The Bodø Region is located just North of the Arctic Circle and the region’s largest town is Bodø, with 50,000 inhabitants. Though small by European standards, Bodø is a modern city with a full range of facilities. As well as Bodø itself, the region includes the municipalities of Meløy, Gildeskål, Beiarn, Saltdal, Fauske, Sørfold, Steigen and Hamarøy.
The airport, just a short walk from the City Centre, connects Bodø with the rest of the world. Fast catamarans ferry passengers quickly out of Bodø to the surrounding districts. The coastal steamer, Hurtigruten, also stops here daily.
Bodø is the final stop on the Nordlandsbanen rail route and daily commuter trains run in and out of Bodø. In addition, there is a comprehensive local and regional bus network.
Culture, sport and leisure
There is no shortage of leisure activities in Bodø, which was rated Norway’s most attractive city in 2016. The city has a range of sports facilities and an excellent, international-class concert hall.
Bodø’s football and handball clubs play at national level in Norway and almost all sports are on offer here.
The region’s natural surroundings are spectacular, with mountains and seascapes in all directions. The local inhabitants use nature to the full in their leisure time and there are many organised mountain trips for the inexperienced.
Even though the region is North of the Arctic Circle, that doesn’t mean winter temperatures all year round. The region has the midnight sun and comfortable temperatures in summer, while winter brings the Northern Lights and very special winter light conditions. Northern Lights tourism has grown markedly in the region in recent years.
All municipalities have a coastline, so there are good opportunities for activities afloat and on the beach in the summer season. There are a multitude of white sand beaches, ideal for those who are unafraid of low water temperatures to swim, snorkel and dive.
This part of the world is a paradise for sports fishermen and those who fish from a boat are as good as guaranteed a catch. There are several excellent salmon rivers, and good trout waters abound in the mountains, many of them easily accessible. There is even a salmon river in Bodø itself, Futelva, just a short cycle ride from the centre.
In Norway there is a universal right to roam, so anglers can take a tent with them into the mountains and camp by one of many good fishing tarns.
As witnessed by the restaurant menus, there are numerous good local food producers in the region. Clean, locally-sourced food is preferred and Bodø’s Nyt restaurant is ranked among Scandinavia’s best.
Picking one’s own delicacies out in the countryside is an option for some, as there are plenty of berries and mushrooms and no restrictions on harvesting them.
When the Government decided to close the fighter base in Bodø, the local community responded by planning an ambitious new project. The plan is to move the whole airport, in order to build a new city district where the Armed Forces were previously based. The new city district will be built using SMART technology and companies from all over the world have shown great interest.
The plans have now been approved and the work of moving the airport two kilometres to the east will start soon.
Recent years have seen dramatic development throughout the whole region, with high-tempo building activity and many new jobs.
The seafood industry is also thriving in the region. Nordland county exported seafood worth NOK 13.9 billion in 2016 and the industry just keeps on growing. Fish farming is also very important in the coastal districts, and plays a key role in encouraging people to live outside the towns.
A wonderful place to live and visit
The time when Northern Norway was seen as a part of the country where nothing much happened is over, and this is now the region where the greatest value creation is taking place. There is every indication that this trend will continue.
Northern Norway is blessed with a spectacular and clean natural environment and low levels of crime. It is a safe place to live and is a part of the world where the experiences nature has to offer are right outside the front door.