The Varangerfjord (English: Varanger Fjord;[1][2][3] Russian: Варангер-фьорд, Варяжский залив; Finnish: Varanginvuono; Northern Sami: Várjavuonna) is the easternmost fjord in Norway, north of Finland. The fjord is located in Troms og Finnmark county between the Varanger Peninsula and the mainland of Norway. The fjord flows through the municipalities of Vardø, Vadsø, Nesseby, and Sør-Varanger. The fjord is approximately 100 kilometres (62 mi) long, emptying into the Barents Sea. In a strict sense, it is a false fjord, since it does not have the hallmarks of a fjord carved by glaciers.

View of the fjord
Location of the fjord
Varangerfjorden (Norway)
LocationTroms og Finnmark county, Norway
Coordinates70.0911°N 31.0091°E / 70.0911; 31.0091
Native nameVárjavuonna  (Northern Sami)
Варангер-фьорд  (Russian)
Varanginvuono  (Finnish)
Primary outflowsBarents Sea
Ocean/sea sourcesBarents Sea
Basin countriesNorway
Max. length100 kilometres (62 mi)
Max. width70 kilometres (43 mi)
SettlementsVardø, Vadsø

Its mouth is about 70 kilometres (43 mi) wide, located between the town of Vardø in the northwest and the village of Grense Jakobselv in the southeast. The fjord stretches westwards inland past the town of Vadsø to the village of Varangerbotn in Nesseby Municipality.[4]


The Kven residents of Varangerfjord are largely descendants of Finnish immigrants who arrived to the area during the 19th century from Finland and northern Sweden.

During the first half of the 19th century, the possibility of Russia demanding the cession of a stretch of coast along the Varangerfjord was for some time on the European diplomatic agenda, inducing King Oscar I of Sweden and Norway to conclude an alliance (1855) with Britain and France in order to forestall this possibility.


  1. Van Dyke, Carl (2013). The Soviet Invasion of Finland, 1939–40. London: Frank Cass. p. 26.
  2. Ratcliffe, Derek (2010). Lapland: A Natural History. London: T & AD Poyser. p. 237.
  3. Odner, Knut (1992). The Varanger Saami: Habitation and Economy AD 1200–1900. Oslo: Scandinavian University Press. p. 42.
  4. Store norske leksikon. "Varangerfjorden" (in Norwegian). Retrieved 2013-03-01.