Halloween in Norway

Not too long ago, Halloween used to be an American tradition that rest of the world only knew through the movies. It is a relatively new phenomenon in Norway, as it has been “imported” in the late 90s. But it has rapidly caught on as a tradition and it’s now quite common (at least in bigger cities) to see groups of kids trick-or-treating and shops full of pumpkins decorated in orange and black from early October.

Each October 31, many houses are decorated with candles, bats and pumpkins. Halloween is highly celebrated in schools and kindergartens, where kids wear their costume the day of Halloween or the Friday before – in the case that Halloween falls on a weekend.

Halloween decorations at Oslo Hostel Haraldsheim
Halloween decorations at Oslo Hostel Haraldsheim

Trick-or-treating is maybe the most famous Halloween tradition. Children wear their costume and go from house to house asking for treats such as candies. If the kids don’t get the treats, the trick happens. Usually, it’s is a mischief performed for homeowners as a small punishment. Instead of saying “trick or treat” in English when the door is opened, Norwegian kids say “knask eller knep” or “digg eller deng” which both mean about the same thing as the English phrase.

Carved pumpkins at the Oslo Hostel Haraldsheim
Carved pumpkins at the Oslo Hostel Haraldsheim

Another tradition that has also been imported to Norway is the pumpkin carving. The top of the pumpkin is cut off and the inside flesh then scooped out; then, a face is carved out of the pumpkin. To create the lantern effect, a light source (such as a candle) is placed inside the jack-o’-lantern.

Pumpkin carving at the Oslo Haraldsheim Hostel
Pumpkin carving at the Oslo Haraldsheim Hostel

Even the adults dress up to go to parties at night. A lot of pubs are preparing for Halloween in every city in Norway, so if you are spending the weekend here, you will not be bored! Some museums also organize Halloween activities on 31st October, such as the Munch Museum’s spooky storytelling and film screening.

Don’t miss the chance to spend Halloween in Norway!

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