Winter in Scandinavia

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Winter in Scandinavia

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Scandinavia, or more properly the Nordic countries, include Denmark, Finland, Iceland, Norway and Sweden. As these countries are near the Arctic, they attract travellers who want to experience winter activities.

The northern half of Scandinavia, with the exception of coastal Norway, is a safe bet for snow from December well into April. In Stockholm, Oslo and south thereof, slush is more common than snow throughout December.

Daylight is very short in winter. At 60 degrees north (around Oslo, Stockholm and Helsinki) the sun is up for 6 hours a day at the Winter Solstice in late December. At the Arctic Circle it is below the horizon for several days.


Christmas, called jul in Danish, Norwegian and Swedish, jól in Icelandic, and joulu in Finnish, is the biggest holiday of the year.

Be aware that the main Christmas holiday is Christmas Eve, December 24.


See Nordic skiing and alpine skiing.


Christmas food is the most traditional part of Scandinavian cuisine.

Stay safe

See travelling in cold weather.

Scandinavians are heavy holiday drinkers. Stay out of drunken brawls.

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