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 is a city and a municipality in Nordlandmarker county, Norwaymarker. It is part of the Salten region.

The city of Bodø was established as a municipality on 1 January 1838 (see formannskapsdistrikt). Bodin was merged with Bodø on 1 January 1968. Skjerstadmarker was merged with Bodø on 1 January 2005. Bodø, located just north of the Arctic Circle, is the largest city in Nordland, and the second largest in North Norway.


Bodø harbor 1880
Nyholms Skandse, Bodø
Bodø was granted township status in 1816 and is now county capital of Nordland. Most of Bodø was destroyed during a Luftwaffe attack on the 27 May 1940. Six thousand people were living in Bodø, and 3500 people lost their homes in the attack. Fifteen people lost their lives during the air attack (2 Britishmarker soldiers and 13 Norwegians). Due to the acute lack of housing, the Swedishmarker government helped build 107 apartments in the winter of 1941. These houses were built tightly together just outside the town. This small area, today in the heart of Bodø, is still called "svenskebyen" — the Swedish town. The town was subsequently rebuilt after the war. The rebuilding ended in 1959 with the completion of the new town hall.

Bodø received international attention during the U-2 Crisis in May 1960, when it became known that the Americanmarker U-2 pilot Gary Powers had been shot down over the Soviet Unionmarker on his way from Pakistanmarker to Bodø.


The municipality is named after the old Bodøgård farm (Old Norse: Boðvin), since the town was built on its ground. The first element might be boði which means "sunken rock" or "skerry" and the last element is vin which means "meadow" or "pasture". The last element was later misunderstood as øy which means "island" (and written with the Danish language form ø).


The coat-of-arms is from modern times. They were granted on 24 July 1959. The arms show the sun as a representation of the midnight sun.


The city lies just north of the Arctic Circle where the midnight sun is visible from 2 June to 10 July. Due to atmospheric refraction, there is no true polar night in Bodø, but because of the mountains south of Bodø, the sun is not visible from the city from early December to early January. Average number of sunhours in Bodø is highest in June with 221 hours; May averages 218 and August 167, while March gets 114, October 54 and December only 0.4.

As the northern terminus of Nordlandsbanen, Bodø is the northern end of the railroad network of Norway. However, travellers going further north will often switch to a corresponding bus in Fauskemarker bound for Narvikmarker. There is also a railway from Narvik to Kirunamarker in Sweden, and further into the Swedish rail network. The railway station opened in 1961. Bodø Airportmarker lies two km outside the city centre and was opened in 1952. The airport served 1,308,000 passengers in 2004. Ferries run between Bodø and the Lofoten Islands.

The strongest tidal current in the world is Saltstraumenmarker, situated some 30 km (20 mi.) east of Bodø. Kjerringøymarker is a well preserved old trading village on the coast 40 km north of Bodø. With its scenic setting and authentic buildings, several movies have been shot at this little port, including Benoni og Rosa (based on Knut Hamsun's novel), I am Dina and Telegrafisten.


Located on an unsheltered peninsula in the Norwegian Seamarker, Bodø is one of Norway's most windy cities. Snow cover during winter is usually sparse, not only due to the wind, but also an effect of a mild winter climate relative to its latitude with periods of rain being common in winter. Average temperature for January is -2.2 °C, while 24 July-hr average is 12.5 °C, annual mean temperature is 4.5 °C and average annual precipitation is 1020 mm. The driest months are April to June, with on average 50 mm rain each month, and the wettest is September to December with on average 120 mm each month. The coldest month on record was February 1966 with a mean of -8.9 °C, and the warmest was July 1937 with a mean of 17.1 °C. Recent years have tended to be warmer; January average in Bodø (11 m) based on the 17-year period 1991 - 2007 is -0.3 °C, with average daily high temperature of 2.0 °C (35 °F). July average for the same 17 years is 13.5 °C, with average daily high 16.6 °C (62 °F) (source: eklima at


Besides Saltstraumenmarker, the municipality of Bodø has lots of wilderness to offer hikers. 10 kilometers north of Bodø lies the popular recreation area Geitvågen. The area is inhabited by a large number of White-tailed Eagles. There are 17 nature reserves in the municipality. Sundstraumlian nature reserve has undisturbed mixed forest with marble bedrock, Skånland with coastal pine forest, and Bliksvær nature reserve with well preserved coastal nature of many types and a rich bird life, making it a Ramsar site as well.
Nordlandssykehuset is the main county hospital


Bodø University College.
Photo:Lars Røed Hansen
Bodø University Collegemarker is located 10 km outside the city centre. Five thousand undergraduate and graduate students study at BUC. The college is one of the leading academic environments among fisheries in Norway.

Bodø is the location of the only police academy in Norway outside Oslomarker. The Norwegian Civil Aviation Authority is situated in Bodø, as is the Joint Rescue Coordination Centre for the northern half of Norway. The Norwegian Armed Forces headquarters for North Norway is located at Reitan, east of the city. SB Nordlandsbuss has its headquarter in Bodø, as does Bodø Energi and Nordlandsbanken.


Bodø has a long history with the Norwegian Armed Forces, and especially the Royal Norwegian Air Force (RNoAF). Bodø is the home to a NATOmarker installation, CAOC3, and air forces regularly exercise during winter months. It is also the home of Bodø Air Force Base, a major Norwegian military air base, which today is a candidate for the Northern Air Base in the new RNoAF system, and Bodin Leir, an RNoAF recruit school including Norwegian Advanced Surface to Air Missile System personnel and a national response unit. The base was central during the Cold War due to its strategic location and proximity to the Soviet Unionmarker. It would have been vital in the build-up of NATO air and land forces to defend Norway, and thus the entire Northern flank of NATO, in a war with the Warsaw Pact. It could also have been used as a forward base for American bombers to strike targets in the Soviet Unionmarker.

Bodø has a street named General Fleischers Gate in honour of Carl Gustav Fleischer.


Bodø's local newspaper is the Avisa Nordland. The local football club, FK Bodø/Glimt, plays in the Norwegian Premier League as of 2008.

The Norwegian Aviation Museum and Salten Museum are located in Bodø. Salten Museum has four exhibitions: The Lofoten Fisheries, a Sami exhibit, a Viking treasure, and an exhibition about Bodø's history from 1816 to 2000.
Norwegian Aviation Museum
The Bodø Cathedral was built in 1956, representing post-war architecture, whereas the Bodin Church just outside the city centre dates from the 13th century, representing a typical medieval stone church.

Bodø is host to the cultural festivals Nordland Musikfestuke and Parkenfestivalen every summer, as well as the free and volunteer based Bodø Hardcore Festival in early winter.


Svefjorden near Saltstraumen; Bodø municipality covers large areas outside the town itself
The airline Widerøe has its head office in Bodø.

See also

  • Bodø Air Traffic Control Center or Bodø ATCC enroute air traffic control unit located at Bodø Airport
  • Bodø Airportmarker (IATA: BOO, ICAO: ENBO) (Norwegian: Bodø lufthavn), a main civilian airport in Bodø
  • Bodø Energi, a municipal owned power company that serves Bodø
  • Bodø Graduate School of Business (Norwegian: Handelshøyskolen i Bodø), a business school and faculty of Bodø University College located at Mørkved in Bodø
  • Bodø Main Air Stationmarker (IATA: BOO, ICAO: ENBO) (Norwegian: Bodø hovedflystasjon), situated just outside Bodø, Norway and the largest air station in Norway, operated by the Royal Norwegian Air Force
  • Bodø Region, a metropolitan region centered on the city of Bodø
  • Bodø Stationmarker, a railway station in downtown Bodø
  • Bodø University Collegemarker, located in Mørkved, 10 km outside the city centre


  1. " Headquarters." Widerøe. Retrieved on 15 November 2009.

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