The Visitor Centre: Sážžá Senja Nature Centre & Museum

For more information about the Park and Senja in general, we recommend you visit the Sážžá Nature Centre and Museum. Sážžá is situated in the former Øverbotn schoolhouse. Inside, there is a display hall, also a coffee-shop, community hall, offices, courses and conference facilities, also exhibitions of art and culture. Outdoors in the grounds you’ll find further information and an activity area. The building and its facilities are a meeting-place and business centre to many, whilst also serving as a central connection between the National Park and the Midt-Troms Museum.

Sážžá Senja Nature Centre & Museum Photo: Ingve Birkeland

Sážžá Senja Nature Centre & Museum Photo: Ingve Birkeland

 The interactive display Sážžá Senja People and Nature presents the nature and culture of Senja, with special focus on Ånderdalen National Park and other protected areas around Senja. Focus is on the cultural history of the reindeer husbandry and Sami who made their living from fisheries and small farms. Other features to enjoy are a film about outdoor recreation Outside there is a nature trail you can follow, or you can go and look for information on Senja by visiting our giant bird-box, as provided by the Troms and Finnmark Country Governor office. In the bird-box you can read about the birds, wetlands, and protected areas of Senja island. On the nature trail billboards there is the opportunity to learn about biological diversity and sustainability.

Outdoor Recreation

The Park has a unique value in its variation in landscapes over such short distances. There are many trails that lead into the Park. From Hyttekroa in Tranøybotn you can take day trips from either the designated entry-port and along the specially made gravel access track, or along the boardwalk pathway into Ånderdalen up to its picnic area with benches and fire-pit.

At Åndervatnet (lake) you’ll find Ånderbu, which is an open hut available for day trip use or overnighting. On the southern shores of Åndervatnet lies Åndergammen which is a traditional-style simple turf shelter.
Take advantage of the opportunity to hunt and fish but remember you will need a license to do this.

Ice-fishing. Photo: Rikki Martin Langnes

Ptarmigan-hunting in Ånderdalen. Photo: Ingve Birkeland

Capturing the moment with a photograph. Photo: Anne-Katrine Borander

Photo 1: Ice-fishing. Photo: Rikki Martin Langnes. Photo 2. Ptarmigan-hunting in Ånderdalen.  Photo: Ingve Birkeland.
Photo 3: Capturing the moment with a photograph.  Photo: Anne-Katrine Borander 

There are many streams and rivers in Ånderdalen. Photo: Rikki Martin Langnes

‘Senja Traverse’

These days it is mostly the modern outdoor person with their sturdy hiking boots and technical waterproofs exploring the Park. A popular route is the Park’s section of the ‘Senja Traverse’, a long-distance hike that follows from Istinden and its mountain pass to Kaperdalen in the North, to Durmålsfjellet in the South. From the Gjeska coast to Åndervatnet (lake) and onwards to Tranøybotn there is also another well-marked trail.

The DNT (‘Den Norske Turistforegning’) ‘Senja Traverse’ marked tourist hiking trail passes through the central core of the Park. The main track goes between Olaheimen in South Senja and Lysvatnet (lake) in North Senja. In the Park there are two paths that branch from the ‘Senja Traverse’ main trail, connecting the trail to the outskirts of the Park. One path connects to Gjeska on the outer coast. The other to Tranøybotn on the inner coast, where there is an entry-port and car park with toilet facilities.

At Åndervatnet (lake), Ånderbu and Åndergammen are two places you can shelter indoors for a night. However, you will also find plenty of fantastic tent-sites along the trail.

Senja from Coast to Coast

From Gjeska til Tranøybotn there is a marked trail bisecting the Park. Although it is possible to complete this trail in one day, it is recommended to plan an overnight stay in Kaperdalen or besides Åndervatnet (lake). You can then try your luck fishing in the many lakes along the path and savour the difference between the ‘outer’ periphery and ‘inner’ reaches of the Park.

Laksefiske i Ånderelva. Photo: Ingve Birkeland

Enjoying the warmth of a fire in winter. Photo: Dag Arild Larsen

The Norwegian Public Right of Access Code

Norway has a common right to open access of wild places, which is a free right and an important part of Norwegian cultural heritage. Applying such Public Right of Access, one is entitled to use without permission of the landowner all non-cultivated or rough grazing areas (in practical terms, all non-enclosed areas). The premise is that nature is for everyone who is careful at using it and who aims to leave no trace or tracks after them.

By Public Right of Access you can set up your tent and sleep almost anywhere you like, in wild-country camp style. However, there are a few rules to abide by. Be careful not to damage saplings when you set up camp and make sure you never camp closer than 150m to occupied houses or huts. As a rule, do not camp for more than two days at the same site. However, in the high mountains or a long way from where people are living, you can camp for longer. If you are in areas that may be fields or pastureland you do need to ask permission to camp or use the land as your rights do not extend to such places.

Lighting fires in forest or elsewhere is forbidden between April 15th and September 15th yet allowed at designated fire-pits where you will also find dry firewood available to use. Even at designated fire-pits, always consider carefully how safe it is to start your fire, and never leave a fire until you are satisfied that it is completely extinguished. Remember to always tidy-up after yourself before you leave and don’t try to burn non-burnable items on the fires (foil, cans). Take any litter home with you.

In the uplands one can walk or ski wherever you like. Horse-riding or cycling is only permitted on trails designed for these purposes. In Ånderdalen there are no tracks specifically for horse-riding. For bicycling you can use the all-purpose gravel track at Tranøybotn. It is permitted to pick berries and mushrooms as part of your Access Rights.

If you want to fish for Atlantic Salmon, Sea Trout and Arctic Char in the tributaries you need to pay for a fishing permit to the State. You can generally purchase a license to fish from landowners. For lake-fishing you can buy a permit from (Opens in new tab). For those aged under 20 or over 67, lake-fishing on State Forestry land is free.

Both outside and inside enclosed pastures you must always remember to shut all gates after use and be considerate around grazing animals. If you have a dog, you need to remember Norway has strict on-leash laws from April 1st to August 20th.

In Ånderdalen you make your own ski tracks. Photo: Dag Arild Larsen

Experience the silence at Ånderdalen. Photo: Madeleine Hanssen.

Explore Senja!

Ånderdalen National Park is situated on Senja, Norway’s second-largest island. Senja has a very varied natural history and geography, offering interesting experiences for all.

‘Visit Senja’ is a regional tourism association which serves tour operators offering recreational opportunities for tourists in the Senja and Dyrøy municipalities. To date, the association has approximately 50 operator members. ‘Visit Senja’ tour operators offer tourists a range of accommodation, outdoor activities, and cultural experiences in a diversity of locations. Through ‘Visit Senja’ experiences you can learn about nature, local culture and the way of life of our small fishing communities.

To see the wide range of tourist opportunities on offer, visit the homepage of the ‘Visit Senja’ website. You will find there the contact and destination details of all our operator members.

Brochure and Map

There is work in progress towards a new information pamphlet for the Park. When it is complete you will find copies of it here, along with a map of the area and link to, a website where you can design your own map to suit your purposes.

On (Opens in new tab) you can make your own hiking map. Set-up the margins of the map around area you wish to explore and then employ the ‘Create Tour Map’ (‘lag turkart’) toolbars on the menu to the left of the display.

Ånderdalen offers countless opportunities for photography. Phhoto: Anne-Katrine Borander.