Iles lofoten ferry bodo moskenes

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To reach the lofoten Islands , probably the most beautiful place in Norway there are a number of options. You can either arrive directly by road from the north, the road coming from Tromso, or by plane directly to Harstad/Narvik (Evenes airport).

But a very common option is to arrive in Bodo, which offers many advantages:

  • direct flights from Oslo
  • road access from central Norway
  • above all, a ferry to Lofoten

The ferry from Bodo to southern Lofoten in Moskenes is super convenient. It only lasts 3h15 (sometimes a bit more). You don’t have to go up from Bodo to the entrance to Lofoten, much further north, and then drive another 3 hours to go back down to Svolvaer. So that saves a hell of a lot of time!

But is it always the best solution, how much does the ferry cost, how long does it take and how often? Let’s find out!

Lofoten islands summer reine hamnoy
village Reine Lofoten islands Norway winter

When is it best to take the ferry from Bodo?

As I said in the introduction, there are two ways to enter the Lofoten Islands:

  • from the north of the Lofoten Islands
    • via Harstad/Narvik airport (there are also airports in Leknes and Svolvaer, but these are rarer), located at the entrance to the Lofoten Islands, you’re easily 3 or 4 hours (with photo breaks)  away from the center of the Lofoten Islands, the most interesting part of the island
    • by road, via the E6 which becomes the E10. The Lofoten Islands are very large, all in length, and it takes 6 hours to get from one end to the other!
  • From the south, via the ferry from Bodo, this ferry reaches the Lofoten Islands (Moskenes) and Vaeroy. We arrive at the very south of the islands, on the fabulous island of Moskenesoya, not far from Reine and A i Lofoten.
  1. You’re only visiting the Lofoten Islands
    • In that case, it’s probably best to arrive in Harstad/Narvik. It’s quicker because you arrive directly at Lofoten, can rent a car there and then head further south.
    • Arriving in Bodo and taking the ferry doesn’t really offer any advantages: the plane takes the same amount of time, car hire is the same, but you’ll have to take the ferry. So a bit more expensive (with the car) and takes more time. Unless you want to visit the city, that’s the only advantage I can see. After that, the ferry ride is great fun too, and the views of the mountains are very pretty!
  2. You can also visit the north (Tromso, Senja, Finnmark)
    • Unless you make a huge detour from Narvik to Bodo (more than 5 hours’ drive), you’ll have to come to Lofoten by road. In general, you’ll arrive in Tromso to visit the region (Alta too, but that’s rarer)
    • On the other hand, what could be interesting, at least to take advantage of both options, is to arrive by road to the north, drive down to the Lofoten Islands and, once you’ve finished, take the ferry back rather than driving all the way up. And you take another route up from Bodo, passing the Stetind, the “national” mountain
  3. Coming from the south, by car or train
    • The easiest way to do this is to take the ferry from Bodo to Moskenes, as you’re coming from the south. So you need to take the ferry, and from there head up to the Lofoten Islands. As you’ll probably be visiting other places in the north of the country, you’ll take the road back to Vesteralen, Senja and Tromso.
    • If you’re traveling by train, this is perfect, as Bodo is the end of the Norwegian rail network. So you can easily get to the pier. What’s more, as we’ll see, it’s free for pedestrians!

Favorite Activity

A magnificent boat trip in the Trollfjord!

  • From Svolvaer, discover one of Norway’s most beautiful fjords, in the heart of the Lofoten Islands!
  • A fjord and majestic mountains to discover by electric boat, for greater silence and comfort
  • Prices from €100
Day cruise trollfjord Lofoten islands Fjord

How to take the ferry from Bodo to Lofoten / Moskenes

The company operating this route is Torghatten Nord this is where you’ll find all the information you need (which we’ll go into in more detail below), and also where you can make your reservation. This company also manages a number of routes in the north of the country, such as from Senja to Tromso.

So, here’s how to make a reservation on this brand new website, much better than the ugly previous one, yiiha!

  • First of all, you’ll need to switch the site to English, in the top left-hand corner
  • Enter the port of departure (Bodo), the port of arrival (Moskenes) and a date, then click on “search”
ferry bodo moskenes Lofoten
  • The new website is very easy to use and to understand, much more than the previou one
  • You need to enter the port of departure, arrival and date again, then choose the type of ticket:
    • chose the kind of car (normal + size), campervan, caravan… and the attached passengers
    • Zero emission means “electric vehicle”, which is distinguished because it’s cheaper
    • A vehicle necessarily includes a driver
    • For example: if you are a car and 2 people, you need to add a vehicle and a person (passenger)
  • Then click on “search”
Ferry Bodo Moskenes lofoten islands
  • The results are now displayed, showing what’s sold out (in red) and what’s available. With a price summary on the right
Ferry Bodo Moskenes lofoten islands
  • Once you’ve selected the time, you need to enter the vehicle and passenger details
  • You have the option of paying online or using the code of your Autopassferje number if you have ordered it before
  • Finally, you’ll be asked to pay by credit card on the next page, a secure payment
Ferry Bodo Moskenes Lofoten islands passenger

What are the ferry schedules between Bodo and the Lofoten Islands?

The ferry is available all year round, with more or less rotations depending on the season. You can already find all timetables here for 2023:

  • low season: September 4 to June 1 (winter schedule, usually 2 departures per day)
  • high season: June 2 to September 3

Careful, it’s not easy, we’re going to separate low season and high season and the days (yes, why make it simple when you can make it complicated):

    • Direction Bodo – Moskenes:
      • monday, Wednesday, Friday
        • high season 3:15am / 6am / 7am / 11am / 1:30pm (Friday) / 4pm / 5:15pm / 6:45pm / 10:30pm (Friday)
      • tuesday, thursday
        • high season 3:15am / 5:30am / 6am / 11am / 3pm / 5:15pm / 6:45pm
      • saturday & sunday
        • high season 3:15am / 7am / 8am (saturday) / 11am / 1:30pm / 4pm / 4:45pm (sunday) / 6:45pm / 10:30pm
      • Low season (attention, this REALLY changes every day)
        • Monday 4:45pm
        • Tuesday 1am / 4:45pm
        • Wednesday 1:45am / 3:15pm
        • Thursday 00:15am / 4:45pm
        • Friday 1am / 4:45pm
        • Saturday 4:30 pm
        • Sunday 1pm / 9pm
    • Sens Moskenes – Bodo
      • monday, Wednesday, Friday
        • high season 7am / 9am / 9.45am (via Vaeroy) / 11am / 2:45pm / 6pm / 8:30pm / 11:45pm / 12:15am
      • tuesday, thursday
        • high season 7am / 10.45am / 9am / 2:45pm / 6pm / 11:45pm / 2am
      • saturday
        • high season 7am / 9am / 12pm / 2:45pm / 6pm / 8:30pm / 11:45pm
      • sunday
        • high season 7am / 9am / 11am / 2:45pm / 6pm / 8:30pm / 11:45pm / 12am
      • Low season
        • Monday + Tuesday + Thursday 7am / 8:30pm
        • Wednesday 7am / 7pm
        • Friday + Saturday 7am
        • Sunday 3:30pm

Important, the ideal website/app to plan your routes is Entur.no which of course includes ferry timetables. Super convenient!

Summer schedules, hover over the image to zoom in, or click here to to download the file

ferry bodo moskenes lofoten islands timetable schedule

Winter schedules, roll over the image to zoom in, or click here to to download the file

ferry bodo moskenes lofoten islands timetable schedule
book hotel house lofoten islands

How much does the ferry cost?

Here are the prices for the different types of vehicles:

  • normal vehicle, under 6m, with driver and 1 or more passengers: NOK 979
    • between 6 and 8m: 2173 NOK
    • between 8 and 10m: 2642 NOK
  • electric vehicle, under 6m, with driver: NOK 602
  • motorcycle with driver: 446 NOK
  • vehicle + caravan: 2058 NOK

Pedestrians:

  • it’s free for pedestrians IF you go directly without booking on the site. We’ll take your name in the traditional way, but that’s all
  • if you reserve your place in advance as a pedestrian, then you’ll have to pay (225 NOK), so I guess the choice is pretty easy to make
  • it’s also free for bikes!

You can download the price list here

With Autopass Ferje and the norwegian Toll Tag, you will have huge discounts, up to 50%!

4 recommended accommodations in Lofoten Islands

Fast Hotel Svolvaer pas cher lofoten

FAST HOTEL SVOLVAER

  • Cheap and convenient
  • A good option in Svolvaer
  • From 73€
Anker Brygge Svolvaer hotel iles lofoten

ANKER BRYGGE

  • Warm and welcoming
  • Perfect location
  • From 153€ 
Rostad Rorbuer Hamnoy Reine Lofoten hotel pas cher

ROSTAD RORBUER

  • A breathtaking view
  • In Hamnoy, right next to Reine
  • From 173€
Naustplassen Rorbuer Ballstad lofoten pas cher

NAUSTPLASSEN

  • Between fjords and mountains
  • In Ballstad, 9.7/10 on Booking!
  • From 141€

Do I need to book the ferry in advance?

ATTENTION: Only 50% of the places are on sale on the website. The other 50% are for cars arriving on site. But in this case I recommend arriving early, especially at weekends and especially in high season.

In high season, yes, you MUST reserve your slot. And several days in advance, sometimes 2 weeks if you want a precise crossing time, and even more when it’s the weekend. For example, it’s early June when I’m writing this article, and some times (usually 11am and 1pm) are already booked up for 2 weeks from now.
Moreover, I’m looking at tomorrow (early June), and more than half the slots are full, leaving 3am and 5/18pm. And tomorrow is Monday. So I really think it’s best to secure a place and make a reservation. It seems that most people, in June and outside weekends, book the day before or 2 days before.

In low season, from mid-September to April, I’d say it’s not worth booking in advance. As a precaution, I’d still only do it at weekends, but don’t forget that 50% of places are available on site, so at worst, out of season, arrive early 🙂

How to get to Vaeroy

Vaeroy is the super-pretty little island just below the Lofoten Islands. It’s also served from Moskenes and Bodo, but there are far fewer daily trips.

  • You can bring your car / camper
  • Moskenes – Vaeroy: 1h30 and 315 NOK
  • Bodo – Vaeroy: 5h15 and NOK 698
  • In low season: there is an evening arrival and every other day a morning arrival (one from Moskenes, but not daily)
  • High season: at least 2 connections, including one to/from Moskenes
  • The timetables change every day, so you really need to look at the Bodo/Moskenes timetables I’ve put up before. Vaeroy is also indicated there

5 activities you must do in Lofoten

  • Discover Trollfjord by boat, the narrowest fjord in the country
  • Discover some of the world’s most beautiful beaches
  • Kayaking in paradise waters
  • Visit the Lofotr museum, for an insight into Viking life
  • Go fishing on a real fisherman’s boat

Useful Information about Bodo

Bodo is directly accessible by plane from Oslo or Bergen, so don’t hesitate to compare flights.

If you arrive in Bodo, you can rent a car there. It’s generally cheaper than renting in Moskenes, and more flexible. But you have to add the cost of the crossing. Still, I think it’s more cost-effective. You can also try Getaround, car rental between private individuals (and receive €15 for your first rental).

There’s not much to see in Bodo, but if you arrive at the end of the day, you’ll have to spend the night there before going to your next adventure.
In that case, I recommend :

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