10 Terrific Day Trips from Tromso (Within 3 Hours!)

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Are you looking to embark on the best day trips from Tromso, Norway? I’ve got you covered – keep reading!

Planning your trip to/from Tromso last minute?

Below are some of the top tours, hotels, and more! Donʻt forget to plan ahead when visiting Tromso and nearby!

🇳🇴 Top Activities and Tours in Tromso:

  1. Best Northern lights tour from Tromso (#1 selling Tromso tour!)
  2. Tromso Ice Domes (another top-seller!)
  3. Whale Watching tour with orcas and humpbacks (must-do in winter!)
  4. Sami and reindeer experience w/ the Northern Lights (great for kids)
  5. Dog sledding through Arctic Norway 

🛌 Top Hotels in Tromso:

  1. Thon Hotel Tromso (I stayed here and recommend it!)
  2. Smarthotel Tromso (I also stayed here – recommend it for budget travelers!)
  3. Radisson Blu (many tours leave from here!)

🚗 Visiting Tromso independently? Be sure to book your Norway rental car ahead of time to ensure availability!

This guide details some of the most incredible Tromso day trips!

Booking a trip for February–March 2024? There is currently limited availability on several tours, including dog-sledding and Sami/reindeer tours (trust me, I am currently here!). Some tours are sold out for the rest of the season. I highly advise you to book your plane ticket, accommodation, and tours at the SAME time to ensure availability.

Booking for the 2024-2025 season? BOOK ASAP. An increased Airbnb presence has created an imbalance between accommodation and tours, leaving travelers with a place to stay but no excursions available. Send me a message if you would like to chat further.

From whale watching north of the city to enjoying a day in the Lyngen Alps, these are some of the top places to visit near Tromso throughout various times of the year.

Best day trips from Tromso (Blåvatnet)
Best day trips from Tromso (Blåvatnet)

Did I miss any of the best day trips from Tromso? Let me know in the comments!

Best Day Trips from Tromso

1. Kvaløya

Distance from Tromso: 28 km (17 miles), 33 min drive

The tall mountains and dramatic peaks of the island of Kvaløya make it one of the most enchanting in the country.

As the 5th largest island in Norway with over 10,000 people, many untouched and preserved landscapes provide an abundance of outdoor activities and opportunities to soak in stunning nature.

Church on Kvaløya
Church on Kvaløya

It isn’t too far from the Tromso airport. It’s right over the bridge, and it is also a great destination if you’re looking to not be far from the city.

In the Northern Sami language, Kvaløya is known as Sállir, meaning “Whale Island,” and is an excellent location for whale watching.

The best times to catch Humpback Whales are during Polar Night and from November to January.

Kvaløya is a mountainous island of impressive mountains reaching heights of over 1,000 meters (3,280 feet), including the Store Blåmann, the highest on the island.

Kvaløya in winter
Kvaløya in winter

There are numerous small fjords to explore as well, which essentially divide the island into a few parts, such as the Ersfjorden, Kattfjorden, and Kaldfjorden.

The Erdsfjordbotn is perhaps the most notable fjord and can be accessed via the small port or the peninsula for amazing views.

2. Sommarøy

Distance from Tromso: 58 km (36 miles), 1h 5m drive

Also in the western part of Tromso is Sommarøy, known for its beaches and fishing villages.

Sommarøy only has 300 inhabitants, but is also one of the busiest producing, processing, and packing herring for global export and supporting the national economy.

The views from Sommarøy Island are quite impressive, with excellent views of all the county’s small islands!

Sommarøy in winter
Sommarøy in winter

You’ll find many shallow coves and beaches on the island, and the scenery makes it a great spot for a walk or a picnic.

Tourism is another economic life force for the island and its villages. In the summer, Sommarøy is visited by many tourists to enjoy the lack of nightfall.

From May 18th to July 26th, the sun does not set and nights look as vibrant as the days.

And due to Sommarøy’s location north of the Arctic Circle, the sun does not rise during the winter – not one day of sunshine or even a sun ray can be seen.

Village in Sommarøy in Summer
Village in Sommarøy in Summer

At Hillesøya, a small hill at the end of the island’s peninsula, are exceptional sights of the Northern Lights reflecting on the ocean.

The small, mossy islands scattered throughout the island are also linked with bridges to the main island of Sommarøy and give you better viewing opportunities.

3. Senja

Distance from Tromso: 178 km (110 miles), 2h 39m drive

Senja is the second-largest island in Norway and is particularly loved by nature enthusiasts due to its diverse landscape.

Facing the Atlantic on the western side of the island, you’ll find a more mountainous, and wild terrain, whereas, on the eastern side, you’ll find pleasant and lush inland.

The island has numerous fjords, straits, and seas to explore in addition to the Atlantic Ocean.

Senja in winter
Senja in winter

To the northeast is Malangen Fjord, to the northwest is the Norwegian Sea, and to the south, you’ll find Vågsfjorden, Solbergfjorden, and the Ånderdalen National Park.

Additionally, to the east is the Gisundet Strait, and to the west is Andfjorden.

The turquoise waters of Senja are rich in aquatic wildlife, and the fishing villages of the island have excellent traditional fish dishes to try out during a long day of exploring the outdoors.

Enjoy the scenery by biking uphill and coasting downhill along the water.

Senja in summer
Senja in summer

Go for a hike on Senja’s numerous trails which lead through islands and iconic mountains, such as the Hesten, Segla, and Husfjellet.

Go skiing in the alpine country, or enjoy the sandy beaches of Bøstranda and Ersfjordstranda. Take a few days at Målselv Mountain Village, or marvel at the excellent views of the Northern Lights.

4. Sarafossen 

Distance from Tromso: 65 km (40 miles), 1h 8m drive

There are numerous wonderful sights to behold in Reisa National Park, many of which are waterfalls.

Sarafossen is the second-highest waterfall in the Nordreisa municipality, after the Mollisfossen waterfall, which is also in the park.

The waterfall is nearly 120 meters (393 feet) in height and is found in the Reisadalen Valley.

Sarafossen in summer
Sarafossen in summer

You can start your journey to the waterfall just outside the park at Saraelv, about 500 meters (1,640 feet) before it at the gravel pit.

You can take the Arctic Trail, which leads toward Somas and Kilpisjärvi, consisting of a steep path that lasts about 30 minutes both ways for 1 kilometer (0.62 miles).

Don’t worry about getting lost- there are signs posted marking the starting point along the road at a small parking bay. 

5. Ovre Dividal National Park

Distance from Tromso: 134 km (83 miles), 2h 7m drive

About two and a half hours from Tromso is Ovre Dividal National Park.

The park has a diverse landscape of marshes, alpine mountains, birch and pine forests, and lakes, reaching an area of 770 square kilometers (0.38 square miles).

Throughout the diverse natural environment, you can come across rare fungi, a variety of distinct insect species, and rare lichens in addition to the rich alpine vegetation.

As for the wildlife, you’ll find many big predators, such as the Arctic fox. You can visit Øvre Dividalen throughout the year and walk through its dense pine forests.

Beware, however, of the high mountainous regions in the park, as they are distanced quite far between lodgings, and are known for their relentless and harsh climate.

Ovre Dividal National Park in late summer
Ovre Dividal National Park in late summer

If venturing in that direction, highly consider hiring an experienced tour guide before heading out.

As you explore the rest of the park, you’ll come across massive landscape formations that will give you a better comprehension of how the territory was formed through melting glaciers.

If visiting in the spring, you’ll come across the Swedish Sami moving into the area as they join the reindeer on their natural migration westward.

The landscape has a wealth of ancient Sami culture to experience and learn from!

6. Lyngen Alps

Distance from Tromso: 77km, (48 miles), 1h 43m drive

Indulge in a variety of outdoor activities at Lyngenfjord and the Lyngen Alps.

It is one of the best destinations in Norway for mountain biking, with scenic views of rivers, lakes, and sea, and is enclosed by gorgeous fjords and mountain peaks, reaching impressive heights as tall as 1,800 meters (5,905.5 ft).

Explore the rivers and lakes with sea safari, fishing, canoeing, as well as fjord kayaking and bungee jumping.

Blåisvannet (Blåvatnet) in the Lyngen Alps
Blåisvannet (Blåvatnet) in the Lyngen Alps

There is also an exceptional list of outdoor arctic activities to engage in, such as skiing, cross-country skiing, snowmobiling, snowshoeing, sledding, ice fishing, ice climbing, and dog sledding.

The Lyngen Alps are known to have one of the best odd-piste slopes, so don’t miss out! If you’re looking for something with low intensity, take a tranquil stroll through the meadows full of wildflowers and fauna.

This region is also known for its stunning views of the Midnight Sun and the Northern Lights.

Lyngen Alps in winter
Lyngen Alps in winter

Spend a night or two at the local accommodations to get a broad experience of the area, ranging from traditional fisherman’s cabins and campsites to luxury lodges, hotels, and glass igloos.

Perhaps also consider enjoying the colorful views of the Northern Lights from a hot tub to relax from the day’s activities.

7. Rovijokfossen

Distance from Tromso: 134 km (83 miles), 1h 52m drive

Another beautiful waterfall you see is Rovijokfossen, with a plunge of 28 meters (92 feet) that joins the Skibotnelva River, which runs through the Skibotndalen Valley and leads to the Finnish border.

The name of the water itself is of possible Sami or Finnish origin.

To experience Rovijokfossen, you can walk a short trail from the car park to a path along the Rovvejohka Stream.


As you follow the path, you’ll see the cascades of the stream leading toward a lookout area that grants marvelous views across the falls’ main section.

Continue the descent along the dirt path sloping downward toward the base of the waterfall, which is most probably covered in mist.

The walk shouldn’t take longer than ten minutes in both directions.

During the late summer, the waterfall’s flow decreases due to the lack of melting snow from the lakes and tarns.

8. Take a Tromso Whale Watching Tour (Winter Only)

Experience the beauty of Norway’s native marine life on a boat tour from Tromso to Skjervøy

This region is considered to be one of the best areas for spotting whales.

Cruise along the majestic mountainous scenery and seascape views while embarking on a polar whale and bird safari.

On the trip, you’ll see humpback whales and orcas and sea, and a variety of birdlife, such as white-tailed eagles, seagulls, cormorants, guillemots, and wider ducks flying along the coastline.

Whale watching in Tromso
Whale watching in Tromso

Your expert local guides will inform you all about the history of the area as well as the wildlife whilst you enjoy food, snacks, and a hot drink as you relish the magnificent scenery.

The heated boat has outdoor decking and indoor seating, so choose what’s best for you, but take advantage of the opportunity to experience Norway’s native wildlife up close!

Meet your guide at the Scandic Ishavshotel to begin the tour.

>> Click here to check tour rates and availability

9. Camp Tamok

Distance from Tromso: 96 km (60 miles), 1h 24m drive

Located about 75 minutes outside of the center of Tromso in the Tamok Valley is Camp Tamok, a wilderness center with a completely different climate zone, with dry and inland mountain weather.

Clear nights are a result of the dry climate during both the winter and summer and make Camp Tamok a wonderful place for observing the Northern Lights.

The wilderness center aims to give visitors and locals alike an authentic experience of the north with chalets, cabins, and lavvos for those seeking to explore and experience something more primitive.

The Tromso Ice Domes is a hotel made entirely out of snow and ice and is rebuilt annually for the winter.

Tamok Valley in autumn
Tamok Valley in autumn

It consists of ice bedrooms, an ice restaurant, ice bars, and an ice cinema with themes showcasing local Sami culture and the Northern Lights through lighting and ice sculptures.

The ice domes are right in the heart of the Arctic wilderness, creating a unique and adventurous experience.

One of the most popular activities at Camp Tamok is dog sledding, where you can enjoy a trip with a group of huskies that love running – and their guides are among the best in the world!

There is also snowmobiling, and you can take tours of the area on a snowmobile.

10. Henrikkafossen

Distance from Tromso: 196 km (122 miles), 2h 44m drive

If you’re heading toward Tromso, stop by the Spansdalen near Lavangen to see a large waterfall called Henrikkafossen, also known as Brudesløret by the locals (not to be confused by the waterfall with the same name in Geiranger).

This tall waterfall has a height of 450 meters (1,476 feet) and is the biggest in the north of Norway, with a steep drop of 200 meters (656 feet), and cascades down nearly 250 meters (820 feet) into the valley.

Take a walk and stretch your legs; enjoy the tranquil scenery of the water descending into the lush green vegetation.

You can view the waterfall from the roadside or take a steep trail up to an altitude of 590 meters (1,935 feet) above sea level for a better view. It is situated along road 84 and is easily accessible.

If you’re looking to spend more time exploring a complete trail, you can start near the small hamlet of Moen, where you can embark on a 4.6-kilometer (2.8-mile) hike. The path is marked by signs!

To see the waterfall at its best, visit during the summertime when there is a great amount of melting water cascading down from the Spanstiden mountain.

Day Trips from Tromso (On a Map!)

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Where to Stay in Tromso

If you’re looking to find the best Tromso hotels for your budget, I have three recommendations covering luxury, mid-range, and budget options. 

You can read our accommodation guide linked above for additional recommendations and details, but here is a quick glimpse into my top picks for hotels in Tromso:

Did I miss any of the best day trips from Tromso, Norway? Let me know your favorite Tromso day trips in the comments.

More Tromso Travel Guides

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Are you searching for the best day trips from Tromso, Norway? This guide contains Tromso day trips that you can take (almost) any time of the year! Read more! | What to do in Tromso | Things to do in Tromso | Tromso in winter | Tromso in summer | Tromso day tours | Places to visit near Tromso | Places to visit in Northern Norway | Beaches near Tromso | Islands near Tromso | Tromso whale watching | Tromso skiing

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