Most people visit Tromso to witness the Northern Lights but there is so much more to this town in the Arctic Circle. Here are 10 things to do in Tromso.
1. See the Northern Lights
No doubt the biggest draw card for tourists is that chances are high of you seeing the Northern lights. It’s all anyone talks about and from the moment you check in and sit down ready to board the chat of passengers instantly turns to the Northern Lights. I was lucky enough to see them during my visit which you can read about here.
2. Visit the seals at the Polaria
The Polaria (Polar Museum) is a cute little museum situated right on the water that is home to four of the cutest seals I have ever seen. Twice daily their trainers feed them, exercise them and make sure they are stimulated mentally. It is not a ‘show’ as such but the seals do a few tricks here and there. There are two bearded seals and they are the only two in captivity in the world, there is also two harbour seals. You can read more about the seals here .
3. Get an incredible view at Mount Storsteinen
Take the cable car to the top of Mount and get this insane view over Tromso, the nearby mountains and fjords. If you are lucky to get a clear day you will see many mountains in the distance. Once at the top there is a cafe with a roaring fire and a bar serving a cold Macks beer.
4. Eat a hamburger at Huken Pub
We found this little gem on trip advisor and it was no doubt the best meal, atmosphere and staff we encountered in Tromso. The pub is small, is filled with retro furniture and has the BEST hamburgers! Both days I ordered a ‘full fettling’ which is a bacon, cheese burger with melted and grilled cheese along with fries covered in bacon. It was a heart attack on a plate but without a doubt an unmissable meal in Tromso. The staff were also super friendly and very welcoming as well.
5. Frolic in the snow
I was lucky to visit during a week off full on snow. Having not seen proper knee deep snow before for me this was a real treat. There had been a massive dumping of snow the week before and the snow continued throughout our week there. There were huge piles of snow dotted all over town.
6. Go dog sledding
Unfortunately I was unable to go dog sledding during my week in Tromso as every single excursion was booked out as it is so popular. Tip: Book your excursions on Visit Tromso website before arriving or you may be disappointed like me. This particular activity isn’t a ‘traditional Norwegian’ trip but I can imagine it would be fun all the same.
7. Walk over the bridge and visit the Arctic Cathedral
No trip to Tromso would be complete without visiting the unique Arctic Cathedral. Located on the opposite island to Tromso. The Cathedral was built in 1965 and reminded me a little of the Sydney Opera House. Unfortunately I was unable to go in as there was a funeral in progress but you can enter for a small fee.
8. See stunning fjords
My husband Dan was dying to see some fjords and before we knew it it was our last day in Tromso, so we checked out the map and headed to a location on the island where we thought the best views were on offer. Two hours later we arrived at the end of the island and all we could see was a long mountainous range ahead, shadowed in cloud and covered in snow. It was a sight to behold and worth the trek through the snow to get this view. There are also trips out of Tromso daily to see nearby fjords.
9. Complain how expensive it is
I tried my best not to complain about the price of everything but it was difficult not to. We all know Norway is expensive but it is still a shock when you get the bill for a glass of wine and a pint of beer and it is close to £20. But there are cheaper options available, bars offer cheap nights for students and not every restaurant has over the top priced meals. You have to go in with an open mind that yes things will be more expensive that you imagine.
10. Have a beer in the most northerly brewery bar
The Macks bar located in town and is an absolute must do whilst in Tromso. The staff are highly knowledgeable in their craft beer and are keen to get the right beer for you. There is also a giant stuffed polar bear which makes for great photos.
We flew to Norway with Norwegian Air
We booked our accommodation on Booking.com and we stayed at Smarthotel Tromso
Check out my other blog posts about Tromso: