The Coal Mines of Suðuroy
Suðuroy is the only island in the Faroes where coal can be found and with history date back to the 17th century, old mines dot the landscape of Trongisvágur and Hvalba. Many attempts were made at profitable coal mining on Suðuroy, but ultimately failed, as British coal was cheaper. Instead, the coal was mined for household usage, replacing peat as a fuel.
Coal mining in Hvalba dates back to the 17th century, though attempts at commercialisation failed, due to the farming society’s inability to change to industrialised working hours. Coal was later mined for the domestic market. Even today there is still one coal mine open, supplying coal to a few households in the Faroes.
In Rangabotnur in Trongisvágur mining began in the late 19th century and mining was an active industry up until the late 70s. In 1954 the coal mines provided coal to about 75% of households in the Faroe Islands. However, coal mining was not profitable, as oil soon replaced the need for coal.
If you’d like to learn more about the history of Faroese coal mining and geology, and to visit the still active coal mines, guided tours can be arranged daily by the Visit Suðuroy office in Tvøroyri.
For booking, please contact:
Visit Suðuroy Tvøroyri
37 Tvørávegur, 800 Tvøroyri
Phone: +298 611080
See below for more information on available excursions.