Hammerfest (häˈmərfĕst) [key], town (1995 pop. 9,561), Finnmark co., N Norway, on Kvaløy island. It is the northernmost town of Europe, but its harbor is always ice-free. Tourists are attracted by its uninterrupted daylight from May 17 to July 29. There are fish-processing plants. Chartered c.1795, Hammerfest was heavily damaged by British naval bombardment in 1809, by fire in 1890, and by retreating German forces in 1944.