Bringing the family to visit a long-lost cousin — who, as it turns out, was lost for a reason — is one way to spend the holiday season. The other is saying a figurative “see ya!” to the whole extended family and renting a luxurious Airbnb in the wilds of Norway’s Lofoten Islands. The choice seems pretty obvious. Known for its dramatic peaks and sheltered, untouched bays, the islands are among the northernmost inhabited places in the world, sitting just 1,500 miles from the North Pole. Lofoten is an archipelago in northwestern Norway, composed of six islands connected by a series of roads and bridges. You definitely won’t run into your extended family or old high school girlfriend here this Thanksgiving — and that’s kind of the point. These are the most luxurious Lofoten Airbnbs to bookmark this holiday season.
We hope you love the spaces and stays we recommend! Just so you know, Matador may collect a small commission from the links on this page if you decide to book a stay. Listed prices are accurate as of the time of publication.
Modern house on the seashore
This house cuts a romantic image when viewed from afar. Standing alone at the edge of the village, the property immediately exudes a feeling of peace and solitude. It’s more modern than many homes you’ll find in Lofoten, built in the Scandinavian minimalist style, with a fully-equipped kitchen and dining room, spacious living area, and porch with panoramic views of the water.
Six guests, two bedrooms
Price: $164 per night
Explorers cabin on the water
This Nordic-style cabin in Vestvågøy sits on the edge of the water, making it a perfect place to watch the sunset or go kayaking right in your backyard. Windows cover the entire house, so you can hunt for the Northern Lights and take in the eerie beauty of the midnight sun without ever venturing into the chilly night. There’s also a fireplace, outdoor hot tub, and patio with views of the water and its little islands.
Eight guests, three bedrooms
Price: $250 per night
Home with a pier and sauna
Sleeping in a renovated fishery might not sound appealing until you actually see this sprawling, modern property for yourself. Sitting right next to its own private pier and (in the summer) floating dock, the old fishery has been converted into a modern accommodation equipped with a sauna, fireplace, and full kitchen. You’ll have sweeping views of the water from both the pier and the many-windowed rooms. The hammock is another great way to enjoy the scenery, and if you get cold, the sauna is steps away to warm you up.
Twelve guests, four bedrooms
Price: $258 per night
Large cottage with mountain and sea views
This six-bedroom house is perfect for a large family getaway. Located in one of Lofoten’s oldest fishing villages, this waterfront house is right on the doorstep of the area’s most scenic mountains, with panoramic views from every room. Perhaps even more enticing than the expansive outdoor patio and modern open-concept dining and living areas, however, is the outdoor hot tub overlooking the mountains. As winter comes and the days get shorter and cooler, it’s the perfect place to watch for the Northern Lights.
Eleven guests, five bedrooms
Price: $265 per night
House by the sea with sauna
For a traditional Nordic accommodation that puts you right in the heart of Lofoten’s dramatic scenery, look no further. This 18th-century house is conveniently located in Vågan, right in the heart of Lofoten, on the doorstep of the fishing village of Henningsvær and one the archipelago’s most picturesque mountains. The small islands and coves surrounding the house are perfect for kayaking if weather permits — but if it doesn’t, you won’t mind just staying in and enjoying the views.
Twelve guests, five bedrooms
Price: $280 per night
Austvagoy Island seaside cabin
Perfectly located right in the heart of Lofoten, this seaside cabin on Austvagoy Island is close to a quiet river mouth that flows into a protected fjord, and ideal for watching seabirds fly over the water. There are marked hiking trails through the nearby mountains, including a popular one that begins in the village of Brenna and winds along the beach. The house rental also comes with free bicycles and row boat so you can have complete freedom to explore the surrounding area.
Six guests, three bedrooms
Price: $176 per night
Spacious cabin in a fishing village
This luxe cabin is located in Ballstad, one of the oldest fishing villages in Lofoten. The views of Lofoten’s rugged waterways don’t get more dramatic than from this cabin, with several windows facing the water and mountains. It’s just five minutes from the nearest restaurant and pub, and within walking distance to the mountains. There’s also a bathtub with waterfront views that everyone will be fighting over. The house strikes the perfect balance between the modern amenities you’d find in a luxury hotel with the feeling of being in the heart of the Norwegian wilderness, surrounded by rugged nature.
Eight guests, four bedrooms
Price: $316 per night