Are you looking for information on what to wear in Norway in the summer and what to pack for your dream trip to the north? After many summers spent in different parts of Norway, I know exactly what clothes to wear to Norway in June, July, and August. Read on and learn everything about packing for summer in Norway – and also find below a full Norway summer packing list.
Norway summer packing
If there is one question that I get a lot, is what to pack for Norway. I get it, a trip here requires quite a lot of preparation, and in terms of deciding on what to wear in Norway in the summer, or winter, there are many things to take into consideration.
I’ve already written a comprehensive Norway winter clothing guide, that helps you to pack for Norway in the winter, and guide for Norway in the autumn, so now I decided to share with you my Norway summer packing list, and all the tips you need to pack for Norway this summer!
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What to wear in Norway in summer
What to wear in Norway in summer might seem easy at first, but in reality, it’s not.
The general trip to Norway includes cities, and nature, a lot of moving around, probably some hiking or at least a lot of walking, and different weather conditions.
Did you know that it can snow in Norway in the summer? Well, it can. You can even ski in the summer in Norway!
But worry not, I will explain it all to you below, and explain to you what to pack for Norway in summer (June, July, and August).
To ensure you’re well-prepared for every adventure and unpredictable weather, I’ve curated the ultimate packing list that covers everything you’ll need, including clothing, shoes, accessories, toiletries, snacks, and more. Let’s dive in!
Tips for packing for Norway in the summer
1. Pack layered clothing
Norway’s summer weather can vary, so it’s best to pack layers to accommodate changing temperatures. Bring lightweight clothing such as t-shirts, shorts, and skirts, along with a few warmer items like sweaters or light jackets for cooler evenings or unexpected weather shifts.
Layers are the ultimate answer to all your questions regarding how to dress in Norway. The deal is, that the pockets of air captured in between layers of clothes keep the warmth around the body. It’s the same technology they use in jackets or sleeping bags filled with the dawn.
Another advantage of layering up is the ability to take some stuff off when you get too warm. I often struggle with this when the weather quickly changes and suddenly it becomes hot again.
Or typically when you start hiking, it’s nice and hot at the bottom of the hill, and then it gets gradually colder the higher you get. With layers, you can put things on and take them off as needed. It works great in hiking and other outdoor activities.
How to dress in Norway in summer:
2. Focus on comfort
Comfort, weather protection, and quick dry fabrics of your clothes are more important than their style.
Of course, wear anything that you feel nice in, but bear in mind, that in Norway, sports clothes are worn for every occasion. For example, even in Oslo, the capital of Norway, you can see most people wearing sports shoes, heels, or any other types of shoes are less common.
All the locals and tourists also dress in a practical way, so it will be easy for you to blend in. I remember my surprise seeing my colleagues coming to the office in waterproof jackets thrown over their smart shirts. After getting to know the Norwegian weather, I started doing the same.
If you already own some outdoorsy clothes, the good news, is you don’t have to entirely change your travel wardrobe for your summer Norway trip. There might be some adjustments needed, though.
3. Check weather forecasts, and then pack for all types of weather, anyway.
Remember to check the specific weather forecast for your destination in Norway before you pack, as it may vary depending on the region you plan to visit. The best weather app for Norway is yr.no.
However, as with any weather forecast, it’s sometimes right, sometimes wrong. Especially in Norway, and especially in the mountains, weather can change very quickly. It can be sunny, rainy, or snowy all in one day. So check the weather, but always be prepared for it to suddenly change.
4. Always take rain gear
Norway is known for its rain showers even during the summer (while I’m writing this we are currently in the middle of the drought in the south of Norway, and we need some rain, but this is not normal!).
Pack a waterproof or water-resistant jacket and consider bringing a compact rain poncho that you can take everywhere with you to stay dry.
Norway winds are not the best for carrying an umbrella, but I sometimes take it with me on calmer days. However, I guess I’ve learned how to operate an umbrella in the strong winds after living in Scotland, so don’t take me for an example, and pack a rain jacket instead.
If you plan to do any hiking, pack waterproof trousers too. Check the price and model here
What to wear in the regions of Norway in the summer
Western Norway and Bergen
Bergen is known for its rain. It rains on average 239 days out of the year there, so you should really be prepared for that. Stavanger also has generally rainier weather.
Mountains and the fjords
The weather in the mountains and fjords of Norway in the summer can vary greatly. There can be 20°C days, and there might be snowing up on top of the peaks.
The weather can also change very quickly. Keeping additional layers in your backpack, even if it’s hot in the morning, is essential, especially on longer hikes.
Oslo and the southern part of Norway
Oslo and the southern coast of Norway are typically the warmest areas of Norway in the summer. The weather generally stays pretty stable there in the summer months, with highs of 20-25C (in the lowlands). However, it can also rain and temperatures can drop lower.
While generally colder than the south, the coastal areas of Northern Norway, such as Lofoten, Senja, or even Tromso, generally have mild temperatures due to Gulf Stream that warms up the waters. However, be prepared for rain and colder days as well.
Ultimate Norway summer packing list
Below, I share with you my list of what to pack for Norway in the summer. After living and traveling all over Norway for the last 6 years, I know very well what to pack, what to leave behind, what’s essential, and what not to forget when packing for your summer Norway trip.
Packing for Norway in June and July should be quite similar. The beginning of June might still have some snow in the mountains. Packing for Norway in August is also not much different, but the temperatures at night might be a bit lower, especially in the mountains.
After that, comes Norway in the autumn (which I highly recommend).
What clothes to wear and pack for Norway in the summer – the best summer packing list for Norway
As I mentioned above – layers are the most important part of packing for the Norway trip. Pack a variety of lightweight, breathable tops for easy layering. I recommend you take a few short-sleeved shirts, long-sleeved shirts, and tank tops to accommodate changing weather conditions.
2. Lightweight waterproof jacket
Norway’s weather can be unpredictable, so it’s crucial to have a waterproof jacket to stay dry during unexpected rain showers. I travel everywhere with my Gore-tex jacket, which is waterproof, wind-proof, and breathable. Perfect for hiking, as well as city walking. Check the price and model here.
3. Sweaters or fleeces
Norway’s evenings can get chilly, even in summer. Pack a couple of sweaters or fleeces to stay warm during cooler evenings. If you have one, take sweaters made from wool. Why..? See below.
Wool is my top favorite material to wear in Norway, also in the summer, not only in winter. My woolen clothes are all-year items, that I probably wear the most of all of my other clothes.
My favorite is merino wool, which cools you down when it’s too hot, and warms you up when it’s cold. It also wicks moisture, doesn’t smell, and dries very quickly so it’s perfect for hiking, traveling, and active days.
5. Comfortable pants
Take versatile bottoms like pants that are comfortable for both city exploration and outdoor activities. I usually take black leggings that I can use for hiking and also for the city. Alternatively, I also take lightweight hiking pants that have zipped-out legs and I can quickly convert them into shorts.
If you plan on hiking, also take waterproof trousers.
6. Shorts or skirts
For warmer days, include a pair of shorts or thinner trousers (one is enough!) to stay cool and comfortable. I often use long pants that can be zipped out to transfer them into shorts.
Don’t forget to pack comfortable sleepwear for a good night’s rest after long days of exploration.
Norway boasts numerous picturesque lakes and stunning fjords where you can take a refreshing (refreshing meaning quite cold) dip, so don’t forget to pack a swimsuit (check this cute one here!).
What shoes to pack for summer in Norway:
1. Sturdy waterproof hiking boots
If you plan to explore Norway’s nature trails and mountains, invest in a pair of sturdy hiking boots to ensure stability and ankle support. There are a lot of rocks, bushes, and uneven terrain on the hikes in Norway.
I suggest you bring waterproof boots, so then you can also wear them if the weather turns (and they will survive the hike in the rain!). Check the price and model here.
2. Comfortable walking shoes
For city walks and exploring urban landscapes, pack a pair of comfortable walking shoes. I recommend sports shoes, everyone wears them here.
If you are not planning to do very big hikes, you can as well pack versatile trail runners and use them in the cities as well as on the hikes instead of the boots. I have Salomon trail runners, and I use them for easier hikes in Norway.
3. Sandals or flip flops
A pair of lightweight and waterproof sandals or flip-flops will come in handy for showers, wearing inside your accommodation, or relaxing by the water.
What accessories to pack for summer in Norway
Bring a durable, waterproof backpack to carry essentials during your outdoor adventures.
The backpack is usually better than a suitcase as you can take it with you hiking. Check the price and model here.
2. Sunhat or cap
For sunny days and for exposed hikes, take a sunhat to protect yourself from the sun.
Sunglasses are important to pack for summer in Norway with all the water activities on fjords and lakes (the reflections!).
4. Lightweight scarf/buff
A lightweight scarf can keep you warm in cool evenings, you can use it as a throw, a cover, a blanket, and even a towel. And Buff is multifunctional and very useful when hiking or doing sports. Check the price and model here.
5. Travel umbrella
Many people say that umbrella is useless in Norway due to the constant winds, but I still take mine with me to the cities. If you don’t know how to operate the umbrella in the wind, take a waterproof jacket instead.
6. Reusable water bottle
In Norway, water can be safely drunk straight from the tap (and it’s delicious!), so save some money and help the environment by bringing your own reusable water bottle and re-filling it on the way – Check the price here.
7. Power adapter
Norway uses Type C and F electrical outlets, so bring a power adapter to charge your devices.
A good investment is to buy a universal power adapter – I take it with me everywhere. I especially recommend a power adapter like this one, with additional USB plugs. You can charge your camera batteries and phones at the same time.
8. Sleeping mask
Due to the midnight sun and white nights, it is very bright at night in Norway in the summer. Therefore, a good sleeping mask will help you have a good night’s sleep despite the brightness.
Norway summer packing list – toiletries
Protect your skin from the summer sun by packing a high-SPF sunscreen. I always take this sun cream as it has great protection, and good skincare, and is perfect for kids and adults on the face and body.
2. Insect repellent
Norway’s lush landscapes may attract mosquitos and other insects, so be prepared with insect repellent. Especially July and August are bad months for mosquitos and midges in Norway – Check the price here.
3. Travel-sized toiletries
Bring travel-sized bottles of shampoo, conditioner, body wash, and other essentials to save space in your luggage. Or even better, become a more responsible traveler and take a shampoo bar and a bar of soap instead.
4. Toothbrush and toothpaste
Don’t forget a toothbrush and toothpaste. A bamboo toothbrush is my favorite.
5. Personal medications
If you have any prescription medications, don’t forget to take enough of them for the duration of your trip.
What to pack for Norway in the summer – snacks and miscellaneous:
1. Energy bars or trail mix
Not sure about you, but I constantly get hungry when I’m exploring and hiking. So to keep your energy levels up during hikes and long days of exploration take some easy-to-pack snacks like energy bars or trail mix.
You can of course also buy them in Norway, but keep in mind that they are more expensive (here are some tips on how to travel Norway on budget and Oslo on a budget, though!). I love Nakd bars with only natural ingredients and no sugar.
2. Portable water filter
Norway has many clean natural water sources. In general, they should be safe to drink, but, especially on the most popular hikes, the water quality can drop.
There are also pastures high on the trails and sheep walking around, so for that matter, the water filter is a good idea to make sure you don’t end up with water poising if you plan to drink from natural sources. Sawyer Mini Water Filtration Systems are very good or the clear water tablets would be the best choice for you.
3. Camera and extra batteries
For capturing those great landscape photos. I always recommend mirrorless Fuji cameras for their great quality of pictures, compatibility, and lightness – Check models and prices here.
4. Travel pillow and blanket
If you’re embarking on long journeys or overnight flights, a travel pillow and blanket can ensure a more comfortable rest.
5. Travel-sized laundry detergent
For longer trips, having travel-sized laundry detergent can be useful for washing clothes and reducing the need for excessive packing.
6. Travel insurance
Always have travel insurance when traveling abroad. It doesn’t cost much but can save you when an unfortunate accident happens (like to me in Svalbard!).
7. Passport, bank cards, and travel documents
Norway is mainly cashless, so taking debit and credit cards that you can use abroad makes the most sense. I recommend Revolut.
Remember to take your passport and other important documents as well.
What to pack for hiking in summer in Norway
If you plan to hike in the summer in Norway (and you should! Check out the best hikes in Norway), then add the below items to your luggage.
1. Thin warm hat
It can get cold and windy on the hikes in Norway even in the summer, so carrying a thin hat is a good idea.
2. Thin gloves
The same goes for thin gloves. If you’re stuck with space, you could skip that, and keep your hands in your pockets when it’s cold, but I can say that I used my thin gloves many times in the summer in the Norwegian mountains in the colder weather.
3. Tent, sleeping mat, and a sleeping bag
Summer in Norway is the best time to go camping or wild camping. Nothing beats pitching up your tent in the most beautiful location and waking up in the middle of nature with a stunning view of the fjords. And it also helps you to travel in Norway on a budget since wild camping is free.
If you have space, I recommend you take a tent, a sleeping mat, and a sleeping bag. I have a lightweight and affordable tent Naturehike Cloud 2.
4. Hiking poles
Most hikes in Norway are quite steep, so hiking poles are a great help to them. I often take mine with me.
What to skip when you plan on hiking in the summer in Norway
Summer nights in Norway are bright, so you don’t usually need to bring a headtorch with you. Especially if you plan to visit Northern Norway.
For southern Norway, you might need it for a few hours in the middle of the night, but usually, your phone torch would suffice as it’s never really pitch black.
What to pack for a Norwegian fjord cruise in the summer
The packing list for a cruise in Norway in the summer would be the same as above but with a few additions.
Nice evening clothes or party attire would be nice to wear for more formal parties at cruise ships or dinners at fancy restaurants.
Most cruise ships have gyms or jogging tracks, so if you still feel energetic after the whole day of sightseeing, you can hit the gym with your gym clothes.
If you are a light sleeper, earplugs might be handy!
Are you ready for packing for your summer trip to Norway?
Packing for a Norway trip in the summer might not be the most straightforward thing to do (thanks, to the ever-changing weather…). But, hopefully, the tips above helped you to understand a bit better what to wear for your Norwegian adventures.
Follow the tips above, and you should be well prepared for any adventure, be it exploring cities or natural wonders.
Always remember to pack clothes suitable for changing weather conditions, comfortable shoes, essential toiletries, accessories, and snacks (they are pricey up here!).
While this packing list provides a solid foundation for your summer Norway trip, you can always tailor it to your personal preferences, specific activities, and the duration of your trip. Safe travels and enjoy Norway!
What else would you add to the summer Norway packing list? Have I missed anything? Let me know in the comments!
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