After admiring the dramatic beauty of the southernmost point of mainland Norway in Lindesnes, we took the roadtrip westward. Around 13:30pm, we reached a moss-covered forest with a pathway leading to the Varnes fort, built in the 1940s. The fort with its cannons, bunkers and creepy underground paths is located in a protected forest area and might be a good route for a long stroll. It is also part of the historical Atlantic Wall built by Nazi Germany. We also dropped by the towering Lista lighthouse from the 1800s. Both of the said places were visited in April, with the cold and crispy spring air all around.
It was a bit tricky to find an empty space in the small parking lot in Varnes, but we managed to fit the car there. Going to the fort was an exciting walk. I can’t remember seeing a mini-forest that green! Mosses all around..
So, a little info about Varnes fort: It is part of the Atlantic Wall (Atlanterhavsvollen), an “extensive system of coastal defences and and fortifications built by Nazi Germany between 1942 and 1944 along the coast of continental Europe and Scandinavia” (-Wikipedia). There are about 300 batteries built along the western coast of Norway. This one in Varnes, Farsund has four 10,5 cm cannons with 16000 meter shooting range and a shooting rate of 5 shots per minute! Sadly, prisoners (Russians, Dutch, and Norwegian volunteers) built the fort which was actually never used in battle! More information about it here (in Norwegian): https://listerfriluft.no/friluftsaktiviteter/kulturhistoriske-opplevelser/spor-fra-krigen/varnes-fort-del-av-festung-norwegen/.
We went through a very dark tunnel mouthing towards the fort. I felt like the tunnel was endless! Even our phone’s flashlight was not enough to see through the tunnel. Carl said that if it was dangerous, officials would have closed it.
Going through the creepiness of the tunnel was all worth it, because what was waiting was an amazing view towards Fedafjorden and some islands of Flekkefjorden. And the fort itself, of course!
As mentioned, I did not want to go through the pitch dark tunney, so we decided to climb up and around the fort. I didn’t really think that it was a good idea, but the adventurous husband of mine was already up the hill waving back at me. So, up we went… I felt dizzy, my knees shaking, but thankfully, Carl was pushing me (and pulling me up) through the mossy, steepish hill. There were ropes to hold on to and some stone steps, but not enough to act without caution.
Taking the high path was also worth it – amazing views awaits!
We followed the blue path (supposedly an easy path) back to the main road and on to the parking space.
We left the fort around 14:30 pm, without visiting the Varnes lighthouse because.. well, it seemed like a difficult hike, and we wanted to see Lista as well. After 30 minutes on the road, the towering Lista light house greeted us.
The Lista lighthouse was first lit in 1836. Bunker systems were built around the lighthouse during WW2 for protection. More information here: https://en.visitsorlandet.com/listings/lista-fyr-lighthouse/173777/. We also didn’t go up the 34-meter tall structure, but enjoyed delicious ice cream in the kiosk instead. There is also an ornithological station and a gallery by the big parking lot. It was probably the first time Carl and I talked about bird-watching. I also bought postcards.
After Lista, we drove back to Missy in the fjordhotel and called it a day. 🙂 This was Maundy Thursday for us this year. More about Farsund in the next entry. #spreadloveandpositivevibes
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