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Tromso - city of Polar expeditions

sunny 8 °C
View Around the Baltic Sea on maxari's travel map.

Norway is a magical place!
Boats and glaciers. Waiting for the ferry.
Tromso bridge in the distance.

After a long drive along the scenic coast from Alta crossing several Fjords (by ferries and bridges) we finally arrived in Tromso on the Monday evening. We checked into a rapidly filling City Camping and got ready for the night. The forecast did not look good. This was just another day rain was forecast with falling temperatures. We got woken by sunshine (!) the next morning (and Rory, who has a habit of climbing into our bed when she thinks it is time to get up). Our plans were quickly scrapped over breakfast and new ones made. We would drive over to the cable car parking lot first, ride up to the viewpoint and have reindeer burgers for lunch. Then we would walk across the Tromso bridge and visit the town proper and the Polar Museum whenever the rain would arrive. The Arctic Cathedral we would visit on the way back to the parking lot. So much for Plan B and the rainy forecast.

Can you spot Bruce?
Something wrong with your eyes?

We are having so, so much luck with the weather on this trip. It is almost like we know someone in the weather service who owes us some favours. We could have sat up on that hill for hours just watching the landscape and the boats moving by slowly under the bridge. A cold wind was blowing, though. We headed into the station and got second breakfast with a hot drink to warm up again.


Back in the parking lot we started walking towards the bridge across the fjord and got our first view of the cathedral. The weather was still good and we got to take some pictures of the oldest house in Tromso (1789).

The Polar Museum was right next door. Whaling harpoons outside.
The museum is very well done, although it would be nice to have more English descriptions. Some information was only available in Norwegian. There are two main topics in the museum, reflecting the history of Tromso: the exploration and the exploitation of the Arctic. On the one hand almost all of the great Arctic and Antarctic expeditions started in Tromso. On the other hand all of the whaling and sealing boats and the Polar bear hunters set sail here to the northern islands (Svalbard/Spitsbergen, Russian islands, etc). It was common for some hunters to stay the winter on an island and return after 6 months of bitter cold and darkness. The expeditions were really well described with two national heroes, Fridtjof Nansen and Roald Amundsen, being examples par excellence. We got sucked into the museum and emerged hungry at 13.45, way past lunch time. Strolling through town we found a nice little Bistro. One of our goals was to try a reindeer burger. Unfortunately, they didn't have any, they were out of Elk burger, too. The reindeer sandwich and fish of the day were really good and made up for it.


We crossed back over the bridge to visit the Arctic Cathedral.

After that we drove along the coast for a bit and decided to stop early to relax a bit. Camping Solberg in Brostadbotn.

Next destination: Lofoten Archipelago.

Posted by maxari 06:02 Archived in Norway

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