)
Anything else?? I've read all the comments above, which has been helpful. Are helicopters really cheap? Or was that a joke...I've been in a helicopter before, an amazing way to see scenery!! I won't be attempting to hitch a ride though!!
Also - I often travel to Mexico, and always bring items to donate. As this part of the world is not poor like Mexico, it would seem that charity would be insulting/offensive. Still - is there anything local children might like, that they don't get there often? Or are their food banks there that would want a monetary donation?? I always like to leave something nice behind, as a gesture of respect.
Thanks in advance!
Feb 8, 2012 6:11 AM
11Ferry from the Orkneys is no more...Only the weekly one from Denmark, or Iceland.
The helicopter flights are really "affordable", but you must book ahead, and they have peculiar schedules (not every day, every destination, no day return)
In terms of economy and standard of life, the Faroes have nothing to compare with Mexico, more like Denmark and the other scandinavian countries, that is high level (in spite of growing unemployment and high prices)
If you happen to be there on Olav's Day ("Ólavsøka")in the last days of july, stay in Tórshavn, for this big, big festival...as most of the archipelago stands still.
There are festivals (music, theater, local culture) in the summer months.
Feb 8, 2012 9:19 AM
12Hi - thanks for the information.
I realize Mexico and Scandinavia are nothing alike - just that Mexico is always seeking donations, and I was wondering if there are any charities/heritage funds etc, that I could donate to in the Faroes. It's something I always do when I travel...it crossed my mind that they may have heritage organizations that run short on funds...??
Too bad about the ferry! Do you know if the one ferry still goes from the Shetlands? Or just the Denmark ferry. Perhaps I will have to fly to Faroes and take the ferry to Iceland - I'll have to check that out!
Thanks again :)
Feb 8, 2012 10:58 AM
13No ferry or other direct transport Orkney-faroe - have you realized how few that lives there - why should there be enough travelling between these places to fill a say weekly ferry or a weelly plane?
Occotionally (seasonally) Altantic flies from Aberdeen and other places in UK - that may be a possibility?
Getting ao'round rented car or public busses. Any "tours" tends to be that you rent a car and get a list of places to visit. Too few tourists for anyting welse. There ARE tours - - check out the 3-4 incoming travel agents (linkes from Alt.Airw homepage and tourist offices).
No seafoon in Faroe and Iceland!! very special. Note in Faroe - there are very few restaurants outside Torshavn - mostly fast food and fixed dinner of "daily food" (fish or lamb). You will havbe to rely a lot oin supermarkets and on calling ahead and explain the limit for you food.
Red Cross is everywhere -and the thousand of cg'hurches in Faroe probaly all have colletion going on for various socia/mission work
Feb 8, 2012 12:40 PM
14Thanks - yes I understand there are very few people there. I wish some of the ferry routes around here didn't operate so often, because of the cost and pollution! (I live on Vancouver Island in Canada - and sometimes our smaller ferries sail with only one or two cars...)
Perhaps I will go to Denmark and take the ferry, and visit the Orkney Islands on a different trip. I have 6 weeks holidays each year, - so am not going to be in a rush...but also realize transportation is limited. I know my Icelandic family came from Norway in the late 800's, so perhaps I'll look into Norway to Denmark - then onwards...
Thanks for the information! I've seen lots of pictures - as well, my family has some old letters about Iceland and the Faroes - so am very much looking forward to seeing where my ancestors lived...
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