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Winter can be a mixed bag, so in making your packing list for Norway you’ll need to think about which areas you are visiting.
In Oslo and surrounding areas, snow often graces the area but the temperatures are more mild than up north. In the north winters can also be quite dark, with only 5-6 hours of sunlight a day, leaving less time for sightseeing. While the temperatures may begin to out you off, this is the best time to see the northern lights in Norway.
Read on to learn what to wear in Norway in winter to keep yourself warm.
When to Visit Norway: Weather and Seasons
bigstockphoto.com / Voy
What to wear in Norway in Fall (September, October, November): Fall is a good time to layer up so you can add and remove as the day goes on. You can also expect some rain during this time so a waterproof jacket would come in handy. Expect temperatures of 0 to 16C / 32-61F and -11 to 9C / 12-48F in the north
What to wear in Norway in Winter (December, January, February): While Oslo and the surrounds attract snow during this time of year the coastal regions will likely avoid it. Rain is definitely a possibility though so a warm raincoat is needed. Average temps -17 (Tromso) to 2C (Oslo)/ 1 to 37F.
What to wear in Norway in Spring (March, April, May): As temperatures start to warm up Spring is a great time to visit the country if you don’t mind a bit of leftover winter chill. In some areas you can still go skiing during this time, while in the coastal areas you’ll get a mild glance of the summer to come. Average temps -1 to 16C / 30 to 60F depending on where you’re visiting.
What to wear in Norway in Summer (June, July, August): During this time of year you can experience the phenomena known as the midnight sun in the north. Don’t let this mislead you though, it can still get quite chilly at night with the sun blaring. Expect temperatures around 11-22C / 51-71F, but in Tromso (and the rest of the north) it can get down to 5C / 41 F with an average of 12C / 53F.
What to Wear in Norway in Winter
How to Dress for Winter in Norway
- Boots x 1-2: Make sure they are warm pairs. If you plan on hiking make one of these hiking boots.
- Socks – As extra warmth for your feet inside boots or just to wear in the hotel room.
- Underwear & Bras: I’d recommend handwashing so you can bring less than 1 per day of visit. For a 2-4 week trip with hand washing you could pack 5-6 x pairs of underwear and 4 x bras.
- Scarf, gloves & Beanie x 2-3
- Bottoms x 3-4 pairs: Opt for jeans and warmer pants. If visiting the north you need to have warmer pants than jeans.
- Tops x 4-8: Depending on what you can fit in your luggage, but you can also handwash these or use the local drycleaners.
- Pullover x 2-3: for layering
- Coats x 1-2: You’ll be wearing these everyday so I’d recommend two if they can fit in your luggage, otherwise one should suffice. If you pack two try one puffer style and one normal – but both long length. Wear the puffer style jacket on check in (or carry on your arm) if you’re reaching the luggage weight limit. If visiting the north pick extra warm coats. In the south you’ll be fine with just full length coats as long as one is insulated for colder days.
- Leggings or long johns x 2: Perfect for wearing under your pants on colder days.
What to Pack for Norway in Winter: Other Items
bigstockphoto.com / Andrey Armyagov
Phone + phone charger.
Camera and lenses.
Camera batteries (1-3) and charger. Keep in mind that the cold will deplete your batteries faster.
Memories cards x 2-4
Makeup and Toiletries:
Any makeup you need but kept it limited.
Toothbrush + travel sized versions of shampoo, conditioner and toothpaste.
First aid kit:
You can buy medicine in Norway but if there’re any brands you love back home you should pack them as they may not be available here.
Take 1 MasterCard and 1 Visa to have better success at ATMs.
Also make 2 photocopies of your passport, leaving one at home with family, and one in a separate part of your bag to your actual passport in case of theft.
Check out the weather forecast before you go as a backpack will be a better option if there’s rain and snow. However depending on how much you pack a suitcase may be more practical, especially if traveling with heavy winter gear. Remember you’ll be wearing the coat and boots a lot so you only have to make room for your second lot in the bag.
What About Travel Insurance? | Norway Packing List for Winter
I personally use World Nomads as my travel insurer and they’re yet to let me down. I’ve used them in the past to claim on a stolen Go Pro and a water damaged computer so I’m quite happy with the choice to use them.
Travel insurance can also help you incase of lost baggage and most importantly medical expenses if something bad happens on your trip. Thank god I have never needed to claim for medical expenses but I feel much more secure knowing I have that option available if needed.
Here is the link for the website if you want to see prices, or you can use the box above.