We begin our guided hike in the city of Hammerfest and pass by the distinctive parish church before heading for the slopes of Mount Salen. Hammerfest was established in 1789 at the site of an ancient anchorage. The first part of the name, 'Hammer', derives from the Old Norse word, 'Hamarr', which means 'steep mountainside'. The second part of the word, 'fest', comes from the Old Norse word, 'festr', which means 'fastening' (for boats).
On our way out of town, we follow Gammelveien (the old road), which is essentially a hiking path around Mount Salen and at one time the only way in and out of the city. During our ascent, we pass through Hammerfest’s only forest, Jansvannskogen. Reaching the mountain's summit demands good general physical fitness, but the stunning views are worth it. On a clear day you can see the islands of Melkøya, Sørøya, and Seiland. The route down follows a popular zigzag path to the town center, where we take a well-earned rest before heading back to the ship.