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Tromso, Norway: The Beginner's Guide

Posted By Mark Price on 24/01/2014


Situated at Latitude 70 degrees North, Tromso in Norway is situated as far north as Alaska and Siberia. It hosts the northernmost university, brewery and cathedral in the world.

Tromso has been nicknamed the ‘Gateway to the North’, due to its use as a base camp for many expeditions to the Arctic and Antarctic. Another nickname, coined by European settlers who were surprised to find so much culture and heritage so far North, is the ‘Paris of the North'.

Despite its northern location, Tromso has surprisingly mild temperatures as it is in a sheltered area. The average temperature in the winter is -4 Degrees Celsius and temperatures in the summer can reach as high as 28 Degrees Celsius. Nevertheless there is still a lot of snow for the majority of the year!

In Tromso there are three natural phenomena that are a major attraction for many tourists.

The Arctic Circle is often called the Land of the Midnight Sun because of the few hours of darkness in summer. You can witness the spectacle of a bright, shining sun at midnight in Tromso from May 21st to July 21st.

During deepest winter in Tromso, between November 21st and January 21st, the sun disappears completely from the horizon. This is called the Polar Nights and there are very few daylight hours.

The most famous yet most elusive, natural phenomena you can see in Tromso, is the Northern Lights. Tromso is at the centre of the Northern Lights zone and, given the right timings and weather conditions, the chances of seeing them from Tromso are high.

Storms on the surface of the sun eject particles that are attracted by the Magnetic North Pole. The energy from these particles is released as coloured light. In the Arctic Circle the northern lights are often green but a particularly powerful episode can display a variety of colours.

Whether you want to see a natural wonder of the world, or just experience the culture and way of living so far North, Tromso has it all.

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