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Paul Goldstein shares his favourite place to spend a night in Norway

There may be better places to see the Northern Lights in the Arctic. Maybe. However the Andoy Friluftssenter is my favourite. By a mile.

Nigel and his wife have created an Arctic base here that borders on perfection. The accommodation is either in cosy cabins or in the large pine main building. Above the cabins is the ‘Labo’ – a communal area like a wigwam with a huge fireplace and fur-covered benches, ideal for groups.

Northern LightsNorthern Lights

Norwegian Landscapes

All are warm and comfortable as is the log-fired hot spa outside. The whole place is perched just above a beautiful fjord and photographically is sensational. When seeing the lights, it is essential that the ‘fixed’ surrounds are interesting, not just rolling hills and a few trees.

Ice, fjords, mountains and rocks all compete to get in the way of the viewfinder and all are within a few minutes’ walk. For many, the scene right in front of the restaurant takes some beating.

Talking of restaurants, this is the best food in the Northern hemisphere. It’s official (well in my book it is.) Char, salmon, moose pie, glorious soups, healthy breakfasts and all made locally using local products, from fish to cloudberries.


Whale Watching Excursions

There are excursions for seeing sperm and killer whales, white-tailed eagles, otters and whooper swans. This is not a heavily populated part of Norway, that is unlikely to change. It takes a bit of getting to but is an utter joy to stay here… much of this is down to Nigel. Lights, camera, food, action.

See our trips to Norway below and stay at the Andoy Friluftssenter.