This phenomenon, also called Midnight sun can be experienced in Finnish Lapland (or in the Arctic Circle to be exact) and is the opposite of the polar night that takes place in the winter solstice.
The nightless night phenomenon is due to the slope of the Earth’s axis of rotation relative to its orbit. This means the sun stays above the horizon throughout the entire day.
This event lasts depending on your location between 2,5 months to 29 days in the Northern parts of Finland (and other northern countries) and some days in the Southern part.
Although the sun sets in the southern part of Finland, the so called white days and nights still exist and can be seen. This means the night skies are still clear and blue but the sun is gone. The longest and brightest day is during summer solstice (midsummer).
On this day (or week) the axis has such a great rotation that this phenomenon is not seen in the northern part but only in the south of Finland, where the sun will stay above horizon all night.
How is this phenomenon celebrated?
It is celebrated in honor to the divine god Ukko, the king of the gods in Finnish mythology. He is the god of the weather, harvest and thunder. It was believed that he brings the rain, that makes the harvest great.
The land of the thousands seas. The land where the sun never sets or never rises.
Most Finns have a summerhouse "Mökki" somewhere at a lake with a sauna. And that is the place where all of them go when the summer vacations start to stay there and celebrate, relax and recover.
The Midsummer celebration lasts all day and begins with preparations to invite the good spirits using birch branches that decorate the house and all night to expel the evil with a fire ceremony "Juhannuskokko". You will not come around taking midnight swims and long saunas, delicious food, and usually a lot of drinking is involved. Good storytelling, singing and gaming are a must. Have you tried the Finnish game "Mölkky"? It is a fun game to play with a big group of family and friends. But do not forget to place mosquito smoke somewhere near-by ;-).
Did you get curious and are eager to experience this event?
Come with us and you can experience this phenomena on our last night of the Midsummer Retreat, when we will have our Midsummer celebration „Juhannus“ including our „kokko“, midnight dips into the lake and sauna baths.