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During the months of June, July, and August, the days are long and the nights are short, even non-existent north of the Arctic Circle, due to the midnight sun. It's the perfect season to experience a wide range of activities and explore Norway's great outdoors (or great indoors, if it's raining!).

As soon as summer gets a firm grip on Norway, usually in late May or early June, you’ll see the locals out and about, enjoying the sun after a long and cold winter. As the weather gets warmer and warmer, so do the people.

Summer temperatures can reach up to 25 to 30 degrees Celsius, especially in the south and in the inland valleys. Even the nights are often warm, and water temperatures in the sea and in the many inland and forest lakes in the southern parts of the country usually reach 18 degrees Celsius or higher, making swimming a popular pastime.

From late June to early August, the nights never get really dark anywhere in the country. But if you want to experience the true midnight sun, you need 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.

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

With one of the longest coastlines in the world, Norway has a rich boating life. People of all ages are out at sea all summer long. The skjærgård in Southern Norway – an archipelago consisting of thousands of small islands and islets – is especially popular, and almost every town along the southern coast has a good guest harbour.

Summer is also prime time for hiking, cycling, and camping. Most of the snow in the mountains has melted away, and lots of people spend their summer holiday out in nature. Outdoor recreation is a major part of our national identity, and the right to roam is even protected by law.

How to dress for summer

Norwegian summer weather may be relatively stable, but that doesn’t mean it can’t surprise you. If you go hiking in the mountains or are out at sea, be prepared and make sure you bring waterproof and windproof clothing, as well as a layer of wool. As we say in Norway: there is no such thing as bad weather, only bad clothing.

The sun can be deceptively strong, even if the wind helps keep you cool, so make sure to use sunscreen. Remember to pack a swimsuit, too!

Get the latest weather forecast

Check the local weather forecast at Yr.no, delivered by the Norwegian Meteorological Institute and the Norwegian Broadcasting Corporation (NRK). Download Yr’s free weather app for iOS or Android.

Delicious summer food and drink

Blueberries, raspberries and lingonberries are common in Norwegian forests and mountains, and begin to ripen in the middle of summer in Southern Norway and a bit later further north. In July and August, you will see roadside booths offering locally grown strawberries and cherries for sale.

When the sun is out, so are the Norwegians. Barbecuing is a Norwegian summer tradition. At the first sign of summer, Norwegians flock to pubs to enjoy a beer on the pavement or in a beer garden. The phenomenon of utepils (literally “outdoor beer”) is so ingrained that the first opportunity to indulge is reported in the media.

A typical summer dish is freshly caught fish, especially mackerel, trout or salmon, served with sour cream, fresh potatoes, and cucumber salad. Prawns straight from the boat, served outdoors with white bread, lemon, mayonnaise, and white wine is another favourite.

Take advantage of top offers

See our selection of trusted companies that work hard to make you happy all through your trip.

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