Drinking and nightlife in The Far North

  • Top ChoiceNightlife in Western Finnmark


    For a shiver in summer and a sense of how Nordkapp must hit the senses in winter, visit Artico (adult/child 139/40kr), one of Norway's original ice bars. Owner, Spaniard José Milares, a polar photographer and adventurer, talks with passion about the shapes, bubbles and inadvertent abstract art in the pure ice that he garners afresh each season. The kids can crawl into an igloo that he constructs each year.

  • Nightlife in Tromsø


    Reputedly the oldest pub in town, and once the hang-out for salty fishermen and Arctic sailors, this is now the brewpub for the excellent Mack Brewery. There are 67 Norwegian ales on tap to try – including a selection from Mack's own brewery and microbrewery – so it might take you a while (and a few livers) to work your way through them all. Rather peculiarly, it closes at 8.30pm from Monday to Wednesday. Dedicated beerophiles can also arrange guided tours of the microbrewery next door.

  • Nightlife in Tromsø


    Bastard (with the stress on the second syllable; let's not get unwittingly confrontational) is a cool basement hangout with low beams and white, furry walls (no polar bears killed during construction). It engages art-house and underground DJs (Friday and Saturday) and bands (up to three times weekly). Showing UK and Norwegian football, it also has a faithful following of armchair-sporting regulars. The house sausages, stuffed specially for Bastard, go well with beer and can stave off those wee-hours hunger pangs.

  • Nightlife in Tromsø


    Norway's oldest film house will satisfy both cinephiles and those in search of a great cafe. The bar is a hip place with free wi-fi and weekend DJs. At other times, the bartender spins from the huge collection of vinyl records, so expect anything from classical music to deepest underground. Ask staff to let you peek into the magnificent cinema with its early-20th-century murals.

  • Nightlife in Tromsø


    Former cinema Bardus serves up Oscar-worthy cocktails and a selection of local beers to a mature crowd. It's smart without being pretentious, with weighty wooden tables, sofa seating and potted bamboo trees lending a relaxed vibe. Try its signature seaweed cocktail: a tongue-tingling sensation of gin, vermouth and distilled seaweed that tastes infinitely better than it sounds.

  • Nightlife in Eastern Finnmark

    Nordpol Kro

    Dating from 1858, with wooden boards and antique bric-a-brac, Nordpol Kro lays good claim to being northern Norway's oldest eatery. Your friendly landlord, Bjørn Bredesen, has what must be just about anywhere's most comprehensive collection of beer mats. Pick the right night and you can enjoy live music too.

  • Nightlife in Western Finnmark


    There may not be many places to drink in Alta, but this sassy little spot takes up the slack through sheer variety – they serve great coffee, good beer and exotic cocktails, have live music from time to time and there's even a dance floor.

  • Nightlife in Tromsø

    Blå Rock Café

    The loudest, most down 'n' dirty bar in Tromsø packs people in for live music (rock, naturally) and sports, and professes to have the best burgers in town. There's almost 50 brands of beer to wash them down. Kitchen open until 11pm daily

  • Nightlife in Tromsø


    One of our favourite Tromsø cafes, this cool little spot right in the town centre does the city's best coffee, accompanied by tasty pastries.

  • Nightlife in Tromsø


    One building, two venues. Downstairs, Circa is a cavernous cafe-bar with a retro aesthetic that serves light meals by day on Friday and Saturday, and morphs into a cool space for cocktails and clubbers after dark. Upstairs, Presis is more chilled, with a tapas menu.

  • Nightlife in Western Finnmark

    Nøden Pub

    This local favourite near the Scandic Hotel Honningsvåg often has live music, and is more of a local haunt than tourist hot spot. The local chapter of the Manchester United Supporters Club meets here for every game.

  • Nightlife in Tromsø


    Skarven has an extensive waterfront terrace and offers fine bar meals and an agreeable atmosphere. It's a fairly generic Norwegian experience by the water, but it's still lively and fun.

  • Nightlife in Tromsø

    Tromsø Jernbanestasjon

    This engaging railway-themed pub with its ex-train-carriage seating is typical local humour – Tromsø has never, ever had a railway station.