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Module 18:
Summer in Norway

From June until August, the days are long, and the nights are short or even non-existent north of the Arctic Circle, where you can experience the midnight sun. Everyone is out and about, basking in the sun after a long and cold winter, barbecuing in parks or on the beach, and enjoying outdoor activities. But you can also go glacier skiing!

In this module, we present a few of the highlights of Norway in summer.


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Støtt in Helgeland.
Photo: Støtt brygge / faroutfocus

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Sites and activities

Warmer weather and lush nature bring Norway to life in summer. Here are a few of the things you don’t want to miss.

Hiking, climbing, cycling, running (or just relaxing on the beach)

From south to north, you can embark on everything from easy urban strolls to challenging climbs and via ferratas. Summer is peak season for numerous outdoor activities. Hike up to stunning views in Tromsø, Bergen, and Ålesund and stroll by the fjord as the sun sets in Oslo. Go fishing or swimming in lakes and fjords, and mountain biking on Rallarvegen near the Hardangervidda mountain plateau. Conquer stunning peaks in Lofoten and relax on the beach in Southern Norway. Keep fit and push yourself by lacing up for Tromsø’s unforgettable Midnight Sun Marathon.

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Find extra information on Visitnorway.com
Hjørundfjorden
Hjørundfjorden.
Photo: Mattias Fredriksson/visitnorway.com

Festivals and events

From jazz to rock, and food to arts and crafts — there is a lot happening in summer. Experience live music at open-air concerts and sample delicious and sustainable local food and drink. Don’t miss Palmesus, Scandinavia’s biggest beach party featuring top international and Norwegian artists, in Kristiansand.

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A band performing in front of a big audience at Granittrock festival in Oslo
Granittrock, Oslo.
Photo: Granittrock

Dive into summer

If winter is the time to head for the slopes and heat up by a fireplace in your cabin, summer is all about enjoying the water. Southern Norway is famous for its beaches and archipelagos, but you will also find some amazing beaches in Trøndelag, Jæren, Fjord Norway, and Northern Norway. With one of the longest coastlines in the world, you have tons of options to choose from. Why not try snorkelling or scuba diving?

Bring the kids to an amusement park or a water park, such as Bø Sommerland. Don’t worry if it’s raining – there are plenty of indoor aquatic centres and resort hotels with pools and slides where you can spend a few hours on a rainy day!

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Couple in the Skerries in Southern Norway
Couple in the Skerries.
Photo: Magnus Furset

Discover top attractions

The National Museum in Oslo is the biggest art museum in the Nordic countries. Discover a vast collection of the finest art, architecture, and design in Norway. Experience Norway from the road on a National Scenic Route with stops featuring cutting-edge and sustainable architecture. Sample delicious eats in Trøndelag, the European Region of Gastronomy 2022, and exciting WWII history at the heavy water basement in Rjukan. 

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People at Stegastein viewpoint along Norwegian Scenic Route Aurlandsfjellet on a sunny summer day
Stegastein viewpoint at Norwegian Scenic Route Aurlandsfjellet.
Photo: Kjetil Rolseth / Statens vegvesen

Roam where you want to

The Norwegian right to roam gives you free access to nature, whether you are on the coast or in the mountains. Head out camping (or glamping) or stay in a treetop cabin and wake up to the sound of twittering birds. With everything from lighthouses and fishermen’s cabins to luxurious, traditional hotels throughout the country, Norway has plenty of accommodation options that will make for a memorable holiday no matter where you end up staying the night.

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Two persons sitting next to their tents whilst enjoying the view
Camping in Kåfjord.
Photo: Magnus Ström/ www.nordnorge.com / Kåfjord

Quintessentially Norwegian experiences

The locals celebrate Midsummer Eve, or Sankthansaften (Saint John’s Eve), on 23 June. Outdoor parties with bonfires take place all over Norway, especially along the coast or up in the mountains. And the Norwegians take their bonfires seriously – in 2016, residents in Ålesund built the world’s largest open-air fire.

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White, wooden houses in Old Stavanger. Photo: Arnold Lan
Wooden houses in Stavanger.
Photo: Arnold Lan

A taste of summer

A typical summer dish is made of freshly caught fish, for example mackerel served with sour cream, new potatoes, and cucumber salad. Peeling and eating prawns purchased straight from the boat, enjoyed right at the dock or served with white bread, mayonnaise, and white wine is another favourite. Hike through the woods and pick your own blueberries, or visit a farm and pick strawberries or morello cherries. To sample local flavours with a little more luxury, book a table at a Michelin-starred restaurant or visit Under, the world’s largest underwater restaurant.

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Inside the underwater restaurant Under in Lindesnes, Southern Norway
The underwater restaurant Under in Lindesnes.
Photo: Ivar Kvaal

Summer climate

Sol de medianoche sobre Lofoten
Lofoten.
Photo: Jørn Allan Pedersen / Visitnorway.com

Sunshine at midnight?

From late June to early August, it never gets completely dark anywhere in the country. But if you want to experience the midnight sun, you have to travel to Northern Norway. The further north you go, the more nights of midnight sun you get. There are plenty of cool things to do with the extra hours – go kayaking, hiking, or fishing in the middle of the night, or visit one of the top places to experience the phenomenon in all its glory.

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Lighthouse at Slettnes in midnight sun
Slettnes in Nordkyn.
Photo: Christoffer Robin Jensen

Test your knowledge

Finished the module? Check your knowledge by doing the test below.

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What clothing should visitors pack for summer in Norway? Select all that apply.

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Is it possible to go skiing in summer?

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Which of the following is *not* a typical Norwegian summer dish?

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The sun shining next to a wood shed in Jomfruland, Kragerø - Eastern Norway
Summer vacation in Jomfruland.
Photo: Visit Kragerø