Local authorities

Innovation Norway

Hiking on Floya in Lofoten © CH Innovation Norway Ishavskatedralen © CH Innovation Norway

Welcome to the Arctic Race of Norway

Welcome to Norway and the most northern professional cycling race in the world. We are honored to once again host this four-day stage race above the Arctic Circle, along the most beautiful coastline in the world. The memories from last year’s race are still vivid, and after just one year the Arctic Race of Norway can easily be declared as being a great success. We can’t wait for the race to start this year!

We hope the fantastic nature of Northern Norway once again will make the race a special experience for the cyclists, spectators and the TV viewers at home. Last year the race was broadcasted in countries all over the globe, and this year a total of 158 countries can show their viewers one of the world’s greatest cycling race, held in a scenery with a stunning backdrop. And of course, we want to welcome everyone who is interested in cycling – or nature, culture or our activities, to come to Norway and experience for themselves what it is like to be here.

This year the four stages of the race will take place even further north than last year. However, the nature is still spectacular –

we promise you!

Arctic Norway is also the kingdom of light. In the summer, the sun never sets as the midnight sun will shine all night. Because of this we promise you not only the most northern cycling race in the world but also the lightest.

A.S.O. and Arctic Race of Norway are doing a tremendous job, and we will thank them for their enthusiasm and willingness to focus also on the travel and tourism aspect of such an event. We are proud to cooperate with you.

We hope you will enjoy Norway (www.visitnorway.com)

Best wishes

Per-Arne Tuftin
Director of Tourism, Innovation Norway


Northern Norway

Hiking on Floya in Lofoten © CH Innovation Norway Ishavskatedralen © CH Innovation Norway

Lots of superlatives can be used about the region – it is unique and slightly mysterious. Nowhere else in the world is the North Pole as close to the mainland as at the North Cape. The areas bordering Sweden, Finland and Russia are still a natural and unspoiled paradise, and the breathtaking combination of sea and mountains you find in Lofoten, Vesterålen and the Lyngsalpene peaks is unparalleled in Europe. The people of Northern Norway enjoy freedom and living their lives to the rhythm of nature. The Sami, Norway’s indigenous people, have lived at one with nature and developed the Sami culture since settling in the Arctic areas of Norway thousands years ago. If you visit Tromsø, the biggest city in the region, in summer, you will be able to soak up the vibrant atmosphere of the city’s streets and squares, which is reminiscent of more southerly climes.

Northern Norway promises endless bright summer nights and dancing Northern Lights in deep, dark blue winter. Untouched nature, mountains, fjords and mountain plateaus beckon – a beautiful sight to behold for the observer or a playground for more active types. North Cape is mainland Norway’s northernmost point – and the main destination for many people who visit this part of Norway.

Combine a trip to North Cape with a trip on the Hurtigruten coastal express, which calls at many towns and villages along the coast. Every harbour and every town has its own story to tell about the fisheries industry and the cultural heritage, about lives lived and the new modern lifestyle. Despite the great distances, it’s easy to get around. Planes, buses and ferries connect towns and villages, and ensure that there are thriving communities from down at the coast to up on the high plateaus.

As you pass the Arctic Circle, you cross over into the realm of the Midnight Sun. The light gives you extra energy to enjoy new experiences. You might forget to go to bed and find that you want to play golf in the middle of the night, feel the bracing wind in your face as you kayak from island to island, or keep lookout for whales on a nature safari as birds of prey circle overhead. Up in the mountains and further inland, you can walk for hours on ancient paths through a majestic landscape.

This is in sharp contrast to the polar nights, with its blue light and the Northern Lights dancing across the night sky. Beautiful, mysterious and majestic. Northern Norway is the best place to go if you want to experience this phenomenon.

Northern Norway is also about food culture. You will find restaurants along the coast where you can enjoy the catch of the day straight from the sea. The further north you travel, the more freshwater fish and game you will find on the menu. Bon appétit and welcome to Northern Norway!





County Nordland

Tomas Norvoll

Northern norway welcomes you!

Arctic Race 2013 was truly amazing! Photos from the race went all around the world, framed by cheering people in a fantastic landscape. This year, the county councils of Northern Norway have contributed to create yet another wonderful event, that involves all of Northern Norway.

Now we are looking forward to this year’s race being hosted by our neighbours further north, from North Cape to Tromsø! In Nordland, we are proud of our county. We are known for our hospitality, and surroundings that we believe you will fall head over heels for!

Nordland is also big on exports based on fishing, aquaculture, manufacturing and mining. We are especially proud of our vibrant landscape, and the local food product that our region can offer - and that we have succeeded in preserving our history, while at the same time managed to build a modern and strong local society. As the pictures from last year shows: Enthusiastic and committed people live throughout the county of Nordland! We love our county, and would love for you to experience it, too.

Tomas Norvoll
President of The County Government of Nordland

County Troms

Line Fusdahl

Welcome to Troms !
And welcome to the northernmost professional cycling race in the world!

To be invited to an opening stage at Europe’s northernmost mainland point is unique both for participants and TV viewers. During the race you will experience a landscape formed by the Arctic climate, open and friendly inhabitants, and businesses offering fish and agricultural products of a unique quality. The race finishes in the Arctic capital city of Tromsø, which is home to people from 140 countries and where the Arctic University of Norway has its main campus with 10,000 students. In this largest city of Northern Norway you find an academic powerhouse, blooming businesses and an urban environment, which has earned the city the nickname Paris of the North.

We will do our best to make the race a success for the participants and the organizers, and also a festive event for the guests and the locals. And we would like to show those who will be watching the race on TV that their next holiday destination is Northern Norway. With our pure and stunning scenery we can offer once-in-a-lifetime experiences. Here you can go fishing in the middle of the night, you can travel in and out of beautiful fjords, or go hiking in the mountains during daytime and enjoy urban life at night.

Line Fusdahl
Chair of Troms County Government

County Finnmark

Runar Sjåstad

Welcome to Finnmark !

During the days of the Arctic Race in Finnmark, participants, media and visitors will notice that they are in an almost separate country. The county in the far north, Finnmark, is bigger than Switzerland, but Finnmark has only 75,000 inhabitants. In a European context, our towns and villages appear tiny. And this is a good way of living. I usually say that we live right in the middle of nature. In Finnmark we are occupied with food, experiences, culture, energy and minerals. Nature surrounds us, powerful and omnipresent.

I believe you will all in some way notice the energy and vitality that makes Finnmark live and perform on a daily basis. Some of the best natural resources are found here. Our abundance of resources, our cultural diversity and our Sámi indigenous population all make Finnmark a rewarding place to work. During your days in Finnmark you will surely get this feeling of being in a “different country”. This experience I’d like to share with all of you – not only during Arctic Race. Welcome back!

Runar Sjåstad
Chairman of the Finnmark county council


© Hammerfest Turist © Hammerfest © Ziggi © Ziggi © Ziggi © Ziggi © Gamvik Gjesteg © Hammerfest Kommune © Hammerfest Kommune © Hammerfest Turist © Hermansen © Hammerfest Turist © Hammerfest Turist © Kvalsund Kommune © Ziggi © Lars Mathisen © Hammerfest Turist © Ziggi © Hammerfest Turist © Ziggi

Hammerfest is formed by compact and colorful reconstruction architecture with an impact of petroleum industry's extravagance. A visit in Hammerfest church from 1961 with its flaming glass paintings should be obligatory. The northernmost Catholic church is also situated in Hammerfest. The Royal and Ancient Polar Bear Society with its exhibition about the arctic history issues the membership that proves your visit to the northernmost town in the world. The town's mountain Salen, which offers a nice walking tour, guarantees a fantastic view over the town. The Museum of Reconstruction tells the story about the burning of Finnmark County at the end of the Second World War and how the county was rebuilt. The Meridian Column symbolizes the first technical and scientific object to be inscribed on the UNESCO World Heritage List. In the Energy House, well situated in Norway's most energetic county, you learn about water power, gas, wind power and tidal power. At the Gallery Kulturbanken, where Eva Arnesen displays her art you get a completely different form of energy.

Hammerfest is Northern Norway's oldest town and received town rights on 17th July 1789. Hammerfest is also considered one of the northernmost towns in the world. The town has an interesting history with Pomor trade, arctic hunting, fishing and fishing industry. It is said that Hammerfest has soul and that it is a place that is easy to like. Fishing, fishing industry and fish farming are important primary industries in Hammerfest. Through the “Snow White” project on Melkøya the petroleum industry has really arrived in Hammerfest. This results in new exciting workplaces and great development potential.



© Edelh Ingebrigtsen © Sveinung Svendsen Nordkapp King Crab Safari © Destinasjon 71 Nord Nordkapp Nordlysbilde © Nordisk Film NorthCape © Bjarne Riesto NothernLight at Nordkapp © Rico Nordkapphallen Puffin in Gjesvær © Finnmark Reiseliv Rafting © Destinasjon 71 Nord Snowmobilsafari at Northcape © Visit Nordkapp

The North Cape is the northernmost point of Europe, and a target for every traveler. The 307m/1007ft high cliff overlooks the Arctic Ocean and infinity, and from the 10th of May to the 30th of July, the Midnight Sun shines in the north. From the “discovery” of the North Cape by the English explorer Richard Chancellor in 1553, adventurers, royals and tourists have been captivated by the idea of going to the end of the world. Bird safari at Gjesvær with hundreds of thousands of puffins, gannets, razorbills and guillemots, hikes to the natural gateway of Kirkeporten with vistas to the North Cape, king crab fishing, deep sea fishing, summer theatre, gallery visits and hikes to abandoned settlements make the experience complete. In the winter, you can travel to the Cape in a convoy behind a snow plough, having the arctic winter and Northern Lights almost to yourself. The North Cape is found on the island of Magerøya, a large island with rolling plateau landscapes and tens of thousands of reindeer on their summer pastures. The 3,100 inhabitants are concentrated in Honningsvåg (2,500 inh.) and the fishing villages of Nordvågen, Kamøyvær, Repvåg (mainland), Gjesvær and Skarsvåg, the latter is the world's northernmost fishing village. Fishing and tourism are the economic mainstays.

The North Cape has a good selection of accommodation in all price ranges, and is easily reached by plane.

The North Cape is Europe's northernmost point on a 307m/1007ft high cliff, and a target for all travelers. Bird safaris, king crab fishing, deep sea fishing and hiking are among the activities available. The municipality of Nordkapp (North Cape) has 3,100 inhabitants, 2,500 in the town of Honningsvåg, the rest in several fishing villages on the Magerøya island and on the mainland. Fishing and tourism are the economical mainstays, and the island is a summer pasture for the reindeer of the Karasjok Sami.



© Anne Olsen Ryum © Visit Norway © Visit Norway © Visit Norway © Visit Norway © Visit Norway © Visit Norway © Konrad Konieczny Ishotell © Konrad Konieczny Nordlyskatedral © Hasvik Foto © Visit Norway © Svetlana Funtusova © Svetlana Funtusova Tromso Alta © Visit Norway

The Northern Lights City of Alta

Alta is the biggest city in the province of Finnmark, with some 20,000 inhabitants. It's a modern city with hotels, restaurants, shops, cultural events and outdoor experiences. The Northern Lights city of Alta, enjoying a stable climate, is among the best places to observe the magics of the Northern Lights. In 1899, the scientist Birkeland built the first Northern Lights Observatory on Mount Haldde. The Northern Lights Cathedral from 2013 is a modern cathedral in a modern city with lines as elegant as the Northern Lights themselves. The rock carvings of Alta are listed on the UNESCO heritage list, and is the most impressive concentration of stone age art in Northern Europe. Finnmarksløpet is Europe's longest dog sledding race. It runs a 1,000 km through Finnmark county, and both starts and ends in Alta. The Alta scenery, such as the salmon river of Altaelva and the monumental canyon of Sautso, are best experienced by river boat, canoe, mountain bike, ATV or hiking. UIT Norway's Arctic University has 3,000 students and 300 staff at their Alta Campus. The airlines Norwegian and SAS both fly directly to Alta in 2 hours. The voyage to fascinating destinations like Karasjok, Kautokeino, Hammerfest and the North Cape starts here.

Alta (20,000 inh.) is the biggest city in the county of Finnmark, and a modern trade and education centre with a university campus with 3,000 students. Modern northern lights research started here because of the favourable Northern Lights conditions. The 2-6000 year old rock carvings are on the UNESCO world heritage list, whereas the lines of the Northern Lights cathedral are all modern. Finnmarksløpet, Europe's longest dog sledding race, starts in Alta. Alta has several non-stop flights to Oslo, and offers hotels, restaurants and good shopping.



© Ida-Henriette Skoglund © Johan Ante Baehr © Magnus Isaksen © Omdommeprosjektet © Renate Kjaer Sted Gildetun © Roy Storkersen © Steve Henriksen © Steve Henriksen

Kvænangen is a beautiful fjord between the 1,000m/3,000ft high Kvænangstindan peaks and the glacier of Øksfjordjøkelen. The view from the mountain pass of Kvænangsfjellet across the fjord to the blue of the glaciers is wide and fascinating. The boat ride in the Jøkelfjord to the place where the glacier Øksfjordjøkelen juts an arm almost down to the fjord takes place in total silence, except the gushing of melting water. Slettnes reconstruction farm is a memory of the destructions of WWII; it shows an original farm from the reconstruction era of the late 1940ies. The island of Spildra in the middle of the fjord is the old centre with some unique Sami bear graves and the 1850 church, the only building to survive the war. Sørstraumen is a tidal current gushing and boiling 4 times a day. The 1,250 inhabitants of Kvænangen live of fishing, manufacturing, fish farming and agriculture. There are important fish farms for trout and salmon in the municipality. The multicultural inhabitants are of Sami, Finnish and Norwegian origin. The most famous son of Kvænangen is Gunnar Kaasen, one of the dog mushers in the original Iditarod race to reach Nome, Alaska, with flu serum.

Kvænangen is a fjord municipality in the far north east of Troms County with some 1,250 inhabitants. The people here are of Sami, Finnish and Norwegian roots, and live of fishing, fish farming, manufacturing and agriculture. The boat ride to the glacier Øksfjordjøkelen reaching the fjord and the majestic view from Mount Kvænangsfjellet are natural wonders, whereas the cultural heritage can be studied on the museum of Slettnes reconstruction farm and the culture island of Spildra.



Aurora Tromso © Ole C Salomonsen © Bard Loken © Farout Kajakk © Paal Jakobsen © Paal Jakobsen © Visit Tromso © Yngve Olsen Saebbe © Visit Tromso © Karl Ivar Ingebrigtsen Tromso panorama © Bard onion

Tromsø – Where your Arctic adventure begins

Tromsø is the capital of Norway's high north and home to 70,000 lively inhabitants living on the edge of the Arctic in a spectacular setting between islands, picturesque fjords and dramatic mountain peaks. Situated at 69 degrees north, 350 kilometres north of the Arctic Circle and only 2,000 km from the North Pole, visitors are amazed to learn that our city has hotels of international standard, busy cafés, restaurants serving world-class seafood, an active cultural life, a very active night life and captivating museums and art galleries. In summer, the sun shines round the clock during the Midnight Sun season, from 22nd May to 22nd July. In contrast, the sun does not rise above the horizon as we experience the Polar Night, from 21st November to 21st January. Tromsø boasts some of the highest levels of Northern Lights activity on earth, making it the perfect destination to spot the magical Aurora Borealis, which is visible in the Tromsø region from September to March.

Tromsø, Northern Norway's largest city with over 70,000 inhabitants, is located in a spectacular setting between islands, picturesque fjords and dramatic mountain peaks. The city center consists of historical wooden homes, a rich cultural life, an exciting Arctic cuisine and an active nightlife. Tromsø was in the 19th century the starting point for Arctic hunting and expeditions to the North Pole. Today it is a center for educational and research institutes, including the world's northernmost university.



Jersey wearers after the stage 4

Classifications after the stage 4


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