There is a lot to experience in small Tórshavn, usually locally referred to as simply Havn, and the distances mean that you can always walk to most of the attractions. Learn more about hiking in the capital in the Faroe Islands.
Tórshavn, the capital and largest city of the Faroe Islands, has a population of 14,001 (2022), and the greater urban area has a population of 21,078, including the suburbs, and makes it one of the smallest capitals in the world.
The old town of Tinganes is a special experience. With its grass roofs and government building, the Lighthouse at Skansen, the Viarlundin city park with green plants, trees and benches, Torshavn church, the boat harbor and not least a walk through the city, will undoubtably be a memorable experience.
The parliament on the Tinganes peninsula was established by the Norse (Scandinavians) in AD 850 and became the capital of the Farao Islands and has remained so ever since.
Tórshavn is a cosmopolitan municipality, where history and 21-century modernity meet to create the city’s unique charm and appeal. It is the place where old stories are narrated and new ones are written, where the traditional Faroese ballads are still chanted (and danced to) and contemporary music is composed; a place where the traditional Faroese attire is proudly used on special occasions and designer woolen clothing is created.
Related: Faroese Knitting Festival
A trip to one of the city’s European-style pubs or music bars is also worth taking. Traditional and international cuisines satisfy a variety of tastes. Feel free to also take a look at the many funny statues that can be found scattered around the city. The city offers a rich cultural life, impressive art exhibitions, recreational activities, traditional experiences as well as excellent hotels and restaurants, all nested in a beautiful landscape.
Tórshavn features a subpolar oceanic climate, with strong moderation from the Atlantic Ocean’s Norwegian Current. Because of its cloudiness and the ice-free water surrounding Tórshavn, its winter temperatures are exceptionally mild for such a northerly location, with winter daytime temperatures usually oscillating around 6 °C (43 °F). However, summer temperatures are much lower than those found in continental Scandinavia on similar latitudes, and barely exceed 13 °C (55 °F) in the warmest month.
You are never far from the “wilderness” on the Faroe Islands, not even in Torshavn. Travel to Svarifossur and enjoy the beautiful waterfall, wildlife, and fresh air. The small but beautiful waterfall is only two kilometers up from the harbor and is today part of the city. The area is protected and used as a hiking area by the locals. Geese, horses and of course sheep graze in the area.
Public transportation in Tórshavn is free of charge and the city buses have free Wi-Fi. The twin goal of this initiative was to reduce traffic in the town’s center and lower fuel oil use and CO2 emissions. As a result, Tórshavn Municipality received the national Faroese Environmental Award in June 2008 for having sponsored the best event designed to promote environmental protection, sustainable development, and sustainable tourism.
Hiking in the Capital in the Faroe Islands, written by Tor Kjolberg
Feature image (on top): Photo – Wikipedia