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Torshavn, the City of Thor

 

 

Torshavn, the City of Thor View large version The capital city of Faroe Islands, Torshavn is quite an old human settlement as the first mention of this place dates from the 10th century. Its name was given to honor Thor, the well known god of thunder from the Norse mythology. Even from its early stages of development, Torshavn was an important political city on the Faroe Islands and still is today.

When the first pioneers ventured on these lands, they founded a parliament named “ting”. The most important decisions were decided in Torshavn, while other, less important decisions, were decided in different cities scattered on the islands. Because the local parliament established laws, people here could establish a prosperous trade, and matters that could not be solved amiable were taken to court.

Nowadays, the city does not have more than 18,000 inhabitants, but, seeing that all the Faroe Islands do not carry more than 50,000 people, you can imagine why Torshavn is the most important place on the islands. The atmosphere is very laid back, and there are many cafes, stores and bars where you can spend a wonderful time.

You can travel around the city by bus. There are basically four routes you can take around Torshavn in order to visit its most important places. During working days, buses run every half an hour, but on weekends, they also come every hour or so. Be aware that you will not find any working bus on weekend evenings.

Here are a few ideas of places to visit in Torshavn. For starters, you can visit Tinganes, the famous parliament which is housed by a dark red building adorned by a green roof. The construction lies on the waterfront so it is impossible to miss. Also, you can visit the city’s most important cathedral, built in 1788, easy to recognize by its clock tower. Other places you need to visit are the Nordic House and the Historical Museum where you can learn more about the history of the place.

If you want to listen to traditional Faroese music, you need to visit the Music Gallery. Free performances are organized on weekdays. Many people are attracted here by the fact that there is also free coffee available. The concerts are available in June and August so make sure to ask ahead for reservations. The best places to eat in Torshavn are the Brasserie Hvonn, located in the center of the city (smoking is not allowed and they serve salads and American like menus) and Glasstovan Restaurant, also non smoking where they serve buffets and traditional Faroese dishes.

If you do not care that much about traditional food, you can try the local Burger King where you can buy a burger prepared in the same way as in any other restaurant of the chain. The Burger King restaurant can be found inside the SMS Shopping Mall. Other great venues are represented by the Sunset Boulevard and Baresso Coffee, also located in the same shopping mall.

 



 

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