About the Polarmuseum

What did hunters/trappers and explorers encounter in the far north? Here at the Polar Museum, you can learn about expeditions, everyday life and adventures in the Arctic from the 17th century up to the present day.

With its location far to the north, Tromsø has served as the gateway to the Arctic for adventurers, hunters and researchers. Our exhibitions convey fascinating stories such as explorer Willem Barents’ very first encounter with a polar bear, daring hot air balloon expeditions over the polar regions and lonely Christmases in a trapper’s hut.

The exhibitions communicate polar history with national and local roots. Our permanent exhibitions are about sealing, overwintering, polar expeditions and the cultural history of Svalbard. The temporary exhibition are based on new polar research. 


The Polar Museum is one of the four exhibition arenas that constitute the Arctic University Museum of Norway. The others are the sealing vessel MS Polstjerna, the Arctic University Museum of Norway and the Tromsø Arctic-Alpine Botanical Garden.