Events and festivals in Alta

During the year, many events that bring together the local population in Alta takes place. Also, people travel far to experience what is happening in Alta.

In March every year, the city of Northern Lights is filled with dogs, mushers and handlers. Finnmarksløpet is Europe’s longest dog sled race, and even for experienced dog sledders this is a tough challenge. The race consists of several distances; 600 km, 1200 km and 200 km (junior). If you are in Alta during the Finnmarksløpet, it is absolutely recommended that you enjoy the start or finish in the pedestrian street of one of the distances. The Finnmark Race 2023 starts on Friday 10th of March and the finish line takes place during the following week.

At the same time, the Borealis Winter Festival, a snow and ice art festival is organized in the center of Alta. Ice and snow artist Laila Kolostyak is behind the vast majority of decorations and building processes with snow and ice ahead of Borealis. The snow stage of the opening show is an attraction in itself!

In July, it’s the cyclists’ turn when Offroad Finnmark is held. Offroad Finnmark consists of the three longest and toughest off-road races in Norway. Not only that; OF700 is the longest and toughest off-road race in the world. Under the midnight sun in Europe’s only wilderness, it is man against nature. Cyclists come from all over the world to face Finnmarksvidda and the whole town gathers for a folk festival.

Alta Live is arranged in August. It all started as a festival in a garden in the district of Aronnes, and over the years Aronnesrocken developed into a larger festival at the sports park. In 2019, the entire event moved to the center of Alta and Alta Live became a reality. In 2022, Astrid S, Vamp and Kjartan Lauritzen were among others on stage.

The Halddemarsjen, a traditional hiking march and downhill race, is also organized on the same weekend. GLØD Explorer is the prime mover for the march, which starts in Kåfjord – 15 km south of Alta – and goes up to the disused northern lights observatory on Halddetoppen, 907 meters above sea level.

Sami language week is organized in week 43 all over the country and then there are many events around Alta, including at the museum and the library. The aim of Sami language week is to raise the status of the Sami languages, and to increase knowledge about Sami language and culture throughout society.

“Opplev Alta” is organized 4 weekends a year. This event involves, among other things, a Christmas street opening in November and an autumn hunt in September. In 2022, Sommerfest i Alta was organized under the Opplev Alta event, an event that offered concerts, stand-up and magic shows.