Tromsø in pink light
©Kari Schibevaag

Top 10 reasons why tour operators choose Tromsø as their destination

Located 400km north of the Arctic Circle at 69˚N, Tromsø is Norway's gateway to the Arctic.

Experience the unique combination of urban city life and a range of outdoor activities in the stunning Tromsø region – year round.

There are many reasons why tour operators choose the Arctic capital as their destination. These are the top 10! 

1.    Tromsø is one of Norway’s sustainable destinations

As a sustainable destination the travel industry in Tromsø continously work to reduce the negative impact of tourism on the environment. Our partners are quality assured through the “Approved by Tromsø” scheme and will do their utmost to ensure that your guests have authentic and safe experiences that are of high quality. Our partners follow guidelines that contributes to minimising the impact from human activity, to help taking care of nature, visitors and locals alike. The “Tromsø Cares” guidelines have been developed to encouraging guests to be considerate during their stay in Tromsø. 

2.    A vibrating city full of urban surprises

Tromsø offers a great mix of cultural events, museums, shopping, and restaurants. The city is compact and easy to get around by foot – with plenty of colorful neighbourhoods to explore. Visit attractions like the Arctic Cathedral, the Polar Museum, or say «hello» to the seals in Polaria. In summer time, the pavements are buzzling with life as the locals go out to enjoy «utepils» (beer enjoyed outside in the sun). For panoramic views of the city, ride the cable car up to Mount Storsteinen.

3.    The Tromsø Region is an Eldorado for nature-based experiences

The scenic region surrounding Tromsø offers pristine nature and unique wildlife. Regardless of when you visit, there will be a wide range of outdoor activities on offer. Check out the «caribbean» beaches and stunning mountains, which are practically on the doorstep of town. Choose between hundreds of summits, from family-friendly routes to more demanding hikes. Go kayaking, fishing, dogsledding or whale watching in the icy fjords. 

4.    Tromsø is blessed with sun around the clock for almost two months

From mid-May to late July, the midnight sun makes both visitors and locals feel happy and energetic, and it might be hard to go to bed. Luckily, Tromsø is a paradise for outdoor activities, like mountain hikes, fjord tours and kayaking, in the middle of the bright night. The streets in downtown Tromsø teem with life during this period of the year. Wander from place to place on a long summer evening and taste local delights. Life’s good under the rays of the everlasting sun. 

5.    Aurora Borealis visit frequently through winter time

Between mid-September and beginning of April, Tromsø is dark from early afternoon until late morning, and the northern lights frequently occur on the sky. Under the dancing aurora you can go chasing the Northern Lights in on a dog sled or with snowmobile, or Sleep in a Sami lavvu (herdsmen’s tent). Bring your warmest clothes and wait for this transformational bucket-list experience! You may even be lucky enough to see the Northern Lights in downtown Tromsø. 

6.    Attend festivals throughout the year 

Tromsø offers concerts and festivals year round. In winter time, there is one festival after another in Storgata, from the international film festival via the Northern Lights Festival to reindeer racing and Polar Night Maratoin. During summer you can attend the popular Bukta festival with big artist from both Norway and other, as well as Riddu Riđđu, Tromsø Sky Race, Tromsø Jazz Festival, and the Midnight Sun Marathon.

7.    Enjoy Arctic delights when you need to refuel

Tromsø is full of internationally recognized restaurants offering a range of arctic dishes that are hard to find anywhere else. Ingredients ftenly come from local farms and fisheries, and are as fresh as it gets! Why not try local treats such as grilled stockfish or reindeer sirloin? Tromsø also has heaps of good coffee and locally brewed beer. 

8.    Try the buzzling nightlife year round

Tromsø is the world’s northernmost university town, and the population is above average when it comes to being social. No wonder Tromsø is known for its lively nightlife. The term «The nightlife city of Tromsø” actually emerged as early as in the 1970's.  Locals grab a beer outside as soon as the sun comes out, or go bar hopping in the main street of Storgata. Did you know that the city has more pubs per capita than any other Norwegian town? There are some great nightclubs for those who want stay up all night. 

9.    Get a taste of Norway’s Sami culture

The Tromsø Region is a wonderful place to experience the Sami culture, with the ancient traditions like joik and handicrafts and reindeer husbandry. Close-up contact with the reindeer and reindeer sledding are popular activities that guests can take part in, often combined with a cultural session around fire in a lavvu (Sami herdsmen’s tent). 
Sami people involved in reindeer husbandry are semi-nomadic and move with their reindeer herd to summer grazing areas. Consequently, most of the activities around Tromsø are offered outside the summer season from October to March. 

10.    Meet amazing whales in their natural habitat

The sea areas off Skjervøy, north of Tromsø, are the whales’ hunting grounds. From November to January, these giant marine mammals migrate towards the coast in search of herring. The cold fjords are frequented by orcas, humpback whales, fin whale and minke whales. Boat trips offer the greatest experiences. Remember; No whale guarantee is offered. Everything takes place on nature’s terms. And, it’s hard to tell if they’ll be back next season, but we sure do hope so!