Ingunn’s road to Holmen

The journey to Holmen Lofoten can best be described by any traveler getting here. My journey to Holmen, as we see it is today, is somewhat different.

I came to Lofoten only 3 weeks old, and was lucky enough to be a little kid exploring these fantastic surroundings. Coming from a family with a lot of siblings, we had to find our own ways to keep busy before or after school. I think we know the exciting world under the quay side, better than the one above. New adventures every day. Fishing or foraging in or near the water, or even going treasure hunting for whatever could be found at the sea shore. We developed excellent balancing skills, climbing fish racks or the foundation piles of the quay,  slippery of the water and high tides. Even better; climbing rocks to find treasures in between them. I remember feeling very rich, as a glittery object in the water ones showed to be a silver tea spoon. But, as beautiful and valuable could also be a tiny piece of a porcelain cup or plate, with beautiful colors on it. 

I had my first work experience at Holmen, bating longlines, or cutting cod tongues, still being a kid at 5. In addition, helping out in a busy household was a must, and we always had a few younger siblings to look after. We know where we got our work morals from, and still I feel lucky having this childhood. At the age of 17, I left Lofoten to get my education. Me and my boyfriend headed south, in a 67 Mustang, with all our belongings in the back seat. Little did I know the small getaway would last for 30 years. 

Holmen was in use until the late 80’, and then just abandoned. Over the next 10 years, I tried in different ways to get the owner to sell the property, with no luck. Finally, almost by coincident, I became the owner of Holmen in the early 2000’s. Slowly, and with uncountable hours of hard work, uncountable sleepless nights, all sorts of hurdles; financial crisis, oil crisis, sickness, childbirth, and a lot of good and not so good experiences, Holmen Lofoten developed to what it is today. 

Our thoughts from the very start, and all the way up to now, have been the same; by taking care of our history and cultural inheritance, to create a peaceful spot on earth, where nature, creativity and good relations can be nurtured. Keeping the faith that we could accomplish our goal, maid us able to continue. After commuting from the south of Norway for a 10 year period, I finally moved back to Lofoten for a trial period, in 2012. The first two years living with my daughter in the oldest cabin at Holmen, Ingebua, left me with a different peace in mind. This is home. This is where I want to be. This is where I want my daughter to grow up. I could not dream of going back to the busy city life. In this community with less than 1000 inhabitants, I feel more looked after than ever. 

And for all our guests, I hope they find the same feeling of peace in mind, relation to nature in all shapes and forms, lowering their shoulders and just enjoy.

– Ingunn Rasmussen, founder of Holmen Lofoten