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The North Cape plateau in midnight sun
Midnight sun at The North Cape.
Photo: Bjarne Riesto / Visitnorway.com
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There are no clear boundaries between one day and the next in the far north during summer. These are the best places to see the midnight sun in Norway.

Text: Mikael Lunde

    You can tell that it is five o’clock – your wristwatch reveals as much. But is it 5 AM or 5 PM? Who knows? Even the locals get confused sometimes. At midnight the sun will hover low in the sky and cast a magical yellow glow onto the coastline, the cities and villages, the sharp mountain formations, and the seemingly endless inland plateaus. It may sometimes hide behind a cloud or a tall peak, but it does not set. Here you can see the midnight sun in all its glory.

  • The North Cape

    From atop the steep cliff heading into the sea at The North Cape, there is nothing but open sea between you and … well, Svalbard, and then the North Pole, and the sun is hovering on the horizon all night long. The cliff is technically located on an island and is not even quite its northernmost point, so this is mistakenly referred to as the northernmost point on the European mainland. Still, it is a more popular destination than the actual spot, Cape Nordkinn a little stretch to the east.

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    Landegode, Bodø.
    Photo: Gulosten / CC BY-SA 3.0
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    Eggum, Lofoten
    Eggum, Lofoten.
    Photo: Jarle Wæhler / Statens vegvesen
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    Tromsø.
    Photo: Christian Roth Christensen / Visitnorway.com
  • Nupen near Harstad

    “The most romantic place in Norway” is the tag attached to Nupen not far from Harstad following a ranking in a Norwegian travel magazine. We’re inclined to agree. From the road or the surrounding hills, you get an unobstructed view of the midnight sun as it descends towards the water and almost meets the horizon in a gentle kiss before it rises again. The peaks of Grytøya island frame the scene.

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    Narvik.
    Photo: Helle Holt
  • Viewpoint Salen in Hammerfest

    The city of Hammerfest is one of the northernmost in the world and one of the oldest in Northern Norway. If you follow the zigzagging path up to the old cabin at “Mount” Salen, you get a panoramic view of the city and the surrounding islands in the midnight sun.

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    Finnmarksvidda
    Finnmarksvidda.
    Photo: Thomas Rasmus Skaug / Visitnorway.com
  • Tungeneset at Senja

    Like Eggum in Lofoten, Tungeneset at Senja is part of the Norwegian Scenic Route initiative where architecture and art amplify the experience of some of Norway’s most fabulous natural wonders. Here, a wooden walkway blends in with nature and leads you to a magnificent view of the distinct rock formation of Okshornan under the midnight sun.

  • Tungeneset, Senja.
    Photo: Hugo Fagermo / Statens vegvesen
  • Longyearbyen

    You might have heard the popular myth that in Norway, there are polar bears roaming the city streets. This is pure nonsense, of course, unless you are in Longyearbyen. In this main settlement on the Svalbard Islands, the midnight sun lasts an astonishing four months. Remember to never venture out without a guard, as polar bears are a real threat.

Plan your midnight sun adventure

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Land of the midnight sun
Travel to the areas above the Arctic Circle in Norway to see the midnight sun.
Read more about the midnight sun
The Vega archipelago, situated off the Helgeland coast, is named one of the world’s top undiscovered island gems. You should also pay a visit to… Read more
Helgeland
Experience the cultural hub of Bodø as well as untouched nature, the world’s strongest tidal current, and remarkable, windswept… Read more
Salten
Bodø is home to the world’s strongest maelstrom Saltstraumen. The largest city in the county of Nordland is also just a boat ride away… Read more
Bodø
Lofoten is known for excellent fishing, nature attractions such as the northern lights and the midnight sun, and small villages off the beaten track.… Read more
The Lofoten Islands
The archipelago of Vesterålen is a place characterized by contrasts, from white beaches and idyllic farmlands to craggy mountain peaks rising… Read more
Vesterålen
Bring your hiking boots and experience the tall mountain peaks close to Harstad. Enjoy culinary brilliance and find out why Harstad is known as the… Read more
Harstad
It’s wild, it’s dramatic – and it’s most certainly unique. Narvik is perfect for nature experiences or an active holiday. Read more
Narvik
Go kayaking and hiking in the midnight sun, or skiing and dog sledding under the northern lights. Or simply kick back and enjoy some of the most… Read more
Senja and Central Troms
Tromsø is ideal for seeing the northern lights and has a modern mix of outdoor activities, a vibrant nightlife, and places to eat… Read more
Tromsø
The Lyngenfjord and the Lyngsalpene mountain range form an Arctic area of exotic and family-friendly outdoor activities based on pure fun… Read more
The Lyngenfjord region
In the city of Alta you can experience Sami culture up close, see UNESCO protected rock carvings, sleep in a ice hotel or hunt for the northern light. Read more
Alta
Join a dogsled expedition, learn to throw a lasso, and experience the Sami culture first hand in Karasjok and Kautokeino. Read more
Land of the Sami
Far above the Arctic Circle, the North Cape offers arctic adventures like dog-sledding in the winter and months of never-ending sunlight in… Read more
The North Cape
An urban surprise along a barren, mostly uninhabited coast, Hammerfest is an arctic town full of life and outdoor adventurous. Read more
Hammerfest
In Nordkyn, the northernmost region on the European mainland, you can enjoy beautiful scenery, world class fishing, Arctic adventures and… Read more
Nordkyn
Teeming bird rocks in Hornøya, a snow hotel, dramatic war stories and a witch monument in Vardø are among the attractions awaiting… Read more
Kirkenes and Eastern Finnmark
The Svalbard Islands are located in the Arctic Ocean, halfway between Norway and the North Pole. Here, you will find untouched arctic wilderness and… Read more
The Svalbard Islands
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