Make the Most of the Solstice: 8 Places to Soak Up the Midnight Sun
Midnight Sun (Photo: Flickr/Alfstorm)
If you’re vacationing near the Arctic Circle this summer, be sure to pack extra sunscreen. In Scandinavia, Russia, and Canada, summer “nights” mean Midnight Sun — and Midnight Fun. Locals who have been hibernating in perpetual darkness all winter take any excuse to stay out late and celebrate.
Midnight here feels more like warm sunset or soft twilight; the notion of night and day is blurred. In fact, in the most northern parts of the Arctic, the sun doesn’t set at all between late April and late August.
Most special events are pegged to the summer solstice on June 21, but opportunities to bask in the mystical glow of the Midnight Sun continue through summer. With more daylight hours and warmer temperatures, it’s peak season for outdoor adventures waaay up north — no parka required.
Midnight Sun Baseball Game (Photo: Flickr/Wbur)
Timing a trip with its annual Midnight Sun Festival means also being present for a quirky Fairbanks tradition: The Midnight Sun Baseball game. Dating back to 1904, this annual game is played without use of artificial lights — because none are needed. If you miss the main event on June 21, no worries; the hometown Goldpanners host additional “night” games though July.
Great Northern Arts Festival (Photo: Courtesy gnaf.org)