Tromso on a Budget

  • Guest
  • Tagged , , , , , 6 Comments
  • 21st September 2015
  • One of our guest bloggers here at Nordophile is back. Vanessa Brune made the move from Germany to Tromso in the Arctic of Norway. Whilst running her own site blogging about life in Tromso, Van also knows the true meaning of being a Nordophile and what Nordophiles want to see and do, so she has […]




    One of our guest bloggers here at Nordophile is back. Vanessa Brune made the move from Germany to Tromso in the Arctic of Norway. Whilst running her own site blogging about life in Tromso, Van also knows the true meaning of being a Nordophile and what Nordophiles want to see and do, so she has started guest writing for us with this in mind. Maybe one day you will make the move as well…….

     

     

    Tromso on a Budget – 10 Free Things to do on your visit

    Hello fellow Nordophiles! I’m so glad to be back again! In case you missed my last post about Tromso, my name is Vanessa and I’m a German expat living in Tromso in Arctic Norway. I blog about my life and travels in Scandinavia and the Arctic over at Snow in Tromso and am here today to spread a bit of my love for Arctic Norway!

    I’m currently a student and living in Norway isn’t exactly the cheapest thing to do. Neither is visiting so I completely understand your worries that visiting Tromso might be too expensive. Therefore, I’m here today to tell you: it is possible to visit the Arctic on a budget! Aside from looking out for cheap flights and booking a private room instead of a room at a hotel, there are a couple of things you can do and see in Tromso completely for free. Today I’m showing you the 10 best!

     

     

    Hunt the Northern Lights

    This is probably the best about Tromso: the Northern Lights. And yes, you can see them for free! Of course, there are Northern Lights tours for tourists which is great when the sky is cloudy and they drive you to less cloudy areas. However if the sky is clear, you’ll most likely see them in the middle of Tromso too! I can see them from my bedroom and I live in the city center! Although, if you want to take really nice pictures of the lights, you’d need to get away from the lights of the city. No problem though as Tromso Island is big and you can get outside of the city within a half hour walk.

     

     

    Experience the Midnight Sun

    Interested in more natural phenomena of the Arctic? If you visit Tromso during summertime, you’ll experience the Midnight Sun (aka 24 hours of daylight) included in your stay. It’s so nice to take a walk around the city centre in the middle of the night while it’s still bright outside.

     

    P1180163dz

     

    Go on a Hike

    Speaking of going on a walk, the Arctic nature can best be experienced outside of the city on a hike through the forests or in the mountains. There are so many hiking routes for you to choose from and all of them are clearly marked. My favourites: walking around Lake Prestvannet, hiking from the Northern tip of Tromso Island to the Southern tip or going up Mountain Storstein or Mountain Tromsdalstind on the mainland.

     

    The Southern Tip of Tromso Island

     

    Visit Perspektivet

    Tromso also has some culture for you to offer and some of it is even for free. Perspektivet, for example, is a photography museum with changing exhibitions – all of them for free!

     

    Perspektivet

     

    Visit the Northern Norway Art Museum & the Gallery of Contemporary Art

    If you’re interested in art, the Northern Norway Art Museum and the Gallery of Contemporary Art should be on your must-see list of places for your Tromso visit. Both are free of charge and both host wonderful Norwegian art you might not be able to see anywhere else.

     

    Gallery of Contemporary Art

     

    Get on board of the Hurtigruten

    Want to see what it’s like to cruise around on Norway’s coastal steamer? The Hurtigruten can be found at Tromso harbour every day from 2.30 to 6.30 pm and can be visited free of charge. You can have a look around the ship, drink coffee in the cafeteria and even use the whirlpool on deck while having a fabulous view on the Arctic Cathedral.

     

    Hurtigruten

     

    Have some Beach Time

    Yes, Tromso has a beach and even though it might not be warm enough to go for a swim during your visit, you should definitely head out to Telegrafbukta anyway. It’s such a beautiful place in the South of Tromso Island and the perfect place for an evening walk at the ocean!

     

    Telegrafbukta - the beach of Tromso

     

    Visit the Botanic Garden

    The Arctic-Alpine Botanical Garden in Tromso is showcasing plants from the world’s Arctic and Alpine regions, like the Himalaya and the Rocky Mountains, and is situated right below the University. To walk through the Gardens is free and should be on your list of things to do if you visit the city between May and October!

     

     

    See Reindeers and Polar Bears

    Tromso is in the Arctic so of course you’ll see reindeers and polar bears! Okay, the polar bear might only be a stuffed one at Mack Brewery but you can also see real reindeers near the University (in captivity) and over on Tromso’s neighbouring island Kvaloya (wild), besides seeing them all over the city centre for decorative purposes.

     

    Reindeer

     

    Take in the view of Tromso from above

    Tromso is such a beautiful place – and even more so if seen from above! The sight of Tromso Island, in the middle of the fjord between the mainland and the island Kvaloya is just so amazing! You can have this view after hiking up Mountain Storstein and as this might be a tough hike not exactly suitable for less well-trained people, you can always go for a much easier hike from the University to the ski jumping tower and look at the mainland and great parts of Tromso from that one. The views will be equally nice, promised!

     

    Tromso from above

     

    You see, Tromso might be in the Arctic and one of the most expensive countries of Europe, but it’s definitely possible to visit the city and see a lot while being on a budget!

    If you want to read more about Tromso and my life in Arctic Norway, head on over to Snow in Tromso and leave a comment below telling me what you’d like to do if you’d visit Tromso one day!

    -->

    Guest Blog – Autumnal Tromso

  • Guest
  • Tagged , , , , , , 1 Comment
  • 25th August 2015
  • Here at Nordophile we are excited to be bringing you some guest bloggers and new writers to our site over the next few weeks. We start with a guest blog from a Nordophile who was lucky enough to make the move to one of the Nordic countries. She blogs about her experiences and has kindly offered […]




    Here at Nordophile we are excited to be bringing you some guest bloggers and new writers to our site over the next few weeks.

    We start with a guest blog from a Nordophile who was lucky enough to make the move to one of the Nordic countries. She blogs about her experiences and has kindly offered to give you an insight into the Arctic city she now calls home and why the season which is upon us, is the best time to visit!

     

     

    Autumnal Tromso – A Magical Time

    Hello, fellow Nordophiles! My name is Vanessa and I’m a German expat living in Tromso in Arctic Norway. I blog  about my life and travels in Scandinavia and the Arctic over at Snow in Tromso and am here today to spread a bit of my love for Arctic Norway!

    Two years ago, I first made the journey to Tromso. It was October and therefore, cold, rainy and grey. I only stayed in the city for one night and one day before embarking on a cruise to the North Cape, but that one night and one day were enough to fall in love with Tromso. Now two years later, I’m living in the biggest city of the European Arctic and am looking forward to the beginning of autumn again. It’s a magical time for so many reasons!

     

    P1120367_-2-1-

     

    The first thing I saw of Tromso was it’s snow-covered mountains, slowly appearing beneath the clouds while looking out of the plane window. Once I got out of the plane, fresh, crisp mountain air welcomed me and even though it was colder than I had expected and I was absolutely freezing, there was something about that moment that I’ll never forget.

    Later that day, I went on my first stroll through the city centre and found a cute, little, Norwegian seaside town that even looked colourful on a rainy day. I mean, red, yellow and even turquoise houses? On a dark day in autumn, these colours pop even more and look so pretty with the golden leaves of all the trees. It took only one hour wandering through the streets of Tromso until I knew that I could live in that city.

    Fast forward a year. I moved to Tromso in August and after about two weeks of summer, autumn arrived. I spent my first weeks in the city going hiking, waiting for the first Northern Lights of the season and experiencing the first snow of the season – in late September that is! These first weeks were absolutely amazing and it is therefore that I can’t wait for autumn in Tromso as I’m already looking forward to experiencing all these things all over again!

     

    Arctic Cathedral during Polar Night

     

    And if you consider visiting the city one day, here are a few reasons why autumn is the perfect time:

    1. First of all, the cruise ship season is over so the city is way less crowded and it’ll be easier to find accommodation and space in the museums.

    2. The snow hasn’t arrived yet which means you can go hiking on trails that are inaccessible during winter time. Plus, I don’t need to tell you how beautiful a forest is in autumn, right? That combined with snow-covered mountains in the distance makes for some beautiful pictures!

    3. If you’re arriving in early autumn, you might still have a chance to see some reindeer before they embark on their journey to their winter pastures. There aren’t any reindeers on Tromso island but on the neighbouring whale island, Kvaloya, you can almost always spot a reindeer or two from spring to late summer.

     

    Tromso Island in Autumn

     

    4. With the midnight sun disappearing and nights finally becoming dark, you can see the Northern Lights again! And in autumn that means, you can wait for them outside without almost freezing to death. Plus, Tromso looks really pretty at night and especially the Arctic Cathedral makes for a nice picture in the dark.

    5. If you’re lucky and at the right place at the right time, you can experience the first snow of the season. Usually, people complain that it’s too early but personally, I prefer snow over rainy and slippery streets. And that feeling of seeing the first snow of the winter is just undescribable, mainly because you never know when it’s finally time. Two years ago, the first snow only arrived in mid-October whereas last year it happened already in late September. I’m so curious to see when it’ll happen this year!

    Can you see why autumn is a magical time in Tromso now? It’s the time of many firsts and lasts and I’m looking forward to the first snow and Northern Lights as much as to the last hikes in the woods and the last reindeer sightings of the season.

     

    P1120462dz

     

    If you want to read more about Tromso and my life in Arctic Norway, head on over to Snow in Tromso and leave a comment below telling me what the best season is in your favourite Northern town!

    Vanessa

    -->

    Routes North

  • Sarah Surgey
  • Tagged , , , , , Leave a comment
  • 11th June 2015
  • routes north

    Nordophile is always looking out for blogs which delve deep into one of the Nordic countries, to encourage Nordophiles to visit. We discovered Routes North, which was founded by Steve Vickers. Steve and his writers go to the places with a fresh perspective and then they bring them to you . Routes North was started […]




    Nordophile is always looking out for blogs which delve deep into one of the Nordic countries, to encourage Nordophiles to visit.

    We discovered Routes North, which was founded by Steve Vickers. Steve and his writers go to the places with a fresh perspective and then they bring them to you .

    Routes North was started to help people discover all of the amazing stuff that Sweden has to offer, regardless of their budget. The site covers the entire country, from cool cities like Stockholm, Gothenburg and Malmö, all the way north to the frozen reaches of Swedish Lapland.

     

    stockholm

    Our destination guides are all researched on the ground by writers who know the country inside-out and speak the local lingo. Apart from money-saving tips and advice on planning a trip to Sweden, you’ll find independent accommodation reviews, detailed guides to museums and other attractions, plus tips on where to eat and drink. Our Sweden forum is the place to get your travel questions answered.

    Routes North is the only Sweden travel guide that pays its own way. We don’t take freebies and we don’t run sponsored posts, so you can always trust what you read on the site.

     

    central-sweden

    Routes North is an independent travel guide to Sweden. Founded in 2014, its aim is simple: to help travellers get the most out of a trip to the country, regardless of their budget. No messing about – just helpful, honest travel advice.

    Unlike the vast majority of publications writing about Sweden, we do not take free stuff or discounts on travel services. Why? Because it means we’re free to say what we really think. All of the hotels, restaurants and attractions featured on this website have been visited in person, anonymously.

    lapland

    Routes North was started by the British journalist Steve Vickers, who has worked on more than 15 guidebooks across Europe and Asia and has spent the past six years exploring Scandinavia with his Swedish girlfriend Karin. Want to say hi? Contact us via Twitter or send us an email at:  routesnorth.com

    -->

    David Nikel – Life in Norway

  • Sarah Surgey
  • Tagged , , Leave a comment
  • 7th June 2015
  • Bryggen-alleyway

    Norway is a Nordic country that we encourage Nordophiles to visit. But as it isn’t as well known as its Swedish and Danish counterparts, we’ve searched around to find someone that we think can help you. David Nikel, founder and editor of the Life in Norway blog. Originally from the UK, I now work for […]




    Norway is a Nordic country that we encourage Nordophiles to visit. But as it isn’t as well known as its Swedish and Danish counterparts, we’ve searched around to find someone that we think can help you.

    David Nikel, founder and editor of the Life in Norway blog. Originally from the UK, I now work for myself as a freelance journalist and consultant in beautiful Trondheim.

    My aim for this publication is simple: to show you what it’s really like to live and work in Norway. You’ll see the sights we see, read our thoughts and observations on Norwegian life, follow along as we all try to learn Norwegian, and more. From time to time we spread our wings and cover stories from the wider Nordic region, including Sweden, Denmark and Finland.

    In addition to editing and writing for this website, I’ve produced articles about Scandinavia for the Telegraph, National Geographic, Computer Weekly, Finnair’s Blue Wings, SCAN Magazine, Startup Norway, Air Baltic’s Baltic Outlook, the Norwegian American Weekly, and Arctic Startup. I’ve been featured in Canada’s Globe and Mail, and interviewed live on BBC Scotland and Finnish radio.

    david-nikel

    HOW IT ALL BEGAN

    I moved to Norway in 2011 almost by accident. As an IT contractor I was lucky enough to be offered several jobs abroad and I couldn’t resist the lure of Scandinavia.

    After a while, the same questions kept popping up:

    • “What is Norway really like?”
    • “What are Norwegians like?”
    • “Does everyone has blonde hair and blue eyes?”
    • “Is it really that expensive?”

    And so, Life in Norway was born!

     

    bergen

    It started off as a simple personal blog. As more and more people became interested in my stories, thoughts and observations, I expanded the site to include several other voices. You won’t find a more diverse collection of writers anywhere online! The success of this website was a contributing factor in me quitting my job to launch a freelance career.

    Bryggen-alleyway

    In David’s blog he features guides to the four main cities of  Norway – Oslo, Bergen, Trondheim and Stavanger.

    There are articles including; learning Norwegian, lifestyle, relocation and travel. This all comes from someone who is living there and his guest bloggers.

    Need specific information on Norway before you go? Just drop David an email and he will be happy to help.

     

    www.lifeinnorway.net

    -->

    Don’t leave Iceland out in the cold.

  • Sarah Surgey
  • Tagged , , , , Leave a comment
  • 29th May 2015
  • stuckiniceland

    Out of all the Nordics, Denmark and Sweden seem to get a lot of the attention. Whether it’s the ease in which people from around Europe, can get to them or the fact that we have a lot of dramas and films from there coming our way right now. But the fact is, you mustn’t […]




    Out of all the Nordics, Denmark and Sweden seem to get a lot of the attention. Whether it’s the ease in which people from around Europe, can get to them or the fact that we have a lot of dramas and films from there coming our way right now.

    But the fact is, you mustn’t discard the other Nordic countries, as you will be missing out. After coming across http://stuckiniceland.com/ I was very intrigued by this Nordic nation.

    Iceland is a unique Nordic place, which over recent years has really started to assert itself through its tourism and business.

    It holds some very special events such as; the Icelandnoir festival ,which celebrates its Nordic Noir authors. Countless music festivals in and around Reykjavik. The Reykjavik Winter Lights Festival and DesignMarch which showcases all areas of design, from architecture to fashion and furniture to product design.

    Because Iceland only holds around 325,000 inhabitants, it means they are indulged with vast space, stunning and every changing landscapes and a high quality of life to enjoy. Being outdoors and participating extreme sports is an Icelandic pastime which is enjoyed all year round.

    From beaches to volcanoes and from glaciers to forests, you can see just why people want to show it off, whilst keeping it a secret!

    Stuck in Iceland, is a humorous, informative and passionate blog about Iceland.

    Make Iceland one of your Nordic destinations this year. And if you do, these guys will gladly help you!

     

    Stuck in Iceland

    Visiting Iceland is an Life Altering Experience

    Jon Thorsteinsson and Sigurdur Fjalar Jonsson run the indie travel blog Stuck in Iceland which was launched in September 2012. Jon works as a marketing specialistat the Nordic IT company Advania and Sigurdur Fjalar is the marketing director at the Idan Educational Center. They run Stuck in Iceland as a side project but the site has been growing fast since it was launched and has accumulated just over 131 thousand users during that time.

    stuckiniceland

    Their site features a lot of great travel advice but also contains information the quirks of Icelandic culture and is sprinkled with fascinating details of Icelandic history. “We are amazed by the strong feeling of affection people feel for our country after they have visited it. Above all they are captivated by Icelandic nature and the extreme elements here. It is pretty clear to me that many of  these people find their visit to Iceland a life altering experience,” comments Jon.

    stuck-in-iceland

     

    He adds that originally Stuck in Iceland was originally based on their own travels around the country but now a lot of the content on site, both long form articles and videos, now comes from people abroad who have visited Iceland and have been captivated by their experience are very keen on communicating their experience to the world. “ We absolutely love this content, it is authentic as it is based on real life experiences of traveling in Iceland and as such it is really useful for those who are planning their Iceland trip,” comments Jon.

    iceland

    Photo credit Martin Schulz. Read his full article here http://stuckiniceland.com/east/me-myself-iceland-and-the-volcano/

    Photo of Jon Thorsteinsson, taken from http://stuckiniceland.com/extreme/scaling-the-majestic-icelandic-peaks-of-vatnajokull/

    -->

    Nordic in the Netherlands – Nordic Vibes

  • Sarah Surgey
  • Tagged , , Leave a comment
  • 10th May 2015
  • Janine from Nordic Vibes sitting in front of a cafe

    This blog is for you if you are a Nordophile searching for Nordic artists who showcase their art and other wares through design, food or maybe music and you find yourself intrigued by the most likened to being a Nordic country, The Netherlands. Nordic Vibes brings to you in Dutch and English some amazing artists who […]




    This blog is for you if you are a Nordophile searching for Nordic artists who showcase their art and other wares through design, food or maybe music and you find yourself intrigued by the most likened to being a Nordic country, The Netherlands.

    Nordic Vibes brings to you in Dutch and English some amazing artists who have one thing in common, they are Nordic.

    Janine Sterenborg has spent much of her time travelling to the Nordic regions to bring Nordophiles a glimpse into the countries that they love.

    If it’s Nordic and relevant to the Netherlands and beyond, then you will find it here. But with more of her site being translated into English there will be no Nordophile stone unturned!

    I spoke with Janine and asked her, to sum up, Nordic Vibes for us and here is her beautifully poetic answer describing her passion, which most certainly makes her a Nordophile.

    Janine from Nordic Vibes sitting in front of a cafe

    Nordic Vibes showcases Scandinavian arts and its culture. All Nordic arts share a similar vibe: the silence combined with the rough scene. The energy of cities like Stockholm, and the cuteness against the rawness of the sumptuous Iceland.

    The space, nature and silence of the Nordics capture the imagination of many. Eyes twinkle when thinking about the northern part of Europe, yet there was no place to find a compilation of the arts all of us love so much. It is time to gather, exchange experiences and discover new talents.

    Nordic Vibes has a strong focus on travel, music and more and more on Nordic Cuisine, with extra regard to artists, events and locations in The Netherlands.

    -->