Discover

BUGØYNES PYKEIJA

There’s some magic in Bugøynes. The charming village is a very small place, streched onto a neck of land surrounded by the sea. It’s population is only 180 and most of the villagers are Finnish descendants. A narrow, winding road leads you to this tiny village at the end of the world. Already the journey to Bugøynes will take your breath away. Windy arctic landscapes dominate the scenery and there is practically no vegetation, but still everything is overwhelmingly beautiful. Bugøynes might be one of the last places on earth you would expect humans to thrive, but yet they do thanks to the King Crab and the Arctic Sea. 

All the things that matter in life are here: fresh air, good people, school, church, nursing home, shop and the opportunity to experience nature. The presence of nature and strong sense of community are features that make Bugøynes such a special place. 

Learn more about our history and of the things you can do in our village.

Bistroen

SERVICES

  • Our village has one grocery store, a post-office, a bistro, a kindergarten, a school, a doctor´s reception (only on certain days of the month), and a retirement home. The school once had over 70 pupils, but in Spring 2022 only 14 students attending grades 1-10.
  • The grocery store, Nærbutikken, is open Mon-Sat.
  • There is one restaurant in the village, Restaurant Bistroen, which is open daily during the Summer season. In Winter from Mon-Sat.
  • You can find an outdoors gym with 11 different gym devices just 1km outside the village. Just follow the main road and lookout to your left.
  • The nearest gas stations are in Varangerbotn (60km) and Näätämö, Finland (70km)
  • The nearest towns are Kirkenes (102km), and Vadsø (110km). Kirkenes has the closest hospital.
  • Vadsø can also be reached by our boat transfer in 20minutes, since it is on the other side of Varangerfjord. By car it will take you over 1,5h.
  • Boat rentals, King Crab safaris and Sauna bookings can be requested from Restaurant Bistroen, or by phone/email.
LOCATION
Bugoynes village pic

SIGHTS

  • The Bugøynes Beach is well-known for its beauty and is much photographed! Gather seashells, enjoy the sceneries or take a swim if you dare!
  • The Pleym Pier is a restored pier dating back to the 19th century with a museum exhibition showing old coastal culture. Open on request.
  • The Lassi House (Norwegian: Lassigården), is a culture house dating back to the 1850s is now used as museum. Open in July, and otherwise upon request.
  • The Bugøynes chapel was built in 1989. The Lutheran church holds one regularly-scheduled service each month.
  • The Eastern part of Bugøynes cemetery is the only known habitat in Scandinavia for the very rare flower, Boreal Jacobs Ladder (Polemonium boreale). The area is protected, and it is forbidden to collect and destroy the plants.
SIBERIAN JACOB´S LADDER
LASSI GÅRDEN
Visit Bugoynes view over Bugoynes

LOOKOUT POINTS

There are excellent look out points just around the village, which are easily accessible. From the cliffs you can see the cold blue water of the Arctic Ocean rinsing the shores, and the petite picturesque village below with its few streets and houses. Find seashells and sea urchins thrown on the rocks by seagulls, and admire the small, adorable flora and fauna that are tenaciously attached to the ground. The nature is accustomed to wind and storms and the arctic weather and ice age have also rounded the stones. When you are looking at the glimmering sea and the arctic scenery things become clearer and unnecessary complaints fade away with the breeze. 

BUGØYNES FROM THE AIR

About

OUR HISTORY

Bugøynes was settled by Norwegians in the 1700´s – but was later deserted. It was still serving as a fishing base, but it was repopulated with regular year-round settlement by people from Finland escaping poverty and famine, which occurred in Finland in the 1800´s. The Finns scattered to many villages along the Norwegian coastline, but in Bugøynes the whole population was Finnish. There was a new wave of Finnish settlement in the 1970s when the fishing factories were thriving. New young Finnish immigrants came to work at the factories and stayed. This is the reason why the village is also called Pikku-Suomi (Little Finland), and many use it by its Finnish name, Pykeija. Old Finnish language is still spoken among some of the older villagers, and the population is mainly formed of Finnish descendants. 

Bugøynes is in many ways unique. It is not only a Finnish village in Norway, but it was also one of the very few places that was not burnt and destroyed during World War II by the Germans. This is why some older wooden houses dating back to the 1800s are still standing. In addition, the scenic windy road leading to Bugøynes was finished only in 1962. Before this the main link between the village and the rest of the world was by sea. 

The village endured much hardship in the late 1980s, when the fisheries moved their operations elsewhere and the villagers became unemployed. The villagers came up with an idea to put an ad in the paper where they applied for a job together as a village. The newspaper misunderstood and the advertisement came out that the village of Bugøynes was put up for sale! This accidental publicity stunt brought a lot of attention internationally and caused a tourism flow which helped the villagers to gain some income. This story also tells a lot of the persistence and determination of the villagers. Finally, it was the arrival of King Crab that actually revived the village, and the King crab is a very important part of livelihood still today.

King Crab safari Varangerfjord

KING CRABS

The Soviet Union moved king crabs (Kamchatkan crab) from the Pacific Ocean to the Barents Sea in the 1960s. It started with a few specimens, but little by little, king crabs have spread along the Norwegian coast towards the west. Now the king crab is an object of conflict. It is an alien species and eats almost anything that sits in the sea bottom destroying the marine ecosystems, but it is also a very important industry for Finnmark region. Many of the small villages, such as Bugøynes, have blossomed after the arrival of crab processing plants. The Norway King Crab in Bugøynes, is such a plant, where they are fishing and farming the red king crab. King crabs can grow up to 15kg and their meat is considered very tasty and healthy. You are welcome to join our King Crab Safari or come to Restaurant Bistroen to taste a King Crab dish! Learn more about the history of King Crab and Bugøynes from the links below.

JOIN A KING CRAB TOURTHE CRAB & BUGØYNES
Arctic Bathing

ARCTIC BATHING

Finnish people are sauna people, and of course the Finnish settlers brought the sauna with them. Every house in the village has a sauna!  For this reason, Bugøynes has also become a very popular destination for Arctic Bathing. Many wish to experience a dip in the Arctic Ocean combined with a sauna. The hot and cold treatment have many physical and mental health benefits and will give you a buzz. Scientific studies show that cold immersions reduce stress and blood pressure, and also trigger the brain’s production of endorphin hormones. The icy water gives you a rush and afterwards you feel extremely calm and refreshed. The whole experience is quite addictive.

We offer Arctic bathing experiences all year round in our Barents Sauna Camp. The saunas are heated the traditional way, with wood, and the saunas can be booked privately. This is an excellent way to experience a true Arctic sensation! 

BARENTS SAUNA CAMP
Bugoynes hiking

HIKING & BIRD WATCHING

There are a few marked trails which depart approx. 2km from the village. For any hiking we recommend to download the “Norgeskart outdoor” app, or other similar app, which will show the trails in the area as well as your location.

  • The most popular trail is to Ranvika Bird Sanctuary. The largest bird sanctuary in Sør-Varanger is situated about 90 minutes walk (5km/one way) from Bugøynes. Lookout for the Ranvika sign turning east approx. 2km from the village. The mountain nests thousands of black-legged kittiwakes and it a popular destination among birdwatchers. It is also an old summer retreat for the villagers. 
  • The Folkesti trail follows the coastline and is 5km/one way. It also departs approx. 2km from the village, on the western side of the road.
  • Sør-Varanger’s highest peak, 497m, is known as Bugøynestoppen, but its Sami name is Gàransèohkka. The trail starts approx. 4 km before Bugøynes. You should definitely use a map to locate the starting point as there is no sign.
  • If you wish exercise, there is a recreation park just outside the village with with 11 different exercise devices. Walk approx 1km up the Bugøynes road and you will see the gym devices on the left-hand side.
RANVIKA ON THE MAPBUGØYNESTOPPEN
SAMSUNG CSC

FISHING

In Norway, you can fish from the sea without any fishing permits. You can fish from the shores of the Bugøynes bay, but it is easiest to rent a small motorboat to go out to sea. This is suitable even for beginners. We recommend to rent the boat only in good weather and to stay 1-2km off the shore. There is no reason to go further since good sized cod, haddock, catfish and even halibut rise from the waters just near Bugøynes! Since 2021 there has been a requirement to register your catch through Fishmemo. And the caught fish have only been allowed to leave Norway if they have been fished through a registered business or tour operator, for example by renting a boat.

When you rent a boat from us please ask for the official document that you have rented your boat through a registered business.

RENT A BOAT
ABOUT FISHMEMO
Northern Lights Norway

WINTER IN BUGØYNES

Bugøynes in winter is a very beautiful and peaceful experience. The low arctic sunlight combined with pristine white landscapes and the deep blue sea is truly magical. Even though the temperatures can be around -10-20 Celsius, Varangerfjord never freezes due to the Gulf stream.

The first snow usually arrives in the end of October. From late November to mid January we experience the Polar night season when we enjoy soft pastel colors of pink, violet and blue, and soon as it gets dark we can start looking for the Northern Lights. Bugøynes is right under the aurora zone and we have hardly any light pollution. This makes it an excellent destination for aurora viewing! Already by early February the sun starts to rise again and the days rapidly grow longer. With the sun passing still quite low over the horizon, both sunrise and sunset seems like an amazing natural event in slow motion. We do also face snow storms in winter, which can be quite spectacular too! By mid March we are already soaking in the sun and enjoying long days.  We welcome you to enjoy the overwhelmingly beautiful arctic scenery and the peacefulness of Bugøynes village.

BOOK A PACKAGE
Visit Bugoynes Winter

HOW TO GET HERE

Bugøoynes locates in Sør-Varanger municipality in northeastern Norway. Location is by Varangerfjord, which is part of the Barents Sea and Arctic Ocean. You can easily access the village by car, and we offer transfers from Kirkenes, and boat transfers from Vadsø.

By car:

  • From Kirkenes the drive is 102km. Drive west on the E6 road. Approximately after 85km of driving, turn right towards Bugøynes. The sign also states “Pikku-Suomi” (Little Finland). At the end of this road you will find our village.

By air:

  • The closest airport is in Kirkenes (102km). From Kirkenes you can rent a car or order a pick up transfer from us.

By ship:

  • Hurtigruten Ferry Line´s final port is also in Kirkenes. From Kirkenes you can rent a car or order a pick up transfer from us.

Driving from Finland:

  • The Finnish border is only 1h drive away. You can cross the border from Näätämö or Nuorgam.

Boat transfer from Vadsø:

  • Vadsø is on the other side of the fjord. By road the distance is 110km, but with our boat transfer it takes only 15-20min.
BOOK TRANSFERS
LOCATION ON THE MAP
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