Home Destinations 7 Reasons Why You Should Take an Arctic Fjords Road Trip in Tromsø, Norway

7 Reasons Why You Should Take an Arctic Fjords Road Trip in Tromsø, Norway

by Michele
2 comments
Epic Arctic Fjords Road Trip Around Tromsø, Norway
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Cute red and yellow cabins, epic fjords, frozen lakes, and quaint villages. See Norway’s stunning landscape and wildlife on this incredible road trip from Tromsø.

This was my second time in Tromsø. The first time I came here, all I wanted to do was see the Northern Lights and go whale watching. I did three Northern Lights tours back-to-back, followed by whale watching trips the following mornings. Why back-to-back you ask? Well, when it comes to nature, you never know what conditions you’ll get on the day, so I allowed for any ‘off’ days. Days for when the weather was bad, days where there was no aurora activity, and days when the whales just weren’t around.

Fast forward three years later and I’m back again in Tromsø. I enjoyed the city and its snowy white landscape so much that I came back for round two!

This time, my priorities changed. This season, the whales didn’t come back. Humpbacks and orcas in previous years had visited neighbouring Kvaløya (literally, ‘Whale Island’) because the herring (which they feed on) drew them there. This time, the herring stayed further north in Skjervoy (2.5 hours away) which meant, I had the opportunity to seek out other ways to enjoy Tromsø.

I still went on three Northern Lights chases, (how could I not?!) but this time I mixed things up. I went on a reindeer and Sami culture experience, where I learned all about the indigenous people of Norway, Sweden, Finland, and Russia. I fed wild reindeer, learned about Sami language, listened to them talk about their culture, traditions, and semi-nomadic lifestyle all while sitting around a warm fire inside a traditional Sami hut. It. Was. Incredible.

Another first for me was going on a road trip to see the neighbouring islands, fjords, and the nothing short of epic Norwegian landscape.

Three years ago, I entrusted Chasing Lights to take me out to see the Northern Lights, this year was no different. Only this time, I tried out another one of their tours, the Arctic Fjords Road Trip.

If you’ve ever seen photos of Norway or visited it yourself, you know just how beautiful it is. The only catch is that it’s hard to know where to see all the best spots and getting there can be tough.

This tour takes care of everything, so you can sit back, relax, and know you’re in good hands.

Here are 7 reasons why you should seriously consider taking the same Arctic Fjords Road Trip I did.

1. Fun, Friendly, Expert Guides

It all starts with the guide. Like any tour you take, your enjoyment heavily depends on the tour guide. After taking a total of 7 tours with Chasing Lights, I think I’ve met at least half of their wonderful, knowledgeable, and professional guides. They are all super passionate about their work, and it shows.

Their guides share loads of interesting tidbits about the area’s history, insights into the Norwegian culture and language and fun facts throughout the entire trip. Plus, they also encourage any questions you have and want to throw their way.

For this Arctic Fjords Road Trip, I was with Jonas, a Swede, awesome photographer, and all-around legend. I had a good old chat with him about how he learned Norwegian (my goal for 2019) and how he enjoys hearing the Northern Norwegian accent.

Just like Jonas, every Chasing Lights’ guide is multi-talented. Not only are they wonderful guides, they also have an excellent eye for photography. But more on that later!

2. Cabins, Coastlines, and Epic Fjords

Arctic Fjord Tromsø Road Trip Norway - View from Kvaløya

View from Kvaløya

During the tour, we visited a variety of breathtaking locations, each uniquely beautiful.

To kick things off, we visited Kvaløya (Whale Island), the 5th biggest island in Norway and home to several hundred reindeer who freely roam the island.

Arctic Fjord Tromsø Road Trip Norway - Cabin on Kvaløya

Moody clouds over Tromsø

Form Whale Island to Hawk Island (Håkøya), we visited a historical site where the Nazi warship, Tirpitz was docked. The Tirpitz was sent to Norway to act as a “fleet in being,” a naval force so powerful that it can influence enemies without ever leaving port. In 1944, British Lancaster bombers bombed the ship killing 950 to 1,204 men.

Arctic Fjord Tromsø Road Trip Norway - Tirpitz dock

Visiting the historical Tirpitz site

After this interesting history lesson, we stopped by the only bridge connecting Håkøya to Kvaløya. Here, we admired the views and coastline dotted with cute cabins and colourful homes.

Arctic Fjord Tromsø Road Trip Norway - Boat at Håkøya

Arctic Fjord Tromsø Road Trip Norway - Bridge to Kvaløya from Håkøya

The only bridge to Håkøya

Arctic Fjord Tromsø Road Trip Norway - Red Cabin at Håkøya

Cute cabin at Håkøya

Arctic Fjord Tromsø Road Trip Norway - View of Håkøya

Looking over Håkøya (Hawk Island)

From here, the locations became even more awesome. We stopped by Grøtfjord (literally, ‘Porridge Fjord’), a quaint village by the water then to Ersfjord where we saw 10 O’Clock mountain. I’ll let Jonas, explain how it got its name.

Arctic Fjord Tromsø Road Trip Norway - Ersfjord and 10 O'Clock Mountain

Ersfjord and 10 O’Clock Mountain (left)

Arctic Fjord Tromsø Road Trip Norway - View of Grøtfjord

Overlooking Grøtfjord

3. Enjoy a Fireside Lunch

Arctic Fjord Tromsø Road Trip Norway - Fireside lunch

“Jonas, can you take a photo of me next to the fire?”

After seeing so many magical locations we had worked up an appetite. To end the tour, Jonas took us to a secluded spot where he set up a cosy campfire. Sitting on warm reindeer skins, we enjoyed a tasty homemade chickpea stew and hot chocolate. It was the perfect way to end the day.

4. Epic Photos

Arctic Fjord Tromsø Road Trip Norway - Ersfjord

Jonas working his photographic genius at Ersfjord

Remember how I said the guides were multi-talented? The photo above taken by Jonas took of me says it all.  Jonas is an awesome photographer and took loads of other stunning photographs of the others on the tour too.

This is another thing I love about Chasing Lights tours like this is that each guide doubles as your personal photographer. Want a couple shot by that fjord? Sure! Want an epic shot on top of a mountain of snow for Instagram? No problem! Just ask.

The guide photographs each location you visit and anyone who wants their photo taken so you can have a bunch of professional looking photos to keep forever.

After each tour, you receive a link to download all photos in high resolution so you can print, send, and share them to whoever you like. They’re yours to keep.

5. Walk on a Frozen Lake

Arctic Fjord Tromsø Road Trip Norway - Standing on Frozen Lake Litlevatnet

Standing on Litlevatnet, a frozen lake.

It’s not every day you get the chance to walk on a frozen lake. But during winter in Norway, that’s just one of the cool things you get to experience.

After passing the very descriptively named ‘Big Lake’(Storvatnet), we stopped by ‘Little Lake’ (Litlevatnet) where I nervously walked on its frozen surface. Apparently, when the ice is 10 cm (3.9 inches ) thick you can walk on it. When it’s 20 cm (7.8 inches), cars can drive on it and when it reaches 60 cm (23 inches) you can land a small commercial plane on it! In fact, frozen lakes are used as emergency landing spots if no other places are available.

Arctic Fjord Tromsø Road Trip Norway - Looking through a frozen lake

Looking through to the bottom of the frozen lake.

Since the lake is covered in about 30 cm of snow, it’s hard to believe you’re standing on a frozen lake. To prove we were, Jonas cleared away the snow to reveal the frozen ice below where you could see the bottom of the lake. Super cool!

6. Wildlife Spotting

This road trip gives you the unique opportunity to spot wildlife in their natural habitat. Oftentimes, you’ll see reindeer or moose crossing the road, spot eagles and seals hunting for fish or get a chance to watch whales from the shore. It doesn’t always happened, but when it does…wow!

7. Relax. Everything is Taken Care of

Arctic Fjord Tromsø Road Trip Norway - Under Håkøya BridgeFrom receiving local knowledge, visiting hard-to-get-to places, enjoying a homemade lunch, and having stunning photos to remember your time by, everything is taken care of.

If that wasn’t enough, if at any point you get cold, Chasing Lights also provide toasty warm winter boots and suits for you to put on whenever you feel that winter bite.


Heading to Norway? Get my free Norwegian travel phrase guide


Essential Info

What to wear

You’ll be outside a lot, so dress in warm clothes (at least two layers), wear gloves a beanie and good winter boots. I wore these Timberland boots but I found that these Sorel winter boots are a Norwegian favourite and are even warmer. If you’re still cold, Chasing Lights provide you with their own warm boots and suits. Just ask the guide when you’re ready to put them on.

Group size

Up to 14 guests, plus a driver and a guide.

Price per person

Adult (13+) 1 300 NOK / $150 USD
Child (0-12) 650 NOK / $75 USD

Location

Pick up at Chasing Lights’ shop and drop off at any hotels in the city center.

Time and duration

The tour starts at 09:00 and ends between 15:00 to 16:00.
The tour lasts between 5-6 hours (depending on the weather conditions). Either way, you’ll be back in time for your Northern Lights tour.

Includes

  • Winter suit and boots
  • Light lunch and hot drinks
  • Manfrotto tripod, if you need one for photography
  • Pictures of the landscape and you
  • Free WiFi on board

Book Your Experience

Want to have your own arctic fjord road trip experience? Check available times and book your experience with Chasing Lights.


Tusen takk (Many thanks) to Chasing Lights for providing me with a complimentary experience. They did not request a favourable review, and all opinions here are, as always, my own.


Planning a trip and need travel insurance? Get a free quote from World Nomads here.


Top Things to do in Tromsø in Winter – Watch the vlog!


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Epic Arctic Fjords Road Trip Around Tromsø, Norway


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Over to you!

Do you have a question about this Arctic Fjord Road Trip tour? Ask me below! 
Have you visited Tromsø?  What other things would you recommend doing?

Let me know using the comments section below or join me on social media to start a conversation.

Thanks for reading and I hope you enjoyed this post.

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2 comments

Turnsalot October 23, 2019 - 17:57

Hi Michelle: The links for this tour take you to the Viator page for it, and it says it is currently unavailable (and does not show up if you search on Viator for Tromso in February 2020). However, when I googled “Chasing Lights”, it did take me to a tour by this name. However, if I decide to take this tour, there does not seem to be a way to get you credit for it. Suggestions?

Reply
Michele November 9, 2019 - 13:14

Thank you for letting me know 🙂 The link is now working again 🙂

Reply

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