Best time to visit Svalbard

Longyearbyen Camping in Svalbard 2024

Have you ever wondered what it’s like to have a nap under the midnight sun instead of a starry sky?

Best time: June–August

Longyearbyen Camping

There are many rules for pitching tents or making fires in Svalbard with the main condition being that plants should not be damaged and that your site must be completely cleared when you depart. Bonfires should be lit by the water and on the ground without any grass. Tents must be pitched 100 or more meters away from protected private cultural heritage cabins and sites. If you are aiming to camp in Svalbard, you are required to prepare yourself properly for protection from polar bears—suitable deterrents and firearms should be accessible quickly in the camp.

In Svalbard, there are also equipped campsites available near the shore on high beach crests. These tents are located four km from the Longyearbyen airport. You can even find Arctic terns breeding between the coastal lagoons next to the campsite. There is also an opportunity to see polar foxes and reindeer there.

The camping season is June to August. It's not only the closest option to nature but also the cheapest form of accommodation. Just mind that due to the time it takes for snow to melt, early summer can be a bit wet.

In other seasons Longyearbyen camping doesn't operate. Spring is too cold to enjoy camping (-25 °C). May is also wet. And polar winter means 24 hours of darkness each day, and hungry invisible polar bears.

Practical info

What are the rules for camping in Svalbard?

Camping in Svalbard requires following specific rules. This includes ensuring no damage to the plants, clearing sites completely before leaving, and lighting bonfires near the water and on the ground without grass. Tents should be placed at least 100 meters from any conservation sites or protected cultural heritage cabins. Show more

What should you do for protection from polar bears while camping in Svalbard?

Given the potential threat of polar bears while camping in Svalbard, it is recommended that campers prepare with deterrents and firearms. The best practices involve using an alarm system connected to tripwires around your tent to alert you in case of any approaching danger. Firearms can be rented or taken along as per the situation's demands. To minimize bear encounters, safety guidelines must be observed regularly. Show more

Where are the equipped campsites located in Svalbard?

Equipped campsites in Svalbard are situated close to the shore on high beach crests, roughly 4 km away from Longyearbyen Airport. Arctic terns breeding, coastal lagoons, and the possibility of seeing polar foxes and reindeers make this area even more picturesque. Show more

When is the camping season in Svalbard?

The ideal time for camping in Svalbard is from June to August. During this time, the chances of exploring wilderness and encountering polar bears are higher. But early summers may be rainy due to snow melting; therefore, it is good to check the weather forecast before heading for camping in Svalbard. Show more

What are the other seasons when Longyearbyen camping doesn't operate in Svalbard?

Longyearbyen camping does not operate during seasons other than summer (June-August) and winter. The weather in spring is too chilly for comfortable camping, and late May may be wet. During winters, polar bears may get hungry, making it potentially dangerous to camp without the necessary precautions. Furthermore, there are 24 hours of complete darkness in winter. Show more

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Last updated:
Authors: Olha Savych