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Ballstadheia Plateau Loop Walk

Wanderung · Vestre Toten
Verantwortlich für diesen Inhalt
Macs Adventure Verifizierter Partner  Explorers Choice 
  • 1.90 km
    / 1.90 km
    Foto: Catherine Allan, Macs Adventure
  • / 2.10 km lighthouse
    Foto: Catherine Allan, Macs Adventure
  • / 2.50 km path around headland
    Foto: Catherine Allan, Macs Adventure
  • / 2.60 km follow the red T
    Foto: Catherine Allan, Macs Adventure
  • / 4.30 km Views from Nonstinden summit over Nappstraumen sound and the mountains of Flakstadøya
m 700 600 500 400 300 200 100 -100 6 5 4 3 2 1 km

A short, but undulating, loop walk that takes you around the rugged headland south of Ballstad to Grænvika Bay and up the peak (459 m) of Nonstinden to give excellent views of the surrounding fjords.
6,3 km
5:00 h
526 hm
523 hm

Begin the loop near Ballstad in the car park with views over many rocky little islands littering the bay.  From here the route hugs the coast for approximately 3 km on a rocky path winding its way through the boulders – this can be slow going but the position by the coast makes up for this!  At Grænvika Bay pause and enjoy the views west to Nusfordheia ridge and up Nappstraumen (the strait of water separating the island of Flakstadøya from Vestvågøy) before beginning the steep ascent on a grassy path to the Ballstadheia Plateau.  On gaining the ridge follow a narrow path along to the peak of Nonstinden, the plateau soon opens out on your right.  From the peak you have wonderful views over the surrounding fjords, Ballstad below and the jagged ridge of Munkan ahead.  Descend on an easy to follow, although at times steep, path back to your car. 


Parking: From Leknes drive south on the 818 towards Ballstad then continue south to Ballstadlandet. Before the end of the road (causeway on your left) turn right towards Kraemmervika and park in the gravel car park above Havets Helter restaurant. 


Bring a pair of binoculars if you have them - the granite cliffs above the coastal path are a favourite haunt of the iconic sea eagle, and keep a look out for seals near the lighthouse!
Profilbild von Catherine Allan
Catherine Allan 
Aktualisierung: 07.06.2019

Höchster Punkt
461 m
Tiefster Punkt
5 m
Beste Jahreszeit


A well-walked route this circuit is a popular hike, so the route is easy to follow once onto the plateau – keep an eye on the GPX track though as there are a few possible criss-crossing paths.  Although well-walked the route along the coastal part of the walk (the first 3km) is sometimes hard won and can be slow going as it weaves it’s way between the boulders; follow the small stone cairns and keep an eye out for the red T’s painted on the rock that lead you through two tunnel-like features between huge boulders. 

The boulders are mossy and are slippery when wet so please take care.  You may wish to attach your poles to your pack for the first coastal section of the route as the ends of poles are prone to getting caught in gaps between the boulders, which could render then more of a hindrance than a help.  You’ll find walking poles very useful for the ascent from Grænvika Bay on the steep vague path though, so keep them handy. 

The terrain is varied and includes walking on dirt path, steep grassy paths, rocky paths, and through boulder.  Good walking boots/stiff soled shoes are essential and walking poles are recommended so you can make the most of this great hike. 

Weitere Infos und Links

Points of Interest


The nearby settlement of Ballstad is one of the Lofoten's largest fishing villages, complete with characteristic colourful robuer.  The village has a small cafe (open from 11am-3pm and closed on Sundays along with a small Joker supermarket.  Why not take a stroll around the village before or after your hike?


The granite cliffs that tower above you as you walk the coastal section of this route are a favourite place for resident sea eagles so keep an eye out for this large distinctive bird of prey soaring high above Grænvika Bay perhaps being mobbed by gulls or crows.  If you're lucky you may also spot an elusive fox along the trail or a seal or two bobbing in water beside the lighthouse. 


Food & Drink

There is nowhere to stop en route for refreshments, so we recommend bringing a packed lunch.  Don’t be fooled by the short distance of this hike, the terrain can make it slow going at times, so make sure to bring plenty of food and water (at least 1.5 litres). There is a café in Ballstad (very limited opening hours and closed on Sundays), along with a small Joker grocery store (closed Sundays). However, there are places to eat and supermarkets in the nearby larger town of Leknes.


Car park above Havets Helter Restaurant, near Ballstad (5 m)
68.065842, 13.534470
68°03'57.0"N 13°32'04.1"E
33W 438912 7550929


Car park above Havets Helter Restaurant, near Ballstad


0.00 km – In the car park above Havets Helter restaurant continue STRAIGHT ON along the gravel road (with the sea on your left and the hillside on your right). 

0.15 km – BEAR RIGHT where the track splits to ascend on the track between drying racks for cod. 

0.25 km – Continue STRAIGHT ON as the track ends and becomes a path, pass between the gap in the short pallet fence and follow the narrow path along the coast. 

0.30 km – BEAR RIGHT on reaching a fence to continue on the narrow path.  Follow the path, which at times disappears, through the boulders using the small cairns for guidance.  Pick out the best route for you (so long as you don’t drop too low to the left) and keep an eye on the GPX track. 

0.70 km – Continue STRAIGHT ON the path here after crossing a small stream. 

1.80 km – BEAR RIGHT on the narrow dirt path to ascend towards a large boulder and continue on the rough path. 

2.00 km – With a rocky promontory and viewpoint ahead BEAR RIGHT to descend towards a rocky inlet then follow the path as it traverses the grassy slope, largely above the boulders. Follow the path around the headland – soon you’ll see a small red and white lighthouse ahead on your left. 

2.50 km – With the lighthouse on your left and a spit of land separated from the hillside on your right by a large boulder field follow the path to continue STRAIGHT ON through the boulder field.  Some of the boulders here are particularly large so you may have to use your hands to climb over them. 

2.60 km – Continue STRAIGHT ON over the boulder field passing through two short tunnel-like features between very large boulders – the way is marked in each case with a red T painted on the rock.

2.70 km – After leaving the boulder fields behind the grassy path traverses the hillside above Grænvika Bay before you BEAR RIGHT to follow the path as it ascends the grassy slope. The ascent is steep and the vague dirt path zig-zags it’s way up 200 m to the ridgeline. 

3.30 km – On reaching the ridgeline you’ll get great views down onto Ballstad, TURN LEFT here to follow the path along the ridge on the left-hand side of the knoll.  Keep to the main path, ignoring any paths coming off this, as you make your way to Nonstinden peak. 

4.30 km – You’ve reached the top of Nontinden peak (459 m)! Enjoy the spectacular views, and perhaps make an entry in the guestbook you can find in the metal box next to the summit. 

Facing the way you arrived BEAR LEFT to descend from the summit on the left-hand path (the one you didn’t ascend on), which initially has a steep drop off on your left. 

4.40 km – TURN RIGHT off the path that continues straight on to begin descending on a rocky path towards more level ground. 

4.80 km – As a path goes off to the right, keep left, and continue STRAIGHT ON towards the viewpoint. 

5.20 km – On level ground where the path splits with cairns ahead, atop boulders, BEAR LEFT.

5.60 km – At a path junction TURN LEFT and begin to descend (don’t continue straight on the path to the low point ahead).

5.70 km – On reaching a T-junction with another path TURN LEFT onto this path and follow the path down the hillside. 

6.00 km – At a viewpoint on your left BEAR RIGHT to continue descending on the path.  Follow this path down the hill back to the car park.

6.40 km – Finish the hike in the car park where you began south of Ballstadheia.  Why not seek out some well-deserved Norwegian waffles?


alle Hinweise zu Schutzgebieten


68.065842, 13.534470
68°03'57.0"N 13°32'04.1"E
33W 438912 7550929
Anreise mit der Bahn, dem Auto, zu Fuß oder mit dem Rad

Buchtipps für die Region

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Although this a short hike you'll experience mountain conditions and weather - remember you're in the Arctic Circle. Make sure to bring waterproofs, warm layers, hats, gloves, and a buff for warmth.  Stiff-soled walking shoes or boots are recommended along with walking poles to help take the pressure off your knees, these will be especially useful on the steep ascent and descent!

Bring plenty of water and food for completing the walk as there is nowhere to restock or fill your water bottle en route. 

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6,3 km
526 hm
523 hm


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