Thursday 26th of February
Heading to Dublin airport on Thursday the excitement was so high! Our bucket list dream was about to become a reality..
Our flights had been booked from Dublin to Oslo with Ryanair and then a connecting flight from Oslo to Tromso. Each flight was approx. 1hr 30mins and cost us approx €250 in total.
Once we landed in Tromso our hotel was only 5 mins from the Airport. We arrived tired but tremendously excited at about 10pm.
Friday 27th of February
Our Adventure on Friday did not begin until 5pm in the evening. We were to be collected at 5pm by bus and brought to Camp Amok. This gave us plenty of time the first morning to get ourselves together and take in our surroundings. There was a full Buffet available for Breakfast in the hotel, which was very welcome and tasty. We then headed to Tromso, took in the sights and visited the local Museum. We learnt about the way of life up North and about some of the great Explorers, first to explore the North Pole.
At 5pm on the button the bus pulled out heading for our overnight camp in Amok. The journey took about 1 hour but the time went by pretty fast. The scenery was amazing!
On arrival at the snow-covered camp, first impressions were just how stunning the place was. A full campsite with changing Cabins, Chalets, Showers…. it seriously looked like something out of the Santa Clause Movie!!
With the friendly staff at hand to help, we were given our full body suits, boots and gloves to keep us warm in the -2 degrees cold outside.
We started first with Dog Sledding, something I was really looking forward too. We were surprised and excited to find that we were able to drive the dogs ourselves. We soon found though that it was actually quite easy. All we needed to do was to pull the break to slow the dogs down or give them a little encouragement to go faster depending on how brave one was feeling! Of course I was giving yelp’s all the time – the need for speed as a boy racer!!
We spent about 2.5 hours winding our way through the mountains and forests following the instructor all the time for safety. The Tour was done in pairs with each person getting a chance to drive the dogs.
It’s a hard thing to portray in words the journey we experienced that evening but I tell you it’s not one I will forget in a hurry. Not only were we on a Dog Sled in North of Norway in about 5 ft of snow, what was most impressive was while traveling through the Darkness, above our heads was the most magical view I had ever seen. The flashing of green waves from the Northern Lights, dancing above our heads in the stars was so surreal. I have been told about them and seen many amazing pictures but it is not until you experience them at first hand can you realize just how incredible they are.
After our time out on the sleighs we landed back in camp greeted by a warm fire and hot chocolate, it was just perfect! We had an hour before dinner was ready. This gave us time to get back into our warm clothes for the night and spend time with the dogs that had been pulling us around the wilderness. The dogs were so well looked after, it was a joy to see them embrace people and to see the love they had for their trainers. I would not be the biggest dog lover in the world but these dogs were just so special. We would have taken one home with us if we could. We were lucky also to meet “Bertie“, the only dog out of the 88 living on site that went to the North Pole and back.
Dinner that night was in a Sami Tent which was really warm and it just finished off the evening perfectly – we even managed dessert!!
The rest of our night was spent outside drinking Hot Chocolate and gazing up at the Northern Lights. With the colours and movement in the sky it was really hard to believe what we were witnessing. At about 2.30am after a long day we decided to head to bed with the knowledge we had another long day in front of us.
Sat 28th of February
We were woken for breakfast at 8am by the howling of the dogs looking for their morning food! Breakfast was simple but very tasty and well presented with a selection of breads, cheeses, cereals and boiled eggs.
Up next was Snowmobiling. Again, like before it was done in pairs with numerous points along the way for change over if you wanted to take turns driving. We followed in line for about 30 minutes meandering our way through mountains and valleys. At one point we were at a place where all 3 countries (Norway, Sweden and Finland) met. The view was just like a postcard with 360 degrees of snow-capped mountains. We were all so glad we had our cameras. The instructor then brought us across one of the biggest frozen lakes in the north of Norway! We were free to go as fast as we liked and if confident enough we could even try a few skids and donuts!! This was something quite unique and really got the adrenaline pumping, tearing across a lake at about 80km/hr!!
After spending 2.5 hours out on the snowmobiles it was time to head back to camp. On the way back the instructor took us through some testing terrain. It was really exciting. We actually wanted the experience to last forever.
Just like the night before we were greeted back with a hot drink of our choice followed by a lovely dinner in the Sami tent. It was sad to be leaving Camp Namok knowing that we might never experience anything like this again.. It was just so perfect and something I will always remember.
We arrived back to our Hotel In Tromso at 5pm and spent the evening in the local bar going through all the pictures and reminiscing about our experiences in the camp.
Sunday 29th of February
With one more activity still left, the following morning we rose early from our sleep. Out of a choice of activities we had all decided on a half-day of Skiing. So we headed out early and attacked the ski slopes of Tromso. The Ski resort was a little small and probably wouldn’t suit any ski experts out there, but it was just right for us.. It had been a few years since we had been on the slopes. There were two long Red/Blue slopes to avail off and many Blue/Green slopes.
It certainly was the prefect ending to our Norway Adventure…..