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Arctic landscape Svalbard
Photo: Roy Mangersnes/wildphoto.no/www.nordnorge.com

The realm of the polar bear

The Svalbard Islands are located in the Arctic Ocean, halfway between Norway and the North Pole. Here, you will find untouched arctic wilderness and unique wildlife in a setting that is both rugged and fragile at the same time.

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Longyearbyen, Svalbard
Colored houses in Longyearbyen
Visit Svalbard
Ole Jørgen Liodden/Naturfokus/ www.nordnorge.com/Longyearbyen
Polar bear in Svalbard
Ole J Liodden/Naturfokus/ www.nordnorge.com/Longyearbyen
Reindeer grazing in front of the seed vault
Renato Granieri/Visitnorway.com
Dog sledding in Longyearbyen
Björn Klauer/www.nordnorge.com/Longyearbyen

A sustainable destination

Many places follow sustainable principles, but being certified as a sustainable destination is an honour few qualify for. It takes years of work demonstrating their lasting commitment to providing the best possible experiences for their guests, while keeping the negative impact of tourism to a minimum. In addition, the destination must work to continually improve its business practices and relations with the local community, whilst safeguarding their natural and cultural assets, history and traditions.

Find out more about sustainability in Norway

Sustainable destination

Find activities and attractions

Join a boat trip to watch the arctic landscape and wildlife. Or try dog sledding or a snowmobile safari.

Photo: Marcela Cardenas / www.nordnorge.com / Longyearbyen
Photo: Marcela Cardenas / www.nordnorge.com / Longyearbyen

A word from our sponsors

Getting here and around

Remember that Svalbard is not part of the Schengen area, so passports must be brought by all non-Norwegian visitors. Get in-depth travel information on Svalbard’s official website.

  • Svalbard snowmobile

    By snowmobile

    There are only about 46 kilometres of road on the Svalbard Islands. Driving off-road is strictly prohibited.

    There are no roads between the various settlements. Instead, locals use boats in summer and snowmobiles in winter. Snowmobiles can be rented in Longyearbyen.

  • Svalbard boat

    By boat

    There is no regular boat transportation between the Norwegian mainland and Svalbard.

    Several companies offer Svalbard safaries and round trips, but these do not offer passage to and from the mainland. You have to make your way to Svalbard through other means.

    Check out ferry and cruise companies in Svalbard.

  • Svalbard plane

    By plane

    There are daily flights to and from Svalbard throughout the year, and frequency increases in the summer.

    Flight time is around 3 hours from Oslo and 1,5–2 hours from Tromsø.

    An airport shuttle service is available for all scheduled flights and takes you to most hotels and guest houses for a fee.

Northern lights forecast


Read more about northern lights in Svalbard.

Seasons and climate

  • Despite the fact that Svalbard lies so close to the North Pole, the archipelago has a relatively mild climate compared to areas at the same latitude.
  • In Longyearbyen, the average temperature ranges from -14°C during the winter to +6°C during the summer.

  • It is not uncommon on Svalbard to have long periods during the winter with temperatures between -20 and -30 °C.

  • Periods of fog are common during the summer. In terms of precipitation, however, Svalbard may be described as an “Arctic desert” with annual rain- and snowfall at a mere 200–300 millimetres. The weather on Svalbard can shift very quickly, and local variations are often considerable.

  • Get the latest weather forecast on yr.no.

The Svalbard Islands also offer …

There is no need to wait until you’re here to find out what you’d like to do. Filter your search and check out the offers below.

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