Tromsø - Sommarøy - Tromsø
This is a short excursion from Tromsø around the southern part of the island of Kvaløya. Drive southwards from Tromsø along the inner coast of Kvaløya. At Skavberget you can see 4,000-year-old rock carvings before heading to the popular excursion spot of Hella with old wooden houses from Tromsø along one of the coast's strongest tidal streams. Conditions are good for fishing from land here, so take your fishing rod. Bring your binoculars and try to spot musk oxen on the island of Rya. Next look for Straumen farm, a well preserved 19th century coastal farm. In the old school building at Bakkejord you will find Profil Glassdesign, which has a cafe and glass art. Sommarøy is a modern fishing village with white sandy beaches and fantastic views. Further along Otervika is a white sandy beach noted for beach volleyball. Return via Kattfjorden, which features wonderful fjord landscape and high mountains.
Side trip: Tulleng (8 miles return), old trading post.
Side trip: Ersfjordbotn (3 miles return), fantastic views of fjords and steep mountains. This is a popular spot for taking photos of the northern lights.
Distance: 75 miles
Estimated driving time: 2 - 4 hours
Tromsø - Svensby - Lyngseidet - Nordkjosbotn - Tromsø
The Lyngen Peninsula, with summits reaching up to 6,000 feet above sea level, blue glaciers, gushing rivers and canyons, features some of Norway's most dramatic landscapes.
The ferry from Breivikeidet to Svensby offers great views of the Lyngen Alps and brings you to the Lyngen peninsula. The summits and glaciers here are for the seasoned mountaineers only, but other outdoors enthusiasts can bask in the easier terrain around Svensby and Furuflaten. A sightseeing trip by car around Lyngen is also a joy for all.
At Svensby you will find the Gamslett fisherman/farmer's farm. Continue to beautiful Lyngseidet, which is home to the historic Lyngen Church from 1740 as well as old wooden buildings and the ugly yet fascinating plastic Santa Claus, Gollis. Solhov Folk High Shcool south of Lyngseidet is Northern Norway's largest wooden buidling. Carry on through the Polleidet tunnel to Furuflaten, an excellent starting point for hikes up the valleys to the glaciers in the Lyngen Alps. Return to Tromsø along the Balsfjord, where the road is high above the fjord.
Side trip: Jægervatn (12 miles return from Svensby), wonderful and easy walk along the shores of Lake Jægervatn with alpine views.
Side trip: Nord-Lenangen (55 miles return from Svensby), a drive with countless opportunities for hikes and activities.
Side trip: Seljelvnes - Lakslesbukt - Laksvatn (20 miles), beautiful panorama towards the highs peaks of the Lyngen Alps.
Distance: 125 miles
Estimated driving time: 4 - 6 hours