Kabelvåg lies a little to the south-west of Svolvær, the administrative center of Vågan municipality. The village was founded as Vågan in the early 12th century by King Øystein Magnusson, who built a church and a fishermen's hostel there. According to Heimskringla, there was something resembling a town there several centuries earlier — the first known town in North Norway, known as Vågar. The Lofoten Museum, as well as the Lofoten Aquarium () and the Espolin Gallery, are all located in Kabelvåg. Kabelvåg in history
The oldest traces of settlement in Kabelvåg are from the later stoneage. Though there are traces of human activity as far back as the earlier stoneage. While modern day Vågan municipality was generally evenly populated in the stone age there are only sparse traces of settlements in the area now known as Kabelvåg during the ironage. During the middleages however the settlement in the area (known as Vågan) experienced a rise in importance. Mostly because of the "Lofotfiske" which mostly takes part in a part of the sea known as Hølla which is an area between modern day Kabelvåg, Svolvær and Skrova.
As long as anyone has known Northern Atlantic Cod has come to Lofoten to spawn. When it comes it this creates an extreme increase in fish density making the fishing during this period very successful. A result of the "Lofotfiske" is that there became large amounts of fish available in need of storage. This led to the drying and salting of fish. Due to the special weather of the Lofoten islands it's an ideal place to make the product known as tørrfisk (direct translation: dried fish). During the Middle Ages this dried fish became a very important commodity in the Catholic countries of Southern Europe, and the backbone of the local economy. According to historians, dried cod from Nordland in the 13th century accounted for 80% of all of Norway's exports.
It's a small village: you can walk everywhere in 10 minutes.