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What To Do In Torshavn, Faroe Islands


Modified: December 27, 2023

by Judye Hazel



Located in the heart of the stunning Faroe Islands, Torshavn offers a unique blend of natural beauty, rich history, and vibrant culture. As the capital and largest city of the Faroe Islands, Torshavn is a hidden gem waiting to be discovered by travelers seeking an off-the-beaten-path adventure.


With its picturesque landscapes, charming streets, and friendly locals, Torshavn provides an unforgettable experience for visitors. Whether you’re a nature enthusiast, history buff, foodie, or simply looking to immerse yourself in a different culture, Torshavn has something to offer for everyone.


Getting to Torshavn is relatively easy, with regular flights connecting the city to major European airports. Once you arrive, you’ll be greeted by a small, walkable city center, making it convenient to explore the many attractions that await you.


In this article, we will guide you through the must-see highlights of Torshavn, ensuring you make the most of your visit to this captivating destination. From exploring the old town streets to hiking in the surrounding mountains, indulging in local delicacies to experiencing the vibrant nightlife, there are plenty of activities to keep you entertained during your stay.


So, prepare to be enchanted by the beauty of Torshavn and get ready to embark on a memorable journey through this fascinating city in the Faroe Islands.


Getting to Torshavn

Getting to Torshavn is relatively straightforward, with various transportation options available. The city is served by Vágar Airport, which offers regular flights to and from major European cities such as Copenhagen, Edinburgh, and Reykjavik.


Once you arrive at Vágar Airport, you can easily reach Torshavn via a scenic 45-minute drive. There are several car rental companies operating at the airport, providing you with the freedom to explore the Faroe Islands at your own pace.


If you prefer public transportation, there are also bus services available that connect the airport to Torshavn. The journey takes approximately one hour, allowing you to sit back, relax, and enjoy the breathtaking landscapes as you make your way to the city.


For those traveling from mainland Denmark, there is an option to take a ferry from Hirtshals to the Faroe Islands. The ferry journey takes around 36 hours, providing you with an opportunity to enjoy a leisurely voyage across the North Atlantic. Once you arrive at the port in Torshavn, you will be just a short distance away from the city center.


Another option is to take advantage of the helicopter service that operates between Vágar Airport and Torshavn. This is a unique and exhilarating way to reach the capital, offering stunning aerial views of the islands along the way. However, please note that the helicopter service operates on a limited schedule, so it’s essential to check for availability and book in advance.


Once you have arrived in Torshavn, the city itself is easily explored on foot. Its compact size allows you to navigate the streets, alleys, and historical sites without the need for public transportation. Additionally, renting a bicycle is also a popular option for exploring the city and its surrounding areas.


With various transportation options available, getting to Torshavn is convenient and sets the stage for a memorable visit to the captivating capital of the Faroe Islands.


Exploring the Old Town

One of the must-visit attractions in Torshavn is the Old Town, known as “Tinganes.” This historic district is a fascinating blend of cobblestone streets, colorful houses with turf roofs, and a rich cultural heritage.


As you wander through the narrow streets of the Old Town, you’ll feel like you’ve stepped back in time. The traditional houses, some dating back to the 16th century, are still inhabited today, providing a glimpse into the Faroese way of life.


Be sure to visit the “Logting,” the oldest parliament in the world, which has been meeting in Tinganes since Viking times. The historic building showcases the Faroe Islands’ political heritage and is an iconic symbol of Torshavn.


While exploring the Old Town, take the opportunity to visit the charming shops and boutiques that line the streets. You’ll find unique handicrafts, local artwork, and traditional Faroese clothing, providing an excellent opportunity to bring a piece of Torshavn home with you.


Don’t miss the chance to enjoy a meal or a cup of coffee at one of the cozy cafes or restaurants in the Old Town. Sample traditional Faroese dishes, such as ræst lamb and skerpikjøt, and indulge in the flavors of the region.


As you stroll through the Old Town, take the time to appreciate the picturesque views of the harbor, where colorful fishing boats and yachts bob in the water. The combination of the old wooden houses, the sound of seagulls, and the smell of the salty sea air creates an enchanting atmosphere.


Exploring the Old Town of Torshavn is not only an opportunity to immerse yourself in history but also a chance to experience the charming and tranquil ambiance that makes this area so special. Whether you’re interested in architecture, culture, or simply taking a leisurely stroll, the Old Town is a must-see destination during your visit to Torshavn.


Visiting the Torshavn Cathedral

A visit to the Torshavn Cathedral is a must for anyone exploring the capital city of the Faroe Islands. Located in the heart of Torshavn, this iconic landmark is a testament to the country’s rich cultural and religious heritage.


The Torshavn Cathedral, also known as “Domkirkjan,” is one of the oldest churches in the Faroe Islands, dating back to the 13th century. Its distinctive black and white exterior, adorned with a red roof, stands out against the surrounding buildings and adds to the charm of the cityscape.


Inside the cathedral, you’ll find an elegant and serene atmosphere, with beautiful stained glass windows, wooden pews, and a traditional, intricately carved pulpit. The intricate details and craftsmanship of the interior create a sense of awe and reverence.


While exploring the Torshavn Cathedral, take a moment to admire the historic artifacts and religious artwork on display. The cathedral houses an impressive collection, including medieval crucifixes, paintings, and intricate silverware.


If you visit during a service or a concert, you’ll have the opportunity to experience the cathedral’s majestic organ, with its powerful sound resonating throughout the space.


After exploring the interior of the Torshavn Cathedral, take a moment to step outside and appreciate the stunning views of the city and harbor from the church grounds. The peaceful surroundings and the charming architecture make for a picturesque setting.


Whether you’re interested in history, architecture, or simply seeking a moment of tranquility, visiting the Torshavn Cathedral is an experience not to be missed during your time in Torshavn. It offers a unique opportunity to connect with the Faroe Islands’ cultural and religious significance and to witness the beauty and grandeur of this historic landmark.


Hiking in the Surrounding Mountains

For outdoor enthusiasts, Torshavn offers an abundance of hiking opportunities in its surrounding mountains. With its rugged terrain, dramatic cliffs, and breathtaking landscapes, the Faroe Islands is a hiker’s paradise. Lace up your boots and get ready to explore the natural wonders that await you.


One popular hiking trail is the “Slættaratindur,” the highest peak in the Faroe Islands. This challenging but rewarding hike takes you to an elevation of 880 meters (2,887 feet) and offers panoramic views over the surrounding islands and the Atlantic Ocean. On a clear day, you may even catch a glimpse of neighboring countries like Iceland and Norway.


If you prefer a more leisurely hike, the “Bøsdalafossur” trail is a fantastic option. It takes you through rolling hills, breathtaking cliffs, and eventually to the famous waterfall that plunges into the ocean. The contrast between the cascading water and the rugged shoreline creates a truly mesmerizing sight.


Another notable hiking destination is “Gásadalur,” a picturesque village nestled between towering mountains and a dramatic coastline. The hike to Gásadalur rewards you with stunning views of the village, the serene valley, and the majestic Múlafossur waterfall that cascades into the sea.


As you embark on your hiking adventures, make sure to be prepared with appropriate gear, including sturdy hiking shoes, waterproof clothing, and a map or GPS device. The weather in the Faroe Islands can be unpredictable, with fog, rain, and strong winds, so it’s essential to check the forecast and be cautious while exploring the mountains.


Remember to respect the environment and follow any guidelines or restrictions to ensure the preservation of this pristine natural landscape. Keep in mind that certain areas may be protected, and access may be limited during nesting seasons for various bird species.


Whether you’re an experienced hiker or a novice explorer, the mountains surrounding Torshavn offer a range of trails suitable for all skill levels. Immerse yourself in the untouched beauty of the Faroe Islands and let the awe-inspiring landscapes take your breath away as you embrace the serenity of nature.


Enjoying the Scenic Beauty of Tinganes

Tinganes is a captivating district in Torshavn that is renowned for its scenic beauty and historical significance. As you explore this charming area, you’ll be surrounded by stunning views of the surrounding mountains, the harbor, and the traditional Faroese houses with their distinct turf roofs.


One of the highlights of Tinganes is its unique architecture. The traditional wooden houses, painted in vibrant colors, create a picturesque backdrop against the dramatic landscape. As you wander through the narrow cobblestone streets, you’ll feel as if you’ve stepped back in time.


Take a moment to admire the iconic red doors that adorn many of the houses in Tinganes. These doors add a touch of charm and character to the already enchanting atmosphere. They are often embellished with intricate carvings and are a testament to the Faroese craftsmanship.


Don’t miss the opportunity to visit the charming Vaglið square, located in the heart of Tinganes. This tranquil square offers a peaceful respite where you can relax on a bench and soak in the surroundings. From here, you can admire the panoramic views of the harbor and watch as boats sail in and out.


While exploring Tinganes, keep an eye out for the Faroese flag, known as the “Merkið.” The flag is often displayed proudly on the traditional houses, adding a touch of patriotism to the neighborhood. It serves as a reminder of the Faroe Islands’ unique cultural identity and history.


Visiting Tinganes is not just about admiring the scenic beauty; it’s also an opportunity to delve into the rich history of the area. Tinganes has a significant historical significance as the location of the Faroe Islands’ parliament, known as the Løgting. The parliament has been meeting in Tinganes since the Viking era, making it one of the oldest legislative assemblies in the world.


As you navigate the streets of Tinganes, take your time to explore the cozy cafes, charming boutiques, and art galleries that dot the area. Indulge in a cup of coffee or indulge in traditional Faroese pastries as you immerse yourself in the local culture.


Whether you’re a photography enthusiast, a history buff, or simply someone who appreciates natural beauty, Tinganes offers a captivating experience. Lose yourself in the scenic charm of this historic district and let its beauty captivate your senses during your visit to Torshavn.


Trying Local Cuisine in Torshavn

When visiting Torshavn, one cannot miss the opportunity to indulge in the flavors of Faroese cuisine. The local culinary scene offers a unique and distinctive gastronomic experience that reflects the island’s natural resources and traditions.


Seafood plays a central role in Faroese cuisine, thanks to the abundant supply of fish and shellfish in the surrounding North Atlantic waters. Sample the freshest seafood dishes, such as grilled salmon, pan-fried cod, or dried fish. Be sure to try the Faroese specialty known as “skerpikjøt,” which is wind-dried mutton. The flavors are intense, and the meat is tender – a true delicacy for meat lovers.


Another traditional Faroese dish to savor is “ræst lamb.” This lamb is fermented and hung to dry, resulting in a distinct and rich flavor. It may be an acquired taste, but it’s worth trying for a true taste of the Faroese culinary tradition.


For a unique dining experience, consider visiting one of the local farm-to-table restaurants that specialize in serving fresh, locally sourced ingredients. These establishments pride themselves on using organic, sustainable produce to create innovative and delicious dishes.


Don’t forget to pair your meal with a glass of traditional Faroese beer or a sip of the locally distilled spirits. The Faroe Islands have a growing craft beer scene, offering a variety of flavors to suit every taste. You can also sample the local schnapps, known as “Black Death,” made from herbs and spices for a warming and flavorful digestif.


During your culinary exploration, make sure to try some of the local sweets and pastries. Taste the delicious “rullupylsa,” a rolled pastry filled with spiced sausage, or the “klejner,” a deep-fried pastry dusted with powdered sugar – a perfect treat with a cup of coffee.


When dining out in Torshavn, you will find a range of restaurants and cafes that cater to all tastes and dietary preferences. Whether you’re craving traditional Faroese fare or international cuisine with a local twist, you’re sure to find a culinary delight that suits your palate.


Immerse yourself in the flavors of the Faroe Islands and let the local cuisine take you on a gastronomic journey that will leave you with lasting memories of your time in Torshavn.


Exploring the National Museum of the Faroe Islands

For a deeper understanding of the Faroese history and culture, a visit to the National Museum of the Faroe Islands is a must during your time in Torshavn. Located in the capital city, this museum offers a captivating journey through the island’s past.


The museum showcases a diverse collection of artifacts that provide insight into the lives and traditions of the Faroese people. From archaeological finds to cultural relics, each exhibit tells a story of the islands’ rich heritage.


Explore the fascinating displays that bring to life the Viking era, including relics from ancient settlements and burial sites. Learn about the daily lives of the Faroese people throughout different time periods and immerse yourself in the customs, traditions, and folklore that have shaped the island’s identity.


One of the highlights of the museum is the exhibit dedicated to the Faroese national costume, known as the “føroysk klæði.” Admire the intricate craftsmanship and vibrant colors of these traditional garments, each representing a specific region of the Faroe Islands.


The historical buildings that house the museum are an attraction in themselves. The setting provides a unique ambiance and transports visitors back in time. Take a moment to appreciate the architecture and imagine what life was like in the Faroe Islands centuries ago.


Join a guided tour or explore at your own pace, as the museum offers informative and engaging exhibitions that cater to both young and old. Interactive displays, multimedia presentations, and artifacts bring the history of the Faroe Islands to life, creating an immersive and educational experience.


Before leaving the museum, be sure to visit the gift shop, where you can find a wide range of books, souvenirs, and handicrafts that provide the perfect mementos of your visit to the Faroe Islands.


Exploring the National Museum of the Faroe Islands is an opportunity to delve deeper into the island’s fascinating history and gain a greater appreciation for the cultural richness that defines the Faroe Islands. It’s a must-visit destination for history buffs, culture enthusiasts, and anyone seeking to understand the essence of this captivating archipelago.


Shopping for Traditional Faroese Products

When visiting Torshavn, take the time to indulge in some retail therapy and explore the vibrant local shopping scene. One of the highlights of shopping in Torshavn is the opportunity to find unique and traditional Faroese products that showcase the island’s rich cultural heritage.


One of the most sought-after items to bring back home is Faroese knitwear. Known for its high quality and intricate designs, Faroese woolens are a true treasure. Whether it’s a cozy sweater, a warm hat, or a pair of mittens, these handmade garments make for a stylish and practical keepsake.


For those with an appreciation for traditional craftsmanship, Torshavn offers a variety of stores and boutiques where you can find locally made wooden handicrafts. From intricately carved figurines to beautifully crafted wooden utensils, these unique pieces reflect the Faroese artisans’ skill and passion.


Another must-have souvenir is Faroese music. Explore the local music stores and discover the melodic sounds of Faroese folk music or the contemporary expressions of Faroese artists. From traditional songs accompanied by the haunting sound of the fiddle to the innovative sounds of modern bands, Faroese music is a true reflection of the island’s cultural identity.


Food lovers shouldn’t miss the chance to bring home some authentic Faroese delicacies. Visit the local supermarkets or specialty food shops to find traditional Faroese ingredients such as dried fish, ræst lamb, and Faroese seaweed products. These unique culinary treasures allow you to recreate the flavors of the Faroe Islands in your own kitchen.


Support local farmers and producers by purchasing Faroese-made food and beverage products such as jams, honey, and craft beers. These products not only make great souvenirs but also allow you to savor a taste of the island long after your visit to Torshavn.


Finally, explore the boutiques and stores that specialize in Faroese clothing, accessories, and jewelry. From contemporary fashion designers to traditional Faroese silverwork, you’ll find a wide range of stylish and authentic pieces that allow you to embrace the Faroese aesthetic.


Shopping for traditional Faroese products in Torshavn is not just about purchasing souvenirs; it’s about connecting with the island’s culture and supporting local artists and artisans. Immerse yourself in the local marketplaces and stores, and let the unique offerings of Torshavn become cherished reminders of your time in the Faroe Islands.


Experiencing the Nightlife in Torshavn

Despite its small size, Torshavn offers a vibrant and lively nightlife scene that showcases the Faroese spirit of celebration and community. From cozy pubs to energetic music venues, there is something for everyone looking to experience the buzz of Torshavn after dark.


Start your evening by exploring the charming bars and pubs dotted around the city. These establishments offer a warm and welcoming atmosphere, where you can unwind with a local brew or sip on a cocktail made with traditional Faroese ingredients.


For those who love live music, Torshavn has a vibrant music scene that caters to a range of tastes. Check out the local venues and see if there are any concerts or performances happening during your visit. From traditional Faroese folk music to contemporary genres, you’re sure to find something that will get your feet tapping.


If dancing is more your style, head to one of Torshavn’s nightclubs or discotheques. These venues attract both locals and visitors, and provide a vibrant and energetic atmosphere. Dance the night away to a mix of popular tunes and local beats, and immerse yourself in the infectious Faroese joie de vivre.


Torshavn is also known for its vibrant cultural events and festivals. Keep an eye out for local celebrations, such as the Ólavsøka Festival, which takes place in late July, and enjoy a festive atmosphere filled with music, dancing, and traditional Faroese customs.


For a more relaxed evening, explore the city’s fine dining scene and indulge in a delicious meal at one of the upscale restaurants. Pair your meal with a glass of wine and savor the flavors of the region while enjoying the company of friends or loved ones.


When experiencing the nightlife in Torshavn, it’s important to exercise responsible drinking and be mindful of local customs. Respect the establishments you visit and have a designated driver or make use of public transportation if needed.


Whether you’re seeking vibrant energy or a more laid-back ambiance, Torshavn offers a nightlife experience that will leave you with lasting memories of your time in the Faroe Islands. So put on your dancing shoes, raise a toast to new experiences, and immerse yourself in the lively atmosphere of Torshavn after dark.


Taking a Boat Trip to Nólsoy Island

Located just a short boat ride away from Torshavn, Nólsoy Island is a hidden gem that offers a tranquil escape from the bustling city. With its untouched landscapes, charming village, and breathtaking views, a boat trip to Nólsoy is a must for nature enthusiasts and those seeking a peaceful retreat.


To reach Nólsoy, you can catch a ferry from Torshavn harbor. The short journey takes approximately 20 minutes, and as you sail across the water, you’ll be treated to stunning views of the surrounding islands and the picturesque coastline of Nólsoy itself.


Upon arriving on Nólsoy Island, you’ll be greeted by the quaint village of Nólsoy. Take a leisurely stroll through the narrow streets lined with colorful houses and soak in the island’s relaxed atmosphere. You’ll feel like you’ve stepped back in time as you discover the slower pace of life on this charming island.


For nature lovers, Nólsoy is a haven waiting to be explored. Lace up your hiking boots and embark on one of the scenic trails that crisscross the island. The most popular hike leads to Nólsoy’s iconic lighthouse, which offers panoramic views of the Faroe Islands’ rugged coastline.


As you hike through the lush landscape, keep an eye out for the abundant birdlife that calls Nólsoy home. The island is a birdwatcher’s paradise, with various species nesting in the cliffs and seascapes. Bring your binoculars and camera to capture the beauty that surrounds you.


After your hike, take a moment to relax and recharge at one of the local cafes or restaurants. Sample traditional Faroese dishes made with locally sourced ingredients and savor the flavors of the island.


Before you leave Nólsoy, be sure to visit the small but fascinating Nólsoy Museum. Housed in a charming historic building, the museum offers a glimpse into the island’s history, including its whaling heritage and the life of its inhabitants.


As you bid farewell to Nólsoy Island, take a moment to reflect on the tranquility and natural beauty you’ve experienced. The boat ride back to Torshavn will provide a final opportunity to enjoy the sweeping vistas and appreciate the stunning Faroese landscapes.


A boat trip to Nólsoy Island is an opportunity to escape the city and immerse yourself in the untouched beauty of the Faroe Islands. Whether you’re seeking a nature adventure, cultural exploration, or simply a peaceful break, Nólsoy will leave you with treasured memories of your time in this captivating corner of the world.



Torshavn, the capital of the Faroe Islands, offers a captivating blend of natural beauty, rich history, and vibrant culture. From exploring the charming streets of the Old Town to immersing yourself in the serene atmosphere of Tinganes, there is no shortage of things to see and do in this captivating city.


Whether you’re hiking in the surrounding mountains, visiting historical landmarks like the Torshavn Cathedral, or indulging in the flavors of traditional Faroese cuisine, Torshavn provides a unique and unforgettable experience for every traveler.


The city’s proximity to the stunning landscapes of the Faroe Islands also offers opportunities for boat trips to nearby islands like Nólsoy, where you can escape the bustling city and immerse yourself in the tranquility of untouched nature.


As you explore Torshavn, make sure to connect with the local culture and traditions by shopping for traditional Faroese products, attending lively music concerts, and experiencing the vibrant nightlife scene. The warmth and hospitality of the Faroese people will only enhance your visit to this captivating city.


Whether you’re an outdoor enthusiast, history buff, food lover, or simply seeking a unique travel experience, Torshavn promises to deliver an unforgettable journey through the wonders of the Faroe Islands.


So, pack your bags, embrace the enchanting beauty of Torshavn, and let the captivating capital of the Faroe Islands leave a lasting impression on your heart and soul.