It is relaxing and cosy to sit by the harbour in the summer and observe the many beautiful sailing boats and the motor boats that grow bigger each year – indeed some of them have almost acquired the character of small ferries.
There is the hustle and bustle of children clad in their regulation orange life jackets, lots of life and sailors relaxing whilst chatting to each other across the boats. In the evening, people gather in groups in the nice shelter places, grilling hamburgers, fish and – of course – Norway lobsters.
The two harbours acquired a mending house each some years ago which caters for many needs. The fishermen can mend their nets in the house, there are toilet and bathroom facilities, and on the 1st floor there is a large room with a kitchen, which the harbour users can utilise freely. In the harbours there are of course also coin-operated launderettes, and the nearest grocery is only a couple of hundred metres away. In Vesterø you can also hire an electric car. From Vesterø Harbour and southward, you'll find a good, child-friendly bathing beach, and in Østerby Harbour there is an inviting beach just on the other side of the west pier. Both harbours offer a wireless network connection for free.
By the two harbours there are playgrounds, which are frequently used by young children. In addition, in Vesterø Harbour, there are three small red houses next to the Ferry Office – known locally as "The Sea in the Harbour". From here you can borrow fishing rods and fishing nets. There is also a screen showing the life enacted at the bottom of the harbour via a camera.
If you get hungry, there are many places to choose from in both Østerby and Vesterø Harbours, where the eateries' menus cater to all tastes – with the sea view as an added bonus.
And now that you are on Læsø, you must of course make sure to taste a real, freshly caught fish. You could visit one of the restaurants, but you could also prepare the fish yourself. The two fishmongers on the island have allied themselves with a couple of delicious birds – i.e. their wives. Janni and Christian in Thorsen Fisk and Helle and Erik in Eriks Fiskehandel are always ready with a good tip for a delicious and easy fish dish.
No harbour would be complete without a harbour festival, and Læsø is no exception. In Østerby Harbour there is a harbour festival on Friday and Saturday during the second weekend in July, and in Vesterø Harbour, the Quay Festival is launched on the third Friday and Saturday in July. On Whit Sunday you can enjoy the Day of the Sea in Vesterø. First Saturday in August, the annual Læsø Norway Lobster Festival is held in Østerby.
Læsø's harbours have a lot in common, but they are very different. In Vesterø, of course, the ferries colour the environment, while in Østerby, it is the commercial port with its many cutters and Læsø Fishing Industry that steal the picture.
Many of us, islanders and visitors included, enjoy an outing to the harbour. We just have to go and check whether an exciting ship has moored alongside the quay or whether this evening offers a beautiful sunset. When you move about the harbour, it is as if the relaxing sailing life rubs slightly off on all of us landlubbers.