Discover the Aurora Borealis on Your Next Holiday
Picture the most glorious light show you can think of, dial that up a notch, and you're about halfway there to picturing the aurora borealis. This spectacular natural phenomenon has captured millions of tourists around the globe, and for good reason. The aurora borealis lights up the Northern Hemisphere, and will truly make your holiday experience memorable.
Resulting from gaseous particles in the Earth's atmosphere as charged particles are released from the sun's atmosphere, the northern lights, also known as aurora borealis, light up the sky with bright dancing colours in the Northern Hemisphere.
Showing off many colours of the rainbow, pale green and pink are the two most common shades that light up the sky. Extending as high as 640 kilometres, the northern lights are one activity for your bucket list and a holiday you'll never forget.
Some quick tips on spotting the northern lights successfully include:
- Seek out dark skies, escaping the city lights will give you a better chance of seeing the aurora borealis
- Go during winter seasons, this gives you higher chances due to extended darkness
- Clear skies are always essential, cloud cover will limit your sighting
- Learn how to photograph the aurora borealis, it can be a tricky task with glowing lights
- Try to give yourself as much opportunity to see the northern lights as possible. They're a natural phenomenon, so giving yourself more than one night to see them will increase your chances!
Our top cities for the aurora borealis follows, don't miss out on seeing this spectacular show!
The majestic colours of the aurora borealis can be seen all over Iceland. As hotels can get quite expensive over this time, consider bringing your wet weather gear, and setting up a tent. This is truly the best way to discover the northern lights up close and personal.
Filled with fishing villages and extensive nature, Norway is one place you will never forget. From October to March, the northern lights dip in and out of the night sky. Consider purchasing a cheap cabin for your northern lights experience, but be sure to pre-plan your trip well in advance to score the best deal. Be fast, hotels can book out quickly during the popular months for viewing the aurora borealis.
From September to March the night sky lights up like a rainbow in Finland, making this one of the most popular destinations to visit for sighting the aurora borealis. As the temperatures can get quite cold, remember your wet weather gear to keep warm and dry for those cold winter nights.
Lying within the arctic circle, Russia is one of the most optimal places to view the spectacular northern lights. If you really want to see a spectacular light show, plan your trip between the months of December and January. Even though these months are the coldest, they are proven to have the best lights on display. Consider hiring a car to drive around the peak northern lights spots, to truly experience them like a local.
This quiet island country is the perfect spot for viewing the lights quietly like a local. With little to no roads and minimal transport, prepare to be fully submerged in the true culture of Greenland. From mid-August to late April, the northern lights are on full show. However, be prepared for cloudy nights and little lights. The aurora borealis is sometimes hard to catch a glimpse of when the winter air is in full force, creating a cloudy night sky.
With milder weather, Sweden can be a hot-spot for viewing the northern lights. From mid-September to the end of March, the northern border of Sweden is the best viewing point. Even though lights aren't always 100% guaranteed, be sure to do your research for viewing hotspots to better your chances of seeing the spectacular northern lights.
7. Northern Canada
For those seeking wildlife, nature and natural surrounds, northern Canada is the place for you. From August to mid-April, the northern lights are in full force. Perhaps set up a tent or hire a caravan to really get close to nature. If Canada is your ideal location to view the northern lights, consider booking a cheap flight through Skyscanner to lock in your best holiday deal.
Enjoy your spectacular light show this winter, wherever you choose to go.