We arrived in Tromso about 5pm but by then it was already dark. We only missed sunset by just over 3 hours. Although Tromso is a city in Northern Norway it like a small village. We were also now in the Arctic Circle, which in itself is pretty cool. After we settled into our hotel we decided to get something to eat. Like the other Scandinavian countries Norway has a higher cost of living but it is totally worth it. We ended up at a restaurant that was a little pricey however we were in Norway and we were hungry. After finishing what was possibly the most expensive chicken I’ve ever eaten and trying some of Benji’s reindeer we decided to head back to our hotel.
The main reason we travelled to Tromso was in the hope of seeing the Northern Lights, something that is on the bucket list of many. We checked a radar website for the Northern Lights and there was meant to be a good chance to see them tonight. I put on a couple of extra layers as it was very cold and headed out. Getting away from the city to escape the light pollution would give us the best chance of seeing the lights. There was a mountain on the other side of a bridge which would probably be a good place to see on our own. As we were crossing the bridge we noticed stars in the sky which was a positive sign. Seeing the stars meant there were no clouds in the sky giving us hope we would see the lights.
We crossed the bridge and reached the foot of the mountain. In between trying not to slip on the ice covered path and trying to not think about the cold there it was. In between a few trees we got our first glimpse of the Northern Lights. It is one thing to see them in photos and videos but seeing them in person is completely different. It is amazing how a few coloured lights dancing in the sky can be so mesmerising. Although what we saw wasn’t much, we had seen the Northern Lights. our trip to Norway had been worth it. However we wanted to see more so we continued on the path. By now the path had almost became an ice rink. We continued a little longer then decided to start walking up the side of the mountain.
We walked up the mountain for what was probably about 5-10 minutes and it didn’t feel like we were getting anywhere. Obviously we couldn’t see how far from the top we were as it was pitch black. We had to use the torches on our phones as our only light source. Fatigue was beginning to set it and we couldn’t see the sky anymore as the trees on the mountain were blocking our view. We eventually came to a stop and sat down to have a rest and take in where we were. Well we didn’t know exactly where we were. as far as we knew we were possibly halfway up the side of a mountain in Tromso.
The mountain was covered in snow that in some parts was knee deep. It was so dark that the snow was shining in the light of our phones as if it was covered in glitter.It was -9 degrees and all we could see were trees, the mountain was covered in them. We were no longer on a track, just the side of the mountain. I don’t know if we were going crazy but I could almost swear I heard animal noises. To be completely honest it was a little scary. We had no idea where we were, it was dark, cold and as far as we could see were trees.
After sitting down for a few minutes and not seeing the lights again we slowly made our way back down. We had no idea if we were going the right way but going down seemed like a good idea. I had my phone in one hand shining my torch whilst using my other hand to grip onto trees as we made the steep decent back down. The thick snow didn’t help at all, I got stuck a few times up to my knees. After what was probably another 10 minutes we eventually reached the path that we were. Although we were back on solid ground which was a slight relief we were not back at our hotel yet.
The walk from the mountain back to our hotel would of taken roughly an hour and being just after 11pm we were tired and didn’t really want to walk. Since there is no Uber in Tromso our only option was a taxi. The only problem is you have to ring up to order one which sounds easy enough. That is until I had to attempt to pronounce the name of the street we were on. And with no way of knowing whether I said the right name we just had to wait and hope a taxi showed up. Thankfully after about 10 minutes a taxi showed up and it wasn’t long before we were back at our hotel . Our first night in Tromso at be eventful to say the least. Regardless of the event that unfolded I was still on a high after seeing the Northern Lights