The seasons

The seasons

On Svalbard we have five seasons. In addition to spring, summer and autumn, we experience both the dark and light sides of winter here in the Arctic.

Light winter

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As the light returns the activity and energy levels on the islands increase - for both the people and the wildlife. Everyone wants to get out, to see and explore! The days become increasingly longer, and by the end of April, the midnight sun has returned to warm a winter white landscape. The seals enjoy the sun's rays from the fjord ice, and the people in town do too. This time of year is fantastic for exploring on snowmobile, dog sled or skis.


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As the midnight sun shines down on Spitsbergen the fjord ice begins to melt and boats return to our waterways. Migratory birds like snow buntings appear around the settlements and the short spring is officially here. During the spring period we can offer both summer and winter activities, like boat trips and dog sledding tours. The temperature is milder, the midnight sun is high in the sky, and you can experience more!


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The snow disappears, the small flowers blossom and a rush of birdlife replaces the quiet of the winter. This is summertime on Svalbard. Towering mountains, calving glaciers, the open sea and colourful flowers, all of this and the teeming wildlife welcome you to an Arctic wonderland. The Arctic summer is short and hectic, but the midnight sun makes it possible to fill your days and nights with experiences, like hiking, boat trips, fossil hunting and dog sledding on wheels.


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The landscape is gorgeous in autumn colours. Orange, brown, red and green cover the valleys. The birds gather to migrate south, and the sun is lower in the sky. The days become shorter after the end of the midnight sun on August 23 and the temperature sinks towards zero as the mountains get their first dusting of snow. Experience the colour and light and enjoy summer activities with a autumnal backdrop.

Dark Winter

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By the end of October the sun has shed its last rays for the year and Svalbard heads towards a period of darkness. For more than two months, between mid-November and the end of January, darkness prevails around the clock. However, with cleary skies and starry nights, a full moon or the northern lights, the snow will light up and the darkness won't seem as complete. By February a little light returns during the day, the blue tones become pink - and finally the sun hits the local peaks. Join us on northern lights safaris, dog sledding and other winter activites, and experience the Polar night.


Did you know?


HURTIGRUTEN SVALBARD AS, P.O. Box 548, N-9171 Longyearbyen
Telephone.: +47 79 02 61 00 | 951 251 579

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