Things to do in Tromsø + Stockholm Train via Narvik

Tromso is the main city of northern Norway and it’s also a university town.  Things to do in Tromso;

  • Fjellheisen Cable Car and Storsteinen mountain
  • Arctic Cathedral
  • Fjords and Glacier tours
  • Northern Lights Tours
  • Reindeer Spotting
  • Polaria Arctic Aquarium
  • Bus to Narvik – Train to Stockholm

You’ll find hotels are reasonably priced for northern Norway.

Fjellheisen Cable Car and Storsteinen Mountain

Things to do in Tromso - Fjellheisen Cable Car and Storsteinen Mountain

If the weather is pleasant enough and the sky is clear I would recommend a walk up the Storsteinen mountain which overlooks the city.  The mountain is quite steep, so you may prefer to take the Fjellheisen cable car.  You can see from the above picture, downtown Tromsø is on the other side of the river, so you need to take a bus, taxi or walk over the bridge and to the bottom of the cable car.  I decided to walk because I wanted to photograph the Arctic Cathedral on the mountain side of the bridge.  From the Arctic Cathedral, the cable car is well signposted, or easy to find by using maps and GPS.

Arctic Cathedral

Things to do in Tromso - Arctic Cathedral

The Arctic Cathedral is a 50 year old church and the main church of Tromso.  It’s unique design as well as inventive name make this a top photo location.  Did you know there’s a similar looking cathedral in Reykjavik, Iceland called the Hallgrimskirkja Cathedral.

Fjords and Glacier Tours

Things to do in Tromso - Fjords and Glacier Tours

I took a Fjord Adventure tour from Tromso.  As a result I was able to take some magical fjord photos.  In my opinion fjords photograph better from land than they do from a Fjord Cruise tour.  Nonetheless, fjords are always magical to photograph!

Northern Lights Tours

Northern Lights Tours

Tromso is one of the best places in the world to view the Northern Lights.  It’s located deep into the Arctic circle therefore the lights are often directly above you.  For this reason, the northern lights are much stronger here than in Iceland or Alaska.  You can take a 7 hour Northern Lights tour from Tromso which virtually guarantees a sighting.  Finally, the Northern Lights are a natural wonder of the world!

Polaria Arctic Aquarium

Things to do in Tromso - Polaria Arctic Aquarium

The Polaria Arctic aquarium features sealife from this part of the world.  For a guaranteed seal sighting, or you’re traveling with kids you must visit the Polaria.  Furthermore, it’s an Instagram worthy building.

Reindeer Spotting

Things to do in Tromso - Reindeer Spotting

It’s unlikely you’ll see a reindeer in central Tromso.  However, as you get out of the city and into the country your chances increase.  For a 100% chance of a reindeer encounter, I recommend the Reindeer Feeding Tour.


Bus from Tromsø to Narvik

Tromso to Narvik bus - 4 hours - 385 NOKTromsø to Narvik bus – 4 hours – 385 NOK

I took the Tromsø to Narvik bus at 0610, which arrived in Narvik at 1030, I got off at the shopping mall which is right next to the train station, here is the bus timetable.  The bus leaves Tromsø from behind the Tourist Information office.  My train left at 1303 so I had plenty of time to get some food in the shopping mall, the train times work well with the early bus.

Train from Narvik to Stockholm

Narvik to Stockholm direct trainNarvik to Stockholm direct train

For the train, the cheapest ticket to Stockholm, is just a seat, for an extra 200 SEK you can sleep on a bed, for some reason I decided to go with the seat.  The seat wasn’t so bad because the car was nearly empty but, I would have slept better on a flat surface.  The journey was long, with lots of long stops as it is a single train line and needs to move over for trains coming in the other direction.  The stop where most people got on and off was Kiruna, all the other stops were quiet, most passengers getting on and off in Kiruna were tourists.

You may recognize this train from the Land of the Midnight Sun travel documentary with Alexander Armstrong.  He took it from Narvik to Kiruna where he stayed in an ice hotel.

Stockholm to Copenhagen

2019-01-03T21:12:08+00:00August 24th, 2016|Northern Europe, Norway|14 Comments

14 Comments

  1. Iza March 7, 2017 at 1:37 pm - Reply

    I have seen some hostels in Nordic countries online. They look like hotels here in Southeast Asia. They are decent and designed beautifully too. When would be the best time to join a ‘lights tour’?

  2. Jean March 8, 2017 at 12:33 am - Reply

    Oh I keep on reading how expensive Norway is. It does concern me but then again when isn’t travelling in the Nordic region expensive? The Fjords photography tour sounds like it was a lot of fun.

    Next time you take an overnight train will you pay the extra for a bed?

  3. Grace March 8, 2017 at 1:43 am - Reply

    I have made a few attempts to go to Norway as I just love the nature it has on offer. But every time we decided against it after calculating the cost of the trip. Now with he GBP doing so poorly it is even less likely we go there (sad face) but is still great to read about the place and enjoy the beautiful photos. Thanks for sharing

  4. Rosie Benton March 8, 2017 at 5:55 am - Reply

    Heard so many great things about Norway – it looks so picturesque too, those views from the cable car are incredible! It’s a shame it’s so expensive to visit, but probably worth the money to see the Fjords. Hope we make it someday – thanks for sharing your information.

  5. Allison March 8, 2017 at 7:04 am - Reply

    I need to go to Norway! The view from the cable car is sensational. Good to know it’s expensive but I would probably still avoid a hostel and pick a decent hotel if I could. The northern lights tour is calling me!

  6. Mel March 8, 2017 at 8:01 am - Reply

    We will be in Norway this summer and I am so excited. I hope we get to Tromso. I’d love to hike up Storsteinen. We will probably be coming from Sweden so maybe we will do the reverse route of your trip.

  7. Suma March 8, 2017 at 9:04 am - Reply

    I have been dreaming of visiting the Norwegian Fjords since so long! Hope I will be able to plan a trip this summer. Sad you couldnt witness the Northern Lights during your visit.
    Loved the view of Tromso from the cable car, it looks fantastic!

  8. Clare March 8, 2017 at 9:52 am - Reply

    I go to Norway this summer!! It looks so beautiful and so much to do. Have pinned the post for later for when I start sorting myself out. Making me get excited for this trip now.

  9. Joanna March 8, 2017 at 11:04 am - Reply

    The Northern I’ve been in Norway was to Lofoten Islands. And from there, I did my way down to Stockholm. It was a bit of a different route than yours and with more trains to change, but the experience was pretty much the same: very long journeys with not so comfortable seats. But the scenery was worth every penny.

  10. Agness May 16, 2017 at 6:13 pm - Reply

    The fjords are simply stunning as well as Stockholm! Your post was very motivational, James!

  11. Sierra Dehmler July 5, 2017 at 3:25 pm - Reply

    I’ve always wanted to go explore Norway, and this only makes me want to go more! My only foray into Norway was the Oslo Airport, which hardly counts. Ha! Beautiful post.

  12. Abigail Sinsona August 15, 2017 at 7:05 am - Reply

    Wow the fjords look beautiful James. I like the sound of a fjord tour at day and Northern Light tours at night. That sounds like the ultimate bucket list item in Scandinavia!

  13. Lisa August 29, 2017 at 7:53 am - Reply

    I’ve yet to have seen Norway, but I’d love to see those fjords one day. Tromso looks very pretty and really Scandinavian! I’ve not heard of Narvuk or Kiruna, but this ice hotel has really peaked my interest!

  14. Soraya September 5, 2017 at 1:27 pm - Reply

    Getting up to the Storsteinen mountain sounds amazing! But I may end up opting to take the cable car up – I do love riding on cable cars. And the view at the top must look amazing. The Fjords photography tour sounds amazing, I would love to try this…especially during the Northern Lights time. That is on my bucket list for sure!

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