Tromsø´s official website for tourism and travel information
We're here to help and have gathered the most frequently asked questions below. If you still can't find what you're looking for, feel free to contact us at [email protected].
- How do I get to Tromsø?
The most common way to travel to Tromsø is by air, but it’s also possible to travel by boat or bus. Read more about our travel options here.
- How do I get to and from Tromsø Airport?
It takes about 10-15 minutes to travel to/from the airport and city centre. See further descriptions on taxi, airport express busses and local city buses here.
- How do I get around Tromsø and the region?
oak in the cozy vibes within the Tromsø city centre, or explore the wild landscapes just a quick bus, car or ferry ride away. Read more on how to get around here.
- Where can I store my luggage?
There are two luggage storages around the city: 1st floor at the Port Terminal, and at Jekta Storsenter. Please note that both luggage storages have limited capacity, and are paid services.
- Where can I exchange money?
In Tromsø you can exchange currency at Ria. Their offices are located at the 2nd floor at Prostneset Port Terminal in Samuel Arnesens gate 5, inside the Bravo grocery shop. We also recommend currency exchange at Oslo airport upon arrival in Norway. ATM machines are widely available in downtown Tromsø and at Tromsø airport. Please note that owing to bank fees it may be cheaper to use your credit card instead of exchanging money. Major credit and debit cards, such as Visa, MasterCard, American Express and Diners, are widely accepted throughout Norway.
The official currency of Norway is the Norwegian krone (NOK), but several attractions, local buses, the Tourist Information Office and taxi companies accept some foreign currencies. However, they may charge a fee, offer a poorer exchange rate or only give change in NOK.
- Is it common to give tips in Norway?
It is common, but not expected to give tips in Norway. If you are satisfied with the service in a restaurant or a bar, tipping will be much appreciated. Adding a 10% to the bill is a standard level of tipping.
It is not very common to tip taxi drivers or other forms of public transport. However, it is up to the customer to decide if they want to reward good service by tipping.
- I it possible to drink the tap water in Norway?
The tap water in Tromsø is very pure and clean, and is often better than bottled water. Very safe to drink, in other words. Fluoride is not added to Norwegian tap water and only very small amounts occur naturally. It is possible to buy fluoride tablets at most pharmacies.
- What sort of plugs are needed when travelling to Norway?
Norway runs on a 230 V system and a 50 Hz frequency.
The power outlets take a C or F European standard plug with two round pins.
If travelling from the USA or a country that uses 110 V, we recommend using a 230 V converter. These can be bought at most airports and luggage shops and are also available at certain stores in downtown Tromsø.
- What are the rules for photography and drone flying in Tromsø?
The most important aspect when taking photos in public is to take photos and videos with respect for other people and nature. For further information and rules on drone flying read here.
- What are the opening hours of shops and supermarkets in the city centre?
Opening hours vary, and we note that most shops and supermarkets are closed on Sundays. Read more here.
- Are the shops, restaurants, supermarkets etc. open during holidays?
There are some shops, supermarkets and restaurants that are open during holidays. Joker is open every Sunday, and also in the holidays. Souvenir shops are normally open as well. To be sure, we suggest to get information from the individual shop, restaurant, supermarket etc. Read more here.
Sights and city attractions
- What can we do in Tromsø?
Visit Tromsø offers more than 300 different activities in both summer and winter. Please visit our booking site for all alternatives.
Some of the top sights in Tromsø city are: The Arctic Cathedral, The Cable Car, M/S Polstjerna, Northern Norway Art Museum, Perspektivet Museum, Polaria, The Polar Museum, Tromsø Cathedral, Tromsø Museum, The Botanical Garden, The Science Centre, Ludwig Mack Brewhouse, Magic Ice and Tromsø Defence Museum (June to September). See all attractions here.
- We are a familty with children. What can we do in Tromsø?
There are several family-friendly attractions in the city: Polaria, The Science Centre of Northern Norway, Polar Museum, Tromsø Museum, Troll Museum, the Cable Car, Magic Ice, Ishavstoget (only summer) Leo’s Lekeland and Tromsø Mini Zoo. See all attractions here.
We have collected all of our activity providers offers here.
- Is there a combination ticket for several attractions/ city buses and attractions?
Yes, we sell the Tromsø pass in the Tourist Information. The pass includes buss tickets and entry to several attractions. There are 5 different types of Tromsø pass and you can read more about prices and information here.
You can also buy a combination ticket to Tromsø Museum and the Polar Museum. Tickets can be bought at the first museum you visit.
- Is there a sightseeing bus or hop-on, hop-off bus?
During summer, Ishavstoget (the Arctic Train) does a tour of the city centre and year round the city buses can be used for sightseeing.
- Are there any activities that are free?
Yes: Tromsø Kunstforening (Tromsø Gallery of Contemporary Art), the Arctic-Alpine Botanical Garden and Folkeparken. You can also read our tips on how to explore Tromsø on a budget here.
- What are the opening hours to the Arctic Cathedral?
- Can we walk across the bridge?
Yes, the foot path is on the right hand side from the city centre. The bridge is one kilometre long and it takes about 20 minutes to walk across.
- Does the Tromsø Cathedral open for tourists?
Yes. Tromsø Cathedral is normally open in the afternoon by volunteers. Church Service is at 11am on Sundays. There is also an International churc service once a month.
- What are the opening hours for the Arctic-Alpine Botanical Garden?
The Botanical Garden is open 24 hours a day with free entrance. The flowering season is from spring to autumn. As the gardens are in open space, the plants cannot be enjoyed during winter, but will still be open for the public.
- Is there a fish market?
Tromsø does not have a fish market. It is possible to buy fresh fish from large supermarkets, fish shops and occasionally there will be mobile kiosks in the market square Stortorget.
- Is there a Christmas market?
There is a Christmas market from the end of November. However, it's not set if it will be open only during advent or througout the Christmas holidays. There are also smaller ones organized by schools and local organisations. There is usually a Farmers Market the three first Saturdays in December. Read more about Christmas in Tromsø here.
- What is the difference between Polaria and the Polar Museum?
Polaria is an Arctic experience centre with panoramic films about Svalbard and the Northern lights, aquariums of Arctic fish, seals, knowledge-based exhibits, gift shop and a café.
The Polar Museum tells the history of winter trapping, seal hunting and polar expeditions.
Nature and tours
- Are there any good hikes near Tromsø?
Most definitely. In and around Tromsø there are a number of hikes offering beautiful views and different levels of difficulties.
In the summer time, it is popular to hike the path up to Fløya, where the Cable Car is (but note that it is a bit steep). If hills aren't your cup of tea, we can suggest a walk along the trails in the forest on top of Tromsøya (the island of Tromsø). The path around Prestvannet is beautiful with views over the lake and the mountains of Kvaløya and Tromsdalstinden.
If you feel adventurous and want to go out and further explore the mountains surrounding us, we have several guiding companies who are eager to take you there! Explore our activities here.
In the winter, the snow normally lies deep and normal hiking is therefore not an option. Remember that the winter-conditions in the Arctic can be rough and makes all tours more difficult. If you are not familiar with travelling in the winter-mountains, we will advise you to join one of our guided tours.
- Is it possible for people with restricted mobility to go on tours or attractions in Tromsø?
Yes, that is possible. Tromsø Accessible Tours can assist you with finding accessible adventures. Furthermore, most restaurants and hotels also provide solutions for wheelchair users and people with restricted mobility or other needs. However, most companies need to know beforehand so they can adjust the tour best possible for the visitor. Please read more here.
- Where can I see reindeer?
From November to the middle of April it is possible to go on guided tours to see reindeers, do reindeer sledding and experience Sami culture, as it is only the Sami people who are allowed to own reindeers. The reindeer walk freely in the countryside and can often be seen on the island of Kvaløya. Also, be sure to watch out for reindeer crossing the road while driving. Read more about reindeer and Sami activities here.
- Can we go to a Sami village?
No, the Samis does not live in separate villages. However, there are guided tours where you can learn about the Sami herding culture and stay in a typical Sami lavvo (tent). In winter there are tours offering Sami culture and activities such as reindeer sledding, lasso throwing and reindeer feeding. Explore activity tours here.
- Can we see whales from Tromsø and where is the best place to see them?
The whales’ location changes from year to year, as they follow the herring in the fjords. They are often seen off the coast of Kvaløya (literally ‘whale island’) and Skjervøy, but the most common way to ensure a sight is to go on a guided whale safari by boat.
The season for whale watching in Tromsø is usually from November to the end of January and sometimes continues into the beginning of February. Explore activity tours here.
- When can we see the Northern Lights?
The Northern Light season is from the end of August till the end of March. In this period there’s no time that is better than other, as the Northern Lights are a natural phenomenon and can appear whenever there is enough solar activity. Please see our own guide and info about the Northern Lights here.
- Where is the best place to see the Northern Lights?
In Tromsø we are ideally located to see Northern Lights because the aurora is overhead, and we can travel to find clear skies. The Northern Lights will be visible in the period from late August to March. See more info on how to find the northern lights here.
We also offer a variety of Northern Lights tours that can be booked here.
- How do we choose a Northern Lights tour?
It is important that you choose a Northern Light tour after your needs. We offer a wide selection of tours that you can choose based on your travelstyle, or where you can choose between Northern Lights chase and Northern Lights experience. During a Northern Lights chase you join one of our experienced and knowledgeable providers who will fulfil your dream of seeing the Aurora. Northern Lights experiences are activities that offer that bit of extra adventure to your Arctic experience. Explore our activity tours here.
- What is the Midnight Sun and when can we see it?
The Midnight Sun is a natural phenomenon where the sun remains visible 24 hours a day in the period from the end of May till the end of July. However, the week before and after these dates are also very beautiful as the sun is only beneath the horizon for a very short time. Read more about the Midnight Sun here.
- Where is the best place to see the Midnight Sun?
Since the sun is low around midnight, it would be a good idea for you to get up in the height. In Tromsø you will have a good view from Mt. Storsteinen where you can either walk up to or take the cable car. Otherwise, it is a good idea to go to places with a view to the north-west. Recommended places by car would be Kvaløyvågen, Sommarøy or just driving along the coast.
- How do I get to the cable car?
You can walk across the bridge to the lower cable car station in approximately 45 minutes from the city centre. You can also catch bus 26 from Havnegata H1 near Stortorget. We recommend buying two single tickets per person to cover the return journey. See bus times and prices here.
- How often does the cable car run?
The cable car runs every 30 minutes, on the hour and half past. See www.fjellheisen.no for opening hours and prices.
- Can you buy cable car tickets at the tourist information?
Yes, you can. Tickets can also be bought from the cable car station. It is possible to pay with NOK, Euros and credit card.
The Tourist Information also sells Tromsø passes if you want to combine other activities and bus tickets.
- Can I take the cable car one-way?
Yes, it is possible to walk and take the cable car as you please. You can easily walk the Sherpa stairs one way and take the cable car the other way in the summer. During the winter, we strongly recommend to take the cable car both ways for your own safety.
- Can I take bicycles, skis, prams or dogs in the cable car?
Yes, but please note that an additional fee is charged for bicycles.
- Is it possible to buy a combined bus and cable car ticket?
The cable car ticket is normally bought separately from the bus ticket. However, the Tromsø pass includes the entrance to the cable car as part of a package of several attractions and city bus tickets valid for up to 7 days.
- Which bookable activities can you recommend for a family with children?
When it comes to booking tours we have two seasons - winter and summer. Some of the trips are available both in winter and summer. Explore our activity providers tours for families here.
Examples of winter tours for families: Sami experience and feeding the reindeer, dog sledding, certain northern lights tours which include a base camp (northern lights visits), northern lights chase by boat, northern lights private tours, Polar Park including transportation, whale safaris, ice fishing, skiing or trips to the Ice Domes.
Examples of summer tours for families: Hiking with huskies, puppy training, family Arctic hiking.
Examples of year-round tours for families: Fjord excursions, sea fishing and boat trips (restrictions may apply), Polar Park, visit to Magic Ice.
Please note that tours clearly specify the lower age limit. Sometimes guests need to specify the child’s weight or height.
- Is it better to book tours before I arrive?
Yes. By booking in advance you make sure that your trip is available and that it is not fully booked during peak season. However, should it be more convenient, or you wish to base your choice on current weather or other plans, you are welcome to visit us at the Tourist Information centre and we will help you book a tour. Tours can be booked online here.
- Is it cheaper to book tours through an agent, or direct with the providers?
No. The prices on our webpage is the same as on the providers’ websites.
- How can I best choose ONE activity when there are so many of them?
The first place to start when searching for tours, is to look through our categories of tours. You will then be able to check the availability during the dates you are in Tromsø. It is also possible to compare tours according to price, duration, group size, mode of transport and what is included. Narrowing it down, it will be easier to choose your tours. We have also gathered suggestions of tours depending on your way of travelling.
How do I get to...
- How do I get to the Arctic Cathedral?
You can walk across the bridge in approximately 20 minutes or take city bus 20, 24, 26 and 28 from Havnegata near Stortorget. See timetables here.
- How do I get to the Arctic-Alpine Botanical Garden?
If you arrive in Tromsø on a cruise ship that has berthed at Breivika, it is a 10-minute walk to the garden by walking the underway path across the main road.
From the city centre it is recommended to take a bus. All routes can be found here.
- How do I get to the Polar Park?
The Polar Park is located in Bardu, 180km from Tromsø.
There are 3 ways to get there: public transport, organized tours or driving your own car.
Public transport: Bus 100 (Narvik) from Tromsø Prostneset harbour terminal to bus stop Skogstad. We recommend taking the 06:10 bus from Tromsø on weekdays. On weekends the first bus is at 10am. Duration is 3 hours by bus and a 3 km walk from the bus stop to the Polar Park.
By car: Follow road E8 and E6. The trip takes about 2 hours and 40 minutes (184 km).
- How do I get to the Stone Age carvings at Skavberg on Kvaløya?
Take district bus 420 from Tromsø Prostneset harbour terminal and get off at bus stop Rya. Duration approximately 45 minutes. Weekdays only. Tickets are bought on the bus (cash only) and operating times can be found here.
- How do I get to Håkøya, the place where the battleship Tirpitz sank?
Take bus 420 (weekdays only) from Tromsø Prostneset harbour terminal. Stop at Eidjordneset and walk over the bridge to the island. Take a right and walk for approximately 40 minutes to get to the Tirpitz memorial.
It is also possible to take bus 42 from Sjøgata S4 from Tromsø city centre to Eidkjosen. It is approximately one hour’s walk from Eidkjosen to the memorial on Håkøya. Or from Eidkjosen take bus 421 to Håkoya. See bus operating hours here.
Taxi prices will range from NOK 500 one way. NB taxi prices vary according to the time of day. Check the price with the driver or company before you go. Read more here.
- How do I get to Hurtigruten?
Hurtigruten berth at Tromsø Prostneset harbour terminal. To board the ships, passengers and visitors enter the harbour terminal on the second floor. The car entrance is on the ground floor on the right side of the harbour terminal.
- How do I get to Ersfjorden?
You can go to Ersfjorden by taking bus 425 from the city centre, or by taking bus 42 from Sjøgata S4 to Eidkjosen and then switch to bus 425 since it departs more often from Eidkjosen than from Tromsø city centre. See bus operating hours here.
- How do I get to Senja?
You can either go to Senja by car or public transport. Read more about Senja and how to get there here.
- Hvordan kommer jeg meg til Sommarøy?
Du kan dra til Sommarøy med offentlig transport eller bil. Les mer om Sommarøy og kjøreforslag her.
- How do I get to Nordkapp?
Nordkapp can be reached by bus, car, plane or with Hurtigruten. Read more on the travel options here.