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Winter fishing in Norway

The colder the water, the bigger the fish!

Join a guided fishing trip and maximize your chances of a good catch...

...or find a frozen lake and go ice fishing with the whole family!

Fresh winter air and waters teeming with fish make Norway a dream destination for ice fishing, fjord fishing, and deep sea fishing.

Although most people flock on holiday in summer, if you want the biggest fish, you should visit Norway in the winter. You will have more space and less competition for the best fishing spots.

For a fishing adventure like no other, go to Northern Norway between January and April, when you can take part in the famous skrei (migrating cod) fishing in picture-postcard scenery. About 40% of the fish come to Lofoten to spawn, but the skrei spawn for hundreds of kilometres along the coast, from Haugesund in the south to Sørøya in Finnmark in the north.

Oh, and by the way, if you want to up your chances of a catch, sex might be the answer! At least according to many local fishermen in Northern Norway, Haill will help you catch more and bigger fish!

Thanks to the warm waters of the Gulf Stream and warm air currents, the coastal areas and fjords remain virtually ice-free in winter, and the waters are brimming with big fish.

Ice fishing is also one of Norway’s most popular winter activities, as the country is dotted with thousands of lakes. Every year, enthusiasts of all ages grab their fishing rods and set off to find their own lake full of trout or char. At the end of a cold but eventful day outdoors, it is common to wind down in a steaming sauna or snuggle up in front of an open fire.

To increase your chances of a good catch, join a guided fishing trip or hire an experienced local guide or professional fisherman. It's also safer, especially if you want to go sea fishing.

Winters in Norway also offer a good chance of spotting whales and experiencing spectacular natural phenomena like the northern lights.

Go skiing, snowmobiling, and dog sledging – and come face to face with the red king crab on a fishing expedition. They are huge – tasty king crabs can measure up to two metres from claw to claw and weigh up to 15 kilograms!

Fishing in different seasons

Even though winter is a great season for fishing, it's not the only time of year when fishing can be very rewarding!

Spring awakening

Fans of Norway know that there are many fishing and outdoor adventures on offer in March and April, both in the fjords and on the coast.

In Norway's central and northern parts, you can experience true fishing magic, as the coast fills up with spawning cod. If you dream about catching a real whopper of a fish, this is the time to try.

Southern Norway also has excellent fishing in the spring – especially for everyone who enjoys fishing for ling and sea trout in the fjords or the sea. You rarely return from a fishing excursion empty-handed.

The Norwegian spring weather is usually fairly mild, stable and dry. In many regions, March, April and May can be the driest months of the year. Since the direct distance between the southernmost and northernmost point of Norway is almost 1,700 kilometres, the weather varies a great deal in different parts of the country.

Golden autumn

The autumn months of September and October are also great for a fishing holiday in Norway, as the water is teeming with all the saltwater fish species you could ever want.

Even summer fish like mackerel and hake hang around in some places well into October. In Central Norway (Trøndelag) and Northern Norway, autumn offers a good chance of catching giant saithe and halibut. In the middle of Norway and down south, you have ample opportunities to catch some handsome ling.

Quiet, sunny autumn weather with double-digit temperatures is common – and you can sometimes experience an Indian summer, both in the south and in the north.

The first snow usually falls sometime in October in Northern Norway and at high altitudes. However, in many parts of the country, winter does not start until November. The change from autumn to winter lasts for a few weeks in the south and the middle of the country, whereas this transition often takes only a few days in the north.

The transformation from the warm and sparkling colours in the autumn to a magic winter wonderland is a memorable sight.

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