Photo: Svein Wik/ NTB scanpix

Seasons and Climate

Norway has four quite distinct seasons - spring, summer, autumn and winter - all of them roughly equal in length and with their own special characteristics.

Spring starts in April and lasts until late May. By then, most of the winter snow has melted, and only the mountaintops and north-facing hillsides remain white. Spring flowers of every colour pop up everywhere, but the weather can also be very windy. As summer approaches, the days become longer and the nights shorter.

Summer in Norway lasts from June to mid August. During these months the days are long, sunny and warm. The school summer holidays last for two months, which gives families the chance to go to the beach or play outdoor games and sports. In the far north, the sun doesn’t set below the horizon at all for several weeks, so everyone has to go to bed when the sun is still up.

Autumn starts when the new school term starts in mid-August. On autumn weekends, Norwegians often go walking and climbing in the hills and mountains, picking wild berries and mushrooms. The temperature starts to drop slowly during September and as autumn progresses, the afternoons and evenings become dark. The northern areas of the country can look quite gloomy during October and November until snow suddenly brightens up the landscape.
Winter turns much of Norway into a winter wonderland! At the first snowfall of the year, children are sometimes given the day off school to enjoy it, so out come the toboggans, skis and sledges! Temperatures can drop to below -30˚C in some parts of the country and it isn’t until early spring time that the days start to become lighter. The snow often lasts until Easter, when it's time for spring again!


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Did You Know?

Norway owes its mostly mild climate to the Gulf Stream. This is a warm ocean current that comes all the way from the Gulf of Mexico. Even after crossing the vast Atlantic Ocean, the waters of the Gulf Stream stay warm enough to stop the harbours along Norway’s coast from freezing. Without the warm air it also brings, Norway would be a much colder country, with a climate closer to that of Alaska or Siberia.