Tromso had been on my bucket list for some time, most likely driven by its claim to be one of the best places to see the Northern Lights in the world! However the pandemic had other plans for us and the trip was postponed a number of times and finally happened in November. We had been to Lapland, Iceland and Sweden so I was keen to add Norway to my Nordic travel list.
In terms of flights from Dublin the two main airlines are Scandinavian or Norwegian and price wise for us they were coming in pretty similar. We ended up going with Scandinavian as it gave us the best flight times going out. Flights home with both airlines are super early. There are no direct flights so we transited via Oslo. Flights were straightforward, not too busy and our bags were checked through. Each flight was 2 hours long. Planet Buddies had kindly sent the kids some wireless headphone which we put to good use on the flights and the airport wait. Highly recommend as they come volume limited so safe for little growing ears.
It terms of flight cost for the four of us this came to around €800 for all the flights including a bag. Scandinavian still give out free teas and coffees on board which was very welcome! Staff were great on all the flights and my kids even got to see the cockpit. A very special memory they will cherish forever.
Where we stayed
Tromso itself is a small and very walkable city. I had done lots of research on hotels and kept being drawn back to one. I would be lying if I said the Tripadvisor reviews commenting on seeing the Northern Lights from the rooms didn’t sway me! We choose the Scandic Ishavshotel which has a prime location on the pier overlooking the city. Tromso is often called the “Paris of the North” due to the spectacular views. When we told our taxi driver where we were staying the first thing he said was “oh you know they have the best breakfast in Tromso”. The city itself is only 6km from the airport and that view when you leave the airport is really something.
We arrived around 7pm and headed straight to check in, it was snowing lightly and the kids were so excited. Check in was smooth, free
tea and coffee all day at reception too so grabbed a coffee and headed to our room on the 7th floor. Once we opened the door….oh my god….that view. We were allocated a Master Suite with a wrap around balcony looking over the sea and Tromso. To say we were speechless is an understatement. A wow moment for sure. There was a separate living out which had a sofa bed for the kids but just check out the view from our bed….I could have wiled away hours just looking out at it.
I suspect our taxi driver was not wrong in his assessment, breakfast was in the spacious lobby with gorgeous views. There was a huge selection of hot and cold items. It wasn’t busy any morning we were there so we enjoyed long leisurely breakfast looking out at Tromso. Breakfast is included in the room rate and it is probably one of the best hotel breakfast we have had on our travels.
The location of the hotel is perfect. You can walk to a selection of restaurants, bars and attractions. And the absolute icing on the cake, it is 100% true that you can see the Northern Lights from your window, 3 nights out of 4 on our trip the Northern lights danced over Tromso when we sat out on the balcony. An experience I will truly never forget.