Heading out by boat, travelers can “experience this region’s magnificent scenery and possibly get a glimpse of a sperm whale, the most common species in these waters”, he writes.
“You might also catch a glimpse of pilot whales, minkes, humpbacks, dolphins and orca (killer whales).”
If bears are more your thing, Norum thinks Pasvik national park south of Kirkenes will have you covered. Also by the Finnmark coast are king crab safaris, where one can pull a king crab right out of the Barents sea.
“The beasts measure up to two metres from claw to claw and weigh up to 15kg”, he writes, also making time to enjoy eating his catch.
“It is an extraordinary experience – a reminder that watching wildlife in Norway is always best when you take the road less travelled.”
Something Norum doesn't specifically point out, but is important nonetheless, is that it is important to keep a safe distance to these wild animals out of consideration to both their well being and your personal safety. Hiring a knowledgeable guide is also a must before embarking on these kinds of experiences.
This goes double for the arctic achipelago of Svalbard, a territory Norum seems particularily smitten with. Here, he goes on to recommend (somewhat) close encounters with both whalerus, reindeer, arctic foxes and polar bears.
To see the latter, a mere guide will not suffice. Encountering the magnificent creature that is now a symbol of Svalbard in general can quickly turn deadly if not handled properly.
For this reason, the Governor of Svalbard has ruled that "any person travelling outside the settlements shall be equipped with appropriate means of frightening and chasing off polar bears".
Presuming you have all that in order, the recommendation from Norum is to go on anything from winter expeditions by snowmobile and skis to boat trips along the fjords.
Wildlife safaris in Norway will bring you eye to eye with a myriad of unique creatures in their natural habitat. Join a safari and get close to animals like whales, king crabs, or even the shaggy survivor from the last glacial epoch – the musk ox.
The Svalbard Islands are located in the Arctic Ocean, halfway between Norway and the North Pole. Here, you will find untouched arctic wilderness and unique wildlife in a setting that is both rugged and fragile at the same time.
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