Whenever I see the big cruise ships arriving to Tromsø during summer, I ask myself how on earth the tourists can have a good time here. Why? Because all they do during their 8-12 hours they have in the city, is going sightseeing by bus, shooting the Arctic Cathedral and Tromsø Cathedral, and going shopping for souvenirs.
Now I might not find any of this very appealing because I've been on those sightseeing busses a few times myself while I worked as a tour guide in the city last summer and because I've seen all those sights a thousand times in the past 2 years that I've been living here.
What I really don't get though, is that all those people go on a cruise in Northern Norway to see the beautiful nature - and then they spend their one day in Tromsø sightseeing and shopping.
I don't mean to be rude but I believe that there's a much better way to see and experience Northern Norway: by going hiking in Tromso!
Therefore I decided to put together this list of 5 short and easy hikes to take in Tromsø during summer. And when I say short and easy, I mean it!
None of the following hikes takes longer than 2 hours so you can easily do your sightseeing and shopping before or afterwards if you like. And these hikes are so easy that any Norwegian reading this will probably laugh at me - Norwegians take hiking quite seriously and an easy hike for them is at least 10 km long!
So yes, don't be surprised if you only see local families with their 2 year olds on the following hikes - they might be short and easy but they offer some beautiful views nonetheless!
PS: If you're interested in downloading a detailed hiking guide to Tromsø, you can do so here.
UiT - Turbohuken
Now this is a hike I loved to do when I was still a student at the local university and my boyfriend Simon was living right off campus.
The tour starts above the university (UiT) and takes you to a little shelter with a gorgeous view over the part of town that is called Hamna and the mountains of the neighbouring island Kvaløya in the background.
The hike itself will be on a trail called "Lysløypa" which is the local skiing trail in winter and which crosses the whole of Tromsø Island from north to south.
It will lead you past the ski jumping tower which you can climb on to take in the view on Tromsø and the Arctic Cathedral from above!
And if you're lucky, you can even spot some reindeers that are kept at the university for research purposes, right next to the trail!
Telegrafbukta - Sydspissen
Now a visit to the local beach Telegrafbukta is a must if you're visiting Tromsø during summer and the weather is nice!
You can find a nice spot to sun-bathe or if you're crazy enough to do like the locals do, take a dip in the ice-cold ocean!
Whatever you decide to do at the beach, you have to go for a walk along the fjord at some point.
There's a nice trail that leads you from the beach to the southernmost point of Tromsø Island from where you can see the mountains of the Whale Island Kvaløya.
Fjellheisen Cable Car Station - Steinbøhytta
Of course, no visit to Tromsø is complete without a trip with the cable car up Mount Storstein. If you're fit enough, you could even hike up the mountain but that's not a trip I'd call short and easy.
For a really short and easy hike, you take the cable car, admire the views from the cable car station and then follow the trail in the middle of the mountain to a little stone hut approximately 150 metres further up.
Now 150 metres don't sound like much but be aware of that there can still be snow around you have to cross on your hike, depending on which month of the year you visit, and that some parts of the trail can be rather steep.
It's definitely doable though and the view from the hut is even better than from the cable car station - if that's even possible!
Following the Power Line on the Mainland
As you might know, I've recently moved to the mainland and one of the first things we did after moving and settling in, was to take a hike under the power lines.
There is a trail that follows the power line from underneath the cable car station at Fjellheisen to a place called Solligården and while parts of the trail can be difficult - in June all the snow melts up on the mountains so that you have to cross quite fierce rivers, while in August parts of the trail might be covered with plants that go up your hips so that you might get the feeling of being in a jungle - the trail offers fabulous views of Tromsø from above!
Simon goes jogging on this trail whenever he doesn't have to work and I definitely envy him for the views he can admire on his early morning trips while I'm already in the office!
Round Trip at Lake Prestvannet
Last but not least, you can walk around lake Prestvannet which is situated on top of Tromsø Island. It's a popular spot for bird-watchers during summer and offers an incredible view on Mount Tromsdalstind, the highest mountain of Tromsø.
The hiking trail is very easy with absolutely no hills or height differences and it takes less than 45 minutes to take the round tour - if you don't stop to take in the view all the time that is.
I've prepared a detailed hiking guide for you with duration and length of these different hikes, as well as information on how to get to the starting points and maps, that you can download here.