Image credit: Ernst Furuhatt
Hiking

Hiking to Keiservarden – Classic Hike in Bodø

Keiservarden is a real classic for the people of Bodø. This mountain plateau is Bodø’s most visited year-round hiking destination and is renowned for the wonderful views of the city and the sea. Keiservarden is also one of the best places to see both the Midnight Sun and the Northern Lights.

Keiservarden is the number one hiking destination for many in Bodø. Keiservarden is 366 m above sea level and climbing to the summit is not a very demanding hike.

Hiking Keiservarden in Bodø, Northern Norway
Keiservarden, view from top. Photo: Terje Rakke.

360° panoramic view – when the weather is clear, you can enjoy a panoramic view. Once you have reached the highest point of Keiservarden, you are rewarded with a scenic view over the city of Bodø (if there are no clouds in the way).

The view from the top – you might be able to see the silhouette of the Lofoten, the islands of Værøy and Røst (the two outermost islands in Lofoten). To the east you will see the many peaks of the spectacular Børvasstind mountain range and the mountains near the Swedish border.

northern lights bodø norther norway
The Northern Lights as seen from Keiservarden in Bodø. Photo: Bjørn Erik Olsen.

See the Northern Lights & the Midnight Sun? Keiservarden is a year-round hiking destination. If weather permits, Keiservarden is a very good spot to see both the Northern Lights and the Midnight Sun. Not at the same time of course.

Stone stairs – several alternative routes lead to the top. In 2016 Sherpas from Nepal built stone stairs along our route, which saves the terrain from wear. This also makes the hike both easier and more fun. Keiservarden and the path are seldom deserted, so be prepared to meet the locals from Bodø on your way.

Keiservarden (The Emperor`s Cairn) is named after German Emperor Wilhelm II, who visited the hilltop in 1891 on one of his visits to Norway. On the top there is both a plaque in honor of Wilhelm IIs climb and a board telling about it.

 

Price

NOK 800

per person
Minimum 2 people.
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  • Level

    Moderate. Please see details below.

  • Duration

    A total of 4 - 6 hours, including transport from/to downtown Bodø.

  • Group size & Capacity

    Min: 2 people. Available for groups. Please see details below.

  • Season & Availability

    We run this tour year-round, weather permitting.

Meeting point

Click for larger map

Check Availability & Book

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Good to Know Before You Start Hiking to Keiservarden

  • Do I need any outdoor experience?

    Is this trip for me? This trip is designed for beginners and intermediates. You don’t need any specific skills. That said you should have some outdoor experience in walking before you arrive.

    Grading: This trip is graded as Medium – Blue grading.

    More about the grading system in Norway.

  • Terrain, distance and elevation

    Terrain: you must be able to walk on gravel roads, trail in slightly hilly terrain and partly steep stone stairs.

    Total length: approx. 5 km up and down.

    Elevation: from starting point 45 (140*) metres above sea level to top Keiservarden 366 m a.s.l.

    (*Two optional starting points, the upper start point is not within reach by public transport.)

  • What do I need to bring?

    You should bring

    • Your own hiking gear suitable for the prevailing wind and weather conditions.
    • Good footwear (hiking boots or sturdy running shoes) is an advantage.
    • A small daypack for your snack, camera and some extra clothing.

    We will provide

    • A knowledgeable, English-speaking guide with a sense of humour and passion for this area.
    • In winter: best snow spikes and headlamps available. This way the trip could be enjoyable even when dark and in winter.
    • Transport from town centre to starting point and back to town after trip is included in the tour price.
  • Where and when do we meet

    • Meeting point: by the Tourist Information in Bodø. Please see map above.
    • Meeting time: We operate this tour at fixed times. Please see start times in the booking calendar.
  • Group size - We prefer small groups

    • Typical group size for our trips range from 2 to 10 (15). We prefer to keep the group size as small as possible for these trips, which improves the experience for the participants and guide alike.
    • What is the minimum number of participants? To run this tour, a minimum of two people must book. If this minimum is not met, we reserve the right to cancel the tour. You will then have the option of being rebooked on an alternative date or receiving a full refund.
    • Larger groups can easily join this trip, then we will we divide the group into smaller groups of 8 – 10 people, each of which trip are accompanied by their own guide. Note: we will never mix a private group trip with lone travellers.
  • Can I book if I’m on my own?

    • Yes, you can! The groups on several of our trips are made up of solo travellers. You are welcome to come on your own and make new friends.
    • Private tour as solo traveller? If you are the only one to book but you wish to go ahead with the tour on your original date, another option is to book a private tour. In this case, you will need to pay for the minimum number of participants required.
  • Weather cancellation policy

    Normally no need to cancel due to weather. The only exception is extremely strong wind and/or heavy rain.

    The view from top Keiservarden will of course be reduced if cloudy weather.

    There is a rustic shelter at the summit where you can shelter from the rain.

    If weather turns bad we will consider choosing alternative routes or experiences.

    Check weather forecast for Nordland.