Tromsø and the Northern Lights

Tromsø and the Northern Lights

3 Nights Tromsø

A wonderful short break to the Arctic’s most famous city in search of those ethereal and elusive Northern Lights.

Tromsø is the largest city in the Scandinavian Arctic. For many years it has been a popular and logical place to start Polar expeditions due to its accessibility by the coastline, however, it was our very own ‘explorer’ Joanna Lumley who really propelled Tromsø into the spotlight during her search for the Northern Lights.

Tromsø is a rather sophisticated little city with a beautiful modern Arctic Cathedral, quality shops, an excellent selection of good quality restaurants, cafes and bars and a stunning location overlooked by the Lyngen Alps and the Arctic Ocean. 

A wonderful short break to the Arctic’s most famous city in search of those ethereal and elusive Northern Lights.

Prices from: £995

To book, call us on:

01274 875 199

or Tailor your Holiday with a Booking Enquiry

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Day 1: Arrive Tromsø, Capital of the Arctic

Tromsø and the Northern Lights by Scandinavia Only

Fly from the UK to Tromsø via Oslo. Transfer by airport bus (included) or taxi (not included) to your hotel. The remainder of the afternoon is free for you to explore Tromsø. How about a Northern Lights Dinner Cruise? See Excursions tab for details.

3 nights TROMSØ - See Accommodation tab for details of hotel options

Day 2: Tromsø city and an Aurora Safari

Tromsø and the Northern Lights with Scandinavia Only, Day 2

A full day to explore Tromsø. Luckily much of the city’s old wooden architecture is preserved and contrasts well with the modern Arctic Cathedral, and you will find a busy centre of shops, restaurants, cafes and bars. Well worth a visit is Polaria, an Arctic themed experience centre with the fascinating Ivo Caprino film ‘Svalbard - Arctic Wilderness’ and the Polar Museum which provides an insight into how polar explorers of yesterday and today really were/are amongst the most daring and adventurous men and women on the planet! Alternatively, why not join one of our optional outdoor activities? Explore your magnificent surroundings by dog sled or snowmobile (Jan-Mar) or learn more about the Sámi culture with a reindeer sledding safari and Sami family visit (Nov-Jan).

At 1915 you will be picked up from Tromsø centre for your Northern Lights activity.  With a broad knowledge of the local area your guides do their utmost to find the best spots for viewing the Northern Lights and for taking photos in a scenic setting. They will search for clear skies, and this may mean driving all the way to Finland, so take your passport!  Along the way your guide will provide information about Aurora Borealis, plus local folklore and myths which have been associated with this phenomenon for centuries.

Your guide will also provide guidance on how to adjust your camera settings to take the best photos, and will also take their own photos of you (if you wish!) with the Northern Lights in the background so that you may have a copy to keep as a memory of your time in Arctic Norway (these are available for download in original size from their Flickr account).

You may also visit their lavvu (modern Sami shelter) and sit around the bonfire, roasting marshmallows (if within reasonable driving distance from their base camp).  Return to your hotel around half-past Midnight.

Day 3: Explore Tromsø, try an activity

Northern Lights from Tromsø, Day 3

Another free day to try one of our optional outdoor activities. Why not try another optional activity, if you've already tried dog-sledding how about trying the complete opposite, a snowmobile, or vice versa. Would you like to learn more about the Sami history and culture? Why not try a spot of reindeer sledding with a real Sami family. Still want to see those magical Northern Lights? Why not take another evening tour, we have several options to choose from. Or would you just prefer to relax with good food with a nice glass of wine? Tromsø has an excellent variety of restaurants to choose from including Emma's Drømmekjøkken

Day 4 - Farewell Tromsø

Transfer from your hotel by airport bus or taxi to Tromsø Langsnes Airport for your return flight to the UK.

Days: Daily from Heathrow Airport (alternative departure airports are available on request, please just ask for details).
Departure Dates: 1 December 2019 - 31 March 2020
Duration: 3 nights (additional nights possible)

Prices from: prices are based on two people travelling together and sharing a double/twin room. Single supplement as detailed.


Dep. Dates Price from
per person
Single supp.
per night

1 - 31 Dec 2019

£995 £47
1 Jan - 31 Mar 2020 £1025 £62
Additional nights
1 - 31 Dec 2019 £88 £47
1 Jan - 31 Mar 2020 £112 £62


SCANDIC ISHAVSHOTELL **** superior, sea-view room
Dep. Dates Price from
per person
Single supp.
per night
1 Dec 2019 - 31 Mar 2020 £1125 £80
Additional nights
1 Dec 2019 - 31 Mar 2020 £127 £80

Prices include:

  • Scheduled return flights with SAS in SAS Go class from London Heathrow Airport to Tromsø (via Oslo) including taxes plus 23kgs of checked luggage and one piece of hand-luggage per person. Alternative departure airports available, please ask for schedules and prices.
  • Return airport bus transfers.
  • 3 nights hotel accommodation as detailed based on either a standard double/twin room at the 3 star plus Clarion Collection Hotel Aurora with shower and WC including buffet breakfast and free light evening meal or a superior sea-view double/twin room at the 4 star Scandic Ishavshotell including buffet breakfast.
  • Guided Northern Lights excursion on Day 2 including pick-up and drop-off from the centre of Tromsø, assistance with camera settings, photo of yourself with the Northern Lights (available to download from Flickr account), coffee/tea, cake and thermal overalls (maximum 16 passengers).


PRIVATE TAXI TRANSFERS:  An upgrade to pre-booked private taxi transfers is possible from £40 per car for 1-3 passengers, for a one-way journey (small bags/suitcases only), £85 per car for 4+ passengers one-way with 4 suitcases. Price includes a Meet & Greet Service and SMS notification of the arrival of your taxi (we will need your mobile phone number for this service).

DEPOSIT:  The deposit payment for this holiday is £200 per person

TO BOOK:  To book this holiday either telephone us on 01274 875199 (this is our preferred option as it gives us the opportunity to chat with you!) or email your booking request to 



It is important to read the Terms and Conditions which apply when making a confirmed booking with us.  By asking us to confirm your booking, we are entitled to assume that you have read and understood our terms and conditions, and agree to them.

It is your responsibility to check and fulfil the passport, visa, health and immigration requirements applicable to your itinerary. We can only provide general information about this. You must check requirements for your own specific circumstances with the relevant Embassies and/or Consulates and your own doctor as applicable. For further information contact the Passport Office on 0300 222 0000 or visit  Up to date travel advice can be obtained from the Foreign and Commonwealth Office, visit

Non British passport holders, including other EU nationals, should obtain up to date advice on passport and visa requirements from the Embassy, High Commission or Consulate of your destination or country(ies) through which you are travelling.


Scandic Ishavshotel, Tromso, Norway

This hotel is something of a landmark, located directly in the harbour, with a view across the sound.  This is the very heart of Tromsø and is situated amongst the city's shops, restaurants, bars and within close proximity to the airport bus stop and the Tourist Information Office.  The hotel has a lovely modern restaurant, Roast Restaurant, serving delicacies from the sea and local meat.  There is also cosy bar and lounge area on the first floor.  All rooms are equipped with high quality beds, TV, telephone, mini-bar, trouser-press and hairdryer and all our clients receive a superior sea-view room as standard. All rooms have free WiFi.  Lift to all floors.  A truly fabulous buffet breakfast is served with a made-to-order omelette station, cold cuts of meat to raw fish, a cooked breakfast and fruit and muesli.


Clarion Collection Hotel Aurora, Tromso
At Clarion Collection Hotel Aurora you can experience Tromsø's beautiful surroundings. The hotel boasts stunning views, overlooking the Arctic Cathedral and Tromsø's mighty nature. All rooms are modern, spacious and equipped with en suite shower and WC, TV, WiFi, writing desk, and breakfast. The hotel include a free evening meal for all their guests which is served from 1800.


Description:  What can we say - delicious, delightful, scrumptious, divine……..all of them at the same time! Emma's is truly a treat. You will begin your gourmet delight with an aperitif…to set the tone…this is then followed by a 5-course gourmet dinner based on local produce – perhaps King Crab, perhaps reindeer, perhaps both, but don't worry they are also very well equipped for serving vegetarians and those with special diets too. Each course is presented by your waiter/waitress so you know where it is from and how it has been cooked, but don't ask for the menu in advance, these products are fresh and the chef will base the menu on what looks good on the day. Perfect for a special occasion or just to celebrate the first night of your holiday. 
Price: £90 per person (5-course dinner), wine menu to accompany the dinner £75 per person. 

Want to know more about your hosts?  Meet the People – Emma's Drømmekjøkken


We recognise that not everyone has the sort of warm, winter, outer layers which are necessary for Arctic conditions, therefore we are happy to be able to offer rental of Arctic winter outer clothing.  This includes: down jacket, thermal trousers, double insulated boots, mittens and a cap with ear flaps.  Please note that you still need to bring your own warm inner layer of clothing and underwear - for that we recommend something woollen or fleece.  Clothing is delivered to your hotel and is waiting for you upon arrival.

Price for 4 days:  £70 per adult, £45 per child up to 15 years
Price for 5 days:  £80 per person, £50 per child  "  "  "
Price for 6 days:  £85 per person, £55 per child  "  "  "
Price for 7 days:  £95 per person, £65 per child  "  "  "


Description:  Make friends with top trained dogs and enjoy the Arctic coastal nature with a fantastic view over Tromsø, surrounded by white covered mountains and long fjords. Each participant will sit on the sled with an experienced guide mushing the dog team (maximum two passengers per sled). There’s a good chance of spotting some wildlife on the way through the snow covered landscape. After about 45-60 minutes of dog sledding (depending on weather conditions) you'll return to the ranch where you will meet some gorgeous puppies, before being served a Sami meal (Bidos) with coffee and cake for dessert inside a warm sami tent (lavvo). Vegetarian option is also available.  Please note: evening activity includes Bacalao meal made with stockfish and tomatoes. Evening excursion includes the opportunity to view the Northern Lights (weather permitting).
Operates:  1 December - mid-April
Duration: 4 hours (45-60 minutes of dog sledding, depending on weather conditions). This includes the transfers of 25 minutes in each direction to and from Tromsø. 
Departures:  Daytime 0745, 0845, 0945 and 1015 or Evening 1815.
Price: £195 per adult, £100 (child 4-12).
Includes:  Transfer to and from Tromsø, guided dog-sledding activity with 2 passengers per sled (guide mushing the dog team), thermal overalls, boots, hat and gloves, and lunch of Bidos with coffee/tea and cake.

NB!  Please click here for important further information regarding dog sledding.


Description:  If you want the ultimate Northern Lights experience this is something for you. Stay outside as long as you like to look out for the Northern Lights before you go to sleep in a big common Sami tent and spend the night as the Sami people have done for generations. Sleep on reindeer skins in sleeping bags. If the Northern Lights appear you hit jackpot, but if not you can enjoy the Arctic atmosphere in our Aurora Camp and spend some time playing with the huskies.

A private Sami tent is available for those who prefer but are limited in number (max 4 people). During the evening we serve a dinner (Bacalao, vegetarian meal available on request) with coffee and cake.

After breakfast the next day you will join the Dog Sledding Ride excursion before returning to the city. Choose to sit in the sled or drive your own team of huskies (must be pre-booked). Back at the centre we serve lunch (Bidos) which is a reindeer stew with vegetables followed by coffee.
Operates:  1 December - 31 March
Duration:  1815 (Day1) - 1400 (Day 2), approximately 20 hours
Price:  £295 per adult, £150 (child 4-12)
Includes:  Transfers, guiding, dinner, breakfast, lunch, dog sledding, sleeping bags, sleeping pads.
Good to know:  If you want to mush your own team of dogs you MUST let us know at the time of booking. With this option you can have one person sitting on the sled and one mushing, with the opportunity to swap around. You will need to wear your own thermal underwear and base layers during the night in the tent.

NB!  Please click here for important further information regarding dog sledding.


Description:  You will have your own sled to drive along with a friend, then switch in the middle of the track. With about four kilometres (45-60 minutes, depending on weather conditions) of dogsledding you also get to meet 300 four legged friends up close and spend some time with the puppies. Two guests share a sled with 5-7 dogs. Professional guides will lead the group in a separate sled. After a ride out in the Norwegian winter a meal of Bidos is prepared with reindeer meat, broth and vegetables - a hearty way to end your trip! Vegetarian meal is available upon request. Good physical condition is required. Minimum age of 16 years.
Operates:  1 December - mid April
Duration:  4 hours (45-60 minutes of dog sledding, depending on weather conditions). This includes the transfers of 25 minutes in each direction to and from Tromsø.
Departures:  0745, 0845, 0945 and 1015
Price:  £195 per person
Price includes:  Transfer to and from Tromsø, guided dog-sledding activity with 2 per sled, thermal overalls, boots, hat and gloves, and lunch of Bidos with coffee/tea.

Click here for further important information regarding dog-sledding.


Description:  This is a lovely trip which departs directly from the harbour in Tromsø on board an authentic fishing catamaran. The catamaran is certified to carry 12 passengers and a crew of four which makes for a nice cosy atmosphere on board. As you pull out of the harbour you have a lovely view of Tromsø by night with the majestic Arctic Cathedral, then gradually the city lights fade and you are shrouded in darkness out at sea. It has to be said that most of the staff at Scandinavia Only have taken this trip and two of them, both terrible sailors, had NO PROBLEM at all which came as a surprise. The trip is in sheltered waters which makes it very comfortable and there is a cosy warm heated lounge where you can relax in between trips to the viewing deck to look for the lights. A delicious homemade fish dinner is served though vegetarian and other special diets are catered for if we know in advance.
Operates:  1 October - 31 March
Duration: 2030 - 2330
Price: £150 per person
Price includes:  Boat cruise, guiding, traditional Norwegian fish dinner (boiled cod with potatoes, bacon, onions, vegetables, flatbread and butter. For dessert chocolate/biscuits/fruit and hot drinks), hiring of poncho and tripod.

Want to know more about your hosts? Meet the People - Sørøya Havcruise


Description:  Try reindeer sledding, the oldest means of transportation in the north, on the island of Kvaløya. This beautiful location has little artificial light and therefore is an excellent place to spend the evening and night looking for the Northern Lights. Your unique overnight stay is in a traditional Sami lavvu (tent or teepee), sleeping on reindeer skins in winter-insulated sleeping bags. During the evening you will be served a traditional Sami meal of Bidos (reindeer stew) and in the morning you will have breakfast before returning to Tromsø.
Operates:  1 November - 10 April
Duration:  Departs 1800 (Day 1) returns 0930 (Day 2), approximately 15.5 hours
Price:  £285 per adult, £145 per child (under 12)
Price includes:  Transfers (30 mins one-way), guide, reindeer sledding (approx. 25 mins), hot meal, hot drink, thermal, sleeping-bag and breakfast

Want to know more about your hosts? Meet the People - Tromsø Lapland


Description:  Join a real Sami guide for an unforgettable experience with reindeer sledding (3 km) and Sami culture in Tromsø. Your guides are from Sami reindeer herding families and are eager to share their stories with you; how the Sami lived in times gone past, how they live today. Just remember NOT to ask them how many reindeer they have! During your visit you will experience: reindeer sledding, lasso throwing, sightseeing at the camp, traditional Sami food, storytelling, display of cultural artifacts and joik (traditional Sami song). The trip departs at 1000 and returns at 1400. Warm clothes, guide, hot meal, hot drink and return transfer (30 mins one way) are included. 
Operates:  Daily, 1 Nov to 31 Mar
Duration:  4 hours, departs 1000 
Price: £170 per adult, £155 per child (13-17), £85 per child (4-12)
Price includes:  transfers (45 mins one way), guide, warm clothes, traditional Sami meal of Bidos (reindeer stew), storytelling and Joik (Sami chant), and hot drink
Group Size:  4 - 48

Want to know more about your hosts? Meet the People - Tromsø Lapland


Description:  We pick you up in Tromsø by bus and drive to our local community Kvaløyvågen. During the drive you can sit back, relax and enjoy the beautiful coastal scenery while our expert guide informs you about the adventure that awaits and what to look for once you are on the boat.

This is a great opportunity to see our local village which has survived on fishing and farming for several generations, and also to hear about the coastal culture. Our small community with 270 inhabitants has a local fish factory that is 100 years old, and the fish racks and the small fishing boats will give you an insight into how people have lived their lives here. Midway through our tour we will go ashore on the small island; Gåsvær, a small island with a white traditional church that was founded and built by the local community. We have been allowed access inside, and you will be able to see for yourself what a traditional church of these parts looks like. We will also enjoy a warm cup of coffee/tea on the church steps while telling you about the culture and history of the island and surrounding area.

This tour is recommended for nature photographers, bird watchers and people that love to see the rural coastal landscape and we want you to keep your eyes open for all the wildlife that can be found in the area; such as white-tailed eagles, golden eagles, king eider, shags, guillemots and little auks. We also have a big population of seals in our area and from time to time we see them pop their heads out from the water to look at us.

You will be provided with an extra layer of clothing and survival suits before the tour.  Small group activity - maximum 12 people per RIB boat, total of 30 people per tour. Not suitable for children under 12 years of age.
Operates:  1 November - 31 March, Tuesday, Thursday, Saturday
Duration:  Approximately 5 hours including transfers
Departures:  0900
Price:  £120 per person
Price includes:  Transfers, guided bus tour and RIB boat safari, thermal outer clothing, coffee/tea and biscuits.

Click here for further important information about RIB boat safaris.


Description:  Mini-bus transfer to Camp Tamok for thorough safety introduction and driving techniques. Your snowmobile safari adventure travels through the valley of Finn to the lake of Tamok, a distance of 15 km one-way (30 km in total). At the lake you can try out ice fishing. You will drive in pairs, one driver and one passenger on each snowmobile, with the opportunity to switch places half-way. Due to the dramatic topography reduced speed is held during parts of the tour however on flat land and frozen lakes you can speed up! A hot meal is served during the trip.
Operates:  1 December - 31 March  NB! Risk of cancellation of excursions in December due to insufficient snow.
Duration:  7 hrs (4.5 hrs plus transfer). Departs: 0900 or 1700
Price:  £190 per person (2 per snowmobile), supplement for solo snowmobile £75 per person
Price includes:  
Price includes: transfers (75 minutes each way), a light meal of reindeer stew with vegetables, flatbread and a hot drink, thermal clothing, helmet and head lamp (evening trip), guide. NB! Driving licence required.
Good to know:  
It is important that you read the following information regarding snowmobile safaris to ensure it is the right activity for you.


Description:  The wilderness centre of Camp Tamok is located a 75-minute drive inland from the city of Tromsø. The camp is therefore located in a different climate zone. Here, you find stable dry weather with many days of clear sky. Due to the stable climate of this location the persistent Aurora watcher will have excellent chances of spotting the frail rays of this beauty. Also, in this uninhabited area, no artificial light will disturb your experience or your attempt to capture the Aurora Borealis with your camera. The guide will focus specifically on sharing tips and techniques on how to photograph the Aurora. 

The excursion includes a 2 kms hike through the valley at night-time. If the sky is cloudy or there is no sign of the Northern Lights, the Aurora guide will take you on a minibus to chase the lights on a betters spot. Whether or not you see this amazing spectacle, a trip to Camp Tamok is an adventure in itself. The dark and quiet surroundings hold a genuine Arctic atmosphere. Camp Tamok has its own bar, Bivrost Bar, which has an amazing view of the frozen river and is a great place to relax with a local aquavit, whiskey, gin, vodka...or perhaps just a glass of wine or beer!

Your unique overnight stay is in a Sami tent which has a large stove fire in the centre. You will sleep in winter sleeping bags on top of several reindeer skins. Please note that you will be sharing the lavvu with other visitors, but you will have your own sleeping berth (sleeping privacy). The temperature may drop below zero but your sleeping bag will keep you warm! The lavvu has a capacity of 12 guests all together.

In the morning you have breakfast and a hot shower before your snowmobile safari. Your snowmobile safari adventure travels through the valley of Finn to the lake of Tamok, a distance of 30 kms one-way. At the lake you can try out ice fishing. You will drive in pairs, one driver and one passenger on each snowmobile, with the opportunity to switch places half-way. Due to the dramatic topography reduced speed is held during parts of the tour however on flat land and frozen lakes you can speed up! A hot meal is served at the end of your trip in the Sami tent before your transfer back to Tromsø.
Operates:  1 December - 31 March
Duration:  Departs from Tromsø at 1700 (Day 1) and returns at 1600 (Day 2)
Price:  £450 per adult, £225 per child (4-15). Not suitable for children under 4 years of age.
Price includes:  Transfers, guided Northern Lights hunt by snowshoe and possibly mini-bus, evening meal*, thermal clothing including headlamp, overnight stay in a Sami tent including winter sleeping bag and breakfast and shower in the morning, guided snowmobile safari based on 2 people sharing a snowmobile with the opportunity to swap around (supplement for solo snowmobile £80 per person) and lunch*.
Good to know:   It is important that you read the following information regarding snowmobile safaris to ensure it is the right activity for you. *Please note that meals in the camp are simple and tend to be either reindeer or fish stew - it is important to note that you may receive the same meal during the evening as you do the following day at lunch. Vegetarians options are available as long as we are informed in advance.

Who is this holiday suitable for?
Everyone really. The Wilderness Camp is one of the most comfortable Northern Lights excursions you can take, in that there is a warm area where you can sit with something to drink and, not to put too finer point on it, you have access to toilet facilities. Those people who generally enjoy city breaks for the cultural aspect will not be disappointed with Tromsø and those who want a short and sweet activity holiday will be happy also.

Can we pre-book private airport transfers?
Yes, we are able to organise private taxi transfers in Tromsø. Please see the Departure Dates and Prices tab for more details and prices.

Do I need special clothing?
If you are joining a dog-sledding or snowmobiling activity then you will be provided with special thermal overalls to wear during your activity. However, for the remainder of your stay you will need your own warm, winter clothing. Bear in mind that the Arctic coast of Norway is warmed by the Gulf Stream therefore temperatures do not drop here they way they can further inland. You will be fine with the same sort of clothing you would wear in the UK during a cold spell i.e. follow the layering principal - base layer (thermals), mid layer (fleece or jumper), outer layer (warm, waterproof coat). Gloves, scarf and hat are definitely recommended along with warm socks - in our opinion NOTHING is better than wool for your feet. Snow boots or good hiking boots and you are raring to go!  Please bear in mind that Norwegians are used to the ground being icy and therefore slippy.  We strongly recommend you invest in a pair of grippers for your boots, something like Yaktrax or similar.

NB!  If you really do not have decent cold weather clothing and do not want to invest in it for this one holiday, we can arrange  full winter thermal clothing for you locally, with delivery of all items to your hotel ready for your stay.  Please note, clothing is rented and not purchased, therefore it will need to be left in your hotel on departure.  See the Excursions tab for more information and prices.

Are special diets catered for?
Absolutely, as long as you let us know in advance so that we can ensure our suppliers provide you with delicious alternatives.

For the latest travel advice from the Foreign & Commonwealth Office including security and local laws, plus passport and visa information, click here

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