When the summertime clock strikes midnight in Norway and Sweden, the sun continues to peep over coastlines, cities, mountains, villages and country vistas that go on forever. It glows low, sometimes hiding behind a cloud or alpine peak, but continues to drench landscapes in ethereal yellow for more than 1,800 hours without setting.
So where do you go to experience the golden phenomenon? Your best bet is to head north – to these staggeringly beautiful spots:
Where to see the midnight sun in Norway
Tucked between land, peaks and sea, Bodø is the northernmost point of the unfathomably stunning Kystriksveien Coastal Route. Standing here, just north of the Arctic Circle, on the rugged ridge of Mount Rønvikfjellet, you’re looking at Norway’s – and arguably Europe’s – best view of the midnight sun. Once you’ve filled up on late-night light (and perhaps had some beauty sleep) the pristine harbour of Svolvær in Lofoten is a two-hour drive away. Book a rorbu cabin for the night at Svinøya Rorbuer, idyllically nestled among fishing stations, traditional buildings and mighty mountains.
Wholesome, healthy and with mountains galore, Sweden’s fresh Nordland pastures are reason to visit the country alone. But Narvik, a picturesque Arctic town with buckets of history, is also ripe for spotting nightime sunshine. Hop on a cable car at the innermost end of the Ofotfjord and you’ll be whisked 656 metres, sky-bound, to the mountain restaurant that awaits. From here, soak up the fjord, town, islands, mountains and of course, the midnight sun.
Where to see the midnight sun in Sweden
It’s one of the world’s top destinations to spy the northern lights in winter – but this Arctic outpost is a midnight sun hotspot in the summer. Expect eight full weeks of sun, around-the-clock adventures and reindeers galore: this is Lapland, after all. During this time, it’s perfectly normal to host a coffee party at midnight or go fishing until the early hours of the morning – but if you need your sleep, it’s best to take a mask to block out the light.
Where else in the world can you ski, go snowshoeing, or even just lounge outside your cabin at midnight… with the sun shining down on you? Set your compass to the wild and serene Idre – a resort in the Swedish heartland that feels wonderfully remote. Long days, heartstopping landscapes and glowing nights – the only thing in the area that tops that natural beauty is Storsätra Fjällhotell, a historic hotel, restaurant and spa surrounded by three National Parks.
Storsätra Fjällhotell panoramic view