We had a late start after returning late from the Northern Lights chase the previous night. The weather was bright and sunny throughout the day, and we headed out to town to visit a few museums after brunch.
By then, we had started to master the trick to prevent ourselves from slipping on melted snow and that is to keep your centre of gravity low. Keeping our knees slightly bent and walk with our legs at least shoulder-width apart, we started to resemble penguins. We know we looked ugly but it was for the sake of survival.
Our first stop was Perspektivet Museum, one of the recommended places of interest to visit on Tripadvisor. The best part, it’s free. It is an attractive building and showcases quite a few interesting pictures of Norway in the past.
We had lunch at Riso Mat & Kaffebar, a highly recommended cafe based on Tripadvisor’s reviews. It serves decent coffee and food.
After the satisfying lunch, we visited the Northern Norway Art Museum, another attraction with free entry. It’s a relatively small museum and mainly showcases sculptures, paintings and photographs by artists from Northern Norway from 19th century to modern days. The focus of the art pieces were on the Sami people – an indigenous Finno-Ugric people inhabiting the Arctic area of Sápmi, which today encompasses parts of far northern Norway, Sweden, Finland, and the Kola Peninsula of Russia.
It might be the lull period for tourism when we were there but we appreciated the low human activity. It felt like we had the museums to ourselves.
That ended our activities for the day as we embarked on our second chase for Northern Lights.
We ran out of luck on our second night. Despite the sunny weather during the day, the thick and dark storm clouds started to roll in from the sea towards the evening, and our chances of seeing the Northern Lights tonight were diminishing by the minute. It started snowing as we boarded the minibus, and we couldn’t find any clear skies around the Tromso area. This is also why it is highly advisable to book at least two nights of the aurora chasing tour. It’s called contingency planning.
We went to Finland, hoping that there would be clear skies there. Sadly, there wasn’t. Never mind that it was minus 6 degree celsius, windy and snowy, a hungry woman is an angry woman, which meant that we had to eat. Our handsome guide, Jonas (we were so lucky to have him as our guide on both nights 🙂 ), set up the campfire and we sat around in circle, slurping up our fish stew in the snow. Norway is warmer in comparison to Finland due to its proximity to the Gulf Stream. Anyway, it was a once-in-a-lifetime-experience (but no thanks, never again) dining in the snow.