My crazy time in the Faroe Islands took me to 7 of the 18 islands over an intense 6 day period in this often neglected country in the backpacking world. I used a mix of buses, boats, hiking and also a hired car to get around on 2 of those days. For the trip to the village of Gjogv, I travelled with Katie from Boston in the USA. We hired a car in Torshavn and drove to it. Gjogv is situated on the island of Eysturoy and it’s by the coast on the north. By this stage we had already toured Sorvagur, hiked to Gasadalur, toured the north eastern islands and visited Torshavn and Traelanipa.
Gjógv (which I won’t even attempt to pronounce) is a tiny village located on the northeast tip of the island of Eysturoy. The population is just 49, which rises in summer. When driving there it is 63 km (39 miles) north by road from the capital of Tórshavn. You need to go across a bridge between Streymoy Island and Eysturoy Island on route to Gjogv. As with everywhere in the Faroe Islands, the views are tremendous, all the way.
Gjogv is named after a 200 metre long sea-filled gorge that runs north to the sea from the village, so basically Gjogv means Gorge. The coolest thing about the Faroe Islands for me is just that there are not many people about yet lots of beauty all around. Gjogv is simply a gorgeous village and I’d definitely put it on your itinerary. Photos speak louder than words when it comes to places like this, but here are the main things to see and do in Gjogv.
1.Gjogv Village Church
The village church in Gjogv dates from 1929, something which it clearly states on the front of it. Gjogv Village Church was the first one to be consecrated in the village and the first one to feature services in Faroese, yes in case you didn’t know – they speak Faroese here. They don’t speak Danish, well at least not as the number one language. Before Gjogv had a church, the village of Funningur (which we passed on route) had the nearest church and villagers would walk all the way there (in the days before motorised transport).
The church is one of the finest I have ever seen, and perhaps this is aided by the absolutely stunning countryside and idyllic village around it, but you can’t help admire. Also, the church has a graveyard as most of the churches in the Faroe Islands do, including the one at Kirkjubour.
2.Gjogv Fishermen Memorial
On the opposite side of the road from the church, a sculpture stands as a memorial to fishermen that were sadly lost at sea. It sits on the grass in a small garden and bears the names and ages of men from the late nineteenth to the mid twentieth century.
3.Gjogv Post Office
The post office in Gjogv is unusual as realistically it doesn’t exist. It’s inside someone’s private home – they act as the post office here! The nearest real post office is in Eidi but there is a post box by the village’s only bus stop.
Photography enthusiasts will have a day in the field here as Gjogv Harbour is stunning. The rocks against the waves, the green algae forming, the sunset, the clouds, this place is a dream to look at.
5.Gjaargardur Guest House
I was there the first week of September which turns out it is the end of their summer and tourist season in the Faroe Islands. This meant that the Gjaargardur Guest House is closed but they were decent enough to e-mail me back to tell me this as originally, I fancied staying here and doing the hike. It’s a Guesthouse at the top of the village, it also has a restaurant and sells alcohol. The Faroe Islands flag flies proudly outside and the guest house has turfed rooves.
Instead I stayed at the best hotel in the country, the Hotel Foroyar in Torshavn and also out at Sorvagur in the Guesthouse Hugo. But if you are there in the right season, you can spend a night or two in Gjogv.
6.Gjogv Gorge Hike
We had already done two pretty cool hikes in the Faroe Islands (past Sorvagsvatn Lake and up to the village of Gasadalur), so by this stage we weren’t up for another hike here. But the hike at Gjogv is meant to be fantastic. Instead we checked out the gorge from the bottom.
Overall, unless you’re doing the hike or staying overnight in Gjogv, you can check out all there is to see in a few hours. It’s a really nice village.
Here are my videos from touring Gjogv while backpacking in the Faroe Islands: