Best Time To Visit Bergen, Norway (a Month-by-Month Guide)

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Bergen is renowned for its rainfall, but there are plenty of reasons to visit the city regardless of its incessant rain. But when should you plan your trip to Bergen?

This guide dives into the different seasons in Bergen: winter, spring, summer, and fall. Each of the seasons in Bergen has a distinct ‘personality’ and will grant visitors different opportunities.

So, while many people may find the best time to visit Bergen in the summer months, I think there is plenty to do year-round!

Are you planning your trip to Bergen last minute?

If youʻre booking your trip to Bergen last minute, I have you covered. Below are some of the top tours, hotels, and more!

🇳🇴  Top activities and tours in Bergen:

  1. Osterfjord, Mostraumen, and waterfall fjord tour (bestselling half-day tour!)
  2. Guided tour to Nærøyfjorden, Flåm, and Stegastein (top Bergen day trips tour)
  3. Sognefjord self-guided tour from Bergen (a great DIY option)

🛌  Top hotels and places to stay in Bergen:

  1. Bergen Børs Hotel (unique 4-star hotel in the old stock exchange building)
  2. Det Hanseatiske Hotel (a high-rated hotel at Bryggen in a 16th-century building)
  3. Hotel Norge by Scandic (at Bybanen Park, next to the light rail station)
  4. Hôtel Charmante (gorgeous boutique hotel a short walk from the harbor)

🚗  Visiting Bergen independently? Be sure to book your Norway rental car ahead of time to ensure availability!

I will break down each month and what there is to do in Bergen during each, including well-known festivals and more. I will also discuss what kind of weather to expect.

Before diving into the individual months, I will give a quick overview of the highs and lows for each season. Please note that things are ever-changing!

Best time to visit Bergen, Norway: a month and season breakdown
Best time to visit Bergen, Norway: a month and season breakdown

Let me know if you have any questions about when to visit Bergen and what to do during each season (and month). Thanks!

Winter in Bergen (December–February)

Bergen’s winter is not particularly the winter you’d expect to have in Norway if basing your trip’s timing on photos.

Winter in Bergen is milder than in many other places in the country and you will have both rainy days and snowy days, depending on the type of winter you have

While I think it is still a great time to visit the Norwegian city, it does come with its downfalls. And one of those downfalls is that the city is pretty dark during the winter months.

However, if you plan and maximize your daylight hours, you can still have a pretty cool trip. In the winter, the short fjord cruises still operate, and you can see a lot of the surrounding nature this way.

You can then spend the rest of the day exploring the rich Bergen restaurant scene before enjoying a drink in the evening. I still think Bergen is a fantastic city break, regardless of when you visit!

Bergen in December

🌡️ Temperature Range: -1°C to 3°C (30.2°F to 37.4°F)
☂️ Average Monthly Rainfall: Around 243 mm (9.5 inches)
❄️ Average Monthly Snowfall: Ranges from 8.8 cm to 17.9 cm (3.4 inches to 7 inches)

If you’re looking to get in the festive spirit, then December is the perfect time to visit Bergen. Temperatures aren’t too cold for winter, and plenty is going on in the city.

The Bergen Christmas Market usually starts the last day or two of November and then runs right through December. Here, you can try delicious treats from food stalls and shop for souvenirs.

Bergen in December
Bergen in December

You can also visit Pepperkakebyen, the world’s largest gingerbread town. It represents Bergen and is made up of miniature houses, cars, and more! Don’t forget to visit the Christmas Shop at Bryggen (even though it’s open year-round).

If skiing is your thing, you’re never too far from Nordic ski trails or downhill skiing opportunities (Voss is a day trip from Bergen and a great place to head for both).

Bergen in January

🌡️ Temperature Range: -1°C to 3°C (30.2°F to 37.4°F)
☂️ Average Monthly Rainfall: Ranges from 211 mm to 244 mm (8.3 inches to 9.6 inches)
❄️ Average Monthly Snowfall: Ranges from 18.1 cm to 22.9 cm (7.1 inches to 9 inches)

New Year’s Eve is a popular event in Bergen, and the city is usually buzzing at this time of year. There are many restaurants and bars open, and a fireworks display takes place at midnight.

Although New Year’s Eve technically falls in December, the festivities and celebrations carry on early into the 1st of January.

Bergen winters are prime cafe season
Bergen winters are prime cafe season

January tends to be quieter than December as the festive season is over, which means you can enjoy the city without the crowds. Popular attractions include Bryggen, the fish market, and the Bergenhus Fortress.

January is a darker month, so be sure to plan your trip ahead of time to maximize the little daylight you will get there. Museums are also a great addition to a Bergen itinerary!

Bergen in February 

🌡️ Temperature Range: -2°C to 3°C (28.4°F to 37.4°F)
☂️ Average Monthly Rainfall: Ranges from 182 mm to 209 mm (7.1 inches to 8.2 inches)
❄️ Average Monthly Snowfall: Ranges from 19.4 cm to 23.1 cm (7.6 inches to 9 inches)

February is considered one of the cheaper months to visit Bergen, even though there are some great events in the city.

One of these is the Bergen Seafood Festival, which typically lasts for a week. During this time, restaurants will hold various events, and free activities are available at the fish market.

Enjoying Bergen's restaurants
Enjoying Bergen’s restaurants

There’s also the Bergen International Literary Festival.

This festival showcases both international and Norwegian literature when it comes to fiction and non-fiction. Here, you’ll get to meet authors from all across the world, including some Norwegian favorites!

Spring in Bergen (March–May)

Spring tends to be my least favorite season in most places, but it is one I love in Bergen.

Why? Well, late spring brings fewer rainy days. May is the driest month, and there are plenty of reasons to celebrate the city then, including Norway’s Constitution Day on May 17th.

If you’ve rented a car, the waterfalls surrounding Bergen will be at their most powerful, and the leaves will start returning to the trees during this time of the year.

You will also find colorful flowers blooming during spring, and it sets the tone for summer in Bergen (another great time to visit).

Bergen in March 

🌡️ Temperature Range: 1°C to 6°C (33.8°F to 42.8°F)
☂️ Average Monthly Rainfall: Ranges from 141 mm to 182 mm (5.5 inches to 7.1 inches)
❄️ Average Monthly Snowfall: Ranges from 6.5 cm to 19.2 cm (2.5 inches to 7.5 inches)

As spring starts to creep in, temperatures start getting warmer in Bergen. This makes it a great time of year for exploring the city!

If the winter is somewhat short, you can start heading out to the trails. Be sure to take in the gorgeous views from Mount Fløyen via the Fløibanen funicular.

The main reason to visit Bergen in March is the Borealis Music Festival. This festival is dedicated to experimental music from Norway and the rest of the world.

Fjords near Bergen in March
Fjords near Bergen in March

Beware that if you visit Bergen during Easter (regardless of whether or not it falls in March or April), you will experience a closed and quiet city.

Norwegians often head to cabins, go skiing, or go with families, and the city shuts down for several days at a time.

Bergen in April

🌡️ Temperature Range: 4°C to 11°C (39.2°F to 51.8°F)
☂️ Average Monthly Rainfall: Ranges from 100 mm to 139 mm (3.9 inches to 5.4 inches)
❄️ Average Monthly Snowfall: Ranges from 0.8 cm to 6.1 cm (up to 2.4 inches)

The weather in Bergen is pleasant in April, with warming temperatures, low precipitation, and not much snowfall. The days are also getting longer.

The Bergen City Marathon takes place in April, which you can either take part in or watch. The atmosphere is fantastic at this event, and runners will receive a medal.

Another popular event at this time of year is Bergen VegFest. It’s the only VegFest in Western Norway, and there are tons of delicious dishes to try (as well as awesome cooking classes).

Bergen in May

🌡️ Temperature Range: 7°C to 14°C (44.6°F to 57.2°F)
☂️ Average Monthly Rainfall: Around 99 mm (3.8 inches) 

May is action-packed with events, making it a fantastic time to visit Bergen.

First of all, the city celebrates Norwegian Constitution Day on the 17th of May, where you can enjoy a day full of activities and celebrations, including a parade.

The Bergen International Festival also takes place, where you can enjoy dance, music, opera, and theater. The Nattjazz (Night Jazz) festival starts in May, and around 80 concerts take place during this time.

May in Bergen
May in Bergen

The Havgapfestivalen Festival is another highlight, as you’ll experience fantastic culture and music. There’s also the 7-Mountains Walking Tour, which is a tradition in Bergen. The full route is 35 km (21 miles).

May is the month with the fewest rainy days, so take advantage of it if your budget permits those high-season prices to come into play!

Summer in Bergen (June–August)

Summer is inevitably the busiest (and perhaps best) time to visit Bergen, Norway.

While hotel prices in Bergen are higher and flights are also more expensive, you will find festivals every month along with comfortable temperatures.

Walking around Gamle Bergen in August
Walking around Gamle Bergen in August

Bergen’s consistent rainfall keeps the city a vivid hue of green, and I honestly think the city is one of the best summer breaks in Europe as it is never too warm.

The summer in Bergen is also a great time for road trips around the region.

Bergen in June 

🌡️ Temperature Range: 10°C to 16°C (50°F to 60.8°F
☂️ Average Monthly Rainfall: Ranges from 101 mm to 112 mm (3.9 inches to 4.4 inches)

June is the perfect month to visit for music lovers. This is when Bergenfest takes place, a 4-day live music festival that usually has around 50 acts (previous artists include Imagine Dragons and Lana Del Ray).

Eggstockfestivalen also takes place in June, a festival that hosts local, up-and-coming artists. The festival is three days long and is free, so it’s a popular event.

Bergan Gay Pride is another event that you can expect to see in June. It’s Norway’s second-largest Pride festival, and over 7 days, there are around 80 different events.

Don’t forget about the Bergen to Voss cycle race, either!

Bergen in July

🌡️ Temperature Range: 11°C to 17°C (51.8°F to 62.6°F)
☂️ Average Monthly Rainfall: Ranges from 113 mm to 130 mm (4.4 inches to 5.1 inches)

July is the hottest month in Bergen, with average temperatures reaching up to 17°C (62.6°F). As such, it’s a great time of year to explore the city.

July also offers plenty of opportunities to explore the nearby area, including fjord day trips and fantastic hiking trails (Bergen is surrounded by seven mountains).

Boat trips around Bergen in July
Boat trips around Bergen in July

Tysnesfest Music Festival takes place at this time of year too. It’s located on Tysnes Island, which you can access by ferry from Halhjem. As well as several music arenas, there’s a market and a small fun fair held here.

Bergen in August

🌡️ Temperature Range: 10°C to 15°C (50°F to 59°F)
☂️ Average Monthly Rainfall: Ranges from 132 mm to 180 mm (5.1 inches to 7 inches)

Temperatures are starting to drop in August, and you’ll start to encounter more rainfall.

A highlight of visiting this city in August is the Bergen Matfestival. This awesome food festival is spread out over the city, where you can visit both food stands and restaurants that present a festival menu.

Bergen Matfestival
Bergen Matfestival

I went one year and got to watch cooking demonstrations from Italian chefs using Western Norwegian ingredients, which was super cool. Please do note that this is at the end of the month and can shift into September.

For music lovers, there’s the Beyond the Gates Festival, which is known for its incredible metal bands. Not to mention the Feelings Music Event, an outdoor festival located at Bergenhus Fortress.

Just be aware that August is a very busy time to visit, so expect crowds.

Fall in Bergen (September–November)

While I love fall in Bergen (because I love fall everywhere), it is the rainiest season in the city. It is not always just rain; it is also storm season.

But, despite all of this, the colors of the trees change inside and outside of the city and it is worth taking a few last road trips before the winter sets in.

Bergen in September 

🌡️ Temperature Range: 7°C to 12°C (44.6°F to 53.6°F)
☂️ Average Monthly Rainfall: Ranges from 182 mm to 223 mm (7.1 inches to 8.7 inches)

Bergen is absolutely beautiful in the fall, thanks to its orange and yellow autumnal colors. The city’s surrounding fjords are dappled in these colors, making it a great time of year to get outside.

Hiking is a popular activity in the fall, and it was one of my favorite months to do the Fløyen-Ulriken hike when the weather played nice.

Hiking Floyen to Ulriken in September
Hiking Floyen to Ulriken in September

In September, Knarvikmila (the Great Fjord Run) also takes place. This international event not only includes several types of runs, but you can also enjoy some fantastic cultural events.

Bergen in October 

🌡️ Temperature Range: 3°C to 8°C (37.4°F to 46.4°F)
☂️ Average Monthly Rainfall: Around 228 mm (8.9 inches)

Although it’s wet, October is a great time to visit if you’re looking to appreciate Bergen’s charm. Thanks to the vibrant fall foliage, the city takes on a new appearance.

The days are shorter in October, and you can expect cool temperatures and plenty of rain and clouds. Luckily, there are some great restaurants and coffee shops in Bergen where you can relax and get cozy.

The Bergen International Film Festival (BIFF) is one of the city’s most popular events, and it takes place in October. It’s the largest film festival in Norway, presenting over 150 feature-length films.

Bergen in November 

🌡️ Temperature Range: 0°C to 4°C (32°F to 39.2°F)
☂️ Average Monthly Rainfall: Around 238 mm (9.3 inches)
❄️ Average Monthly Snowfall: Ranges from 2.1 cm to 8.4 cm (0.8 inches to 3.3 inches)

If you’re looking to get in the festive spirit, then November is a fantastic option if December prices scare you away a bit.

This is when the Christmas lights switch on and the city’s Christmas market starts. So you can enjoy all the dazzling lights as you explore Bergen.

Winter road trip from Bergen in November
Winter road trip from Bergen in November

The Festival of Lights also takes place in November. It’s the ‘traditional annual opening of the Christmas season’, where you can enjoy fireworks, music, and entertainment.

Don’t forget about VILL VILL VEST, a national music and industry festival. Here, you can listen to up-and-coming Norwegian artists.

FAQ about When to Visit Bergen

Which month has the lowest number of rainy days in Bergen?

May! While spring in the United States is rather rainy, Norway’s western coast is a bit different. The rain tends to come during the fall. But don’t get me wrong—Bergen is still rainy in May. It was just a little less rainy than other months.

What is the best season in Bergen?

I guess it is not a season, but I would say May and June are the best months to visit Bergen.

Bergen in late spring is the best (in my opinion)
Bergen in late spring is the best (in my opinion)

Late spring is incredible, as the waterfalls nearby are flowing and the number of rainy days is at its lowest. However, most of summer is also pretty great.

Can you see the northern lights in Bergen? If so, when is the best time?

Yes, you can see the northern lights in Bergen, but will you? Likely not. And I mean, really likely not.

There are some clickbait articles out there currently promoting the northern lights in Bergen, but I think it would be a terrible idea to travel to Bergen for the aurora.

Go north to somewhere like Tromso instead.

Bergen is rainy and cloudy. There is heavy light pollution, and it is also quite far south. So the aurora needs to be powerful to be seen in this part of Norway. Pair that with Bergen’s clouds and light pollution, and it is not the most opportunistic place to see the northern lights.

Disregard whatever articles you see out there promoting Bergen as a northern lights destination.

Do you have any questions about the best time to visit Bergen?

Let me know your questions in the comments, and I will do my best to answer!

More Bergen Travel Guides

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Are you looking for the best time to visit Bergen, Norway? I have been several times and even lived there, so I am breaking down the seasons, month-by-month! | Bergen in winter | Bergen in spring | Bergen in summer | Bergen in January | Bergen in February | Bergen in March | Bergen in May | Bergen in June | Bergen in April | Bergen in December | Bergen in July | Bergen in August

2 thoughts on “Best Time To Visit Bergen, Norway (a Month-by-Month Guide)

  1. Priyanka says:

    This guide beautifully captures the essence of Bergen’s seasonal charm! As a travel enthusiast, I appreciate the detailed breakdown of each month’s highlights. Planning my trip to Norway just got easier with these insightful tips. Can’t wait to experience Bergen’s magic firsthand!
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    • Megan Starr says:

      I am so glad you found the post useful! If you need any help with planning your trip, please reach out to me!

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