Post-conference tour EGF2016

A post-conference tour is offered, starting from Trondheim immediately after the conference on Thursday 8 September 13:00 h and ending Saturday afternoon in Sandnessjøen. 
 
Thursday 8 September
 
13:00 Departure from Trondheim, lunch packages will be provided in the buss. We will travel north along the E6 towards Grong to Namsen Laksakvarium (Namsen Salmon-aquarium) (http://namsenlaksakvarium.no/ web-page only in Norwegian). Here we experience the Atlantic salmon (Salmo salar) and the Arctic char (Salvelinus alpinus) close up. Namsen is a big salmon river that also produces trout (Salmo trutta). We will see one of the longest salmon stairs in Europe (293 meter with 77 holes making a difference in height of 34.5 m). A salmon stair allows the salmon to hasten past obstacles and thus let it spread further up the river. A “salmon studio” is built in one of the holes and a close up experience of salmon forcing the stairs is made possible. In connection with the Salmon-aquarium is Fiskumfossen, which is a waterfall with a fall of 34.5 m with a water-flow changing from zero to more than 1 million litres per second. 
 
We continue north to Namsskogan Family Park (http://familieparken.no/#/info/english/). We will be accommodated at Namsskogan Hotel across the road from the family park. In the family park, we will have dinner in a Lavvo (Sami tent) where we are served local dishes of reindeer (Rangifer tarandus) or elk (Alces alces). We will get a guided tour and visit the four big predators in Norway (wolverine (Gulo gulo), lynx (Lynx lynx), wolf (Canis lupus) and brown bear (Ursus arctos)). 
 
   
Wolf with offspring. Photo: P. E. Aspholm, NIBIO   Lynx with offspring. Photo: P. E. Aspholm, NIBIO   Elk. Photo: H. Sund, Bioforsk
 
 
Friday 9 September
 
9:00 Departure towards Brønnøysund to visit Hildurs Urterarium (http://www.hildurs.no/en/). We have now entered Nordland County and Helgeland, the southern part of this 800 km long and narrow county. Helgeland consist of 18 of the 44 municipalities in Nordland including Vevelstad, which inhabit the second smallest number of people (approximately 500) in Norway. Hildurs Urterarium is located at Tilrem, centre of one of Helgelands mighty chiefdom dated back to the Viking age. Remnants from the Viking age is still visual, e.g. a huge grave site. We will visit the farm holding a big flock of Old Norwegian Sheep, visit the Herb Garden including more than 200 different plant species. The garden is divided into sections with species special for e.g. food, medical treatment, poisonous, and biblical. After a lunch, we catch a ferry that will bring us to Vega.
 
   
Vega main island. Photo: P. Thorvaldsen, NIBIO   Look to Vega from Lånan. Photo: P. Thorvaldsen, NIBIO   Ferry to Vega island. Photo: H. Sund, Bioforsk
 
Vega (https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Vega,_Norway) consist of a main island (162 m²) and about 6500 smaller islands in Vega Archipelago. In 2004, the archipelago’s cultural landscape was inscribed by UNESCO on the World Heritage Site list. It is representative of “the way generations of fishermen/farmers have, over the past 1500 years, maintained a sustainable living in an inhospitable seascape near the Arctic Circle, based on the now unique practice of eider down harvesting” (http://www.verdensarvvega.no/index.php/en/). During our stay at Vega, we will visit a dairy farm and hear about the living of farming in such a remote area of the world. We will hear about eider down harvesting and production and visit one of the biggest eider down nesting places, Lånan (http://www.verdensarvvega.no/index.php/en/lanan). We will stay at Vega Havhotell and experience an exclusive dinner made by Chef Jon Aga. He creates food with local products from Vega and Helgeland. What applies to the season is an important starting point for his menus.
 
   
Typical island settlement. Photo: P. Thorvaldsen, NIBIO   Sunset over the archipelago. Photo: P. Thorvaldsen, NIBIO   Seven Sisters Photo: P. Thorvaldsen, NIBIO
 
Saturday 10 September
 
09:00 Departure with a smaller boat to Lånan. The trip to this unique island will allow us to get a very close up experience of nature. We pass small islands and inlets only metres from the boat, see a rich seabird life of seagulls (Laridae, e.g. little gull, great black-backed gull), cormorant (Phalacrocorax carbo), white-tailed eagle (Haliaeetus albicilla) and many more. If we are lucky, we might also experience porpoise (Phocoena phocoena). During a guided tour at Lånan we will see eiders and their nests and hear about the important job of the “eider-keepers” in the spring and early summer time. Here, eiders are as pets for the eider-keepers. We return from the islands back to the main land to visit Tjøtta. 
 
   
Female Eider at her nest, Vega. Photo: T. H. Carlsen, NIBIO   Sheep on island of Vega archipelago. Photo: S. Aune, NIBIO   Male Eiders in Flock. Photo: T. H. Carlsen, NIBIO
 
Tjøtta is a small village with only 250 inhabitants. Tjøtta Farm is the largest farm in Northern Norway and host one of the locations of Norwegian Institute of Bioeconomy Research (NIBIO). Tjøtta is an important historical place with archaeological evidence going back to the Iron Age. Tjøtta is mentioned in Heimskringla many times. Heimskringla is the best known of the Old Norse Kings’ sagas written by the Islandic poet and historian Snorri Sturluson. We will be served lunch in the main house of the farm, Tjøtta Guesthouse. The lunch is a diversity of local specialties and traditional food from Helgeland. We will visit the farm (beef cattle and sheep) and do a walk through the unique cultural landscape formed through decades of mixed grazing with sheep and cattle.  
 
   
Landscape Tjøtta. Photo: H. Sund, Bioforsk   Lama and sheep. Photo: H. Sund, Bioforsk   Tjøtta farm. Photo: H. Sund, Bioforsk
 
We continue to the museum of Petter Dass, 20 km north of Tjøtta located at the foot of the mountain chain The Seven Sisters (http://www.petterdass-museet.no/?lang=en). Petter Dass was a priest and wrote poems and songs for all occasions. The museum is the County of Nordland’s millennium site and is designed by the architectural firm Snøhetta AS. We end the Post-conference tour in Sandnessjøen, the main city of Alstahaug municipality. 
 
There is a small airport located close to Sandnessjøen with connections to Trondheim. However, on Saturday afternoon, there are no flights and the first opportunity to leave by plane is Sunday midday. Depending on the interest, we can arrange transport back to Trondheim during Saturday evening to make early flights out of Trondheim Sunday morning. It is also possible to stay in Sandnessjøen at one of the hotels and experience the new cultural house of Sandnessjøen.
 
   
Seven Sisters from Tjøtta. Photo: H. Sund, Bioforsk   Photo: P. Thorvaldsen, NIBIO   Photo: P. Thorvaldsen, NIBIO
 
Prices and registration
The price of the post-conference tour will not exceed 400 €. The tour includes all food, accommodation, travel and entry to tourist sites. Beverages are at your own cost. Accommodation on the night of Saturday 10 is not included in the tour and must be organised by you (hotels in Sandnessjøen: http://www.scandichotels.com/Hotels/Norway/Sandnessjoen/Syv-Sostre/#.Viocv_7os-U, https://www.nordicchoicehotels.com/clarion-collection/clarion-collection-hotel-kysten/).
 
Please ensure you bring suitable clothing and footwear for farm and island visits, and the boat tour (closed boat). There is a degree of walking at the farms and on Lånan. Please advise us at the booking if this is a problem and we will prepare for this. Please advise us of any dietary requirements you may have or of any special considerations that are needed.
 
Webpages of interest: 
Namsskogan hotel: http://www.hotellet.no/ (in Norwegian only)
Heimskringla: https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Heimskringla
Vega Havhotell: http://www.havhotellene.no/
Tjøtta: https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Tj%C3%B8tta
 
Additional information about Post-conference tour
Previously, we wrote, “Depending on the interest, we can arrange transport back to Trondheim”.
We get some requests regarding transport back to Trondheim during Saturday in order to reach connections from Trondheim airport on Sunday morning. Here is some additional information.
We will arrive at Tjøtta Saturday around noon. This allow you to connect with the flight leaving Sandnessjøen airport Stokka on Saturday afternoon 13:35. However, you must be aware that you will then miss the opportunity to visit Tjøtta Farm and the visit at NIBIO Tjøtta. You will also miss the visit to the Petter Dass museum. We offer transport to the airport. Please send an email directly to vibeke.lind@nibio.no if you need the transport. 
 
The next option is to take the train from Mosjøen to Trondheim airport Værnes. Mosjøen train station is located 1h15m from Tjøtta. The train leaves Mosjøen 16:41 with arrival at Værnes 21:35. Using this option, you will miss the visit to the Petter Dass museum.
 
The final option is to catch the night train, also leaving from Mosjøen on Sunday September 11th 01:40. The train arrive Værnes 07:07 Sunday morning. 
 
We offer transport to the train station. Please send an email directly to vibeke.lind@nibio.no if you need transport and highlight which train you will take. Be aware that booking of tickets will be available only 90 days prior to departure (June 10th).
 
You are most welcome to stay in Sandnessjøen and book a later flight. Trains are also available (see attached link to the train schedule; 71 Bodø – Trondheim S). 
https://www.nsb.no/rutetider/rutetabell/_attachment/11236?_ts=15132dd32c0
We offer free transportation to the airport or train station. No connections with plane or train are included in the fee.
 
If you have any further questions regarding the post-conference tour, please do not hesitate to contact Vibeke Lind at vibeke.lind@nibio.no directly.