Autumn in Norway might not be the most popular time of the year for tourists, but this appears to be a good thing (especially if you don’t like the crowds and enjoy the peace). Bright autumn colors, crisp clear air, empty hiking trails, delicious fresh autumn produce, and the Norwegian way of cozy feeling of “kos”, makes Norway in autumn a place like no other.
Norway in autumn
Autumn in Norway falls in the months of September, October, and November. This is when the air gets crisper and cleaner, the colors more vivid, and the stars reappear in the dark sky after the bright summer nights. It’s a perfect time for an outdoor adventure in Norway, with many top hikes in Norway being empty, as well as a city break in Oslo, Bergen, or others.
Table of content – Norway in autumn
- Norway in September
- Weather in Norway in September
- Norway in October
- Weather in Norway in October
- Norway in November
- Weather in Norway in November
- What to do in Norway in autumn
- Norway autumn events
- What to pack for Norway in autumn
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Norway in autumn – what to expect
Many people are not sure what to expect when visiting Norway in autumn. Is it cold? Are the roads open? Are there many tourists?
One thing to be sure of is that any season, especially autumn in Norway, as well as Norway’s winter, can be unpredictable. This time of year, you can encounter a wide range of temperatures and types of weather. From summery vibes in September, or sometimes October, to snow in November, but also in October, especially in the mountains. When that happens, some of the higher roads can already be closed. Make sure to check that in advance on the traffic information website.
Mornings and evenings are colder, but during the day, in Oslo, temperatures can occasionally hover around 19°C. They can also go below 10°C.
One thing to be sure of is that autumn has arrived when trees and mountain bushes change colors to shades of orange, red, and yellow. The number of tourists is also always smaller than in the summer.
Norway in September
September in Norway might be one of the best months to visit the country. It’s often still warm enough for a general traveler, with mild temperatures and sunny weather. The high season is finished, with summer tourists coming back home, leaving the iconic Norwegian attractions such as the Kjerag hike or Trolltunga more enjoyable without the crowds.
This is one of the best times to enjoy the Norwegian outdoors with clean air and beautiful colors. Try the famous Romsdalseggen or spectacular Trollveggen and Reinanuten, or visit the famous Rondane National Park.
Remember that in the north of Norway, weather changes quickly. Whereas in the south it can still be warm, the more harsh conditions can already arrive in the northern parts of the country, as well as in the higher mountain areas.
Towards the end of September, you can start seeing the Northern Lights in the Arctic Circle.
Weather in Norway in September
The weather in Norway in September is very enjoyable. This is when the summer transitions into the golden colors of early autumn.
South: The average temperatures in Oslo in September range from 7.5°C to 15.1°C. The daylight is getting shorter, but it’s still not too bad with almost 13 hours of daylight in the south.
North: The average temperatures in Tromso in September range from 4.5°C to 9.3°C. There are 13 hours of daylight.
Norway in October
The golden autumn colors are on full display in Norway in October. This is the time when you can admire beautiful Norwegian scenery in peace, as there are not so many tourists anymore. The weather can still be relatively good and the daylight, even though shorter, still allows for enjoying hikes and nature. Go to the forest, make a bonfire and enjoy wild camping on crispy nights under the blanket of stars. Rent out a traditional Norwegian hytte and sit by the fire after the whole day of exploring.
October is the time when the Northern Lights displays in the Arctic Circle are more common.
Weather in Norway in October
Crisp, cool air starts to be a normality in October. As well as shorter daylight hours.
South: The average temperatures in Oslo in September range from 3.8°C to 9.3°C. There are 10 hours of daylight in the south.
In the north of Norway in October, as well as in the mountains, the temperatures are much lower. In many places, there is already snow.
Norway in November
November in Norway is almost the start of winter. This is the time when you can see the last of the autumn colors, and visit Norway before the December rush starts.
However, November in Norway is usually quite dark and wet, especially in the south and west of Norway. The northern part is usually already full of snow and ready for winter. When there is snow, you can already start feeling the cozy Christmassy atmosphere everywhere with Christmas markets starting to pop up in Oslo, and Oslo in winter is not a bad place to be.
During the last few days of November, the places located in the Arctic Circle experience the time of Polar Nights, which means complete darkness. This is also when the Northern Lights season is at its fullest.
Weather in Norway in November
It’s dark, cold, and wet. At the end of the month, the sun doesn’t rise at all in parts of northern Norway.
South: The average temperatures in Oslo in November range from -1.5°C to 3.2°C. Oslo gets around 7 hours of daylight.
What to do in Norway in Autumn
There is plenty to do in Norway in autumn. Below are some of my favorite activities.
1. Admire the autumn colors
The dazzling autumn colors make autumn in Norway the best time to be in Norwegian nature. Grab your camera and take some pretty shots of the vivid landscapes. The best places to do that are in Norwegian fjords, like in Flam, as well as in the mountains, for example, in Rondane National Park.
2. Go for a hike
Crisp mountain air, empty trails, and still relatively good weather make autumn the perfect time to go hiking in Norway. Check the best hikes in Norway here to find the best one for you. You can find the most picturesque of Oslo hiking trails here, including the famous Vettakollen hike.
3. Pick berries and mushrooms
Autumn in Norway is the perfect time to pick delicious wild berries and mushrooms. Remember to only do it when you know what types you are collecting, as some of them can be poisonous.
4. Follow the Norwegian art of “kos”
Norwegian cozy feeling of “kos”, is the Norwegian version of the famous Danish “hygge”. Take a blanket, lit scented candles, grab a hot drink and sit in front of the fireplace with a book, to experience the coziness of the autumn season in Norway. You can experience it well in a cozy Norwegian cabin with a fireplace.
5. Try Norwegian comfort food
Slow-cooked lamb and various stews, wild mushrooms, game meat, apples, pears, and berries are only some of the comforting dishes you can try in Norway in autumn.
6. Get an autumny Norwegian souvenir
Autumn introduces colder temperatures, so it’s a perfect excuse for getting a traditional Norwegian souvenir – a woolen sweater. Even though they are expensive, they will last you for years, be the warmest item you own, and you will likely not want to part with them ever again (unless it’s scorching hot). Check traditional Norwegian sweaters here.
7. Enjoy tourist sights without the crowds
Autumn in Norway allows for a peaceful visit to the country’s most famous attractions. The summer crowds are mainly gone, the weather is good and you can enjoy the sights all for yourself. This is the time to visit Kjeragbolten, Trolltunga, or Romsdalseggen (but only when the weather allows for it).
Later in the season, it’s good to do some of these hikes with a guide, such as this snowshoeing hike to Trolltunga, especially if you don’t have enough experience and knowledge about the terrain.
If you have a chance, stop by the Vøringsfossen, a powerful waterfall with a hanging bridge. I went there during Norway’s autumn and I loved the colors!
8. Chase the Northern Lights
With its darker nights, autumn in Norway is the start of the Northern Lights season. The milder temperatures are in favor of long hours spent outside waiting for the aurora.
Maximize your chances of seeing the northern lights by taking a guided tour combining a thrilling northern lights chase with a visit to an aurora camp in the wilderness.
9. Go to the traditional Norwegian cabin
Wooden cabin in the forest, fireplace, glass of wine, and a group of friends – what else do you need to spend a perfect weekend in autumn in Norway? Find the selection of the best Norwegian cabins (hytte) here. And, for autumn in Norway specifically, I can suggest staying in these beautiful wooden cabins located just by the edge of the UNESCO-listed Nærøyfjord in Flam – check them out here.
10. Watch the night sky
Even if the activity of the northern lights is low, in autumn you can finally see the stars in Norway. During the summer, due to the white nights, it’s very hard, so if you want to catch a shot of the Milky Way, now it’s the time.
you can even take a Luxury Northern Lights Cruise with Hot Tub and look for the northern lights and milky way above the arctic fjords while relaxing in an outdoor hot tub.
11. Visit Oslo in autumn
Oslo, the capital of Norway, has a lot to offer at any time of the year. I really love Oslo in winter, as well as in the summer. But only recently, I discovered how nice it’s to visit Oslo in autumn!
The weather is often still good, and the colors can be seen in the city’s parks (I especially recommend Frogner’s park). You can also go to one of the many Oslo hiking trails to get closer to the forest, and Oslo cafes are very cozy inside. There are many good hotels in Oslo for you to stay in, and in autumn, they often have lower prices. If you feel like taking a trip out of Oslo, there are many Oslo day trips to choose from.
Norway Autumn Events
Norway in autumn is full of interesting events to attend. You can find examples of them below.
Norway autumn events in September:
Autumn events in Norway in October:
Norway autumn November events:
What to pack for Norway in Autumn
- A waterproof and windproof jacket such as a Goretex jacket or rain parka (yellow seems to be very popular)
- Warm hat and thermal gloves
- Cozy scarf
- several thin layers of wool, I recommend merino wool top and merino wool bottoms – to read about the layering system check my Norway winter clothing post.
- For cozy but cold nights, I recommend a traditional Norwegian sweater, if you have it, if you don’t it’s a perfect Norwegian souvenir
- Waterproof shoes for the southern and western parts of the country – rubber boots
5 Reasons To Visit Norway in Autumn
- There are fewer tourists in autumn in Norway.
- You can admire the magical autumn colors in the mountains.
- It’s the time to be cozy inside with a fireplace and good food – get to know some Norwegians!
- It’s sauna season.
- The skies are dark and you can see stars and aurora.
Would you like to visit Norway in autumn? What would you like to do? Or maybe you have some other activities to add to the list? Let me know in the comments!
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