The Lyngen Alps are a stretch of peaks along the Lyngenfjord in Northern Norway, wedged between Tromsø and the Finnish border. The area is very popular with backcountry skiers and is also a worthy hiking destination. Limited light pollution makes it an excellent location to view the northern lights.
The Lyngen Alps and Lyngenfjord area can easily keep you entertained for a week, but can also be explored on a trip from Tromsø. It’s about a two-hour scenic drive and many of the local adventure companies offer transport.
Here’s a snapshot of things you can do in summer and winter in Lyngenfjord and the Lyngen Alps:
1. Stay in a glass igloo
The friendly folk at Lyngen North offer unique accommodation with two glass igloos by the sea. The self-contained domes are perfect for couples, with views of the fjord, mountains, and of course the sky above.
The igloos come into their own from September to March when the northern lights come out to play. If spending most of the night hunting the lights by driving around and standing in the cold doesn’t appeal to you, watch the lights dance across the sky from the comfort of your own bed instead.
Lyngen North, Spåkenesveien 281, 9153 Rotsund
2. Master northern lights photography
Once you’ve spotted the northern lights the next thing you want to do is take an awesome picture for Instagram, right? The lights often look cooler in photos anyway, and the chilled out Aurora 101 evening teaches you everything you need to know.
The course is held close to Lyngseidet with plenty of opportunity to spot the lights on a clear night (no guarantees of course). There is a local tapas platter included and the session is held at the Aurora Spirit distillery meaning you can…
3. Warm the soul at the world’s northernmost distillery
Marketed under the name Bivrost, the Aurora Spirit distillery in Årøybukt produces gin, vodka, whisky, and of course the Norwegian national spirit, aquavit. Aside from the northern lights evenings, guided tours run every weekday and include a complementary tasting.
Aurora Spirit, Årøybuktneset, 9060 Lyngseidet
4. Stroll to the blue lake on a sunny day
On a bright day in summer or autumn, The Blue Lake (Blåvatnet), shines stunningly against its mountain backdrop. The hike is accessible to most, with a refreshing swim awaiting those brave enough.
The lake can be found along a four kilometer trail (8 kilometers return) from the Sørlenangsbotn parking lot. Camping is a little tricky due to the rocky terrain, but possible.
5. Enjoy the famous Lyngen Alps spring skiing
It’s widely known in Norway that the ski touring in the Lyngen Alps is some of the best in the country. Ski season usually lasts from November to June, but the optimal conditions are in the spring time, from March to May.
Magic Mountain Lodge in Lyngseidet has cosy accommodation with a restaurant, bar, and of course plenty of skiing advice.
Magic Mountain Lodge, Stigenveien 24, 9060 Lyngseidet
6. Trek to the Steindalsbreen Glacier
The Steindalsbreen Glacier has left behind 8,000 years of history in the Steindalen valley. The current base of the glacier can be reached on a medium 10 kilometer return hike up the valley from the fjord. There is a cabin along the trail available for overnight stays and simple accommodation at the bottom of the valley.
Remember not to walk on the glacier itself without a guide. A guided tour ensures you have all the necessary equipment like crampons and harnesses, plus the knowledge to walk safely on the glacier.
7. Revel in the midnight sun
From late-May to late-July the sun never sets over Lyngen. A late-night hike to one of the many local peaks for a fjord panorama is the best way to experience the eeriness of the glowing midnight sky. A visit to Lyngstuva is more relaxed, family-friendly option.
Much like with the northern lights, the longer your stay the better chance there is of having a magical experience.
8. Jump off the the Gorsa bridge
The wild Kåfjorddal valley is filled with canyons, waterfalls, and hiking trails. The most spectacular activity in the valley is without doubt the bungee jump from the Gorsa bridge – a suspension bridge strung 153 meters over the canyon below.
The bridge and narrow canyon are an attraction in themselves and can be visited on a marked hiking trail.
9. Hike Finland’s highest point
Yep, Finland’s highest point. That’s not a typo. The point, at 1,324 meters above sea level, is situated on Halti mountain. Halti’s peak is actually in Norway (1,361 meters), but the Finnish border runs just 2 kilometres south.
The 14 kilometer roundtrip hike across rocky ground is demanding and best attempted in good conditions in late summer to ensure a pleasant hike and no snow.
10. Pop out for a horse steak and cod tongues
Traditional Norwegian food is hearty and satisfying, typically consisting of meat or fish and vegetables. Vollan Gjestestue in Nordkjosbotn has revived some regional delicacies including horse steak served with basil sauce and pan-fried cod tongues. For the less adventurous, don’t worry, some more standard fare is also on offer.
Traveling from Tromsø to the Lyngen Alps
The nearest airport is in Tromsø, with daily flights from Oslo and other cities in Norway.
- Breivikeidet–Svensby (between Tromsø and Lyngseidet)
- Lyngseidet–Olderdalen (for access to the north-eastern side of the fjord)
The Arctic Route bus service is a very handy way to access some of the specific activities and accommodation providers in the area during winter. The bus operates from December 1st until late March. Many of the tour companies in Lyngen use this bus service for transfers to and from Tromsø.
Lyngseidet, on the western side of the fjord, is the main village in the region, home to around 800 people. The village has a small supermarket and petrol station.
Do you have any questions about planning an adventure in the Lyngen Alps? Let us know in the comments below!