Driving to the Midnight Sun

Jan 24th, 2008, 02:32 PM
  #1  
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Driving to the Midnight Sun

I'm looking at possibilities for a couple of weeks in June - our previous plans for April in Tuscany have been torpedoed by - ick - work, so looking at other possibilities. We'll be in Stockholm, and am thinking about hitting the road to the north.

Various mapping sites say it's about a 3-day drive from Stockholm up to the far north - Hammerfest, Kirkenes, Tromso etc. Can anybody confirm those times are about right? How are road conditions in mid June? (Our experience in the north is from Alaska, where many roads are prone to frost heaves, closures etc., but those are different geological areas, so not sure how comparable.)

I think it would be fun to spend some time above the Arctic circle in June, since we're planning an Antarctic cruise in December.

Any input is most welcome.
Gardyloo is online now  
Jan 24th, 2008, 02:51 PM
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Sorry, cannot comment on road conditions since the northernmost point I have been to has been Stockholm so far.

Since the title of your post is "driving to the midnight sun", I just wanted to say that already in Stockholm you barely have darkness in mid June.. you'll be almost as much north as in Anchorage, AK (well, some 120mls south), but still..
Cowboy1968 is offline  
Jan 24th, 2008, 03:14 PM
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I'm so jealous---I've only been as far as Trondheim (the roads were fine that far). I've always wanted to continue on up to Tromsø.

What's your route from Stockholm? Up through Sweden or over to Norway?
enzian is offline  
Jan 24th, 2008, 03:19 PM
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Most routes suggested by the robots (hence my post here) entail driving all the way up to the top of the Gulf of Bothnia, then crossing overland through a bit of Finland before entering Norway, then forking off on the appropriate road to whatever coastal destination is desired.

Cowboy, we lived in Alaska for quite some years, so are very familiar with "white nights." Also familiar with Deet and other nostrums to deal with major mosquitoness in June.
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Jan 25th, 2008, 01:19 AM
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Friends of ours did a driving tour through Lapland in June a couple of years ago, - no problems with the weather as far as I recall.
hetismij is offline  
Jan 25th, 2008, 06:21 AM
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TTT 'cause I'm greedy.
Gardyloo is online now  
Jan 25th, 2008, 08:15 AM
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It's OK---I think all former Alaskans (and travelers to far-flung places of the world) have a license to be greedy here.

Would you consider dropping the car and taking the Hurtigruten back from Kirkenes? I saw a 2-for-1 ad in my Smithsonian mag this morning. Early booking special.

But I suppose the drop charge could be horrendous.
enzian is offline  
Jan 25th, 2008, 11:05 AM
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Gardyloo: May I suggest something which we recently did..in reverse. We had "done" Norway by car and the Hurtigrute...part of the drive was from Bodo, to the Lofotens, and then on to Narvik and Tromso and points north. On returning, we dropped the car in Narvik (no drop charge since we had rented in Bodo) and had booked the overnight sleeper train to Stockholm...comfortable and reasonably priced. Therefore, you could consider taking that train from Stockholm to Narvik, renting there, driving to Tromso and thence to the Kirkenes region...and backtrack to Tromso where you can drop with no charge and fly onward to anywhere.

Roads are excellent and not crowded...

Stu T.
tower is offline  
Jan 25th, 2008, 11:17 AM
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Stu - thanks, I'm looking at that option - sleeper north to Lulea or some such, get a car and loop up into the arctic, then return to Lulea, drop the car and sleeper south.

Or we're also looking at the 2-country rail pass option, and just renting cars for day trips out of e.g. Narvik.

Time might be more limited than I thought, and I don't want to turn the trip into a driving/train marathon. We might just scrub the arctic option this year and head off to some thatchy roofy Danish Kro and drink beer and eat cheese for a few days.
Gardyloo is online now  
Jan 25th, 2008, 01:47 PM
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There are no problems with road conditions in June. The roads are free of snow.

I recommend to take a flight close to the artic cycle. Several low cost airlines offer flight to airports in the north and you can safe a lot of travel time. I can recommend flights towards Lulea (flights from Stockholm), Gällivare (flights from Stockholm) or Kittilä (flights from Helsinki). Also the north of Norway is served by low cost airlines starting in Oslo.

I started my last trip in Lulea (cheap flight from Stockholm) and you can reach the northern parts of Sweden, Finland and Norway within one day.

June is a off-eason travel period, but still most hotels are open and you will have no problems to find a accommodation.
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