FREQUENTLY ASKED QUESTIONS ABOUT VISITING NORWAY IN DECEMBER
Whatever you’re wondering about visiting Norway in December, we’re here to answer your most commonly asked questions. Is December a good time to visit Norway? Definitely! What can you visit during this time of year? Read below to find out all the details from our local travel experts.
What are the best things to do in Norway in December?
Sure, the days are short and the winter temperatures start to get chilly, but there’s a lot to love about spending holidays in Norway in December.
One of the highlights if you visit Norway in winter is the aurora borealis. You can see them best in Northern Norway, or you could spend a few nights on a Hurtigruten cruise along the country’s picturesque west coast. Or maybe you want to experience thrilling winter activities.
There is plenty to do and your days in Norway could be filled with fun excursions and exploration.
Here are 10 of the best things to do in Norway in December:
Spot the dancing aurora borealis in the night sky
Explore the vibrant capital, Oslo
Board Norway in a Nutshell® in December to experience the beautiful Flåm and Bergen railways
Learn more about Sami culture
Enjoy a Hurtigruten Coastal Voyage along the west coast
Stay the night in an ice room at the Snow Hotel
Meet huskies for a dog sledding excursion
Cruise through the dramatic Norway fjords in December
Try snowmobiling, snowshoeing or cross country skiing in the countryside
Admire the fairy lights of the many Christmas markets and fairs
Christmas markets in December
December is an excellent time to visit Norway to take part in their festive season. You’ll find a large Christmas market in Oslo, which is open until the end of December. Among many other locations in Norway, Bergen and Trondheim also host markets from November until around 22 December.
Once you’ve visited Norway’s markets, you’ll know that the true highlight are the stalls. Taste local delicacies and buy high-quality craft as souvenirs. If you’re travelling as a family, kids may love to try ice skating or admire the views from the top of ferris wheels.
Good to know: The Norwegian experts at Nordic Visitor will make sure your itinerary is tailored to your taste. Add excursions like dog sledding or snowmobiling to your tour or even shore excursions to your cruise. You could visit charming Ålesund and the Lofoten islands.
Plus, you’ll get all the signature Nordic Visitor benefits. These include access to our 24/7 helpline, a detailed personal itinerary, helpful travel guide and daily breakfast.
What are the best places to visit in Norway in December?
Travel to Norway in December to see the beautiful natural sights covered in snow. Northern Norway is especially great to visit during the winter for snow activities or to go chasing the northern lights.
Here are some of the best places to visit in Norway in December:
Explore the capital Oslo
and its many highlights and museums
to chase the aurora borealis
Experience snow like never before in Kirkenes
Stroll through the “Gateway to the Fjords”, Bergen
Fly north to visit the kingdom of polar bears, remote Svalbard
If the northern lights are on your bucket list, December is a fantastic time to visit Norway. The “northern lights belt” (also called “aurora belt”) passes directly through Northern Norway. This means the best places to go for viewing the aurora borealis are the Arctic towns of Tromsø or Kirkenes.
What is the weather like in Norway in December?
As December is a winter month, the weather is usually cold. Temperatures are falling slowly towards below freezing, especially at night. It can be a hit or miss regarding snow in December, but at higher altitudes snow starts to cover the rugged landscape.
What is the temperature in December?
In Norway in December, the average temperature is around 0°C (32°F). But as the country spans such a large distance, temperatures in Norway vary depending on location.
In the capital and in Tromsø, the average temperature is -3°C (27°F) in December. In Bergen and Stavanger, it is higher with an average of 3°C (37°F) and 6°C (43°F) respectively. That’s thanks to the Gulf Stream, which warms the west coast.
Does it snow in Norway in December?
You may expect some snow during your tour of Norway in December. However, January to March are usually the months with the most snowfall.
The Norwegian winter is an ideal time to take part in activities such as snowmobiling or dog sledding.
What are the driving conditions in Norway in December?
Driving in Norway in winter is likely to be different than what you’re used to back home, even if you’ve experienced snowy, icy conditions before. Winter storms can bring high winds, poor visibility and slippery surfaces.
Driving over mountain passes can also require extra caution at this time of year. It’s important to note that some roads are closed over the winter. This is why we recommend summer road trips to Norway instead.
Between May and September, you could also join a guided group tour, go hiking and experience the midnight sun. Southern Norway is especially beautiful at this time of year!
What to pack for a trip to Norway in December?
Temperatures are usually below freezing in Norway at this time of year. For that reason, it’s best you bring ample warm layers. That way, come rain or shine, you can enjoy the natural beauty of the country.
Here is a list of packing essentials for your Norway trip in December:
Insulated and waterproof jacket
Waterproof or snow trousers
Insulated boots with a good grip
A warm hat, gloves and scarves
Thermal socks and underwear
If your tour includes activities like dog sledding or snowmobiling, you may also wish to bring glove liners, a balaclava and maybe even warmer heat packs. Some excursions will provide thermal suits for your protection, but make sure to check details before departing on your adventure.
What to wear in Norway in December?
In the Nordic countries, they have a saying: “There is no such thing as bad weather, just bad clothing”.
When travelling to Norway in the winter, you can expect cold temperatures outdoors. They may feel even colder with the strong coastal winds (wind chill factor). To enjoy all your winter activities, come prepared with warm underlayers and insulated outer layers.
What are the daylight hours in Norway in December?
As December coincides with the winter solstice, you can expect the shortest days and longest nights of the year. In Oslo, the sun rises around 9:00 AM and sets at 15:20 PM. This means you’ll experience an average of 6 hours of daylight.
In the north, the sun doesn’t rise at all thanks to the polar nights. The advantage of this is that you may be able to see the northern lights!
Can I see northern lights in Norway in December?
The best time to admire the auroras in the Norway skies is between the months of October and March, so you’re in luck! Head to Northern Norway with a stay in Tromsø or Kirkenes for your best chances of seeing them.
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