Where and when to observe the midnight sun?

Who I am
Joel Fulleda

wikipedia.org, lonelyplanet.com

Author and references

Un beautiful astronomical phenomenon, absolutely fascinating. Let's talk about the Midnight Sun, that masterpiece of Mother Nature visible only where it is very cold, but a little chattering in this case it's really worth it. We reveal exactly what is it?, because it happens, when and where to admire it. Ready for a decidedly alternative tour?


  1. Best time to see it
  2. Lapland, Finland
  3. Tromsø, Lofoten Islands - Norway
  4. Grimsey Island, Iceland
  5. North Cape - Norway
  6. Midnight Sun: curiosity and explanation of the phenomenon
  7. User questions and comments

Best time to see it

Due to the inclination of the Earth's rotation axis, at latitudes greater than or equal to 66 ° 33 ′, in the period between the winter and spring equinoxes, the Sun may happen to remain above the horizon instead of setting and rising. This splendid phenomenon occurs in alternating semesters in the northern and southern hemisphere. Since the only inhabited areas south of the Antarctic Polar Circle are actually scientific outposts, the enchanting experience of admiring the Midnight Sun is lived freely only by the populations residing north of the Arctic Circle. Due to refraction, this phenomenon can be also seen from regions located at lower latitudes compared to those of the Polar Circles even if the Sun geometrically should not be visible above the horizon. The duration of the Midnight Sun varies from about 6 months to 24 hours depending on the area.
And now let's see in detail where and when to admire the Midnight Sun.

1 - Lapland, Finland

  • When: from 26 June to 7 August
  • As: with 8-day tour departing and arriving from Helsinki (approximately € 2.000,00). Info on www.visitfinland.com

Finnish Lapland is made of wonderful contrasts: 24 hours of sunshine during the summer and dark days in the winter, the noise of the ski resorts and cities and the quiet of unspoiled nature. Rovaniemi is its capital and is known throughout the world for being there city ​​of Santa Claus. Positioned near the Arctic Circle, offers modern facilities and a variety of activities throughout the year. Most people come to this region for 3 reasons: Santa Claus, the Northern Lights and the Midnight Sun. Finland is, in fact, one of the best places in the world to observe the two phenomena natural.

2 - Tromsø, Lofoten Islands - Norway

  • When: from 20 May to 22 July
  • As: with an 8-day organized tour to Tromsø (approximately € 1.250,00). Info on www.visitnorway.it

The Lofoten Islands are an enchanting location and you can see the Midnight Sun from the Hurtigruten Bridge before it lands in Tromsø. The "Paris of the North" can be reached easily from Bodø by plane with an hour's flight and is a modern city, where nature and culture go hand in hand. Tromsø is located 350 kilometers north of the Arctic Circle and is the largest city in Northern Norway. It is a popular destination for those who want to see both the Northern Lights and the Midnight Sun.
Outside the center of Tromsø, a almost untouched nature and that offers many opportunities for outdoor activities such as hiking, fishing, kayaking or dog sledding. The city is also known for its lively nightlife and the choice of restaurants specializing in fresh ingredients from the Arctic.

3 - Grimsey Island, Iceland

  • When: from the end of May to the end of July
  • As: organized or do-it-yourself tours (by ship from Denmark, the Faroe Islands or Norway, by plane to Reykjavik). Info on www.islanda.it

In the summer, Icelandic nights are characterized by sunlight and during June the sun never sets completely in the north of the country. In Iceland, even if under the Arctic Circle, it is therefore possible to witness the extraordinary event of Midnight sun thanks to the refraction of light. But if we decide to undertake a tour on the island of ice and fire, after visiting the main attractions, it is good to move north and organize an excursion to theGrimsey Island, located in the Arctic Circle, where you come into direct contact with the phenomenon of the Midnight Sun. It is possible to reach Grimsey both by ferry and by plane. The ferry leaves Dalvík 3 times a week (Monday / Wednesday / Friday) all year round, and reaches Grimsey after around three hours of sailing. From Akureyri, on the other hand, there are two bus companies that connect between Akureryi and Dalvík (directly to the ferry terminal for Grímsey). If you choose to take the bus from Akureyri it is advisable to purchase ferry tickets to Grimsey in Akureyri from the tourist information office located inside the Hof Cultural Center, Strandgata 12, Akureyri. Also from Akureyri, Norlandair offers scheduled flights and charter flights all year round.

4 - North Cape - Norway

  • When: from 14 May to 29 July
  • As: tour from the Svalbard Islands via the North Cape flying from Honningsvåg or Hurtigruten (from € 1.000,00 approximately). Info on www.visitnorway.it

Here the icy waters of the Atlantic Ocean and the Arctic Ocean mix in a place out of time where there is no dry piece of land with the exception of the Svalbard Islands. In the North Cape, the sun never sets in summer. With its cliff overlooking the sea, the North Cape rises to 307 meters high. The visitor center, North Cape Hall, hosts various exhibitions throughout the year. At the North Cape you will also find the St. Johannes Kapell, the northernmost ecumenical chapel in the world and a popular wedding venue. North Cape does not only offer the spectacle of the Midnight Sun, but also: the sunset over the Barent Sea; the Gjesværstappan cliff hosting hundreds of thousands of puffins, gannets and cormorants; the natural arch of Kirkeporten which offers an impressive panorama over the entire North Cape; small and colorful fishing villages. In short, an enchanting place where the sky can also offer the spectacle ofNorthern Lights.

Midnight Sun: curiosity and explanation of the phenomenon

It's a beautiful astronomical phenomenon that occurs in the polar regions and it happens based on the position of the Sun on the horizon. In fact, when the star remains above it for periods ranging from at least 24 hours (at latitudes close to those of the polar circles) to 6 months (at the geographic poles) it is possible to admire the so-called Midnight Sun.
The bizarre name of this phenomenon stems from the fact that when the Sun is realized apparently finds its climax with respect to the horizon, not at noon, as one would expect, but at midnight local. During the winter period of the hemisphere in which the Midnight Sun occurs, the Polar Night takes place in the other hemisphere, ie the opposite phenomenon.

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