What we love about Kirkenes, the Gateway to the East
Kirkenes is a diverse town in many ways and offers a mix of historical, cultural and outdoor experiences like no other Norwegian town! Kirkenes represents the upper end of Norway. It’s located only 15 km from the Russian border and is often called the gateway to the East. Kirkenes is also the end destination for the Hurtigruten coastal steamer and the end of Norway’s main road, E6, that takes you all the way down to Oslo.
The region enjoys the midnight sun, 24hours of continuous daylight in the summer, and 24 hours of continuous nighttime during winter, when the Nordic Lights blaze in the sky.
Kirkenes town is the home of Norwegians, Russians and Samis, the indigenous people of the North. Here you can experience the traditional indigenous way of living, Norway’s long history with Russia and in the winter months the surrounding nature offers ice fishing, Northern Lights hunting or sleeping in one of the beautifully decorated rooms in the Kirkenes Snowhotel.
Did you know that the region around Kirkenes is the home of the majestic king crabs? They get exceptionally large, reach a span of 1.8 meters and weight up to 15 kg, and were artificially introduced by the Soviet Union during the 1960s. Today, they have spread to the Norwegian coast and we highly recommend joining a king crab safari when in Kirkenes!