Bodø is the county capital of Nordland. The city is situated on the headland separating the fjords Saltenfjorden and Vestfjorden.
The city is a modern administrative centre and communications hub, surrounded by beautiful scenery—the Børvass peaks to the south, Landegode and Lofotveggen to the north. With a population of more than 50,000 people, Bodø is the second largest city in Northern Norway. Among other things, the municipality can also boast three nature reserves: Bliksvær, Karlsøyvær and Myrneset.
Bodø is renowned as the foremost city in which to enjoy the midnight sun, and when the weather is nice, the view from Rønvikfjellet is quite spectacular—the panoramic vista includes Steigen, Lofotveggen and Svartisen, and if you're lucky, you can see as far as the Sulitjelma mountain range. A great number of tourists visit Bodø in the summer months, and the city has a lot of sights and natural experiences to offer.
The main tourist attractions include Saltstraumen; this narrow strait has one of the strongest tidal currents in the world. It is 150 metres wide and three kilometres long. Kjerringøy Old Trading Post is a listed site. Currently it is being used as a museum, operated by the Nordland Museum, which is also curating exhibitions in the majestic museum building in the city centre and an open-air exhibition of old boats, buildings and wharfs on and near the water in Bodø. The Norwegian Aviation Museum, including both civil and military aviation history. Bodø Art Association and Galleri Bodøgaard emphasize Norwegian contemporary art.
Bodø was originally established around the estate of Hundholmen, with the aim of reducing Northern Norway's dependence on traders in Bergen. The city saw a significant upswing with the abundant herring supply in the 1860s and 1870s. Even so, Bodø remained a relatively small city until World War II. The Germans bombarded the city in 1940, and a lot of the city's building mass burned down. After the war, the city was rebuilt, with a near right-angled street grid.
Bodø has developed into a significant hub of trade, service, administration, education and communication. More than 1.5 million people travel to and from Bodø every year, via plane, train, bus, car, express boat and ship.
Bodø's contribution to the "Footprints in the North" project is Bodin cemetery and Bodøgård. The old city centre is a thriving and well-preserved cultural landscape, with Iron Age burial mounds, a medieval church and cultural centre, in connection with a recreational area. Bodin Church was originally a medieval stone church, built around the year 1240. An extension was added in 1784, and the church was later restored. Right nearby is Bodøgård, which from 1604 served as the seignory seat, and later as the seat of the county governor.
Area (km2): 921
Inhabitans: ca 50.000
Administrative centre: Bodø
Key industries: Military base, civil aviation, healthcare, education