Welcome to Bodø

Located just north of the Arctic Circle, the town of Bodø is the second largest town in North Norway.

To travel to Bodø, you fly via Oslo International Airport (OSL). There are several daily departures from Oslo to Bodø, and discounted tickets for under 26s are often available. Once in Bodø, you will discover that the airport is within walking distance to the city centre.
All the festival venues, hotels, restaurants etc. are also right in the centre, but if you want to go exploring, there are buses to take you around the area. All info about schedules etc. can be found at the Bodø Tourist information, in Torvgata 9. Check also out Visit Bodø

Aria Borealis Bodø offers a special hotel package at the Comfort Hotel Bodø in the city centre. There are rooms with twin beds or double beds, and all Aria Borealis Bodø Sessions members may book rooms with a 10% discount off the regular rates. Details on how to obtain the promo code will be sent out with your confirmation letter. Aside from this offer, there are plenty of hotels and Airbnb options in Bodø, but be sure to book ahead of time. 

There are many good restaurants in Bodø, but we highly recommend joining the Aria Borealis Bodø Sessions, which will give you access to the two daily common meals in Stormen. This will be economically favourable, and will also bring performers and participants together, creating a great festival atmosphere.  

When packing, you may want to consider a wide variety of options, weather-wise. For hiking or boat trips, warm clothes are good, but the general summer temperatures are higher than one might assume, considering the latitude. Average temperature in June/July is 14C/57F, and many days see temperatures above 20C/68F. 

Organised outings and adventures

Bodø is more than Baroque music! It is also home to breathtaking scenery and unforgettable nature adventures. And the good thing is that it takes no special equipment, training or skills to take part and enjoy them. 

These three trips can be booked independently, but if you decide to join the Aria Borealis Bodø Sessions, you will get free access to the late night hike. This lovely, light hike provides a spectacular view over Bodø and its surroundings, and is led by one of our guides. 

You will also get special discounted prices on the other two trips, where you climb on board a RIB (Rigid Inflatable Boat) to experience the Midnight Sun and the Saltstraumen, the strongest tidal current in the world. We’ll make sure that you won’t miss out on any of the other Session fun while you’re out on these adventures. 

Saturday June 25 @ 15:30 – 17:30

Bodø is home to Saltstraumen, the strongest tidal current in the world. A narrow strait, an underwater threshold and the moon work together to create special movements in the water, and if you are lucky you will experience the famous vortexes up close. A RIB-safari from Bodø to Saltstraumen is the number one thing to do in Bodø.

You travel through breathtaking scenery, in close contact with the elements. Learn about our proud coastal heritage and our strong dependency on the sea. Scout for the White Tailed Sea Eagle, the largest bird of prey in Europe, with a wingspan of up to 2.5m, see if you can spot some porpoises, and admire the Caledonian mountain fold up close.

Four times a day, the tide pushes more than 400 million m3 of water through the 150 meter narrow strait of Saltstraumen. The water reaches a tremendous speed, creating amazing vortexes, as large as 10 metres wide, and 5 metres deep. We take you there, but we’ll stay at  a safe distance. A RIB-safari to Saltstraumen is a mind moving experience!

Tuesday, June 28 @ 20:00 – 23:30

Come along on an easy hike to the top of Bodø! Keiservarden, The Emperor’s Peak, is named after the German emperor Wilhelm II, who visited Bodø several times a hundred years ago. The hike to Keiservarden is one of the most popular hikes in the area, and the view is amazing! If the weather is good, you will be able to get a glimpse of Saltstraumen, the glacier Blåmannsisen, Sweden and the Lofoten islands.

Our guide will meet us at Stormen Concert Hall and be with us all the way to the top and back. The first part of the tour will be by bus, and we will start the hike from a smaller peak, which makes this hike comfortable and easy for most people. Keiservarden is just 366 metres high, and you’ll need a pair of hiking shoes/good trainers and a wind/waterproof jacket, otherwise no special gear.

Along the way, our guide will tell us about Arctic life, about where the Norwegians came from, and what led us to our current lifestyle. Once at the top, we’ll make sure to celebrate the marvellous view with a small surprise and, hopefully, the midnight sun.

Included for Aria Borealis Bodø Sessions members.

Friday July 1 @ 22:00 – 24:00

The sun shines day and night above the Arctic Circle during the summer months. While people are hunting the Northern Lights (Aurora Borealis in latin) in the winter, our summer guests go crazy over the Midnight Sun. Come along on this Insta-friendly RIB-safari through the archipelago of Bodø, under the magical light of the Arctic summer night.

The Arctic summer nights are glorious. Don’t sleep them away! A RIB-safari is a comfortable and fun way to experience the midnight sun. Feel the soft touch of lazy sunrays and the mild breeze as you travel into eternity. We know where to find the magic moments, let us guide you through your midnight sun adventure.

Discounted rate for Sessions members. Book here.

Other outdoor activities to engage in 

  • hiking to some of the high mountain tops with breathtaking views, or longer hikes in one of the five national parks surrounding Bodø, nicknamed “the tenderloins of Norwegian nature”.
  • kayak or RIB boat trips in the archipelago
  • midnight glacier hike at Svartisen, to view the play of light between the ice and the midnight sun
  • cave tours
  • electric bike trips
  • deep sea fishing

…and much more.

Bodø is a charming town with a laid-back atmosphere and a welcoming population. Distances in the city centre are very short; all the important venues are within walking distance. Still, you will have no problem finding lots of cosy little places to eat or have coffee, or a laugh and a dance in the evening.

For more information about Bodø, go to Visit Bodø.

This performance is right up there amongst the best I have heard!

Early Music Review – review of the CD “Er heißet Wunderbar” , 03.08.19 by Brian Clark

Aria Borealis Bodø

Opening hours: Monday – Friday 09:00–15:30 CET