Jan Mayen

Norway's western frontier is often associated with other Norwegian areas in the arctic, like Svalbard and Bjørnøya, but Jan Mayen is unique.

The island is very isolated, and has no permanent inhabitants. The crew of eighteen is split between an meteorological station, and the navigation system Loran C.

There is no public transport, the station get supplies by the army's  Hercules planes every second month.

The landscape is dominated by black lava stone, and green moss. In the north Beerenberg, the world's northernmost volcano looms 2277 meters above sea level.

There is several good Jan Mayen sites with lot's of information.

The Jan Mayen homepage   - The crews pages.

Vidar`s Jan Mayen page  - Lot's of info from Vidar Teigen.


The volcanic island Jan Mayen is situated in the Arctic Ocean, 600 nautical miles from Norway, 325 from Island and 270 from Greenland.

The mountainous landscape is dominated by black lava, covered by thick, green moss.

Climate is arctic maritime, with strong winds and rapid changes of weather. There are no animals, except from seals and a rare visit of polar bear. On the other hand, birdlife is extremely rich with millions of fulmars and arctic sea birds. The island is very isolated and has no permanent inhabitants.

Jan Mayen has no facilities for tourists. The station is only is equipped for the crew, and has no obligations to visitors. Foreigners have to apply in advance to visit Jan Mayen.

Daily life

The 18-men crew is engaged for six months at a time. The Loran C crew can apply for one year.

Social skills are important due to the isolation, and efforts are made to make people enjoy themselves. Time off is spent by hiking, exercise, TV, bar, and different hobbies.

Many of the crew enjoy this life and apply time after time.


  Har lånt dette av ukjent kunstner på Jan Mayen

Sommar. Vi skimtar veien til Metten og flyplassen. Lavastraum nede til høgre. Foto: Per Einar Dahlen

Mørketid. Det lyser frå "Olonkin City". Ein skimtar "Metten" og flyplassen ved Sørlaguna



It’s possible that Jan Mayen was discovered around year 500. Irish Monks found an island with mines from where devils threw fire at them.

It is also believed that Vikings used Beerenberg as a landmark when sailing from Island to Svalbard, around year 1000, since the mountain is visible from 300 Km distance.

In the 17teen century Dutch and Englishmen used the island for whaling and there was frenetic activity for a short period. A Dutch group tried to stay the winter in 1633, but none of them survived.

Around 1840 Norwegian trappers started to hunt polar fox and seal around the island.

Jan Mayen became Norwegian in 1922 after being occupied by the Meteorological institute! The met station was crucial to predict storms on their way to Norway.

Today the weather station is located by “Olonkin City”, founded in 1961 for the navigation system Loran C.

I Schmelkdalen kan ein utforske masse lavagangar

Kraterlandskap ved norges vestligste punkt, Hoybergodden på Sør-Jan

     Basert på faktastoff til "Aftenposten magasin"

Olonkin City, med Beerenberg bak

Bølger i Båtvika. Beerenberg dominerer øya når været er bra

Svart, grønt, kvitt. Øya er full av knallgrøn mose og underlige lavaformasjonar

Svart, grønt, kvitt. Øya er full av knallgrøn mose og underlige lavaformasjonar

Den veien?

Kunstverk på stranda