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Gáivuotna – Kåfjord – Kaivuono

  (Redirected from Gáivuotna)

Gáivuotna (Northern Sami) – Kåfjord (Norwegian) – Kaivuono (Kven) is a municipality in Troms county, Norway. The administrative centre of the municipality is the village of Olderdalen. Other villages include Manndalen, Birtavarre, Trollvik, Samuelsberg, Nordmannvik and Djupvik.

Gáivuona suohkan
Kåfjord kommune
Kaivuonon komuuni kommune

View of Olderdalen
View of Olderdalen
Coat of arms of Gáivuona suohkanKåfjord kommuneKaivuonon komuuni kommune
Coat of arms
Gáivuona suohkanKåfjord kommuneKaivuonon komuuni kommune is located in Troms
Gáivuona suohkanKåfjord kommuneKaivuonon komuuni kommune
Gáivuona suohkan
Kåfjord kommune
Kaivuonon komuuni kommune
Gáivuona suohkan
Kåfjord kommune
Kaivuonon komuuni within Troms
Gáivuona suohkanKåfjord kommuneKaivuonon komuuni kommune is located in Norway
Gáivuona suohkanKåfjord kommuneKaivuonon komuuni kommune
Gáivuona suohkan
Kåfjord kommune
Kaivuonon komuuni kommune
Gáivuona suohkan
Kåfjord kommune
Kaivuonon komuuni kommune (Norway)
Coordinates: 69°36′14″N 20°31′57″E / 69.60389°N 20.53250°E / 69.60389; 20.53250Coordinates: 69°36′14″N 20°31′57″E / 69.60389°N 20.53250°E / 69.60389; 20.53250
Country Norway
County Troms
District Nord-Troms
Established 1929
Administrative centre Olderdalen
 • Mayor (2015) Svein O. Leiros (Sp)
 • Total 991.18 km2 (382.70 sq mi)
 • Land 950.33 km2 (366.92 sq mi)
 • Water 40.85 km2 (15.77 sq mi)
Area rank #107 in Norway
Population (2017)
 • Total 2,132
 • Rank #319 in Norway
 • Density 2.2/km2 (6/sq mi)
 • Change (10 years) -4.0%
Demonym(s) Kåfjording[1]
Time zone CET (UTC+01:00)
 • Summer (DST) CEST (UTC+02:00)
ISO 3166 code NO-1940
Official language form Bokmål and Sami

The 991-square-kilometre (383 sq mi) municipality is the 107th largest by area out of the 422 municipalities in Norway. Kåfjord is the 319th most populous municipality in Norway with a population of 2,132. The municipality's population density is 2.2 inhabitants per square kilometre (5.7/sq mi) and its population has decreased by 4% over the last decade.[2]


General informationEdit

The municipality is dominated by mountains, the fjord branch named Kåfjord and some valleys

The municipality of Kåfjord was established in 1929 when it was separated from the municipality of Lyngen. The initial population of Kåfjord was 2,482. Then on 1 January 1992, the Nordnes area of Lyngen (population: 38) was transferred to Kåfjord.[3]


Kåfjord is a Norwegianized form of the Sámi name Gáivuotna. The meaning of the first element is unknown and the last element is vuotna which means "fjord".

The name of the municipality was Kåfjord until 2 May 1994, when it was changed to Gáivuotna–Kåfjord[4] It was the fifth municipality in Norway to get a Sami name. In 2005, the name was again changed such that either the Sami Gáivuotna or the Norwegian Kåfjord name can be used.[5]

In 2016 the name was changed again, to include the Kven name.[6] The official name is now Gáivuotna – Kåfjord – Kaivuono, or more formally Gáivuona suohkan – Kåfjord kommune – Kaivuonon komuuni.[7]


The coat-of-arms is from 1988. It shows a silver or white spinning wheel on a red background. This was chosen to reflect the crafts and traditions of the local community.[8][9]


The Church of Norway has one parish (sokn) within the municipality of Gáivuotna–Kåfjord. It is part of the Nord-Troms prosti (deanery) in the Diocese of Nord-Hålogaland.

Churches in Gáivuotna–Kåfjord
Parish (Sokn) Church Name Location of the Church Year Built
Kåfjord Kåfjord Church Olderdalen 1949
Birtavarre Chapel Birtavarre 1937


In 1945, the villages of Kåfjord were burned to the ground during the retreat of German forces from Finland and Finnmark. This was as far west as the Wehrmacht used their scorched earth tactics.


All municipalities in Norway, including Kåfjord, are responsible for primary education (through 10th grade), outpatient health services, senior citizen services, unemployment and other social services, zoning, economic development, and municipal roads. The municipality is governed by a municipal council of elected representatives, which in turn elect a mayor.

Municipal councilEdit

The municipal council (Kommunestyre) of Kåfjord is made up of 17 representatives that are elected to four year terms. Currently, the party breakdown is as follows:[10]

Gáivuotna Kåfjord Kommunestyre 2015–2019
Party Name Name in Norwegian Number of
  Labour Party Arbeiderpartiet 5
  Progress Party Fremskrittspartiet 1
  Conservative Party Høyre 2
  Christian Democratic Party Kristelig Folkeparti 2
  Green Party Miljøpartiet De Grønne 1
  Centre Party Senterpartiet 4
  Local Lists Lokale lister 2
Total number of members: 17


Kåfjord valley (Kåfjorddalen).

The municipality is situated on the eastern side of the Lyngen fjord, and around its eastern arm, the Kåfjord. The municipal centre is Olderdalen. Other villages include Birtavarre, Kåfjorddalen, Djupvik, Nordmannvik, and Manndalen, where the international indigenous peoples' festival Riddu Riđđu is hosted each year.

On the border with Finland, is the mountain Ráisduattarháldi which has a height of 1,365 m (4,478 ft).


Fishing and small-scale farming have been the most important sources of income. Now many people work in education and other public services. The population has declined for many years, but the decline is now less rapid than earlier. A new optimism has arisen among young people, largely due to the increasing cultural activities.


The majority of the population is of Sami origin. Due to assimilation pressure from the Norwegian State, the language was largely lost in the 20th century. Now efforts are being made to reintroduce Sami, largely concentrated in the municipality's largest village, Manndalen/Olmmáivággi.

Notable residentsEdit

Erik Johnsen (1844–1941), a Laestadian preacher. He received the King's Medal of Merit (Kongens Fortjenstmedalje) in 1938 for his work for the salvation of the soul.[11]


  1. ^ "Navn på steder og personer: Innbyggjarnamn" (in Norwegian). Språkrådet. Retrieved 2015-12-01. 
  2. ^ Statistisk sentralbyrå (2017). "Table: 06913: Population 1 January and population changes during the calendar year (M)" (in Norwegian). Retrieved 2017-09-09. 
  3. ^ Jukvam, Dag (1999). "Historisk oversikt over endringer i kommune- og fylkesinndelingen" (PDF) (in Norwegian). Statistisk sentralbyrå. 
  4. ^ "Ot.prp. nr. 111 (2001-2002)" (in Norwegian). Retrieved 2008-12-02. 
  5. ^ "Endring av skrivemåten for tospråklige kommunenavn" (in Norwegian). Archived from the original on March 28, 2014. Retrieved 2008-12-02. 
  6. ^ Kvensk navn på Kåfjord kommune - Kaivuonon komuuni - Kåfjord kommune
  7. ^ Stadnamn og rettskriving - Statens kartverk
  8. ^ Store norske leksikon. "Gáivuotna/Kåfjord" (in Norwegian). Archived from the original on 2013-02-22. Retrieved 2012-12-20. 
  9. ^ "Civic heraldry of Norway - Norske Kommunevåpen". Heraldry of the World. Retrieved 2017-09-07. 
  10. ^ "Table: 04813: Members of the local councils, by party/electoral list at the Municipal Council election (M)" (in Norwegian). Statistics Norway. 2015. 
  11. ^ Read more about Erik Johnsen Archived 2011-07-23 at the Wayback Machine.

External linksEdit

  The dictionary definition of gáivuotna – kåfjord – kaivuono at Wiktionary   Troms travel guide from Wikivoyage