A Travel Price Comparison for Norway Tromso vs. Lofoten Islands for Hiking, Couples, Food, and Families

Should you visit Tromso or Lofoten Islands?

Which is cheaper to visit? Which is more expensive for vacation?

Trying to figure out where to travel next? This travel comparison between Tromso and Lofoten Islands can help. It includes a travel cost comparison in addition to other factors. For many travelers, the cost of a destination is a primary consideration when choosing where to go.

Tromso

Tromso is a remote, one-of-a-kind, and spectacular town. This is a great small town that is just waiting to be explored. You'll find world class beauty here as well. And you can't forget about the food, hiking, and nightlife.

Lofoten Islands

Lofoten Islands is a dramatic, remote, and pristine archipelago. Many visitors also come because of it's amazing beauty. It's also popular because of the food, beaches, and hiking.

Tromso and Lofoten Islands: Pros and Cons

Pros
  • Active nightlife
  • Good for hiking
  • Family-friendly
  • Good for couples and romance
  • Good for backpackers and budget travelers
  • Good for students
  • Very walkable
  • Small town charm
  • Impressive beauty
  • Home to the Northern Lights
Pros
  • Popular museums and historical sights
  • Popular beach
  • Scenic old town
  • Good for hiking
  • Family-friendly
  • Good for couples and romance
  • Good for backpackers and budget travelers
  • Impressive beauty
Things to Consider
  • Less popular for nightlife
  • Less walkable


Is there more to do in Tromso or Lofoten Islands?

Tourists will generally find more to do in Lofoten Islands. Although Tromso and Lofoten Islands are both popular with visitors, Lofoten Islands has more sights, activities, and attractions for travelers. Lofoten Islands is more popular for its museums, beaches, historical sights, hiking, and shopping, while Tromso is known for its nightlife and small town charm. Tromso is more touristy than Lofoten Islands and is popular for its stunning nature, beautiful Arctic landscape, and breathtaking fjords. Lofoten Islands is popular for its dramatic mountain peaks, beautiful fjords, remote setting, and colorful houses. It is also home to The Svolvær Goat Trail.

How is Tromso different from Lofoten Islands?

Which is Better for a Holiday?

Let's take a look at the differences and similarities between Lofoten Islands and Tromso. Then, you can decide for yourself which place is better for your next trip.

Are the Museums and Historical Sights Better in Tromso or Lofoten Islands?

Tromso
Lofoten Islands

Lofoten Islands is a archipelago with good options for its historical sights. However, Tromso does not have museums and landmarks.

If you're looking for an educational opportunity, there are a decent number of museums and historical sights around Lofoten Islands. The charming towns often have local museums that highlight the region's history and culture. The Lofoten War Memorial Museum is in the town of Svolvaer. The Lofotr Viking Museum is on the island of Vestvågøy and the Lofoten Museum is in Kabelvåg.

Tromso does not have museums and landmarks. You can learn about everything having to do with the Arctic at the museum, Polaria. There's also the the Polar Museum, the Arctic Cathedral, and Nordnorsk Kunstmuseum.


Is the Food Better in Tromso or Lofoten Islands? Which Destination has the Best Restaurants?

Tromso
Lofoten Islands

Dining out at restaurants in both Tromso and Lofoten Islands can be an enjoyable experience.

Tromso has a number of nationally recognized food spots and restaurants. Fish is the staple around town and you'll find local seasonal fish dishes. There are also modern restaurants that serve international cuisines or trendy options.

With its innovative style combined with traditional elements, Lofoten Islands makes for a great culinary experience. Fish and lamb are both common at most restaurants in the area. The food is fresh, delicious, and filling, and although it's expensive, it's also high quality and uniquely local.

Is Tromso or Lofoten Islands Better for Nightlife?

Tromso
Lofoten Islands

Tromso is very good for nightlife and partying. However, Lofoten Islands is not a good archipelago for its evening party scene.

There's a variety of activities in the evening in Tromso. There's a good nightlife scene with many bars and clubs that are popular with locals and tourists alike.

Those looking for nightlife will find a few places to hang out in Lofoten Islands. Some towns have local bars and pubs that are fun places to grab a drink.

Is Tromso or Lofoten Islands Better for Beaches?

Tromso
Lofoten Islands

Lofoten Islands is a great archipelago for the beach. However, Tromso is not a beach destination.

The beaches at Lofoten Islands attract visitors from all over. Most people don't think of the Arctic when they think about beaches, but these islands have long sandy beaches that meet blue waters. They're tucked in between valleys and mountains and offer a surreal Arctic landscape.

Tromso is not a beach destination.


Is Tromso or Lofoten Islands Better for its Old Town?

Tromso
Lofoten Islands

Lofoten Islands is a great archipelago for its historic old town charm. However, Tromso does not have a historic old town.

Lofoten Islands is an extremely popular place to visit the historic old town area. The islands are filled with well-preserved fishing villages that are charming and quaint.

Tromso does not have a historic old town.

Is Tromso or Lofoten Islands Better for Hiking?

Tromso
Lofoten Islands

Lofoten Islands is an unbeatable place for hiking. Also, Tromso is not as popular, but is still a nice town for the nearby hiking options.

Around Lofoten Islands visitors will find world-class hiking trails. It's remote setting and dramatic scenery lead to some truly breathtaking hikes. You'll find trails that pass by beautiful beaches, climb spectacular peaks, and wander through the beautiful countryside. Reinebringen, Horseid Beach, and Bunes Beach are among the favorite hikes in the area.

Tromso is a popular spot for hiking. The surrounding countryside is filled with fjords, mountains, and pristine wilderness. There are hikes that cater to every level, and a trip to Tromso is not complete without heading into the rural areas.

Is the Shopping Better in Tromso or Lofoten Islands?

Tromso
Lofoten Islands

Lofoten Islands is a archipelago with good options for its shopping areas. However, Tromso is not known for shopping.

Lofoten Islands has a variety of shopping areas worth visiting. There are quirky local shops that sell local art, food, and merchandise.

Tromso is a good destination for shopping. There are shops sprinkled along the main street, as well as a shopping center or two around town.


Is Tromso or Lofoten Islands Better for Families?

Tromso
Lofoten Islands

Both Tromso and Lofoten Islands are superb to visit with kids.

You'll find plenty of family-friendly things to do in Tromso. Whether you visit during the summer or winter season, there are a number of indoor or outdoor activities around town. Many visitors come during the winter months to see the Northern Lights. There's also the Ice Hotel, Husky Sledding, and fjords cruises. Indoors, you'll find the Science Center, the Arctic University Museum, and the Troll Museum.

Lofoten Islands is a very family-friendly place to visit. Outdoor adventures await at this breathtaking archipelago. There's kayaking, hiking, whale watch, and even a few Viking museums that the kids will enjoy.

Is Tromso or Lofoten Islands Better for Couples?

Tromso
Lofoten Islands

Lofoten Islands is an unbeatable place for couples. Also, Tromso is not as popular, but is still a nice town for romance.

Lofoten Islands is a great archipelago for couples, as it has plenty to offer. Stunning views, dramatic fjords, and world class outdoor adventures make this an amazing romantic destination for couples. If you enjoy the outdoors and adventure activities, then there is no shortage of opportunities to explore here.

Tromso is a very popular place to visit for couples. For many couples, seeing the Northern Lights is an iconic romantic experience. The area also has an amazing outdoor setting with fjords and hiking. Indoors, there are art museums and more.

Is Tromso or Lofoten Islands Better for Backpackers and Budget Travelers?

Tromso
Lofoten Islands

Lofoten Islands is a great archipelago for backpackers and budget travelers. Also, Tromso is not as popular, but is still a nice town for backpackers.

Plenty of budget travelers and backpackers visit Lofoten Islands. There are plenty of hostels around but transportation can be a bit tricky.

Plenty of backpackers visit Tromso. There are hostels as well as camping in the area that make this otherwise expensive area somewhat more affordable.


Is Tromso or Lofoten Islands Better for Students?

Tromso
Lofoten Islands

Tromso is very good for students. However, Lofoten Islands is not popular with students.

Tromso is a good town to visit for students. Although it's a very small city, there are a large number of students and some big city amenities. There are plenty of entertainment options both in town and in the surrounding countryside.

Lofoten Islands is not popular with students.

Is Tromso or Lofoten Islands Better for Public Transit? Which Is Easier to Get Around Without a Car?

Tromso
Lofoten Islands

Tromso is very good for its public transit. However, Lofoten Islands is not a good archipelago for times when you don't have a car.

Tromso has a few public transit options. There's an efficient and reliable bus system in town.

Public transit is mostly limited in Lofoten Islands. There are buses and ferries, but the service is limited, although reliable.

Is Tromso or Lofoten Islands a more walkable city?

Tromso
Lofoten Islands

Tromso is a well-known place for its high level of walkability. However, Lofoten Islands is not a good archipelago for its ease of walking around.

Tromso is a very walkable town. The city is generally walkable but if you want to get into the countryside you'll need to travel by car or bus.

Lofoten Islands is not a very walkable town. Although the area is filled with hikes, you really must have a car if you hope to explore it with flexibility and accessibility.


For even more information, also check out Is Tromso Worth Visiting? and Is Lofoten Islands Worth Visiting?.

Should I spend more time in Lofoten Islands or Tromso?

How long in Tromso or Lofoten Islands?

Both Tromso and Lofoten Islands have a number of activities to choose from. In our opinion, Lofoten Islands has more to see and do, so we recommend spending more time in Lofoten Islands than Tromso. However, 4-7 days is a good amount of time to spend in either destination.

Families should spend more time in Lofoten Islands than Tromso. Because of the many family-friendly attractions and fun things to do for kids in Lofoten Islands, it's a great place to visit with the whole family.

Couples should spend more time in Lofoten Islands than Tromso. You'll find plenty of romantic sights and fun activities in Lofoten Islands that are perfect for a weekend getaway or a longer couple's trip.

Backpackers and budget travelers should spend more time in Lofoten Islands than Tromso if your budget allows for it. With a larger number of budget-friendly sights, good nightlife, and active things to do, anyone traveling on a budget would have a good time in Lofoten Islands.


  • How many days in Tromso or Lofoten Islands? Ideal Length of Stay
    Tromso 4-7 
    Lofoten Islands 4-7

One day in Tromso or Lofoten Islands?

Tromso is a small town with plenty to do. Make sure you spend some time hiking while you're in the area. Take your pick from the many activities offered here. One day is usually not enough time for a trip here as there is plenty to do.

Many travelers enjoy the shopping and museums when visiting the destination of Lofoten Islands. Hikers are also drawn to this area. But since there are so many activities, you'll likely want to spend more than one day exploring.

A weekend in Tromso or Lofoten Islands?

Tromso might be a small town, but there's plenty to do in the area. Many travelers plan to spend time hiking while in the area. The entire region has so many activities, and you'll want time to do everything. Since there is so much to do in the area, a weekend is probably not enough for all of it.

Lofoten Islands is a great place to explore. Don't miss the hiking, as that's what most people do. With so much to do, a weekend is probably not enough time to see everything. Your budget might influence how long you stay.

Five days in Tromso or Lofoten Islands?

Tromso is a great place to explore. Hiking can easily take up a good amount of your time here, too. This town offers something for everyone. It is common to spend five days here. Five days is often enough time to do most activities.

It's hard to know how much time to spend in Lofoten Islands. Don't miss the hiking, as that's what most people do. For many, it makes a great getaway for five days. Make sure you spend some time hiking while you're in the area. With all of its activities, you can easily fill five days here. It has many unique tourist attractions and fascinating things to do.


A week in Tromso or Lofoten Islands?

Tromso is a small town where visitors enjoy the food and nightlife. Hikers are also drawn to this area. The length of your trip often depends on your style of travel. For many, it makes a great getaway for one week. Because of this, one week is usually enough time for a trip here.

Many travelers enjoy the shopping and museums when visiting the pristine destination of Lofoten Islands. This archipelago offers a variety of activities to choose from. Many travelers plan to spend time hiking while in the area. If you have one week, this is a great place to go. This would be the perfect place to spend one week, as it has just the right amount of activities.


For some great organized tour ideas, see The Best Coach Bus Tours in Norway, The Best Adventure Tours to Norway, The Best Sightseeing Tours in Norway, and The Best Romantic Tours for Couples in Norway.


Which place is cheaper, Lofoten Islands or Tromso?

These are the overall average travel costs for the two destinations.

The average daily cost (per person) in Tromso is $115, while the average daily cost in Lofoten Islands is $55. These costs include accommodation (assuming double occupancy, so the traveler is sharing the room), food, transportation, and entertainment. While every person is different, these costs are an average of past travelers in each destination. What follows is a categorical breakdown of travel costs for Tromso and Lofoten Islands in more detail.



Accommodation
  • Accommodation Hotel or hostel for one person
    Tromso $57
    Lofoten Islands $7.36
  • Accommodation Typical double-occupancy room
    Tromso $114
    Lofoten Islands $15
Compare Hotels in Tromso and Lofoten Islands

Looking for a hotel in Tromso or Lofoten Islands? Prices vary by location, date, season, and the level of luxury. See below for options and compare which is best for your budget and travel style.

Hotels in Tromso


Hotels in Lofoten Islands


Kayak helps you find the best prices for hotels, flights, and rental cars for destinations around the world. Compare prices for multiple destinations when planning your next trip.


Our Analysis
We've analyzed the average and typical hotel prices based on guest reviews, star ratings, and hotel amenities here: Tromso Hotel Prices.

Local Transportation
  • Local Transportation Taxis, local buses, subway, etc.
    Tromso $30
    Lofoten Islands $11

Is it cheaper to fly into Tromso or Lofoten Islands?

Prices for flights to both Lofoten Islands and Tromso change regularly based on dates and travel demand. We suggest you find the best prices for your next trip on Kayak, because you can compare the cost of flights across multiple airlines for your prefered dates.





Food
  • Food Meals for one day
    Tromso $39
    Lofoten Islands $35

Food Tours and Cooking Classes in Tromso

For Tromso, here are some samples of tours and activities related to meals and dining experiences:

  • Night Reindeer Sledding with Camp Dinner and Chance of Northern Lights: $191
  • Fjord Cruise Expedition with Dinner,Tromso: $211
  • Luxury Northern Lights Cruise with Hot Tub and Dinner: $257

Entertainment
  • Entertainment Entrance tickets, shows, etc.
    Tromso $17
    Lofoten Islands $25

Tours and Activities in Tromso

Also, here are some specific examples of entertainment, tickets, and activities for Tromso.

  • Touring-Trekking Bicycle Rental in Tromso - 1 to 2 Days: $47
  • Tromso Embrace the Spirits of the North Tasting Experience: $65
  • 1 Hour Photo & History Cruise: $85
  • Sightseeing and hike with Tromso Outdoor: $94
  • Northern Light 4 hours cruise with MS Strønstad : $95
  • Tour in Tromso through the Fjords and Sommaroy: $106
  • Northern Lights Walking Tour: $114
  • Half Day Arctic Fjord Cruise from Tromso: $120
  • Tromsø, Northern Lights and Wilderness Evening Catamaran Cruise: $123
  • Arctic Fjord Sightseeing by Minibus: $130
  • Puppy Training Experience at a Husky Farm in Tromso: $133
  • Arctic Nature Photography Sightseeing Tour from Tromso: $134

Tours and Activities in Lofoten Islands

Some specific costs of activities, tours, and entrance tickets for Lofoten Islands are as follows:

  • From Leknes port: Special Summer Guided Tour of Lofoten : $130
  • Sadhana Morning Yoga - An Adventure of Awareness: $23
  • Sea Kayak Guided Tours on Skrova Island: $119
  • Small-Group Cultural Walking Tour of Skrova: $34

Alcohol
  • Alcohol Drinks for one day
    Tromso $8.64
    Lofoten Islands $0.74


When we compare the travel costs of actual travelers between Tromso and Lofoten Islands, we can see that Tromso is more expensive. And not only is Lofoten Islands much less expensive, but it is actually a significantly cheaper destination. So, traveling to Lofoten Islands would let you spend less money overall. Or, you could decide to spend more money in Lofoten Islands and be able to afford a more luxurious travel style by staying in nicer hotels, eating at more expensive restaurants, taking tours, and experiencing more activities. The same level of travel in Tromso would naturally cost you much more money, so you would probably want to keep your budget a little tighter in Tromso than you might in Lofoten Islands.

If you're trying to decide if either of these two destinations are within your price range, also see Is Tromso Expensive? and Is Lofoten Islands Expensive?.