Go Back  FlyerTalk Forums > Destinations > Europe > Nordic Region
Reload this Page >

Short trip to Norway in late October

Short trip to Norway in late October

Old Aug 19, 14, 11:57 pm
  #1  
Original Poster
 
Join Date: May 2013
Location: SFO
Programs: AA Platinum, UA Silver, Hilton Diamond, SPG Preferred
Posts: 58
Short trip to Norway in late October

I am planning to take a short trip to Norway in late October, about 4 nights. I really want to see the northern lights, but not sure if late Oct is a good time to go. Anyone has any suggestions how my itinerary should be like? I have never been to Norway though, so I also want to visit Oslo. Is one full day in Oslo good enough considering I only have limited time? Looking forward to hearing from you guys!! Thanks in advance.

Last edited by SoloTravelerinRed; Aug 20, 14 at 12:21 am
SoloTravelerinRed is offline  
Old Aug 20, 14, 2:56 am
  #2  
 
Join Date: Jul 2014
Posts: 4
I have been thinking about going north(I'm Oslo-based) to see the northern lights one time myself. From what I have read the best time is around January to March.

Even if Oslo has nice nature around it's not comparable to western and northern Norway (naturewise). Seems you will see nature elsewere and can focus on other things in Oslo. So if you have 1 FULL day in Oslo I think you can get a reasonably good impression of the city, even if 2 days might be preferred. You can focus on the museums and sights and leave the nature-parts out.

Indoor:
Viking museum
Kontiki Museum
See Munchs Scream at National Gallery
Munch Museum for rest of his works
etc

Outdoor: (October is on average dark, cold, rainy but you might be lucky)
Vigeland park
Opera House
etc
oladunk is offline  
Old Aug 20, 14, 9:28 am
  #3  
Original Poster
 
Join Date: May 2013
Location: SFO
Programs: AA Platinum, UA Silver, Hilton Diamond, SPG Preferred
Posts: 58
Thank you so much for the information. Just another question about Norway--I am not planning on renting a car. Is train service a reliable option? Also, for northern lights, which city is the closest to arctic circle? If you planned to go, where would you like to go for northern lights? Looking forward to hearing back from you.
SoloTravelerinRed is offline  
Old Aug 20, 14, 10:20 am
  #4  
 
Join Date: Jul 2014
Posts: 4
Yes, train is reliable option but will not take you further north than Bodø (which is quite a distance north anyway).

For northern light I was thinking about going to the region called Finnmark and maybe stay over in one of those ice hotels (I think it's in Alta) and combine with some dog-sled "safari".
Another option was to go to Tromsø and see northern lights from some arranged tour there.

I found a lot of info when googling northern lights in Norway some time ago.
oladunk is offline  
Old Aug 20, 14, 12:46 pm
  #5  
 
Join Date: Oct 2013
Location: Copenhagen, Denmark
Programs: Mainly Hilton Hhonors, SAS Eurobonus
Posts: 1,981
No northern lights there, but Bergen is very nice and I found the train ride from Oslo to Bergen very beautiful and interesting.
helosc is offline  
Old Aug 20, 14, 9:31 pm
  #6  
Original Poster
 
Join Date: May 2013
Location: SFO
Programs: AA Platinum, UA Silver, Hilton Diamond, SPG Preferred
Posts: 58
Bergen sounds like an interesting place to visit. I am just concerned about the daylight in late October. When does it get dark usually? I was in Copenhagen once around Christmas. It was dark around 4 pm if I remember correctly...
SoloTravelerinRed is offline  
Old Aug 21, 14, 12:08 am
  #7  
Hilton 5+ BadgeAccor 10+ Badge
 
Join Date: Nov 2012
Location: Rhineland-Palatinate
Programs: OW Sapphire (BA), *A Gold (A3), Le Club Accor Gold, HHonor Diamond
Posts: 3,912
In Oslo, sun rise and sun set time for late October are 8-18 for the first 3 weeks, then 7-17 the last week (we change to Winter time 25th October). This is a time of the year when day length shorten very quickly, we lose 5 minutes every day.

In Tromsø, you are looking at 8-15 the last week, 8:30-16 the first three weeks. They lose 9 minutes of day time every day.

More night time means more chances to see Northern Lights.
fransknorge is offline  
Old Aug 21, 14, 5:31 am
  #8  
 
Join Date: Oct 2013
Location: Copenhagen, Denmark
Programs: Mainly Hilton Hhonors, SAS Eurobonus
Posts: 1,981
And sunset in Bergen is about 6.30 pm mid-october.
After the changing of the clock on 25. of October it is 4.58 to 4.44 p.m.
helosc is offline  
Old Aug 21, 14, 8:32 am
  #9  
Original Poster
 
Join Date: May 2013
Location: SFO
Programs: AA Platinum, UA Silver, Hilton Diamond, SPG Preferred
Posts: 58
It's good to know that the daylight saving time will be switched back on Oct 25. That means I get longer night time. And Yes, more night time means more chances to see the northern lights!!

For northern lights, I am looking at a couple of places: Tromsø, Alta (Finnmark), and Kirkenes. I google mapped them. Kirkenes is in the far north, close to Russian boarder. That should be a better place to chase the lights right? I am just wondering if the town itself is also interesting with something to see? Tromsø seems nice. Any suggestions?
SoloTravelerinRed is offline  
Old Aug 22, 14, 2:38 am
  #10  
 
Join Date: Sep 2012
Posts: 196
I timed my trip to Tromsø to coincide with the new moon (Oct 24) to minimize interference.
klew97 is offline  
Old Aug 23, 14, 8:03 am
  #11  
Original Poster
 
Join Date: May 2013
Location: SFO
Programs: AA Platinum, UA Silver, Hilton Diamond, SPG Preferred
Posts: 58
Short trip to Norway in late October

Klew97, what year did you go to Tromso? Were you able to see the northern lights? Was it lots snow already in late October?
SoloTravelerinRed is offline  
Old Aug 23, 14, 9:56 pm
  #12  
 
Join Date: Sep 2012
Posts: 196
Originally Posted by SoloTravelerinRed View Post
Klew97, what year did you go to Tromso? Were you able to see the northern lights? Was it lots snow already in late October?
I'm going this year, in 2 months! Here's hoping I get to see something. I was in Jukkasjarvi's Ice Hotel in late December 2012 and only got a small and weak, 15 minute blur on night 3 (of 3). There were clouds the first two nights.
klew97 is offline  
Old Aug 23, 14, 11:14 pm
  #13  
Original Poster
 
Join Date: May 2013
Location: SFO
Programs: AA Platinum, UA Silver, Hilton Diamond, SPG Preferred
Posts: 58
Originally Posted by klew97 View Post
I'm going this year, in 2 months! Here's hoping I get to see something. I was in Jukkasjarvi's Ice Hotel in late December 2012 and only got a small and weak, 15 minute blur on night 3 (of 3). There were clouds the first two nights.
How did you like the Ice Hotel? I was thinking about it but not sure if October is cold enough for that.

I hope we got luckier this year to be able to see more of the beautiful northern lights.^
SoloTravelerinRed is offline  
Old Aug 24, 14, 8:34 am
  #14  
ksu
 
Join Date: Mar 2005
Location: KSU (Kristiansund N, Norway)
Programs: SAS EBD/ *G
Posts: 2,045
Originally Posted by SoloTravelerinRed View Post
It's good to know that the daylight saving time will be switched back on Oct 25. That means I get longer night time. And Yes, more night time means more chances to see the northern lights!!

For northern lights, I am looking at a couple of places: Tromsø, Alta (Finnmark), and Kirkenes. I google mapped them. Kirkenes is in the far north, close to Russian boarder. That should be a better place to chase the lights right? I am just wondering if the town itself is also interesting with something to see? Tromsø seems nice. Any suggestions?
Actually Kirkenes and Tromsø are similarly far north, Kirkenes is at 69, 43' N, and Tromsø is at 69, 40'. However, Kirkenes is much farther to the east, and thus appears to be further to the north on most maps. Alta is slightly further to the north, at 69, 58'.

Honningsvåg (the airport closest to the North Cape) is the northernmost in mainland Norway at 71, 0', but the village is not that interesting, especially in autumn. Hammerfest is the northernmost city of Norway (and for tourist purposes: in the world) and is at 70' 40'. Be aware that the latter two are only served by Widerøe, using Dash-8's. A change is necessary at Tromsø, and flights are much more expensive there. Choosing between the two, I would definitely go for Hammerfest (I am actually going there on business in a week's time), but for the OP's purpose, I would go to Tromsø.

I would not necessarily expect much snow even in late October. As for the aurora borealis, you might have luck, and then you might not.
ksu is offline  
Old Aug 25, 14, 10:32 pm
  #15  
Original Poster
 
Join Date: May 2013
Location: SFO
Programs: AA Platinum, UA Silver, Hilton Diamond, SPG Preferred
Posts: 58
Originally Posted by ksu View Post
Actually Kirkenes and Tromsø are similarly far north, Kirkenes is at 69, 43' N, and Tromsø is at 69, 40'. However, Kirkenes is much farther to the east, and thus appears to be further to the north on most maps. Alta is slightly further to the north, at 69, 58'.

Honningsvåg (the airport closest to the North Cape) is the northernmost in mainland Norway at 71, 0', but the village is not that interesting, especially in autumn. Hammerfest is the northernmost city of Norway (and for tourist purposes: in the world) and is at 70' 40'. Be aware that the latter two are only served by Widerøe, using Dash-8's. A change is necessary at Tromsø, and flights are much more expensive there. Choosing between the two, I would definitely go for Hammerfest (I am actually going there on business in a week's time), but for the OP's purpose, I would go to Tromsø.

I would not necessarily expect much snow even in late October. As for the aurora borealis, you might have luck, and then you might not.
Thanks a lot for the info. I am now more interested in Tromsø. Should I rent a car or join a tour if I want to chase the northern lights at night?
SoloTravelerinRed is offline  

Thread Tools
Search this Thread
Search Engine: