An escape on an Arctic cruise is just what you need if you want to go out and explore the Nordic countries. While it can be a bit chilly depending on the time of year that you visit, this part of Europe is filled with tons of amazing museums, viewpoints, historic bridges, cathedrals, and more. With cruise line volume buys plus our low everyday prices you can save up to 80% versus the brochure price! Book your Arctic cruise today with AffordableTours.com, your discounted cruise headquarters.Arctic Travel Guide
Arctic Travel Guide
Arctic Cruises Highlights
- See the most breathtaking view from Brandsoyasen Viewpoint.
- Walk through the Arctic-Alpine Botanic Garden.
- Explore the architecture of Bryggen in Bergen.
- Stroll across the Old City Bridge.
- Visit the aquarium, Polaria, in Tromso.
- Ride the Floibanen for some of the best views of Bergen.
- Learn at the Polar Museum.
- Explore historical Andersgrotta.
- Marvel at the Arctic Cathedral.
- Eat at the restaurant on top of Ulriken.
- Explore the royal residence of Stiftsgarden.
- Learn at the Trondelag Folk Museum.
Arctic Cruises Travel Tips
- Make sure you take out some of the local currency in each country that you visit. While many destinations will take credit and debit cards, there may be times when you want to purchase street food or souvenirs from a smaller seller that doesn't have those capabilities. Be smart, and be prepared!
- Dress appropriately for the weather at the time of year that you're visiting. If you visit in the winter, for instance, you'll want to bundle up, or you'll be cold for a lot of your trip!
- Visit top-rated tourist attractions as early in the day as possible. Seriously, the second you get off your cruise in the morning when it docks, head straight to the most popular places! This way, you can avoid the long lines that come later in the day.
- Don't be scared to take public transportation in this area of Europe. It's extremely trustworthy and is known for being on time a lot, so it's a great way to quickly get around cities.
- Wear a strong pair of walking shoes, or at least make sure that you pack a pair. Your feet and ankles will thank you while you're adventuring through these European cities that are known for having smaller cobblestone lanes in some areas.
Arctic Cruises Things To Do
- See the view from Brandsoyasen Viewpoint
The Brandsoyasen Viewpoint is a beautiful spot located in Floro, Norway, looking into this area's scenic nature. You truly will be in awe if you take the time to visit here as you look out and see the nearby mountains, forests, and lakes that you wouldn't see from above elsewhere. To get to the top, you do have to hike. There are a few different trails to get to the top, luckily, so you can choose whichever one you think you can most successfully do. They usually take around 2 hours to get to the top.
You Should KnowMake sure you stop by the tourist information office in the area so that you can grab a map to help you with your hike to the top.
- Walk through the Arctic-Alpine Botanic Garden
The Arctic-Alpine Botanic Garden is a beautiful botanic garden located in Tromso. It's most well-known for being the most northern botanic garden in the world. It's run by the local university in the area and has been opened since 1994. Inside the garden, you can find many plants that showcase what flora and fauna are like in the area. It's incredibly beautiful no matter what time of year that you visit. There are also a few stone walking trails throughout the Arctic-Alpine Botanic Garden, which provide you a sort of self-guided walking tour of the attraction.
You Should KnowThe garden is quite large, so plan on spending at least a few hours in this garden.
- Explore Bryggen
Bryggen is a gorgeous wharf area located in Bergen right along the water on the Vagen Harbour. It was officially named a UNESCO World Heritage Site back in 1979 and is filled with some of the most beautiful historical buildings that you honestly won't want to miss. They are quintessentially what you'd expect to see in Norway! All of the buildings here are commercial, so they are filled with different shops that you can go through and browse around. You might even find a souvenir or two to remember your trip here! There are also a few different restaurants and cafes in the area in case you get hungry.
Best Time To VisitAs mentioned earlier in the tips, be sure to visit as early as possible to avoid crowds since this is a top attraction!
- Stroll across the Old City Bridge
The Old City Bridge is a gorgeous bridge located in Trondheim, Norway. It crosses right across the Nidelva River and was designed by the architect Carl Adolf Dahl. You can get some of the town's best views from the bridge, especially at sunrise or sunset. The bridge was built in 1681 and is one of the most historical attractions in the whole town. It officially connects Kjopmannsgata to Bakklandet. While it was initially constructed entirely out of wood, it was reconstructed in 1861, giving it the same look today.
You Should KnowLocals also refer to the Old City Bridge as Bybroa or Gamle Bybro in Norwegian.
- Visit Polaria
Polaria is the northernmost aquarium in the entire world. It's located right on the coast in Tromso, Norway, the northern part of the country. It opened in 1998 and is particularly well-known for its outstanding exhibits and experiences for families and young children visiting the area. This aquarium and educational experience are also extremely unique because of its architecture. It appears to look like a bunch of dominoes that have been knocked down by someone from the outside. It doesn't even look like a building from the outside, so you might just miss it!
You Should KnowBook your tickets ahead of time to ensure that you can enter Polaria when you visit Tromso.
- Ride the Floibanen
The Floibanen is a scenic cable car right up a mountain in Bergen, Norway. It connects the downtown part of Bergen to Floyen. At the top, there are viewpoints and different tiny trails that you can explore to have some of the city's best views. The mountain cable car funicular railway first opened in 1918 and stops at five different stations along the way. No matter what one you hop on at, you'll still get to the same endpoint and will enjoy the same views. This is a great affordable attraction for all ages visiting Bergen, Norway!
You Should KnowThe cable car is only a short walk away from the cruise ship dock in Bergen.
- Learn at the Polar Museum
The Polar Museum is located in Tromso, Norway, and is filled with exhibits and artifacts showcasing the Arctic's history. It's one of the best ways to learn more about the area you'll be touring on your Arctic cruise! It opened in 1978 and is run by the local university. A considerable part of the museum also focuses on Tromso's local heritage, history, and culture. The museum is located inside a historically-important building since it's a warehouse dating back to the 19th century.
You Should KnowBe sure to set aside a few hours to explore the Polar Museum to make sure that you learn as much as you can about the area.
- Explore Andersgrotta
Andersgrotta is a unique historic landmark located in Kirkenes, Norway. It's a bomb shelter from World War II, which was used as a spot for safety by many locals and residents in the area. It's sort of a combination of a shelter and an underground cave bunker. When you first get to Andersgrotta, you'll be shown a short film that shows archived recordings that you can only see at this attraction. Keep in mind that the film is only offered in a limited number of languages, including German, Norwegian, and English.
You Should KnowBook your tickets at least 24 hours ahead of time if you plan on visiting Andersgrotta because it's a popular attraction.
- Marvel at the Arctic Cathedral
The Arctic Cathedral is one of the most unique Parish Churches in the world. It's located right in the center of Tromso, Norway, and doesn't even look like a church from the outside. Architecturally, it honestly just looks like a futuristic triangle building that is utterly unassuming. The cathedral was built by Jan Inge Hovig and only holds around 600 people at a time. It's completely free to go inside and walk around the cathedral, but you might be able to also hop onto a quick tour of it as well if you're interested in learning more about it.
You Should KnowThe church was built back in 1965 and is a popular spot for weddings in the area!
Arctic Cruise Packages
This area of Europe is a great time to visit year-round, though keep in mind that the winters can be quite harsh, especially in Nordic countries like Sweden, Norway, and Finland. Of course, you can plan your trip to have the best weather possible, but most people visit here when it's warmer.
- Spring and Fall - September to November and March to May - Shoulder Season
The spring and fall seasons are the shoulder season in this area of the world. The average high temperature in the spring is approximately 51°F, while it's around 56°F in the fall. This time is a bit cooler than the summer, but it usually is nowhere near as busy.
- Summer - June to August - High Season
Like in most places, summer is the most popular time to visit this area of the world. The average high temperature during this time is approximately 70°F, but it's a bit cooler in the more northern countries. Prices for accommodations will be a bit higher at this time because of how busy it is.
- Winter - December to February - Low Season
The least amount of people visit the Arctic during the winter because of how cold it gets. The average high temperature is approximately 36°F, while lows can reach around 27°F daily. Prices for flights and accommodation will be lower around this time because not many people are visiting.
Arctic Cruises Frequently Asked Questions
- What are Arctic Cruises?
Arctic cruises are the best way to get introduced to the Arctic region of Europe. You can have your accommodation come with you the whole time on the cruise ship, and you'll have access to fantastic food and entertainment every day. Then, you'll be able to hop off the cruise and explore wherever your ship is docked on some days as well. What's great is that you have the freedom to choose where you want to explore, as long as you're back on the ship by the end of the day when it leaves.
- What’s included on an Arctic Cruise?
The main draw for Arctic cruises is that they include accommodation. They also include meals, and you'll have tons of different restaurants, buffets, and cafes on board that you can also grab a bite to eat at. You will have your own private room and bathroom with amenities, including hairdryers, televisions, and more. It depends on the type of room that you book!
- What’s the best Arctic Cruise?
Each Arctic cruise is so different, so it's hard to say! What destinations do you need to visit during your cruise? How long of a vacation can you have? What's your ideal budget? These questions are vital to ensure that you can find the best Arctic cruise for you and your needs.
- How much do Arctic Cruises cost?
Arctic cruises vary in pricing. Some cost around $100 a day while others cost more than twice that per day. It depends on the cruise line, the cruise's length, the time of year, and the stops throughout the cruise. Luckily, you can rest assured that by booking through Affordable Tours, you can save up to 75% off the brochure price versus if you were to book the same cruise elsewhere.
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