Hvalba is one of the northernmost villages in Suðuroy, located on the east coast between two mountains to the north and to the south, the west coast is not far away. There are two so-called Eiði on the west coast near Hvalba. Hvalba used to be the largest village in Suðuroy, and in the old days it was the only village which had a priest. There is much land in and around Hvalba, which is why the village was the largest, people lived mainly by farming in those days. When the fishing industry became more important Vágur and Tvøroyri became larger than Hvalba. Hvalba is connected with two other villages by two road tunnels: to the south is the road tunnel to Trongisvágur, which is the oldest road tunnel in the Faroes, made in 1963. To the north is the road tunnel to Sandvík, the norhternmost village. These tunnels don't comply with modern demands when it comes to the size of them, they are narrow and low compared with the new tunnels, which are made in recent years. Hvalba has a fish factory, and it is difficult for the factory to transport the fish through the tunnel, because it is so low that no trailers can go through it. They must use special made transportation vehicles in order to transport the fish to the ferry Smyril.
Hvalba has a history of pirtates bothering the villagers. There was one incident back in 1629, when three Turkish ship arrived with pirates, who killed some of the villagers and also took away almost 30 women and children as slaves. They never returned. One of the vessels went shipwreck and some of the dead bodies drifted ashore. They were buried in a place which is called Turkargravir (Graves of the Turks). The pirates were not from Turkey, but from northern Africa, which then was a part of the Ottoman Empire. There have been other pirates too, some came from Ireland. But finally the Danish government stopped it by sending a ship to guard the Faroe Islands. That stopped the pirating.
Fiskieiði and Norðbergseiði
The southern Eiði is called Fiskieiði or Hvalbiareiði, it used to be an extra harbor for the men of the village. Around 100 years ago they mada a road/stair down to the sea, so it could be easier for the fishermen to go fishing with their boats. Now most men go fishing with one of the modern trawlers from the harbor on the east coast. Fiskieiði is mostly used for boat trips or for fishing trips as a hobby. Norðbergseiði was earlier used as rubbish dump, but now it is a beautiful place, where people can enjoy the vertical cliffs and to come all the way out to the edge and enjoy the view over the North Atlantic. Some men from Hvalba have started to offer rappelling for tourists on Norðbergseiði, but the Faroese way of rappelling, which is called "Síging" or the verb "at síga". Faroese men have used this tradition for perhaps thousand years in order to catch birds or bird eggs as a part of their food.
Hvalba is the only village in the Faroe Islands which still has active coal mining. The coal mine history started around year 1770. There have been coalmines in Hvalba, in Trongisvágur and in Fámjin. A few men still work in one coalmine in Hvalba, and they work in the same way as their ancestors did before them.