Hillesøya is the last, the most western island of the “chain of islands” created by Sommarøya, Kvaløya and Tromsøya, which are connected by bridges. Together with the neighbouring Sommarøya (“Summer Island”) in summer, it is an idyllic resting place for Norwegians – it has wonderful sandy beaches and clear, transparent water – what more could you want? Maybe a short trekking. In contrast to completely flat neighboring islands, Hillesøya is distinguished by a small hill, from which there is a picturesque view of the surrounding area. In the distance in the north you can see an island with an interesting form. It is Håja, whose shape inspired the design of the Arctic Cathedral in Tromsø.
It was on this island where around the 12th century a settlement named Sommarøy was established. At the beginning of the 20th century it grew into the neighboring Sommarøya. From the Middle Ages until the beginning of the 19th century, a parish church stood here. Because in 1800 the congregation was already 150 people, it was decided to move it to Brensholmen on the island of Kvaløya, where in 1889 a new larger church was built.
Hillesøya is a farewell to the mainland and fjords and the welcome of the open sea. And with it – whales.