Imagine living in a place where the sun never goes down, a never-ending day with no sunsets and no night. I’m not talking about a fairy tale land but about real-life places near Artic Circle that have no nights and when they do its for continuous long months. In these places, you have sunlight for all 24 hours, popularly called “The Midnight Sun”, whereas the opposite phenomenon called “Polar Night” when the sun remains below the horizon in winters. Here’s a list of few places that only live in black and white time zones.
1. Barrow, Alaska
The small city of 4,581 people is built on soil that is below freezing point and in many places goes up to 1,300 feet deep giving the place super cold and windy winters. Can you imagine a beach in Alaska? Well they do, it’s called the Barrow Beach, where you can enjoy the sun even at 2 o’clock in the night. The sun never goes down for three months in this place. The opposite of this occurs from mid-November through late January, when the sun doesn’t rise for roughly two months north of the Arctic Circle. In Barrow, this polar night stays from early November to early January.
Best time to visit this place: Early May to Early August
2. Hammerfest, Norway
Though one of the oldest towns in Norway, it might surprise you how modern Hammerfest looks. From hiking, fishing to its grand carnivals on the cruise, there is no reason for people to sleep especially when the sun doesn’t. The midnight sun is at its peak on June 21 each year, when Norway and other regions of the Arctic Circle may receive almost 24 hours of sunlight.
Best time to visit this place: May 16- July 27
3. Qaanaaq, Greenland
With about 650 residents, Qaanaaq lies in the extreme north of Greenland but is absolutely within reach. Explorers and poets have long romanticized Qaanaaq as truly the top of the world and why shouldn’t they, the beautiful evening this place offers has no description with human words. People are often affected by the midnight sun by continuous light with very long, cold winters, and have to use black curtains to get the necessary sleep during the 2 1/2 month period of the midnight sun.
Best time to visit this place: late April- late August
Making the long months of night less winters a commercial business, there are several tours like midnight sun tours, the Golden Circle in Iceland that are famous in Iceland, not to forget they also have horse riding and mountain hikes for the sleepless adventurers. The myths and legends of giant trolls, ghosts, and Huldufólk (secret people) will keep you company in this mysterious land.
Best time to visit this place: Early May- Late July
5. Ivalo, Finland
This beautiful village in Finland is quite small and surrounded by forest and cross-country ski trails. With a busy airport and not so mainstream tourist attraction, soak in the culture with endless days in this fairytale town. According to data provided by the nation of Finland, 66 percent of the world’s population within the zone of the midnight sun resides in Finland, particularly in its northern Laplands.
Best time to visit this place: May 22 – July 21
6. Kiruna, Swedish Lapland
Kiruna – home of the iconic Ice hotel is also one of the world’s best places to see the Northern Lights. But in the months that has no night, this place also has several interesting tours like the “Igloo Overnight Tour”, camping by the bonfire, you’ll be surprised by the comfort of the warmth your igloo will give you. You can also go reindeer sledging, ride Icelandic horse, learn about the Sami culture and see reindeer, go by snow mobile and ice fish.
Best time to visit this place: End of May – Mid July
7. Yukon, Canada
Untouched wilderness, millions of migratory birds and wildflowers in bloom thus makes Yukon in the summer, the perfect way to get your dose of adventure and Vitamin D. In the land of the midnight sun, the skies are glorious and summer light just won’t quit.
Best time to visit this place: Early May- Late June
8. Nunavut, Canada
A town of just over 3,000 people in the Northwest Territories of Canada, Nunavut is situated two degrees above the Arctic Circle.During winter it experiences about 30 consecutive days of total darkness(the Noon-Moon) and has two months of 24/7 sunlight in summers. The place is full of mysteries, legends about disappeared tribes, vampires, man-eaters or aliens. Good thing the place has the protection of sun for a few months. If you ever make a visit don’t forget to ask the locals about the Anjikuni mystery.
Best time to visit this place: Early April- Early June
9. Svalbard, Norway
Svalbard is as close as most humans can get to the North Pole and still capture its spirit. Not only is it the land of more polar bears than people, the sun too never sleeps here. So adventures have several activities like glacier hikes or expeditions by snowmobile or led by a team of huskies to make the most of this bizarre phenomenon.
Best time to visit this place: April 20 – August 22
10. St. Petersburg, Russia
Imagine walking along the banks of the city’s rivers and canals in almost broad daylight, no matter what the time of day it is. Could there be anything more romantic than such a life as lived in the land of “White Nights”?
St. Petersburg is the world’s most northern city with a population over 1 million, and it stands at such a high latitude that the sun does not go below the horizon enough for the sky to grow dark.
Best time to visit this place: June 11th to July 2nd