The Extraordinary King Crab Safari
Heading to Kirkenes, don't miss this incredible seafood experience, the harvesting of the Red King Crab.
In the far northeast of Norway, bordering Finland, Russia and the Barents Sea; is the small town of Kirkenes. Located 400 km north of the Arctic Circle and at the end of the line on a Hurtigruten voyage, this town certainly feels like you have made it to the Arctic North. This small little town is starting to make itself a very big name for it's incredible seafood!
Namely, the Red King Crab, which were introduced to the area in the 1960's by Soviet sailors and now provide a nice livelihood for fishermen, and a treat for locals and visitors, alike. Visitors to Sapporo, Japan and Kamchatka will be familiar with this crab - it is the one and the same.
During the winter, you can join an ice-fishing safari, which involves a snowmobile ride across a frozen fjord, breaking through the sea ice with an auger, and hauling up the traps holding the day’s catch. Once you have enough, you head back to a warm hut and eat these incredible creatures - simply prepared with lemon and seasoning.
In summer, the journey is by RIB boat out onto the fjords and then the crabs are caught in cages which you help haul out from the depths. These crabs can have a leg-span of up to 1.8 metres and there is actually quite a bit of work involved in harvesting these crabs - plus a bit more at the eating stage as you try to crack & cut the massive legs open!
All of our escorted Norwegian Hurtigruten voyages include a King Crab Safari and the experience comes highly recommended by our previous travellers.