Tromso on a Budget

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  • 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.

     

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    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!

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    Guest Blog – Autumnal Tromso

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  • 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!

     

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    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.

     

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    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

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