Using public transportation you can take a round trip from Kirkenes to Vardø with the famous coastal steamer Hurtigruten and back to Kirkenes with a scheduled public bus along the spectacular National Tourist Route in Varanger. Available all seasons on Sundays, duration 8 hours. The boat leaves Kirkenes each day at 12:30 and arrives Vardø at 15:45. Vardø is the first stop of the southbounding Hurtigruten voyage from Kirkenes to Bergen. You can buy the boat ticket on board or order online.
Please note: The schedule is subject to changes in accordance with changes/cancellations of Hurtigruten’s operation.
On Sundays the bus (number 064) departure in Vardø is at 17:00. In Varangerbotn you have to change the bus at 19:00, the waiting bus in Varangerbotn has the number 066 and will arrive Kirkenes at 21:00.
Vardø, belonging to the region Varanger, is the easternmost and oldest town in northern Norway, located at 31°E, which is east of Saint Petersburg, Kiev and Istanbul. Vardø lies in the arctic climate zone. Its warmest month does not reach 10°C, so the land is tundra and is treeless.
Approaching by boat you first can see the huge Globus II radar to the left and the lighthouse on the small island of Hornøya, a wildlife watcher's paradise, to the right.
Just a 5 minutes footwalk from the quay you can visit the Vardøhus fortress, the world’s northernmost, which was built 1734 to guard the border with Russia, although it is not known whether Russian forces ever attacked the installation. Located near to the fortress is the Steilneset memorial, a monument to the victims of atrocities during the burning of witches in Vardø.
The bus stop in Vardø lies just 50 away from the quay, you can't miss it.
Between Vardø and Vadsø the road winds along the coastline of the Barents Sea leading through small fishing villages as Kiberg and Ekkerøy. In Vadsø you can see the mooring mast from which the airship "Norge" with Amundsen and Nobile left Vadsø for the expedition to the North Pole in 1926.