The Significant four seasons in Norway and Sweden

Changes in the seasons are normal of course in the Northern hemisphere, and the further north you go, the more significant the contrasting seasons are. These changes make a great deal of difference from winter to summer, especially in Norway, Sweden and Finland. As always, the sceneries in nature demonstrates it the best, so let me give you an example showing two pictures from our vacation home town in Sweden:

Winter in Mariestad Sweden #2
Mariestad, February 2009.

It’s snowy and with fresh, crisp air and a low sun. However, three months later, there is quite a greener look:

Flower bed at spring in Mariestad, Sweden
Mariestad, May 2009.

Notice the flowerbed: From covered with snow to colourful bloom! Btw; Can you guess why this is typical Swedish colours?

The change in the scenery does not have to take very long. Let me give you an example from a view my regular readers have seen before:

Horse in spring water at a ranch
A horse ranch in Norway April 6th.

Rance at spring in Norway #2
The same ranch at May 25th.

Of course all this various from the south to the north, from sea level and up in the mountains. Oslo is on latitude 60°, where as North Cape is on 71°1′8″N. In a post from up north in Kirkenes, I told you the temperature could change from winter -50C (-58F) to +30 (86F). It’s not that big of a different in Oslo: more like from -20C (-4F) to +25C (77F).

I love all four seasons, also because of the dramatic changes and every one of them reminds you that nature is always there, although in hibernation from time to time. I can also assure you; you learn to treasure and appreciate a warm summer day at the beach when you are swimming around thinking of that in 6 month, you can go skating on the same water :-)

Another significant different in the Nordic, is of course the duration of daylight. In Oslo, the shortest day is about 6 hours and the longest 19 hours – not to mention at North Cape, where for about three month the sun never goes down: The land of the midnight sun you know.
In three weeks, we’ll have summer solstice and the sun doesn’t go down before almost 11PM. I guess you can imagine we are treasuring the long summer nights too :-)

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  1. We have significant seasons here too, Renny. Our temps range from summertime highs of around 110F to wintertime lows of -5F. Of course extremes can be higher or lower.

    Our shortest Winter days are about 9 hours and the longest Summer days are about 16 hours long, with sunrise at 5 am and sunset at 9 pm.

    Hope you, Diane and your family have a wonderful Sunday! :-)

    Love and hugs,


  2. Renny – I love the comparisons. And I definitely love the long long long long summer days! I think of you when it turns to summer. I’m not sure why I think of you more in the summer – maybe the enjoyment of the sunshine outdoors? Beautiful photos!

  3. i think your place my place have the same season. Great photos Renny. Thanks for sharing it. Hope you had a wonderful weekend :)

  4. These are such gorgeous pictures. I would love to find an Erasmus exchange partner for my business school in a Scandanvian country. Feel free to zap me an email if you have any contacts in the education biz, preferably business schools with programs in English.

  5. I am usually happy to wake in the morning sunshine. But not at 5:45 on a Sunday morning! The puppy mommy literally knocked at my door as she wanted to see me! Quite confusing to be asleep in your house and suddenly hear knocking on your bedroom door! I was sure something was very wrong. But no. Just my Anneliese who is a dog of many talents!

  6. Amazing contrasting pictures. Both sets are very beautiful. While the flowing sping is always pretty, there is poetry even in icescapes during winters.

  7. According to the Aboriginal people of Australia, there are eight seasons in the year. I have heard what they are, but unfortunately can’t remember. Because we’re subtropical, we don’t have the great variation in seasons. The days do get shorter, in fact our shortest day is here in three weeks. Mainly our seasons are cool and dry (winter) and hot, wet and humid (summer). Although in the months that you would call spring and autumn, the weather is just perfect. Cool nights, so we can sleep, and warm days where we can still wear summer clothes.

  8. What fantastic pictures! I will try that taking the same scene at different times of year. You have no idea how much I want to go to Scandinavia every time read your blog…

  9. This is absolutely my favorite time of year in Norway. I never get tired of the changing scenery though; it’s a constant reminder that the earth is far greater than any of us individuals.

  10. this is the 1st time i’ve seen that many blue flowers! they’re lovely. :D

    and the ranches look neat. your side of the world is pretty in all seasons. :D

  11. Love the flowerbed with the colours of Sweden! Sounds Anaïs will stay north Europa and live the four season you know!!! my new blog will soon ready! I’m very excited!

  12. Yes, it’s all about taking advantage of every second with the sun for me!!!!! And these last days have been fabulous!!!! I’ve loved it, but now they tell us that ot’s going to be lower temps again and even rain…. *sigh*

    Hey, where are your drinks….? We’re having a party over here and do we really have to drink it all by ourselves? *giggles*

  13. I never thought about the origin of the colors actually. I could cheat and ask my wife (who’s Swedish) but I’ll guess that the blue has something to do with water?

    Nice try Anil, but if you asked your wife, she would probably say it could have something to do with the Swedish flag :-)

  14. Same in Canada, but you already know that! I should take pictures at the same place through seasons like you did. Great idea!

  15. I tell people that I am Swedish/Norwegian and no one believes me because I have red hair. So are there any redheads in Scandinavia? And both sets of my grandparents live in sweden or norway btw.

    Oh yea, there are redheads in Scandinavia.

  16. No matter how the season and climate changes, Norway is still as beautiful. And the descendents of the Vikings are such brave and kind people. :)

  17. Renny, the lanscape showed in the photos are amazing. I always like this extraordinary combination of colours and how they are together in harmony within the four seasons.

    Oh God! 9 hours for short days + 19 hours for long ones is a huge variation yet it’s compatible with the nature. I know the people thier used to this but always makes me wonder :)

  18. I admire you on how you differentiate climate and also using the pics for us to understand more. It was really a pleasure reading this kind of article, it is very informative and well said. Great job Renny.

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