kalsoy in winter

Faroe Islands in December | Nature, Events and Tours

By Verified Expert

What can you do in the Faroe Islands in December? Is it dark and cold? What is the weather like? Can I still take day tours? How do Faroe Islanders celebrate Christmas and New Year’s Eve? Continue reading to get to know everything you need to know to plan your own December vacation in the Faroe Islands.

December is the month when the Faroe Islands gets dressed up in its winter gear. Visiting the Faroe Islands this time of year is an unforgettable experience. You are sure to be served with a fresh, clean winter breeze making it the ideal setting for a winter vacation.

Faroe Islands in December is a serene natural escape. Travelling throughout Faroe Islands during this winter month will reward you with a much quieter and less crowded experience. With a bit of preparation and planning, you can enjoy the wintery landscapes in the Faroe Islands too. Here are some ideas for what to do during December in the Faroe Islands.

The Northern Lights seen from Norðradalsskarð a 15 minutes drive from Tórshavn along the road Oyggjavegurin. Photo by Mortan Mortensen.

The Faroe Island’s landscapes and the towns and villages can be blanketed in snow, but there is no snow guarantee throughout the month. On the other side, you are guaranteed more hours of darkness than light each day. December is the darkest month of the year.

The sun will only appear on the sky for just more than five hours. This is why most day tours are closed during the peak of winter as there is simply not that much daylight for exploring. Instead, the Faroe Islanders and travellers alike celebrate the quietness and peacefulness of the Faroe Islands winter.

As always, you can drive around the country and be blown away by the beauty that nature beholds. There are also some day tours running, though, that you can join. All boat tours are closed for winter.

Horse riding is one of the outdoor activities that you can do in December. Tours are made from Tórshavn. Photo by @panpapaioannou on Instagram.

There are some things that will leave travellers better off when coming to the Nordic archipelago in winter. Here are some of the good reasons why to consider visiting the Faroe Islands in December.

  • There are very, very few other travellers in the Faroe Islands in December
  • Accommodation is cheaper as this is low-season
  • Car rentals are less costly than during the summer months
  • You are more likely the get a good deal on flight tickets

Visiting Faroe Islands in December is more about everything calm and quiet. It is about leaving the busy and noisy metropoles behind and entering a peaceful hide-away that will let you unplug for a while.

The Faroe Islanders celebrate christmas and they also do their christmas shopping but it is still done at a slow pace. You will see people chatting to each other in the local grocery store and in the daytime stillness is presence.

Christmas in Tórshavn

Christmas in Tórshavn city centre. Photo by Ólavur Frederiksen.

The capital Tórshavn is filled with all sorts of cosy Christmas events and activities. The christmas village makes its annual return to the city centre and the houses and trees here are packed with sparkly lights.

You can also take a spin around the ice in Tórshavn’s ice rink situated at Vaglið just outside the town hall. Open throughout the month of December it is a great alternative to an afternoon of shopping. The ice rink is open for everyone, for the clumsy and not so clumsy alike.

Best completed on a crisp, clear wintry evening, go for a walk on the path Rossagøtan on the hillside above Tórshavn. Along the way you will walk to the Havnardalur valley. You will find it easy to connect with nature even though you will still have the city as a backdrop.  

Later in the evening you can go for some vintage inspired cocktails in the critically acclaimed restaurant Tarv that serves lovely drinks on the lower floor. This place right next to the Tórshavn marina also has a couple of beers that are brewed specially for the restaurant. You do not have to dine at the restaurant in order to hang out in the cosy cocktail room.

What to do in the Faroe Islands in December

The Tórshavn marina. Photo by Faroephoto.

Tórshavn has a lot to offer in December, which might sound like a surprise due to its small size. You will always find cosy activities when you are looking for things to do in the capital. Experiences like live concerts at some of the best venues or a local beer tasting event in the old part of town.

Then there are all the classic spots around the country that really makes visitors come to the Faroe Islands. Most attractions are open but there are also several that are closed such as Slættaratindur and Mykines. It can be too dangerous to climb the highest mountain Slættaratindur when it is covered in snow and the surface icy. Mykines is only open from May to August. It can also be quite risky to hike to one of the favourite spots Kallur Lighthouse and if your really eager to go there anyway, it is recommended that you do so with a tour guide.

The long dark evenings suites for star gazing. There will be evenings and nights with clear skies. You might also be lucky to experience the aurora borealis. As the dancing light on the night sky is a natural phenomenon, there is no northern lights guarantee but this is one of the months when you are most likely to get a glimpse of this natural wonder.

You can also go for some of the top attractions that are open throughout the year such as the village Saksun hidden deep in the Saksunardalur valley, there is the tallest waterfall Fossá, that you will find on your way to the serene settlement Tjørnuvík. In the most northernly village, you will find Viðareiði in breathtaking surroundings.

Faroe Islands New Year’s Eve

New Year’s Eve in the capital Tórshavn as seen from the suburb Argir. Photo by Ólavur Frederiksen.

New Year’s Eve in the Faroe Islands is something else. It gets quite spectacular as everyone are allowed to shoot fireworks. The experience is impressive in all larger villages and in towns around the islands as the night sky is lit up by colourful fireworks.

You will also see lots of distress signal rockets, which will shine bright red for a couple of minutes. These belong to fishermen who add something extra to the festivities. The rockets expires and once a year on New Year’s Eve, old rockets can be seen everywhere as they are replaced by new once onboard small and large fishing vessels. The rockets appear in the air hours before midnight and everything culminates at 12 o’clock.

Coming to the Faroe Islands during New Year is definitely worth it. New Year’s Eve in the Faroe Islands is a hidden treasure, so… hush.

Faroe Islands Weather in December

December is one of the coldest month in the Faroe Islands. Photo by @panpapaioannou on Instagram.

As always in the Faroe Islands, the weather is unpredictable. December is no exception. So when you are preparing your journey, make sure to take into account the unpredictableness of the Faroe Islands weather. This is also key when you start to pack for Faroe Islands.

Average temperature in December will be quite stable around 5°C (41°F) during the daytime. It will rarely fall below -5°C (23°F) and never exceed 10°C (50°F). Snow is common but not a guarantee. Most days will see snow capped mountains and the coastline less so.

December is the darkest month of the year in the Faroe Islands. There are less than six hours of day light in the beginning of December and on New Year’s Eve, there are five and a half hours of sunlight. On winter solstice on 21 December, the day is five hours and eight minutes long.

 Sunrise TimeSunset TimeHours of Light
December 1st09.2115.115 hrs 49 mins
December 31th09.5115.105 hrs 19 mins

The sun will rise late and set early in the afternoon which gives you few hours to explore in daylight. But the evenings and nights also hold some truly magical moments.

Try driving to a place in the mountains with no artificial light at all, stop by the roadside, and step out of the car. On clear evenings with no wind, you will get an absolutely unbelievable experience. You will witness the stillness of the untouched nature in the middle of the North Atlantic.

Far away from the crowds. Photo by Michael Franz known as @maufderlauer on Instagram.

Roads are in good condition throughout the year. On snowy days the snow will be cleared continuously so no worries not being able to get back to your accommodation.

Travelling to the Faroe Islands in December is a stress-free way to enjoy some days in an otherwise busy month. A visit here during this winter month will leave you well rested and rejuvenated.

Planning to visit the Faroe Islands? Check out how to get to the Faroe Islands by plane and take the next step.

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