Lysfesten: Bergen’s Festival of Lights

Every year in Bergen on November 30th huge crowds gather around the lake in the city centre for what has now become a tradition involving the lighting of the city’s Christmas tree and a torchlit parade.

As always the same event took place yesterday although it did so during a torrential rainstorm.  If it had rained as much as this a few thousand years ago Noah would have abandoned his ark in favour of a much more practical submarine!

Never folk to let a little bit of weather get the better of them the Bergensers sang their usual carols and lit torches which always seemed to be in danger of setting fire to the sea of umbrellas festooning the place and stood in their rain-gear to watch the fireworks which ended the Lysfest…


The view across the lake with trees garlanded with lights and the lights of the Fløyban funicular railway climbing up into the rain-laden clouds.


The civic Christmas tree – God Jul.


The very wet fireworks area.


Cold hands being warmed by torch as the rain pours down.


Torchlight and Christmas lights.


Starburst from the fireworks at the end of the Lysfest.


Aerial explosions in the rain.


A glorious red glow in the sky.








About Mjollnir MacAlba
Scottish guy married to a Norwegian and now living in Bergen

35 Responses to Lysfesten: Bergen’s Festival of Lights

  1. Ingrid D. says:

    Looks romantic!

  2. Hanna says:

    Seriøst smukt, Mjollnir

  3. Really atmospheric with the low cloud over the hill!

  4. There is something with lights that always draw the eye. I think to remind us all we are light.

    Awesome photos again! Thank you!

  5. Things look better (a) at night and (b) in rain/fog so add them up and you have something special. Very nice. Besides you can always dress for the rain,
    -12 last night here. -4 now. Was thinking of putting lights on the house today. Emphasis on ‘was.’ :-)

    • Mjollnir says:

      Don’t do it Maurice! You’ll freeze to death. I thought I was dressed for it but rain that heavy is unusual even for Bergen. I had to go to the pub until I dried out! :-D

  6. tootlepedal says:

    What fun you have in Bergen.

  7. Lois says:

    Wow! This looks fabulous!

  8. soonie2 says:

    Spectacular images! It is the season of light!

  9. niasunset says:

    WOW! This is amazing festival, I loved them all. Thank you, with my love, nia

  10. Mike Powell says:

    The show must go on… Your shots of the lights and the colors (and the rain) are spectacular. Sometimes you have to sacrifice for the sake of art. I especially liked the images with the torches.

    • Mjollnir says:

      Thanks Mike. It was a huge downpour all during the event so I was soaked and had to go to the pub to dry out afterwards! :-D

  11. As uncomfortable as it was, you still managed to get some fine shots. Actually, I like the effect of the rain and the fog. The hillside image is soft and wonderful and I like the torch shots too. Altogether a profitable evening, I’d say! :-)

    • Mjollnir says:

      Thank you very much George. More wet than profitable considering I spent far too much money in the pub straight afterwards! :-D

  12. Beautiful shots, but I see in the comments that it was cold and wet, perhaps I’d go straight to the pub afterwords too :)

  13. Reblogged this on Vector Charley and commented:
    God, Jul!

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