Why Tromsø is the perfect place to try dog sledding
From its polar museum to its mountainous sherpa staircase, and from its eclectic architecture to its wild Arctic landscape, Norway’s “Paris of the North” has many ways to steal your heart. But if you really want to make your time in Tromsø unforgettable, hop on a dog sled!
Here’s five reasons why Tromsø is the perfect place to try dog sledding:
It’s the best way to take in the landscape
The mountainous expanse around Tromsø and its nearby cluster of islands will take your breath away! And while hiking is certainly an option, nothing compares to sitting comfortably on a sled while a pack of happy huskies take you on the trip of a lifetime, through the snowy birch and pine forests and sleek slopes of places like the Kvaløya island! With the temperatures around Tromsø surprisingly mild for its latitude (thanks to the warming effect of the Gulf Stream), you and your kiddos can comfortably enjoy up to one hour of sled ride — and take countless pictures of sprawling scenery and wagging dog tails!
Credit: Tromsø Wilderness center
You’ll get to experience a part of Arctic history
By hopping on a dog sled, you’re becoming part of a tradition that has been going strong for millennia, ever since the indigenous Sapmi people of this area used dogs to help them herd reindeer. But even in the last few centuries, dog sledding has been a core part of Norwegian DNA, with Norwegian explorer Roald Amundsen using a dog sled on his expedition to the Southern Pole in 1911, and Norwegian native Leonhard Seppala using a dog sled to deliver diphtheria medicine in Alaska in the beginning of the 20th century.
You can feel like an explorer for a day
If you prefer a more adrenaline fueled day in the Arctic, you can try your hand at dog sledding (also called dog mushing) yourself! Driving a sled is certainly a high-octane experience, as you need to be in a good fitness condition and be able to jog uphill through snow, have a good balance, and a tight grip on the reins, but you can get an expert to teach you everything from harnessing the dogs to driving techniques, before embarking on an adventure of a lifetime!
Credit: Tromsø Wilderness center
You will make some doggos very happy!
Many people who are unfamiliar with dog sledding are worried about the well-being of the dogs. But the dogs used in sledding are Alaskan huskies, who are at their happiest when running through deep snow and demanding terrain — it’s what they were born and bred to do! In many dog sledding tours you also have the opportunity to visit the dog yard before or after your ride, meet the adorable dogs and puppies up close, and see how thrilled they are to meet you and run with you!
You could even visit at night, for a chance to spot the Aurora Borealis
Tromsø is one of the best places in the world to spot the infamous dancing lights in the sky, so why not combine two bucket list items at once? Just a few minutes away from the city, the night skies are dark enough that you have an excellent chance of spotting the Aurora Borealis. And if you go on a husky camp visit, you can cuddle with dogs, enjoy a hearty Norwegian meal around an open fire and keep an eye up in the sky for the vista of a lifetime!