WHERE TO SEE THE NORTHERN LIGHTS
People call this amazing natural phenomenon differently: aurora, aurora, rainbow, luminescence, fox lights, southern lights (when the sky over Antarctica is lit), splashes. But another thing is important: this spectacle of incredible beauty must be seen at least once in your life! Northern lights can be observed on both sides of the Arctic Circle: in the countries of Norway, Sweden, Finland, Switzerland, as well as Iceland, Greenland, northern US, Canada, Alaska and Siberia.
Ancient legends say: this wonderful glow arises during a fox hunt when their tails touch a stone. But today we know that this phenomenon is due to the increased activity of the sun, in which the solar particles, in contact with the lower layers of the atmosphere (nitrogen and oxygen), glow with all the colors of the rainbow, smoothly turning and flowing one into another. Luxurious green-red-purple light dance!
What factors should be considered
Behind the elusive and unpredictable phenomenon – the Northern Lights – this is a real hunt, special tours are organized. But at the same time an absolute guarantee that travelers will see it, no. What to pay attention to?
• Observation point – north of the Arctic Circle;
• clear cloudless sky;
• lack of nearby city light;
• winter time (November-February);
• time of day – night.
By the way, in some hotels in the service they keep a special person watching the night sky in order to timely notify (more precisely, wake) the guests. Now the main question: where to go, to still look at the magical heavenly phenomenon? Let’s call several verified places.
Tromso in Norway
Take a tour to Tromso in Norway and you will be provided with a fabulous journey! Everything is organized here: at a strictly designated time, tourists sit in minibuses to get to the best observation deck, away from cities.
Northern cape of Norway
Book a cruise boat – and go on a trip to the Norwegian fjords in the light of amazing white nights. On the way to your dream, you will also be able to see the Lofoten Islands, Trondheim and Tromso with all their charms.
Svalbard in Norway
Go to the archipelago for the brightest Northern Lights should be during the polar nights (until the end of March). Just think: you will be so close to the North Pole! Here you can also admire animals: deer, seals, walruses, polar bears. Infrastructure is well developed on the islands, roads are perfect, and hotels with huge panoramic windows will allow you to watch the wonders of nature right from your room!
Extreme fans will be able to join walking or snowmobile walking trips, as well as go dog sledding in pursuit of fox fires. Even dog trips across the archipelago are organized. Overnight stays are provided in the schooner-hotel right on the eternal ice and on an abandoned radio station.
Canadian Great Lakes in Ontario
You have to get to the Upper Lake and experience the wild cold, riding a snowmobile, rushing to point X. But then – admiring the games of light in the sky, a hot sauna with beer and lots of memories.
Reykjavik in Iceland
A trip to a small polar town with good infrastructure and nightlife and you are on the spot. Just consider: to see the heavenly spectacle, it is better to leave the city with its night lights.
Iceland, Snayfellsnes Peninsula
A narrow strip of land with an extinct volcano, fields of hardened lava, caves, glacial outcrops — this is the lunar landscape of the peninsula. On an uneven steep coast live fishermen in the villages. In the most distant of them, Budir, it is excellent to observe the radiance in the night sky. And here you can make exciting walks on snowmobiles and quad bikes.
The same picture as in Reykjavik: hotels, restaurants and the opportunity to see the bright northern lights outside the city.
Swedish Abisko National Park
This is a beautiful place of nature, and it is here that the Aurora Sky Station SIC is located, to which the cable car is laid and where you can stay for the night. True, without amenities, but you will enjoy an unforgettable action – the northern lights in all its glory (of course, if you are lucky with the weather)!
Finnish villages Utsjoki and Ivalo
These villages are located in the north of Finland far from big cities. The shining of the heavenly lights here is not only a frequent phenomenon (up to 200 times a year), but also bright and very rich! You can not say, for example, about Helsinki.
Finnmark County in Norway
This is where you have to go if you want to visit the northernmost city in the world, Alta. Evidence that you can accurately see and photograph the aurora is an observatory located in Alta since the end of the 19th century, specially created to observe the northern lights. You can also have fun in Finnmark with a diving hunt for king crabs and hiking on snowmobiles and dog sledding with overnight stays in huts.