From breathtaking natural phenomena to cherished traditions, Europe’s Nordic countries are filled with seasonal charms. Here are just a few of the reasons to pay them a visit, no matter the time of year.
The northern lights, or aurora borealis, are a phenomenon that has been enchanting onlookers for centuries. With its high, almost arctic latitude, Iceland offers prime aurora-viewing conditions for those who visit Iceland between September and mid-April—when the days are shorter and the nights at their darkest.
No trip to Norway is complete without taking some time to experience the fjords. Roughly 1,200 of these picturesque inlets line the country’s western coast, and the possibilities for exploring it are all but endless. Spring is the best time for a visit, when the mountain meltwaters fill the waterfalls and bankside orchards are in full bloom.
One of the highlights of a Finnish summer is the flavors. You can find—and pick—wild blueberries and lingonberries in the forests of Finland, or stop by a farmers’ market to stock up. Another favorite is crayfish. This end-of-season tradition is so popular that at NJK—Helsinki’s most famous crayfish restaurant—upward of 30,000 of the crustaceans are consumed each year.
As the days grow shorter and the foliage starts to turn, Copenhagen takes on a whole new feel. Culture Night (an annual event that opens up museums, government buildings, and more to the public), the festive Halloween decorations at Tivoli Gardens, and fewer crowds make the Danish capital an ideal fall destination to visit.