Petr Pavlicek

Eight ways of enjoying the daylight in Lyngenfjord in winter

Lyngenfjord is an excellent location for Northern Lights sightings. However, what can you enjoy during the day? You can unwind with low-key activities and outings in this incredible winter landscape.

One typically comes to Lyngenfjord in the darkest winter months to witness the Northern Lights. Aurora will keep you occupied, whether she decides to appear or not, all evening. Thus, save the days for relaxation and experiencing the landscapes and people. Here, we’ve gathered a few ideas for things you could do during your stay in Lyngenfjord while seeking the Northern Lights.

Go skiing or snowshoeing in the white winter landscapes:

Lyngenfjord enjoys a stable winter climate, and most years there’s plenty of snow from December well into May. This gives you ample time to enjoy the snow. Cross-country skiing is Norway’s national sport, and you can rent skis from several locations in Lyngenfjord. Inexperienced skiers can stick to the safe, well-prepared tracks around Lyngenfjord’s larger villages. Experienced skiers can explore the Reisadalen valley or other flatter areas in Lyngenfjord. However, if skiing is new to you, snowshoeing is a fun and straightforward alternative. No prior training is needed, and it’s a peaceful way to explore the forest.

Make a husky happy and go dogsledding in the forest:

Dogsledding is a fantastic way to experience Lyngenfjord’s stunning scenery. In winter, Lyngenfjord is blanketed in snow, and the dogs will lead you deep into the forest. Be ready to lend a hand in pushing the sleigh uphill and make sure to reward the dogs with plenty of love and cuddles. No previous experience is required, and you’ll grasp the techniques within 30 seconds, including how to use the brake. While this can be done at night, daytime allows you to appreciate the landscape.

Snowmobiling in Lyngenfjord comes with a grand panorama:

Nothing takes you further inland and up into the mountains like snowmobiling. Dense forests, frozen lakes, and wide snowy expanses await on Lyngenfjord’s monumental mountains. Witness the pastel colours of the short Arctic days in December or enjoy the warming sunshine in March. Snowy weather is a possibility throughout the winter. Snowmobiling in Lyngenfjord takes place on designated trails to minimize the impact on wildlife, reindeer herding, and skiers. The terrain offers variety and an enjoyable driving experience that requires more technique than speed. Anyone with a driver’s licence can participate.

See the whales in the Polar Night

If you have enjoyed a Scandi buffet of cold dishes, you know that herring is much appreciated up north. Sometimes in November, billions of herring come to the coast around Skjervøy. Then the underwater alarm is set off – orcas and humpback whales signal across the ocean that Skjervøy is the place to be. Orcas hunt in packs, encircling the herring shoals, whereas humpbacks leap from the bottom of the sea with their mouths open. Around Skjervøy, the seas are teeming with life. But all of a sudden, around early February, the herring sets out to sea, and the party is over. At some point, this whole circus will move on to another location, but we hope to see whales around Skjervøy for a few more years.

Enjoy the landscapes during the day:

If your nights are filled with Northern Lights tours and activities, consider taking a leisurely drive through Lyngenfjord’s snowy landscapes during the day. The entire eastern side of Lyngenfjord provides excellent views of the peaks of the Lyngen Alps. At the northern tip of the peninsula, you’ll have unobstructed views towards the cliff island of Nord-Fugløy in the north. Along the way, you’ll pass the monumental Kjosen fjord, surrounded by steep peaks, and you can stop at Lake Jægervatn for a view of the peaks on the other side. The Reisadalen valley, with its deep forests, is enclosed by cliffs, and has a totally different feel.

Locations around Lyngenfjord

Lyngenfjord is beautiful wherever you are. If you drive around, you can stop at these places for nice views, shopping and coffee.

Shop for something unique from Lyngenfjord:

Lyngenfjord may not be the place to overhaul your wardrobe, but there are a few distinctive items that could make lasting memories. And the search for them can be enjoyable too. At Manndalen Husflidslag in the village of Manndalen, you can purchase unique wool carpets with traditions dating back thousands of years. Mittens and hats are available in traditional patterns that wouldn’t look out of place on a bustling city boulevard. Kronebutikken in Sørkjosen, once a regular country shop, now showcases local handicrafts. You can even enjoy a cup of coffee there. At “Bærkokeriet” (Berry cookery) in Storslett, you can buy jam, juice, and condiments made from wild, local berries—ideal for gifts.

Connect with the locals over coffee:

For some of us, holiday time involves indulging in endless coffee. It’s not solely about the coffee, but also about immersing in the local atmosphere. Coffee is, of course, the daytime beverage of choice in Lyngenfjord. In places like Bios in Nordreisa and På hjørnet (“On the Corner”) in Skjervøy, you’ll receive your coffee in generous mugs and can engage in local chatter. Don’t miss out on trying the “læfsa”—a multi-layered sweet treat filled with cinnamon and brunost (Norwegian brown cheese). KaffeKin in Storslett has embraced international coffee trends, accompanied by cookies. Lastly, the ferry across the Lyngenfjord provides ample time for coffee during the 35-minute crossing.

Explore Lyngenfjord’s diverse heritage:

Lyngenfjord is a multi-ethnic area. The Sami were the first to inhabit the fjords, and the Norwegians settled the outer coast later on. The 18th-century immigration from Finland established the Kven culture in the inland valleys. For a comprehensive explanation, visit the exhibition at Halti in Storslett, which narrates the complete story of the people along the fjord. While many other museums across Lyngenfjord are closed in winter due to snow, they often make great subjects for photos. The same applies to the 18th-century churches in Skjervøy and Lyngen. At Skjervøy, the salmon farming explanation centre is also worth a visit.

Daylight is limited during the polar night:

The winter Northern Lights season can roughly be divided into two periods in terms of daylight duration. From late November to mid-late January, Lyngenfjord experiences the Polar Night. However, this doesn’t mean constant darkness. On clear days, you’ll start to see the landscape around 9 AM in the deep blue morning light. By 11-12 AM, you can enjoy beautiful colours in the southern sky, rendering the landscape wonderfully visible. As the day progresses, it gradually becomes darker again, with a transparent blue sky by 1 PM. After 2 PM, the last light fades in the southwest. Rising at 9 AM and taking an afternoon nap before embarking on your Northern Lights adventure in the evening might be a good idea.

February and March offer longer days:

By late January, the sun returns with full force. In early February, daylight extends until 4 PM, and by mid-March, darkness doesn’t set in until after 6 PM. This prolonged daylight provides ample time for exploration. The best part of the day, from around six to seven in the evening, remains in darkness, giving you optimal chances of spotting the lights.

Finding your way around the Lyngenfjord

Lyngenfjord is a big fjord system north and east of Tromsø, heading towards Alta and Finland. The municipalities of Lyngen, Storfjord and Kåfjord surround the fjord, whereas coastal Skjervøy and inland Nordreisa are immediately to the northeast of it. All five municipalities are represented by Visit Lyngenfjord.

Lyngenfjord is some 350 km inside the Arctic Circle. Still, it enjoys a stable, good winter climate with a lot of clear skies. Occasionally, slippery driving conditions, snow storms and avalanches are a danger. To keep yourself updated, use the weather app

The winter climate in Northern Norway is in general not as cold as one tends to think. However, in some of the inland areas of Lyngenfjord, the temperatures can drop to -40C (which is also -40F), and every winter down to -30C. Most days, however, the temperature hovers around -10C. The northern, coastal areas around Skjervøy and Nord-Lenangen, on the contrary, are mild and snowy, occasionally rainy, in winter. Expect temperatures just below freezing out here. Places like Lyngseidet, Olderdalen and Storslett are between the two extremes.

The main roads are fairly good and have very little traffic, and should be fine for drivers used to driving on snow and ice. However, do check the app to check slippery conditions. If you have never tried driving on snow and ice, we do not recommend Lyngenfjord to try it out.

There are buses or boats to almost every inhabited place in Lyngenfjord. However, there may not be a bus when you want it to. This means you have to plan carefully if you want to use public transport. The official public transport app is called Troms Fylkestrafikk, but it takes a bit of local knowledge to use it. We therefore recommend double checking with your accommodation and / or the local tourist board, Visit Lyngenfjord.

Visit Lyngenfjord is the local tourist organisation, manned all year. Their website is brimming with