How to Experience the Midnight Sun in Sweden

How to Experience the Midnight Sun in Sweden

A haven of natural wonder beckoning travellers from around the world, Sweden certainly knows how to put on a show. The yin to the Northern Lights’ yang, the Midnight Sun is the phenomenon of endless days. From late-May to mid-July, the sun hangs low in the sky but never sets, bathing everything in a surreal soft glow. Forget about sleep, this is the time for adventurers to amplify the summer fun. In addition to picture-perfect views and lingering light, visitors can enjoy late-night hikes, swims in crystal-clear lakes, wildlife watching tours, and festivals to celebrate the extended days. To see the magical Midnight Sun in Sweden, consider planning a trip around the summer solstice, when everything is illuminated.

  1. What is the Midnight Sun? 
  2. When Can I See the Midnight Sun in Sweden?
  3. Where Can I See the Midnight Sun in Sweden?
  4. What’s it Like to See the Midnight Sun in Sweden?
  5. Will I be Able to Sleep?
  6. Our Favourite Midnight Sun Experiences


What is the Midnight Sun? 

Due to the tilt of Earth’s axis, parts of the globe experience dramatic seasonal swings. Between April and September, the northern hemisphere is angled towards the sun, resulting in longer days and warmer weather. Around midsummer, destinations close to and north of the Arctic Circle experience an astronomical phenomenon of perma-light known as the Midnight Sun, when the sun doesn’t set and hours become elastic.


When Can I See the Midnight Sun in Sweden?

The Midnight Sun shines in northern Sweden from late-May until the middle of July.


Where Can I See the Midnight Sun in Sweden?

To see the sun when the clock strikes midnight, you’ll need to make your way north. The general rule of thumb is to be close to (or ideally inside) the Arctic Circle to see the Midnight Sun in Sweden. Swedish Lapland – the northern region covering almost a quarter of the country – is the best place to see the Midnight Sun. In Jokkmokk, just north of the Arctic Circle, the sun can be seen at midnight for 32 days in a row. The small town is surrounded by stunning natural scenery, making it perfect for a late-night hike or a midnight dip in the nearby lakes and rivers. Venture even closer to the North Pole to the quaint town of Abisko and you can expect 55 days without a single sunset.


What’s it Like to See the Midnight Sun in Sweden?

Witnessing this phenomenon is magical, memorable and bewildering – rather like watching a sunset and sunrise all at once and feeling slightly jetlagged at the same time. Your eyes are telling you it’s happy hour, but the clocks confirm that a new day is dawning. Being out in Swedish nature during this enchanted moment is an experience you won’t forget.


Will I be Able to Sleep?

There’s no doubt the constant light makes it harder to sleep, and you should expect to feel rather discombobulated. But there are some simple solutions to reduce the amount of light reaching your eyes, and thus encourage slumber, such as using black out blinds and packing a sleep mask. But honestly – who travels to Swedish Lapland to sleep through these confounding never-quite-nights? Our top tip is for you to get out and experience one of the many unique Midnight Sun activities available.


Our Favourite Midnight Sun Experiences

Here are some unusual Midnight Sun adventures on offer in Sweden:

  • Tee off at midnight: 155 miles north of the Arctic Circle you’ll find Björkliden, one of Sweden’s most picturesque golf courses. Between July and September, it stays open 24 hours a day offering visitors a gorgeous 18-hole round under the surreal sunbeams.
  • Hike in a national park: Abisko sits 150 miles inside the Arctic Circle, making it one of the best places to take in the Midnight Sun in Sweden. Hop on a scenic chair lift to the Aurora SkyStation before savouring a sumptuous meal, and then hiking to the summit of Mount Nuolja, admiring the breath-taking views en route.
  • Fish for a midnight feast: Keen anglers can cast a line under the everlasting light in various spots all over Swedish Lapland. It’s sure to be an unforgettable experience, regardless of what’s biting.
  • Scale a mountain: Intrepid travellers can take on the challenge of scaling Sweden’s highest mountain, Kebnekaise, which sits around 95 miles inside the Arctic Circle.
  • Ski and snowboard in the late-night light: The chance to ski or snowboard under the Midnight Sun is one of Riksgränsen’s biggest draws. When the snow sticks around until late-May, revellers can experience the doubly confounding combination of winter white and summer light.
  • Dance under endless sun: Kirunafestivalen is Scandinavia’s northernmost and brightest festival. Three days of celebrations including music, a funfair and Swedish food are staged following the summer solstice.
  • Take on a midnight triathlon: Why tick one box when you can tick three? Fitness fans can challenge themselves to race the Laponia Triathlon, which involves swimming, cycling and running under the Midnight Sun.
  • Join a horse riding tour: Enjoy the Midnight Sun on a memory-making horse-riding tour through Sweden’s valleys and along the Kalix River.
  • Go wildlife watching: Ranea River offers all types of outdoor adventures including fishing, kayaking and rafting. Join a wildlife watching trail for a good chance of spotting moose, reindeer and even bears.