The Lofoten Aquarium – A journey through the aquarium’s history from 1931 – 2014

by Lofoten Aquarium

Storvågan • Lofoten

The company named Kabelvåg Fiskeriselskap opened the first aquarium at the Kabelvåg pier on 18 March 1931. It was one of the first aquariums of this kind in Europe. The site was occupied by the invading forces throughout the war and used as laundry facilities. 23 May 1953 was the day the aquarium reopened. It has been in continuous operation since then for more than 30 years. By 1985 the facilities had become so run down that everything was shut down for safety reasons. A committee was established that same year to organize the construction of a new aquarium in Storvågan. The new Lofoten Aquarium opened its doors to the public in July 1989.

It is located close to Galleri Espolin, the Lofot Museum and the Nyvågar Rorbuhotell. The number of people who visit the aquarium remains stable at approximately 45 000 people a year. There are approximately 70 000 people visiting the area each year. Lofotakvariet houses large and small aquariums, an aquarium dedicated to Skrei (Arctic cod), a dam for otters and seals, a lookout point, movie theatre, cafe and a souvenir shop. There is also a permanent exhibition about the life and culture of the Sami people that was established by a collaboration between the fishing, aquaculture and oil industries. New aquariums have been added in recent years. The most recent of which is located in the main buildings and holds approximately 44 000 litres of water. This is the biggest aquarium ever constructed at the Lofotakvariet.

The facilities also offer presentations on fish farming of salmon, trout and rainbow trout, in addition to the other common species of fish around Lofoten and the northern waters.
The aquarium is associated with various networks such as Destination Lofoten, Lofoten Vinter, Innovative Opplevelser, Lofoten Mat, the Lofoten Cruice network and Storvågan AS.
Lofotakvariet was consolidated as part of Museum Nord as of 1 January 2014.