Far north there is an amazing cluster of 18 islands isolated by the North Atlantic ocean. It has green mountains and plunging waterfalls and is halfway located between Iceland and Norway. This beautiful place is called The Faroe Islands, an autonomous country within the kingdom of Denmark. These islands are soon to be closed for its maintenance on one of the spring weekend’s this year. And it’s hosting sustainable tourism in a smarter way – the Faroe Islands is welcoming volunteers for nature preservation projects.
The Faroe Island gets some 100,000 visitors each year, attracted by the country’s breathtaking scenery, including rocky cliffs, green mountains, sea caves, and an abundance of birdlife, and sheep – unspoiled and unexplored.
But in a world where more and more tourists search for freshness, how can we ensure that these gorgeous islands remain unspoiled by tourism?
“Visit the Faroe Islands”: An opportunity for Volunteer Tourism
The Faroe Islands welcome volunteers for nature preservation projects this year as it is closing for maintenance on one of the weekends from 26th to 29th April. It has launched a new dedicated “Visit Faroe Islands” campaign, seeking a tourist-free weekend.
This campaign aims to close all sites for tourists but will need volunteers from all parts of the globe as a helping hand for maintaining fences and viewpoints, wide terrains and wildlife to preserve nature in the kindest way possible. In return, the Faroe Islands will provide free food and stay for everyone who helps out.
Aim of the project is to inspire other countries to get prepared in advance and set up their own ‘Maintenance Crews,’ so as to encourage tourists to also help in what is needed to preserve those fragile natural destinations which are the tourism places to be.
History of The Faroe Islands
The Faroe witnessed the arrival of Irish monks in 625 AD followed by Viking years and then saw unification under the Kingdom of Norway during the middle ages of 1035. It then became part of the Kalmar Union (1397-1523) and was later joined by the Denmark-Norway region in 1523 which ended in 1814 with the treaty of Kiel. This treaty ended and the Faroe Islands became part of Denmark as it is today.
During the world war II it had the British occupation and by 1946 was acquired by Faroese Independence Referendum. The official Faroese language, its official flag and self-governance all came by 2005 takeover act.
However, under the common fisheries policy CFP, the Faroe Islands is part of Denmark but not E.U and:
- Faroese aren’t E.U citizens
- Yet travelling between these two destinations is under Schengen situation which means no passport needed OR PASSPORT-FREE region for citizens of these regions.
- There are defined trade rules amongst the two.
The Temperature and Climate
In general, the Faroe Islands witness temperature variations with summers slightly cold and warm winters. This climate is influenced by topography. The weather is generally in a Koppen situation smelling like the subpolar oceanic climate (a combination of windy, wet, cloudy & cold) and benefits the warm gulf currents coming from the northern Atlantic.
The Faroe Islands weather 2019 report is published as per below:
The Prime Minister and the Primary Goal of the Project:
The Faroes’ Prime Minister, Aksel V. Johannesen, has joined the campaign by calling volunteers to lend a helping hand and has said in a recent statement “On behalf of the Fareo government, I hereby declare the Faroe Islands closed for maintenance & open for Voluntourism during the last weekend of April.”
He also confirmed that during this weekend all sites will be closed for tourists. However, they are happily inviting volunteers from abroad to lend them a helping hand by working (on fences & viewpoints and thrives off the flora and fauna) with locals in all maintenance projects.
The campaign will work with all local residents and farmers to identify multiple areas where a renovation will help to preserve the infrastructure and will create new ways for the sustainable life of the islands.
Is this the beginning of Smart Sustainable Tourism?
Breaking the stereotypical parameters of sustainable tourism, the Faroe Islands currently have started to ponder over their fragile natural assets ignoring the fact that there are no over-tourism problems as of now.
However, this is a highly appreciable step by the Faroes. Using foresight, Faroe islands is taking charismatically active steps to curb mass tourists in the future. This comes from an understanding that in the near future tourism will always demand undiscovered and untouched places.
THE WHOLE IDEA IS, TO ‘CLOSE FOR MAINTENANCE AND OPEN FOR VOLUNTOURISM’ OVER THE WEEKEND OF APRIL 26-27, 2019 AND TO REPEAT THIS EVERY YEAR UNTIL IT WORKS WELL.
To objectify the touch of tender loving care (TLC) to Faroese Island and to refresh it for visitors in the future, there will be a series of projects led by local villagers.
All you need to know about Volunteering for the project:
Only 100 visitors will be selected to sign up to volunteer with the local Faroese Team.
- In return for all the services to the program, they will be provided with food and stay over the three-night preservation duration.
- All maintenance tasks will take place on a weekend, April 26 and April 27.
- On Saturday night, there will be celebrations amongst joined forces who helped.
- Volunteers can also extend their trip at the Faroe Islands if they want to do so.
But, before you start we suggest a little bit of homework:
- The population of Faroes Island? 51,312!
- The total number of sheep? 80,000!
- The number of islands? 18 (*Ofcos*)
- The total area? 1,399 sq km (*Gulp*)
- The approx number of tourists till 2018? 110,000
- What about the participation criteria? Well! A great zest to learn and assist the team
- Anything about the project agenda? Agenda includes creating walking paths and fences in areas much used by travellers, building viewpoints that help preserve nature and birdlife sanctuaries and putting up signs that help with finding ways.
For more information to volunteer and register, please visit www.preservefaroeislands.com.
And before you, pack your bags to head towards the Faroe Islands, visit www.visitfaroeislands.com
If you are carrying the hunger to travel while serving a cause towards the olive ridley turtles, do motivate your plans by volunteering in these exotic destinations across the world!