If you are the one to enjoy a good snowball fight, look forward to an adventurous skiing trip and still find peace in a snowy afternoon, then this post is for you. Now that the season is slowly coming to an end in Europe, we decided to go on a quest. We hunted down friendly places where winter lasts longer, and ended up in Scandinavia and Iceland.
Read further and you will find tips on where to go this late winter in order to still find amazing ski slopes, explore white nature, enjoy a sauna or be enchanted by the northern lights.
#1. Andøya, Norway
Andøya, Norway is the northernmost island in the Vesterålen archipelago inside the Arctic Circle. It is ideal for both nature lovers and space-exploring enthusiasts. It is also the leading spot for whale and wildlife watching, for which it has earned the name ‘Whale Kingdom of the North’.
Andoya is populated by the villages of Andenes, Bleik, and Risøyhamn, and a coastal express boat ensures connection between the inhabited areas.
Some of the most enjoyable things to do in Andoya include nature walks and hikes, as well as whale watching, and chasing the Northern lights.
#2. Rovaniemi, Finland
Rumored to be the birthplace of Santa Claus, Rovaniemi is a winter fairytale. The capital of Lapland is located in the northeast part of Finland, which makes it a perfect place to spot Aurora Borealis. It is here that the colorful spectacle of light can be seen 200 nights per year.
The small city offers plenty of possibilities for spending time outdoors, from farm visits, Husky tours, sauna experiences, skiing or ice fishing. All these make Rovaniemi an interesting place for spending more several days at the end of the European winter and getting immersed in the local culture.
#3. Stockholm, Sweden
The capital of Sweden, Stockholm combines a rich historical background with modern attractions. Cobbled streets, picturesque bridges over the city’s canals, fantastic architecture and much more are the reason to visit this place. The Old Town is simply spectacular, with its museums, boutiques and traditional food.
You can try out steamy saunas and skating frozen rivers in Stockholm for as late as mid-March, which is why we decided to add this lovely destination to our list. For interesting places to go in and around Stockholm, explore these 2019 best Scandinavia tours & trips on 50°North.
#4. Jukkasjärvi, Sweden
This is a small village commonly known as Jukkas, which is located about 17 km north of Kiruna in the region of Lappland. It is commonly known thanks to the Icehotel, by far the world’s largest igloo, built every year all over again in October next to the Torneälven River. The hotel lasts until the temperatures rise significantly above zero in May and then melts back into the river.
#5. The South Coast of Iceland
Although the entire Ring Road offers memorable landscapes during the winter in Iceland, we believe the South coast is safer and friendlier during winter. From horse riding and ice cave tours, to fantastic hiking trails, winter here feels at home sometimes up to the beginning of May.
Check out this post on 10 adventure travel experiences in the South of Iceland we put together a while back to get a sense of the region and available activities during the winter.