A Hurtigruten Tradition on Crossing the Arctic Circle:
We reached the Arctic Circle this morning and as we pass the entrance of the Trollfjord, it is a tradition on a Hurtigruten cruise that you have a Trollfjord drink.
Our invitation says to put on warm clothes and to be out on the deck at 23:30 and we’ll have the opportunity to taste some fishcakes and to buy a Trollfjord drink!!!
The Trollfjord Drink Tradition
It’s freezing and drizzling and there’s not much cover on the deck. After a few minutes of waiting, our cruise director arrives, followed by the drinks trolley. There’s a huge bucket of ice on the trolley and I wondered at the necessity of ice in this freezing temperature.
Next a scary looking Neptune arrives, followed by the ship’s viking captain. It now becomes clearer what the three exclamation marks are. The Trollfjord drink is a laddle of ice water down your back, and you get rewarded with a Certificate of the Arctic Circle to confirm that you’ve made it to the Arctic Circle.
Most of the passengers take the Trollfjord Drink in good spirit and Tony decides that the best way to survive this is to take off all layers of clothing leaving only one garment on to get wet.
It’s only the ship’s officers who administer this tradition and these sadistic Norwegian officers are merciless in dishing out the ‘drinks‘ and enjoy seeing the passengers scream and squirm.
The certificate is a nice souvenir of the voyage and is signed by the captain. It wishes all recipients “Måtte hell og lykke følge deg på denne reise og i all din tid” or in simple English “May good luck and happiness follow you on this voyage and forever after.”
A Trollfjord Battle
For just a little bit of history – the famous Battle of the Trollfjord took place here in March 1890. Trollfjord is a highly sought after fishing area as there are plenty of cod in this part of the Norwegian fjords. The night before the eventful battle several steam boats had broken the ice in the fjord. They then blocked the entrance to the Trollfjord and demanded that fishermen pay a cost to get in.
The fishermen refused to pay, broke through the barricades and a big fight ensued. This matter made headlines and the Parliament and authorities subsquently worked out new and fairer laws in regard to the fisheries in the Lofoten Islands.
If you’ve been on a Hurtigruten cruise and experienced a different kind of Trollfjord Drink, we’d love to hear about it.