A short flight from Norway's main land, takes you to the mighty and arctic landscape at the Svalbard Islands. Explore raw wilderness adventures, the unique animal life, and eat and live well in the lively city of Longyearbyen.
The polar climate, rich wildlife, wild nature and old mining towns of Svalbard have fascinated travellers for a long time. Longyearbyen is an international city with many cultural events, such as concerts, festivals and exhibitions. Dine on arctic food traditions like seal, whale, reindeer, grouse and Arctic char at one of the many restaurants. Svalbard also has a local beer brewery and one of Norway’s greatest selections of Champagne.
From the city of Longyearbyen you can go on exciting trips by boat, kayak, snowmobiles or dog sledding. You can go hiking or skiing, just don’t venture anywhere outside the city border without a professional guide, because in addition to the 3,000 people living there, Svalbard is also home of the mighty polar bear.
«Svalbard is as close as most mortals can get to the North Pole and still capture its spirit.»
— Lonely Planet
“Svalbard” means “cold coasts”, however, the archipelago has a relatively mild climate compared to other areas at the same latitude. The constant midnight sun in the summer and the dark period during winter make for two entirely different experiences. The polar night is special to Svalbard – it’s the darkest time of the dark period from mid November to the end of January. It gets dark enough that you can see the striking northern lights during the day.
Historically, both whaling and mining have been major industries at the archipelago, but now polar exploration and tourism are the main focus. Svalbard’s nature is unforgiving, but fragile. Nearly two thirds of the surface of Svalbard is protected, and it’s crucial to show caution for the wild animals living there.
Longyearbyen has achieved the certification Sustainable Destination. Although this does not mean that the destination is sustainable, it does mean that it has made a commitment to work systematically to reduce the negative effects of tourism, while strengthening its positive ripple effects
The most common way to travel to Svalbard is by plane. Find more inspiration on Svalbard’s official website.
Dog sledding and activities
Stay active and explore Svalbard by dog sledding, skiing or hiking!
Safaris and sightseeing
Join guided tours to learn about the culture, see the nature and the animals living there!
Where to stay
From comfy hotels to cosy cabins. Find your home away from home at Svalbard.
Food and drink
From local food gems to high-end restaurants. Get a taste of what Svalbard offers.
Svalbard also offers …
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.
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.
Seasons and climate
Despite the fact that Svalbard is 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 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.