Thorsmork in the Highlands of Iceland during a summer night

Icelandic summer nights are lit by a certain twilight that creates a special atmosphere


Always wanted to see the Northern Lights? Then the summer months are not the time for your trip to Iceland! From mid-May to mid-July, the midnight sun illuminates Icelandic nights. That means, it never gets entirely dark, but a certain twilight always remains. While some people might have trouble sleeping (dark shades and sleeping masks help!), others embrace the energy and make the most of the endless light.

What’s there to see?

In June the sun doesn’t set at all above the Arctic circle. Though Iceland is located south of the Arctic Circle there is the small island of Grimsey which lies on it. There you can experience the midnight sun almost setting and climbing up the horizon again between June 7th and July 7th.

In the rest of Iceland, the sun shortly sets around midnight. The further north you are, the shorter the sun vanishes under the horizon. Here you can calculate how long the sun is up when you are visiting Iceland.

What's there to do?

Do you wonder how to use all that daylight? Icelandic summer nights are perfect for:

Rolling around in the grass – one magic night

When the days are the longest and it doesn’t get dark in summer, magic is happening in Iceland. Old folkloristic beliefs around the night of Jónsmessa, a holiday celebrated on 24 June, claim that cows could speak, seals could turn human and diseases heal when rolling naked in wet grass. But since Icelandic nights can still get quite chilly in summer (with average temperatures being 6 degrees) we also have some more (warmer) recommendations and fun events for you, that take place under the midnight sun in Iceland.

A group of people sitting and chatting on a meadow in downtown Reykjavik

In summer, Icelanders make up for the time spent inside during the winter


Grimsey wins the competition for longest daylight and from June 23rd-June 25th a three-day family Summer Solstice Festival with music, seafood, dancing, and boat rides takes place on Iceland’s northernmost Island. Locals and visitors alike indulge in the endless sunshine and celebrate summer. In case you don’t want to leave the Island, the northernmost family festival on mainland Iceland takes place in Kopasker.


It is a most exquisite sight to watch the midnight sunsets. While viewing this spectacle requires good weather, it further only needs a seat on the shore - which we have plenty of. Pick a nice place for midnight, bring a blanket, and nice company. Et voilá!

Three people watching the sunset at Háifoss

Hiking in the night and watching endless sunsets - an unique combination


If you were always dreaming about that one special lit shot of a certain waterfall, then photograph it by night. Not only will it have a special midnight-sunlight filter on but also: no people.


Iceland is busy during the summer months of June, July, and August. The most popular sights along the ring road, especially along the South coast, are visited by up to a thousand travelers per day. But the good news is: most sightseeing highlights in Iceland don’t have opening hours and can be visited 24/7. If you rather want to enjoy certain sights alone, then the nighttime is your travel time!

Hverir hotspring during sunset in June

Hverir hot springs at the Namafjall geothermal area attract many visitors during summer days - way less during the night


The whales are not asleep! Humpback whales for example don’t nap longer than 30 minutes, since they need to come to the surface to breathe. Midnight sun whale watching is ideal for everyone who wants to share the boat with fewer people surrounded by the beautiful mountains and serenity of the nighttime.


The summit of Mt. Thorbjorn is the goal of the Midsummer Night's Eve hike in Grindavík, held around June solstice. The hike is family-friendly, with a bonfire and music on top of the mountain. The walk ends at the Blue Lagoon, open past midnight that evening and sponsors the event.

golfer looking at his watch, sunset lights the sky red

There is no limit to what you can do outdoors during the summer


Golfing under the midnight sun is possible in Akureyri. A very special tournament takes place every year on Akureyris 18-hole-championship golf course. Players from all over the world participate at the Arctic Open and practice their favorite sport until late in the evening.

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Celebrate the Midnight sun