Street in Torshavn

The Faroe Islands are a small collection of islands way out in the middle of nowhere. By nowhere, I mean in the middle of the North Atlantic, but “nowhere” is sure what it feels like while you are sailing across it. As we approached Torshavn, which is the capital town of the islands, we expected to find a rustic little community huddled tenuously in the midst of a barren, harsh landscape. We expected to find wind-beaten old buildings and salt-eroded stone quays. We expected the people to have webbed fingers and few teeth, if any. But we failed to take something significant into account: the Faroe Islands belong to Denmark. And I have to say that based on what we discovered in Torshavn, those Scandinavians could teach us all a thing or two. The last thing we expected from Torshavn was Torshavn itself, a town where grass-roofed cabins and modern architecture live side by side, where streets are clean and engaging, and where wifi comes “free” with your eight-dollar coffee.

One of the ports

Even with the gray, rainy weather we had while we were there, we were charmed by Torshavn. The port is surrounded by colourful buildings with neat white trim and grass roofs, but as we walked into the town itself we started to discover some very new, very contemporary buildings tucked neatly into the fabric of the town. It was a wonderfully balanced coexistence — the new buildings were well considered and tastefully modern, acknowledging their context without blatantly emulating it, and the older buildings were well-maintained and often renovated, but without any loss of their original character. We abandoned any thoughts of organized sightseeing and just walked happily up and down the steep streets, ducking into coffee shops whenever the sky opened up on us.

Sloped grass roof



  1. Bruce the Moose

  2. I spy an Albin 25, third boat from the left!
    The Albin 25 was the forbearer to our Albin 27. They were mostly made in Sweden, some in the UK. Runs on a 3 cylinder diesel.

  3. Debbie Rosen

  4. Bruce, that’s too funny!

    How did you even notice the boat? lol

Leave a Comment

Your email will not be published.
Required fields are marked *.