Scandinavia has a lot to offer. Many people prefer to go in the Spring/Summer months, when a parka and snow boots aren’t required. But these people aren’t taking full advantage of this region! Scandinavia is a hoot in the Winter – this is when it offers a real cultural experience – the REAL DEAL. If you go to one of these countries in the summer, you would miss out on:
⦁ Northern Lights: A bucket-list item for many, the northern lights appear . For your convenience, there’s even a whole site dedicated to tracking the Northern Lights in Norway. February, March and October are the best times to go if you want to cross the item off your list. Note: NOT THE SUMMER!
2. Days of Night/Polar Night: In the northern parts of Scandinavia, they barely get any sunlight for the winter. This is absolutely incredible and a super weird feeling if you’re not used to it. I experienced the opposite of this in the Arctic as it came closer to the summer: I remember going ski-dooing all day, finally getting back home and thinking phew, it feels like only 4pm! Then I checked the clock and it was midnight – and the sun was still up. WEIRD! Unless you’re waaay up north, you’ll normally get some sunlight during the Polar Night, but you’ll basically likely experience dawn and dusk within a few hours of each other in the middle of the day.
3. Real cold: For the non-Eastern-Canadians, you can finally experience that dreamy snowy cold wonderland you’ve always seen in movies! Temperatures of -20C and below! That is real character-building stuff. It really says a lot about a person when you see how they react to the struggle of starting their car after losing a finger while they were scraping off the 3 feet of snow without arctic-proof gloves.
4. Major Winter Sport Potential: you’ve got tons of skiing available – as you’d expect. But they also have a few cultural activities that might toot your horn, such as dog sledding, reindeer safaris, ice fishing and ice racing (although this last one is pretty dangerous so make sure you read well up on it before you try it out). Come on, isn’t that a pretty badass vacation story?
5. Ice/Snow Hotel: Another popular bucket-list item! They’re found all over the region, with the most popular ones being Ice Hotel in Jukkasjarvi (Sweden) and Snow Hotel in Kirkenes (Norway). If you’re an avid travel Pinner, you’ve probably seen many photos of the Kakslauttanen Igloo Village in Saariselka (Finland).
If you’re convinced, go ahead and book a flight for February! I spotted a great Scandinavian deal with Norwegian Air on my first flight sale post!
Plus, travelling during the off-season is an incredible bonus, which I elaborate on here when I went to Cuba in July.