The Polar Museum (Polarmuseet), Tromso

4.1
#1 of 17 in Museums in Tromso
Dedicated to Norway's long tradition of Arctic exploration, The Polar Museum (Polarmuseet) catalogues the history of science, human survival, and industry in the world's coldest reaches. Visit the museum, housed in an early 19th-century wooden warehouse, for a glimpse of the vessels, machines, and equipment that helped to transport humans to the ends of the earth. Keep in mind as you wander the exhibits that although whaling, bear hunting, and seal trapping is controversial today, these methods played a vital role in sustaining the region and spurring further discovery during the 19th and early 20th centuries. Don't miss the special exhibition dedicated to Roald Amundsen's Antarctic exploits. Before you head to Tromso, plan trip itinerary details with our user-friendly Tromso day trip website , to make sure you see all that Tromso has to offer, including The Polar Museum (Polarmuseet).
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The Polar Museum (Polarmuseet) Reviews
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  • This museum provides a great insight to the history of the region, it’s culture and of Amundsen’s explorations. It’s certainly worth a visit. If you only have time to visit the polaria or here then go...  more »
  • Worth a visit - some interesting facts and exhibits about polar exploration and the history of the fur trade etc. in Norway. Very busy on the day we visited.  more »
  • This was one of the most interesting places I’ve visited in a long time. I felt like a kid playing with all interesting and educational things had. This was really fun and caught the interest of all a...  more »
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  • Very interesting exhibition. Flyers available in different languages and they say in a very nice way the history of artic exploration. English guide has more information than other languages.
  • Oh man, this place is brutal. Upon entering you'll see a recreation of a arctic hut, with a few mannequins in various work poses- and inexplicably accompanied by a looped soundtrack of baying & yelping dogs. Across from this is a taxidermy fox caught in a metal bear tap, next to two more taxidermied foxes investigating their own mortality in the form of a crush trap. Next up is a full size reenactment of a mannequin clubbing a taxidermied baby seal, while it's taxidermied mother looks on, immobilized in a nearby boat. The museum focuses on arctic industry, so hunting & trapping take up a large portion, although there are some interesting exhibits on expeditions to the north pole, maritime economy (including a number of old clocks and a ship's wheel). Roald Amundsen gets almost an entire floor to himself, including memorabilia from his expeditions & his (taxidermied) pet dog. Past the Amundsen section is a bit about the 'polar bear king', who was so named because he killed over 600 of them in his lifetime. To drive the polar bear theme home, there are also mummified polar bear organs on display next to an explanation of how to skin & butcher a bear- complete with color photos of a polar bear being eviscerated in what appears to be a church hall. Finally at the very top of the museum is a recreated office, complete with polar bear skin rug, plenty of taxidermied heads and one small, taxidermied baby moose? reindeer? I didn't get close enough to find out. There are chairs set up here if you need to sit down and take it all in. Head back downstairs to the lobby, and before you leave step into the room opposite the ticket desk, which was empty except for an 'ice sheet' hanging from the ceiling and a couple of wall placards explaining polar ice.
  • I wasn't expecting much but it's very well done and fascinating look into the life of the early artic explorers. You can borrow a guide book in English if you wanted. I enjoyed this more than the Polarium.
  • A very interesting museum, lot of history about Norway and Arctic in general. Unfortunately all the information is in local language, and at the entrance they give you a small book in your language with some description of what you are going to see, but sometimes it's difficult to find correspondence between what you see in the museum and what you are reading. An audio guide or some description in English would really help.
  • Must see! very interesting museum about the artic mission of the XIXth century

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Where to stay in Tromso

Tromso is a major tourist destination in northern Norway and offers a range of accommodations. In the city center, take your pick from numerous hotels at varying prices and within walking distance to restaurants, nightlife, and tourist attractions. If you've come for the city's main attraction, the northern lights, check out a number of offbeat accommodations that bring you closer to nature. Consider staying in a cabin or fishermen’s cottage near the city, with a fjord or the sea as your backdrop. Alternatively, experience the local culture by renting a room from a family.
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