Alex is the coolest dog I’ve ever known – and also the weirdest. I’ve known him since March 2015. He lives with one of my beloved Faroese families in Vestmanna. I’ve visited him and his family 5 times before, and this November, I spent all of my 11 days in the country in Vestmanna living with him and his family. That meant that Alex and I got to spend a lot of quality time together.
He’s an old dog, 12 years, but he still has so much energy, it’s incredible. Some days, I would take him for long walks around Vestmanna and even up in the mountains above the village. I never saw him get tired once, even after a two-hour walk in the mountains. He’s a magnificent dog and I love him and miss him so much!
Walking Alex twice a day also meant great opportunities for me (or us) to explore Vestmanna, a village that has stolen my heart because of its unfathomable beauty. Vestmanna is the 7th largest village in the Faroe Islands, it’s located in the north of Streymoy, the main island, by the end of a 15 km mountain road. The village is nestled by the foot of 5 mountains and overlooks the island of Vágar across the fjord.
Alex loves exploring the outdoors, just like me. Whenever I’d come to his room with the leash, he knew what time it was, and he jumped up and down like a maniac. He was so excited!
On one of my first days there, we walked for several kilometres into the center of Vestmanna, through the plantation Viðarlundin, which has been planted by the school children in the village. It’s a beautiful oasis in a country which is otherwise devoid of trees.
Another day, we walked for over an hour to two small villages, located right next to Vestmanna. Those are Válur and Nesið. Valúr is located a few kilometres from the center of Vestmanna, and less than a kilometer from the house, so it almost feels like cheating when saying that we went to another village – but it is a separate village, nonetheless. Only 55 people live in Válur, making it one of the smallest villages on Streymoy. But Nesið is even smaller. It’s located by the end of the road out of Valúr, and is home to a tiny harbour and 3-4 houses.
The day of our walk to those two small villages the weather was so extremely beautiful. The sun was shining brightly, the sky was painted in morning pastel colours, and the mountains were reflecting in the completely still water of the harbour. What a perfect morning.
We had our last great adventure together just two days before I left the Faroe Islands. It was our longest walk to date, and I was worried that it would be too hard for Alex, so I was prepared to have to carry him home. But he was so strong, he made it all the way without any trouble at all! I even think he could’ve kept going.
We first walked up the snow-covered road Leitisvegur to the man made dam nestled in between the mountains of Loysingarfjall and Tindur. We walked further along a path that went high up into the mountains, giving us an amazing view of Vestmanna. Alex met some sheep there, but he couldn’t leave them alone. I’ve never heard a dog bark so much before, and we practically ran up the mountain path!
By this point, we were only a few hundred metres from reaching the top of Mount Loysingarfjall at 639 metres. I debated whether or not we should try for the top, but I figured it would be too dangerous and cold for Alex, so we went back down the slippery road to the house. A two hour walk was over, and he was still so full of energy!
Later that day, I decided to try for the mountain top myself, but I had to give up halfway to the top, as there was too much snow and I kept slipping. I felt like the chance of falling down the mountain was too high, so I went back down, saving the mountain top for a summer trip!
During my stay in Vestmanna, I had some beautiful adventures with Alex, and these three described in this post were my favourite trips with him.
Now that I’m back in Denmark, I miss Alex and his beautiful family terribly, but I know that I’ll see them again soon for more great adventures in and around Vestmanna!