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Hammerfest Webcam - Live city view

Europe, Norway, Hammerfest

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 Hammerfest (help·info) is a city and municipality in Finnmark county, Norway. The municipality encompasses parts of three islands: Kvaløya, Sørøya, and Seiland. Hammerfest was established as a municipality on 1 January 1838 (see formannskapsdistrikt). The law required that all cities should be separated from their rural districts, but because of low population, and very few voters, this was impossible to carry out for Hammerfest in 1838. (See also Vadsø and Vardø.) The rural district of Hammerfest (Sørøysund) was separated from the city on 1 January 1852, but it was merged back into the city on 1 January 1992. (But without the area of Kvalsund, which was separated from Sørøysund as a municipality of its own in 1869.)

Hammerfest offers sport and commercial fishing, both sea and freshwater, as well as scuba diving. The northernmost glacier on the Norwegian mainland is a popular hiking destination. The town is a popular starting point for northern tours. There is a daily boat to the North Cape (Norwegian: Nordkapp). One chain of the Struve Geodetic Arc, now on the World Heritage List, is located at Fuglenes in Hammerfest.

Hammerfest is also a centre of Sami culture.

American author Bill Bryson begins his European travels, documented in his popular book Neither Here Nor There with a visit to Hammerfest in order to see the Northern Lights, stating that he found the town "engrossing" and that it "had grew to feel like home".

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