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The Faroe Islands Will “Close” for a Weekend to All but 100 Volunteers—and You Could Be One of Them

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Volunteers will be able to work on projects like repairing the hiking trail along the Old Postman’s route from Gásadalur to Bøur.

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Volunteers will be able to work on projects like repairing the hiking trail along the Old Postman’s route from Gásadalur to Bøur.

100 lucky guests will have their room and board covered, in exchange for helping out with a voluntourism project on the remote archipelago.

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The Faroe Islands are famously home to more sheep than people. But considering that tourism to the remote island archipelago southeast of Iceland has increased 10 percent a year over the past five years, it’s no surprise that the government is more concerned about the overpopulation of tourists than sheep.

To make sure the islands don’t begin to suffer the effects of overtourism, the Faroe Islands has decided to close some of its major tourism sites from April 26 to 27 to complete various maintenance projects to make travel more sustainable throughout the country. While the sites will be closed to tourists, the government has decided to allow in 100 foreign volunteers to help out with the projects—and you could be one of them.

The tourism infrastructure will be expanded at popular sites like the famous “hanging lake” in Miðvágur.
In exchange for their work, the 100 volunteers will have their room and board covered—including a celebratory meal on Saturday night—plus transportation around the island. But this isn’t an entirely free trip. To secure a spot, you must be one of the first 100 people to book a flight through visitfaroeislands.com for DKK 2,100 (approximately US$320) from Copenhagen to the Faroe Islands.

Volunteers will also be responsible for paying for their own flights to and from Copenhagen, which at press time, cost in the mid- $700s for nonstop SAS flights from New York that week (or approximately $550 on airlines like Icelandair and Norwegian).

While flights are available to the Faroe Islands in May and September from the East Coast for approximately $550, the chance to be one of only 100 visitors allowed at these sites and to give back to an up-and-coming destination is worth the extra money.

New steps will be added to the path leading to the puffin colonies on Mykines island.
Those who secure a spot on the trip will participate in one of eight or nine different projects throughout the islands. So far, six projects have been confirmed, including building new paths for hikers and expanding the infrastructure and signage at popular destinations like the “hanging lake” in Miðvágur and the island of Mykines, where you can visit puffin colonies.

Volunteers will be expected to use hammers, wheelbarrows, and shovels during the projects, but no special skills are necessary to participate.

To sign up, visit visitfaroeislands.com.

>> Next: What to See and Eat in the Faroe Islands

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