The Best Places to see the Aurora Borealis
The Northern Lights or Aurora Borealis are an incredible natural phenomenon and seeing them is a true bucket list experience. But where are the best places to view these amazing lights? From as close to home as Norway to as far afield as Canada’s Yukon, we have ideas for everyone for the 2021/2022 season!
Thanks to its location within the Arctic Circle, Fairbanks, Alaska is known as one of the best places in the world to see the Northern Lights. They are most visible between August and May, with the sweet spot between 22:00 and 02:00 every night.
Stay at Bettles Lodge, a fly-in property located in a prime spot under the aurora band of highest frequency activity. Staff here even provide wake up calls when the viewing is at its best so you won’t miss a thing (or any sleep)!
Tromso, Norway is the perfect location to see the Lights closer to home, with the best time to visit between October and March. Visit in January to get the chance to attend the annual Northern Lights Festival too. The town of Tromso itself is a great place to stay, with more pubs and bars per capita than anywhere else in Norway.
Stay at the Thon Hotel, in the centre of the city, for the perfect duality of city excitement and a front row seat to Mother Nature!
Kiruna is a remote area of Swedish Lapland that offers a more unique Northern Lights experience. The best time to visit is between October and March, although they may be visible a little outside of these months during periods of clear weather.
Lulea is another great option, which offers a host of other winter activities alongside Aurora Borealis viewing, including dog sledding and ice fishing.
The Northern Lights can be viewed up to 200 nights of the year in Finland. As well that, you can also go dog sledding, ice fishing and snowmobiling. Rovaniemi is also the home of Santa so a trip to Finnish Lapland could make a magical Christmas holiday for the family.
To make your trip extra special, spend a night or two at the Arctic TreeHouse Hotel.
With its otherworldly landscape, geothermal pools and volcano tours, Reykjavik is also a popular place to see the Northern Lights. For the best viewing, visit between September and April.
Spend time at Hotel Katla in the more isolated region of Vik in southern Iceland for an uninterrupted Northern Lights encounter. From here, you can also take snowmobiling tours, play a round of golf at the nearby course, or go for a glacier hike.
You cannot get much more remote than the Yukon, in the north west of Canada’s vast expanse. Its location in the Arctic Circle makes an incredible location for viewing the Aurora Borealis from August to April.
Stay in your own cabin at Southern Lakes Resort, which is accessible only by floatplane from Whitehorse. As well as the Northern Lights, go dog sledding with the resort’s own pack of huskies.