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Tromsø, situated 300 kilometres (190 miles) within the Arctic Circle, is the largest urban area in northern Norway. More importantly for northern lights hunters, it is one of the best places in the world to see Aurora Borealis, or northern lights. Climate is mild when taking the latitude into account. Mildness is due to Tromsø being located in the Gulf Stream area of influence. The Gulf Stream is a fast flowing ‘river’ of air, originating at the tip of Florida, along which warm air flows, high in the atmosphere. Tromsøya the island which can be seen in the centre of the picture that accompanies this post, is where most of Tromsø as well as the airport are located. The Tromsø Bridge (bottom of picture) connects the island to the Norwegian mainland while the Sandnessund Bridge connects Tromso to Kvaløya Island. The island also has a network of underground road tunnels – it’s the first place in the world where we’ve seen underground roundabouts!
Being within the Arctic Circle, Tromsø enjoys midnight sun during the summer. In the winter longer nights make it a great spot to catch the northern lights which can be seen from 6pm to around midnight. The northern lights only appear in an area around the magnetic northern pole, Tromø is in the middle of this area. If it’s cloudy in Tromsø itself, local micro climates in the region mean that’s it more than likely that a local guide will be able to take you somewhere else nearby to see the lights – almost guaranteeing you will to see the spectacle.
Tromsø is a northern cultural hub, home of none less than electronica duo Röyksopp. The are events throughout the year as well as attraction such as the Ishavskatedralen – the most recognisable landmark in Tromsø.
Visit Norway have details on how to get to Tromsø, including information on direct flights from London. Get in touch with Visit Tromsø or look out for our upcoming Northern Lights post for more information on the northern lights.
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