At 350 km (217 miles) into the Arctic Circle, the world’s most northerly botanical gardens opened in 1994 and are spread over 1.56 hectares swathed in thousands of plants from across the world. Given the climatic conditions prevalent in Tromsø, the majority of species displayed here are Arctic or alpine species that flourish in the cold, snowy winters and long summer growing season, which is warmed gently by the effects of the Gulf Stream.
Multi-colored Arctic poppies, rhododendrons from the Caucasus and Siberian lilies, mosses, scented herbs and bright-blue gentians thrive on the rocky slopes of the gardens as meandering rocky pathways, ponds and waterfalls lead down to the sparkling blue waters of Tromsø Sound. Displayed by geographical area, the gardens are well signposted in English and have informative labeling to explain each group of plantings, while a Geology Walk at the entrance to the gardens explains many of the rock formations common within the Arctic Circle.
Located at Stakkevollvegen 200, the garden is open daily from late May through early October from 9 a.m. to 5 p.m. Admission is free, and bus No. 20 can be taken from the city center to the Northern Lights Planetarium. The site is also accessible via a 40-minute walk from the city center. The garden is 10 minutes from the cruise harbor.